Royal Caribbean to drop COVID-19 testing requirement for some guests

An undated image of Royal Caribbean's Mariner of the Seas cruise ship. Handout photo via Royal Caribbean. (Royal Caribbean International)

The Royal Caribbean cruise line plans to drop its COVID-19 testing requirement for some guests starting on Aug. 8, according to a statement on its website.

The only guests who will need to test for the virus before they board a ship are those who are unvaccinated. Officials said those who are vaccinated will only need to take a test if they go on sailings that are six nights or longer.

"We are currently developing updated protocols that provide for the continued safety of our guests, crew, and the communities we visit, better align with the travel and hospitality sector, and meet destination regulations. This means we’re transitioning to the point where everyone will be able to vacation with us," the cruise line said in a statement.

Prior to the change in protocol, all guests were required to provide a negative COVID-19 test result before boarding.

All crew members will continue to be fully vaccinated and tested regularly.