(1:18 p.m. EST) -- Royal Caribbean has quietly revised its onboard mask policy, announcing masks will no longer be required in areas of the vessel designated for vaccinated passengers only as of sailings departing after February 14.
The update -- which was made to Royal Caribbean's Healthy Sail Center webpage -- follows news from Norwegian Cruise Line, which announced Tuesday it would scrap onboard mask usage for sailings departing after March 1, 2022.
Royal Caribbean still requires masks to be worn indoors and when physical distancing cannot be maintained. Voyages departing up to and including February 14, 2022 will still require masks to be worn in all areas of the ship, while sailings departing after February 14 will revert back to the masking policy Royal Caribbean had in place last summer, which allowed masks to be removed once in areas of the ship designated as vaccinated-only. This includes select bars and lounges, the ship's casino, and designated dining venues.
Masks are still required in ports of call where local regulations dictate.
Royal Caribbean becomes the latest line to relax its onboard policies surrounding COVID-19, in line with what is happening in many U.S. and Canadian states and provinces as the omicron wave gradually subsides.
Guests under the age of two do not need to wear a mask.
"We are continually evaluating mask policies as public health standards and government regulations evolve," notes the Royal Caribbean website. "Booked guests will be advised of the latest requirements for their port of departure before sailing."