Just received this info from CLIA this morning:
Important Updated Cruise Travel Information
There are several changes that the U.S. government will be implementing in the coming months that will impact your cruise clients. Please review the following information and communicate these messages with them.
Effective February 18, 2008 - Passengers MUST be on board at least one hour prior to departure
Cruise ships departing from U.S. ports will be required by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, to provide the full passenger and crew manifest to the U.S. government 60 minutes prior to departure starting Feb. 18, 2008. This means that all cruise guests will need to be on board at least* one hour before the shipís scheduled departure.
In order for the ship to be able to depart port on time (and for your clients to be on board and not waving to the ship from the pier), following these suggested travel tips will ensure an on-time departure for all:
Each passenger should submit their full and accurate identification information** to the cruise line as soon as possible but at a minimum prior to arriving at the departure port. Many cruise lines have online check-in available for guests that reduces the time they have to wait for their final boarding documents at the pier. Travel agents should encourage their clients to check-in online or offer to provide passengersí information to the cruise line with final booking.
To avoid last-minute boardings (and possible denial of boarding), ensure your passengersí travel arrangements leave plenty of time to make it to the ship. Cruise lines outline suggested arrival times at the pier on their Web sites and/or their cruise documents. Encouraging cruise guests to arrive the day or evening before and enjoy the port city is the best recommendation for a stress-free start to their cruise.
*Check with the individual cruise line for final boarding times (some are requiring guests to be on board 90 minutes prior to departure to meet this new government requirement).
If a passenger does not make it aboard the ship in the allotted hour-before-departure timeframe, they may be denied boarding because their name has not been vetted by U.S. government databases.
** These fields include:
Middle Name (if there is one)
Date of birth
Country of Residence
ID Expiration Date
Effective January 31, 2008 - Oral declaration of citizenship will no longer be accepted
(Previously sent by CLIA on Dec. 21, 2007) Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that effective January 31, 2008, all travelers, including U.S. citizens, entering the United States through all ports of entry (including land and sea ports) will no longer have the option of orally declaring their citizenship. This previously accepted, but rare, practice of proving citizenship through oral declaration will no longer be sufficient. Cruise passengers must present the appropriate identification or risk being denied boarding.
What does the January 31, 2008 discontinuation of the oral citizenship declaration option mean to you and your clients?
Currently, CLIA member lines generally require proof of citizenship and a government-issued ID for boarding. This typically means a driverís license along with proof of citizenship in the form of either a:
Original or certified copy of birth certificate
Naturalization papers (for U.S. Naturalized citizens)
Other forms of Identification recognized by CBP see them at: http://www.dhs.gov/xtrvlsec/crossing...ibasics.shtm#3
These requirements have been industry standards, but will now be required by regulation and enforced as of January 31, 2008.
Cruise passengers on international voyages who do not have proper citizenship and identification documentation will not be allowed to board their cruise after January 31, 2008. Please advise your clients of this change.
Once again, as of January 31, 2008, all travelers, including U.S. citizens, seeking to enter the United States through land and sea ports of entry must present documents proving citizenship (such as a birth certificate or passport) and government-issued identification (such as a driverís license).