Carnival CEO has 'no idea' when cruises will sail again

'We know that day is coming. We just don't know exactly when': Arnold Donald

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Carnival Corp. CEO Arnold Donald he's unsure when the cruise line industry will recover from the cancellations caused by the coronavirus pandemic, he admitted to FOX Business' Liz Claman on Thursday.

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"At this point, we're taking the reservations, but clearly, we have no idea what the rest of the world, when we'll be in a position to sail again," Donald said on "The Claman Countdown." "We know that day is coming. We just don't know exactly when. We just have to wait and see when the world is ready for a social gathering."

Due to coronavirus, people around the globe have canceled their travel plans. Governments and health officials have warned the public to avoid boarding cruise ships and long flights.

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Donald believes until travelers feel comfortable gathering in large groups again, his company will continue to be paused. He reminded cruisers his industry won't change terribly much after all this since there were already stringent cleaning processes on cruise ships.

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"We already had a medical record screening," Donald noted. "We already had temperature scanning. We already had the hand sanitizers throughout the ship. We already had signs everywhere about washing your hands. And we have a medical facility on board. And those things existed previously because we sail around the world."

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Donald pointed to the various diseases around the world, such as Ebola, Zika and MERS, the cruise industry already had to prevent onboard. But once new protocols for COVID-19 are determined, Donald assured people his company will take those actions.

But before reopening, Carnival still has a lot to do.

"We still have environmental practices that we have to execute, and we still have crew aboard," Donald explained. "In fact, we have well over 50,000 crew that we're still looking at repatriating back to their home countries because of the difficulty of moving people around with borders being closed and limited travel options."

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A recent study found nearly two-thirds of travelers will reduce their travel plans over the next year.

The top three cruise lines in the U.S. – Carnival Corp, Royal Caribbean Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings – are holding out for sail dates in June.