CC: How safe do you feel on the cruise?EF: We feel very safe. We will do another test on Wednesday. (American passengers on Paul Gauguin end up taking at least three COVID-19 tests -- one within 72 hours of their flight to Tahiti, one at arrival and another four days after their arrival.)CC: How full is the ship, and are there other Americans?EF: There ended up being 54 of us on 350 capacity -- 32 Americans and the others French. It's frankly like being on a private mega yacht. It's all to ourselves.CC: Are you regular cruiser?EF: My husband and I have been cruising for 31 years. (We've done) all the lines, but "cruising during COVID" is quite an experience. But it can be done.CC: What is the biggest adjustment?EF: Adjusting to mask wearing. But I have to adjust because travel is our passion, and I really don't want to continue (staying) in the house. We already had several trips cancel this year. It's our 40th wedding anniversary so this cruise made up for a lot.CC: Were you nervous about traveling so far?EF: I was nervous but my husband was not. Had a 72-hour test before and one at arrival, so I know everyone on here is healthy. All anxiety gone!CC: What is it like interacting with the other passengers, at a distance and with masks?EF: We're all adjusting to a new normal. Once you sit at a table or bar, you can take your mask off. You must have your forehead scanned in front of this machine for temperature before entering the dining room.CC: What about shore excursions? (Unlike some of the European cruise lines, Paul Gauguin is not requiring passengers to take ship-sponsored excursions.)EF: A few were canceled since it's such a small group and wouldn't make the minimum.
(5:50 p.m. EDT) -- A report issued by U.S. Federal Maritime Commissioner Louis E. Sola concluded that, "when considered on a per capita basis, there may not be another state in the Nation paying as high a cost from passenger ships not sailing than Alaska."
The latest in a series of in-depth assessments into the impact of the cruise industry's shutdown on the U.S economy, the report notes that the cancellation of the entire Alaskan cruise season because of the COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected Alaskans, as many state towns are heavily dependent on cruise tourism.
"While tourism benefits all our Northwestern states, it is one of three pillars of t