Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas kicked off the highly anticipated comeback of the summer season when it departed on the first of a series of 7-night cruises from Seattle. The sailing marks a celebratory moment for the cruise industry, local workforce, regional suppliers and Alaska’s beloved communities that were significantly impacted by the absence of all cruise tourism, which normally represents more than 60% of the state’s visitors and generates upwards of $3 billion for its economy each year. Ninety-seven percent of the entire onboard community on Serenade is fully vaccinated.
Serenade sets course for classic cities and quaint towns like Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan and Icy Strait Point, Alaska, as well as the jaw-dropping Endicott Arm fjord and Dawes Glacier. The ship will be joined by Ovation of the Seas in Seattle starting 13 August rounding out Royal Caribbean’s great Alaska comeback in 2021.
Commenting, Michael Bayley, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean International, said:
“Cruising in Alaska is finally back, and we are excited to be the first to return. Alaska is one of the most popular destinations among our guests, especially families with young kids – children who are ineligible for the vaccine today.
“We are grateful for the support of our partners and health authorities. This is a return that is significantly felt by many, including those whose communities rely on cruise tourism.”