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With Canada now closed to cruises until 2022 is now the time to repeal Jones’ Law?


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Given that Canada has closed down until 2022 surely all the USA has to do is repeal Jones law and cruises from the  mainland US  to Alaska can go ahead?  Is there any pressure group/petition cruisers can join to help bring this about? The law seems totally anachronistic these days!  Perhaps those from the USA can organise a nationwide petition, pester your law makers, and get this daft law changed?!

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You are new to the forum, and apparently new to cruising. The Jones Act has nothing to do with cruise ships. I suggest you read up on the PVSA, which governs cruise ships and US ports. And no, I highly doubt the US government would be willing to drop everything just to please a bunch of bored cruisers. They have bigger and more important issues to deal with for the forseeable future.

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Suggest you visit the cruise line forums and read the current threads there.  Here is the one from the HAL forum:

 

And another from the Celebrity forum:

 

There are probably others on the forums I don't visit, but this should keep you occupied for awhile.  EM

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I had to Google Jones Law.  I found that it was passed in 1916, granting independence to the Philippines.  Not sure what this has to do with cruising though, and I'm pretty sure no one wants to see it repealed.   😉

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2 hours ago, jbatsea said:

The law seems totally anachronistic these days!

 

I may be in the minority here, but I don't think it is an anachronism.  Why make it easier to outsource what few maritime jobs we have left in the US?  Foreign airlines can't fly unrestricted in the US.  Why should foreign cruise lines have these same rights?  

 

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56 minutes ago, Essiesmom said:

Suggest you visit the cruise line forums and read the current threads there.  Here is the one from the HAL forum:

 

 

 

 

Not for nothing, but the language of the OP in this thread is very similar to that of the "anachronistic" OP on the HAL board link you provided.  Plus, first post.  Hmmm.  Just sayn'.  😉  

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2 hours ago, jbatsea said:

Given that Canada has closed down until 2022 surely all the USA has to do is repeal Jones law and cruises from the  mainland US  to Alaska can go ahead?  Is there any pressure group/petition cruisers can join to help bring this about? The law seems totally anachronistic these days!  Perhaps those from the USA can organise a nationwide petition, pester your law makers, and get this daft law changed?!

I suspect you are not a US resident. As such, you might want to research whether your country has an equivalent law...most countries in the world do.

 

As others have mentioned, this topic has been beat to death here. To change a law just for the sake of possibly resuming cruising ignores all the other issues involved, like the ability for a non US resident to travel to to board a ship in the US. Or the fact the CDC doesn't seem close to allowing cruising any time soon. 

 

We all want to cruise...that is why we are on Cruise Critic.

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39 minutes ago, All That Jazz said:

 

It's the PVSA that cruisers clamor to have repealed or suspended.

 

Not all cruisers, but maybe I'm the only one.  Lol 

 

I don't like the idea of a company being allowed to operate without following our labor/hour/wage laws.   PVSA let's them do that with the foreign port loophole.  I would not expand that.   

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1 hour ago, SelectSys said:

 

I may be in the minority here, but I don't think it is an anachronism.  Why make it easier to outsource what few maritime jobs we have left in the US?  Foreign airlines can't fly unrestricted in the US.  Why should foreign cruise lines have these same rights?  

 

 

Saw this after I posted.  So, there are at least two of us.   😀

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27 minutes ago, ldubs said:

 

Saw this after I posted.  So, there are at least two of us.   😀

 

I'm not from the US, but am still against relaxing or eliminating Cabotage Laws/Acts.

 

Tampering with PVSA and opening domestic trade and inland waters to FoC shipping is a more complex issue than the loss of a few marine jobs.

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1 hour ago, ontheweb said:

Yawn, this topic has been beaten to death. And no one in this thread has mentioned yet that the cruise lines seem to have no desire to have the PVSA repealed.

 

Well, you are correct of course but I would say about 90% of the topics have been previously discussed if not beaten to death.  

 

Seems I recall seeing a comment not so long ago about how nice it was to not have the chair hog/dress code threads.   Haha.  

 

Anyway, it is all just casual, and hopefully good natured, conversation to pass time I think.   

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2 hours ago, Heidi13 said:

 

I'm not from the US, but am still against relaxing or eliminating Cabotage Laws/Acts.

 

Tampering with PVSA and opening domestic trade and inland waters to FoC shipping is a more complex issue than the loss of a few marine jobs.

Since i have long admired (and agreed) with most of your posts this is a tough,   But why would I be surprised at a Canadian resident opposing the USA simply bypassing Canada to continue cruises to Alaska?   We remain unconvinced that a Presidential waiver or a PVSA amendment to allow cruising between two USA States would become a big deal.   And let us be very clear, we are simply talking about a cruise between two US States!  This is a USA problem and does not involve any other country.  The only reason that Canada has long enjoyed the business derived from Alaskan cruises is because of a USA law.  If Canada chooses to deny access to these cruises then we respect the decision of Canada...but should reserve the right to continue moving ships between our own country's States.

 

Hank

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23 minutes ago, Hlitner said:

Since i have long admired (and agreed) with most of your posts this is a tough,   But why would I be surprised at a Canadian resident opposing the USA simply bypassing Canada to continue cruises to Alaska?   We remain unconvinced that a Presidential waiver or a PVSA amendment to allow cruising between two USA States would become a big deal.   And let us be very clear, we are simply talking about a cruise between two US States!  This is a USA problem and does not involve any other country.  The only reason that Canada has long enjoyed the business derived from Alaskan cruises is because of a USA law.  If Canada chooses to deny access to these cruises then we respect the decision of Canada...but should reserve the right to continue moving ships between our own country's States.

 

Hank

 

Touchy. Had you taken the time to think about it you would have realized that the poster was not commenting on a specific US act. Rather the post was clear in its first sentence that an opinion was being expressed regarding Cabotage laws in general. (It may surprise you to learn that most maritime countries have such laws/regulations.)

 

I do wonder why one would argue for an exception for Alaska and not Hawaii, San Juan and the Virgin Islands? Surely these economies are even more impacted by the loss of cruise visits? After all Alaska has oil, gas, and other resources.

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56 minutes ago, broberts said:

 

Touchy. Had you taken the time to think about it you would have realized that the poster was not commenting on a specific US act. Rather the post was clear in its first sentence that an opinion was being expressed regarding Cabotage laws in general. (It may surprise you to learn that most maritime countries have such laws/regulations.)

 

I do wonder why one would argue for an exception for Alaska and not Hawaii, San Juan and the Virgin Islands? Surely these economies are even more impacted by the loss of cruise visits? After all Alaska has oil, gas, and other resources.

The issue here on CC is not about "Cabotage laws in general" but specifically about the PVSA as it applies to Alaskan cruises.  And Heidi13's post specifically refers to the PVSA which is a specific Cabotage Law that applies to cruise ships.  I would also add that the recent ban announced by the Canadian government only applies to cruise and certain pleasure craft.   Puerto Rico  and the USVI are not an issue vis-a-vis the Canadian government's recent decision.  Not only are PR and the USVI not States, but cruises to those places would likely be able to get permission to dock at one or more Caribbean/Mexican ports.  As to Hawaii, there might be a few cruises impacted by the Canadian decision (I have not looked at all the scheduled itineraries) and if so  the simple solution would be to just include those cruises in any waiver or PVSA amendment.  In my small mind cruises or flights between US States do not need to involve other countries if they choose to interfere.

 

As I said, I have the utmost respect for Canada and its government.  But bypassing Canada on Alaskan (and possibly some Hawaiian) cruises is simply acceding to Canadian wishes and regulations.  To me it is no different then when we had to cancel a planned annual wine tasting trip to Ontario (because of Canadian travel restrictions) and replace it with a wonderful vacation to Florida (Key West, Ft Myers Beach and Tampa).  We did not whine because Canada closed it's borders but simply changed our itinerary and happily spent our money in our own country.

 

Hank

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Any news on what is going to happen to all the Alaskan cruises which need to spend at least 1 day in a Canadian port because of the Jones Act?? I still see these cruises available for booking on line so I am wondering if they are trying to work things out.  I wonder if Canada would allow the cruise ship to just dock in a Canadian port if the passengers and crew do not get off.  Seems like a win- win solution to me and I don't see any harm in that or am I missing something??

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44 minutes ago, Hlitner said:

Since i have long admired (and agreed) with most of your posts this is a tough,   But why would I be surprised at a Canadian resident opposing the USA simply bypassing Canada to continue cruises to Alaska?   We remain unconvinced that a Presidential waiver or a PVSA amendment to allow cruising between two USA States would become a big deal.   And let us be very clear, we are simply talking about a cruise between two US States!  This is a USA problem and does not involve any other country.  The only reason that Canada has long enjoyed the business derived from Alaskan cruises is because of a USA law.  If Canada chooses to deny access to these cruises then we respect the decision of Canada...but should reserve the right to continue moving ships between our own country's States.

 

Hank

 

It wasn't my intent to further the debate on Canada's action to ban cruise ships, which is why I started with Cabotage Laws/Acts, which most Maritime Nations have in force. Personally, I am not in favour of any country eliminating/relaxing Cabotage Laws. Cabotage Laws may have been established as early as the 1600's, but with the proliferation of FoC shipping, they are equally as important now for the safety of our coasts.

 

Having worked in the domestic trade for many years, I have seen a plethora of FoC officers trying out for positions on my ships. While they most likely handled deep sea trades with some level of competence, most could not handle the inland/coastal waters and many couldn't even be trained in a reasonable time frame. 

 

Canada's cabotage laws provide us the ability to provide acceptable compensation packages and could train employees for the specific nature of the job. In addition to crewing, we could also spend significantly more down time for annual maintenance, both drydocking and wet dock. If we were competing with FoC operators, to prevent going out of business, standards would have had to drop.

 

When I worked the Alaska seasons, all ships we met in Alaska were based out of Vancouver. Can't remember when Seattle started as a home port, but it was probably around the late '90's. The primary reason ship's started using Seattle is because Vancouver refused to develop a new cruise terminal. Canada Place was originally designed to handle 5 ships, but as the ships increased in size, the terminal capacity was quickly reduced to 2 ships, until the berth was extended.

 

Cruise Lines wanted additonal capacity, especially on weekends, but Vancouver refused to accommodate, so Seattle filled the void by developing a cruise terminal. We originally had an alternative at Ballantyne Pier, but that closed about 6 years ago, handing more business to Seattle. 

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You all seem to assume that Alaska would be happy to just drop their current entry restrictions to allow thousands of cruise passengers to descend on them. Do you think that's likely?

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6 hours ago, goldengirl123 said:

Any news on what is going to happen to all the Alaskan cruises which need to spend at least 1 day in a Canadian port because of the Jones Act?? I still see these cruises available for booking on line so I am wondering if they are trying to work things out.  I wonder if Canada would allow the cruise ship to just dock in a Canadian port if the passengers and crew do not get off.  Seems like a win- win solution to me and I don't see any harm in that or am I missing something??

Its NOT the Jones Act!! It is the PVSA!! And the whole point of this thread, and the many other threads on the topic, is whether or not the PVSA can or will be suspended, altered or eliminated in order to somehow resume cruising. And the fact that the PVSA doesn't allow the "technical stop" (the old name for docking, but nobody gets off) any longer.

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I'm all in favor of a one year relaxation of the detail that requires a stop in a foreign port. If Alaska doesn't want the tourism, then they can impose restrictions when issuing docking space.

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6 hours ago, mom says said:

You all seem to assume that Alaska would be happy to just drop their current entry restrictions to allow thousands of cruise passengers to descend on them. Do you think that's likely?

I also have wondered about that.  But what triggered some of the original discussions was that some key members of the Alaskan State Legislature had been circulating a letter (signed by many of their collogues that was addressed to President Biden asking for his support in changing the PVSA to allow for cruising.  Some (not all) of the Alaskan cruise ports rely on cruise ships for a majority of their annual economy they and losing that business for two season will be devastating.  At least one community (I cannot recall if it is Ketchican or Sitga) will have difficulty surviving without  the cruise related revenue.  

 

On the other hand, there are also the current CDC Guidelines that have put a real roadblock into the resumption of any cruising involving US Ports.  Despite several cruise lines talking about the resumption of cruises this Spring I am not aware of a single vessel that has started the onerous process necessary to even seek CDC approval.    This involves a multi-month process that is very expensive for the cruise lines without any guarantee of success (getting approval to cruise).  And keep in mind that current guidelines require this process for each individual vessel.  And even if a ship does get approval a single case of COVID aboard would result in at least temporary suspension and possible revocation of the approval.  

 

Hank

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11 hours ago, ldubs said:

 

Well, you are correct of course but I would say about 90% of the topics have been previously discussed if not beaten to death.  

 

   

Either a new poster came unto these boards thinking he or she alone had a solution to no cruises to Alaska or an experienced poster changed his or her handle to make the original post. Either way, especially the second, he or she could have found several threads on this topic. And the person is still listed as one post; it looks like a sophisticated troll maneuver to me.JMHO

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2 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

I'd vote for a proposal that every time someone on CC refers to the PVSA as the Jones Act, another mandatory 5 years is added before its repeal could even be considered.

 

I feel exactly the same way as you do about the Jones/PVSA snafu on CC and the clusters of misinformed threads that spin....

 

But aren't we throwing out the baby and the bathwater and the bathtub at the same time?

 

It seems a better option  maybe to re-educate the posters so that the distinction between Jones and PVSA is made clearer.   

 

 

 

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