1st cruise ship to sail from US as industry seeks comeback


The Celebrity Edge cruise ship is docked at Port Everglades, Tuesday, June 22, 2021, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The Celebrity Edge is set to sail on Saturday from Fort Lauderdale. It will be the first cruise ship to leave a U.S. port with ticketed passengers since the onset of the pandemic, which halted sailing. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

MIAMI (AP) — The first cruise ship to board passengers at a U.S. port in 15 months is set to sail Saturday from the industry’s South Florida hub.

The sendoff will mark a symbolic stride toward normalcy for the U.S. where vaccines are curbing the COVID-19 outbreak.

For many Americans, the global pandemic first hit home through news of deadly cruise ship outbreaks, with guests quarantined for weeks and ill passengers carried away on stretchers at ports.

But customers booked on the Celebrity Edge’s voyage out of Fort Lauderdale are confident it will be smooth sailing with at least 95% of those onboard vaccinated. Companies are aware the world is watching.

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