Travel News

Updated: 4 days ago

Theme Park News


Walt Disney World


EPCOT International Festival of the Arts will be returning January 14 – February 21, 2022.


And, there’s more good news! The DISNEY ON BROADWAY Concert Series is returning for this year’s festival, where guests can see some of their favorite entertainers perform Disney songs live at America Gardens Theatre in World Showcase. Stay tuned for updates about the entertainers and schedules.

During the festival, art lovers of all ages can enjoy inspirational experiences, such as:

  • Culinary delights from Food Studios around World Showcase

  • The Wonderful Walk of Colorful Cuisine – a fun food stroll featuring five delicious sweet and savory treats

  • Chalk artists turning walkways into stunning landscapes and portraits

  • Photo ops where you can step into famous artwork

  • A paint-by-number mural

  • Figment’s Brush with the Masters scavenger hunt

  • Performance and visual artists

  • Special festival merchandise

EPCOT International Festival of the Arts is available with valid theme park admission and a park reservation for the same date.


photo credit: Disney Destinations


Soon guests visiting Walt Disney World Resort will once again be able to experience visits with their favorite characters. Characters will still be social distanced so there will be no hugs or autographs, but guests will be able to take socially distanced photos with individual characters in specific locations. Instead of a "meet and greet" the interaction will be called a "Sighting."


Character Cavalcades, motorcades, and surprise character appearances will continue to surprise guests throughout the parks.


In Disney's Hollywood Studios, the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular is returning on December 19th, 2021! Indy and Marion give guests a demonstration of how stunts in movies are performed as they take on an exciting adventure in front of the audience.



Disneyland Resort


Plaza Point is the all-new holiday store on Main Street, U.S.A. has opened in the Disneyland park.


Inside Plaza Point, guests will find fun seasonal items – from ornaments to home décor, collectibles and more! And, throughout the year, the store will change seasonally to showcase additional holidays as well, such as Lunar New Year, Easter and Halloween, to name a few. That means guests will want to make a stop in Plaza Point each time they visit to not only see the latest décor, but also shop the current seasonal merchandise!

One favorite item in the new holiday store are the ornaments that guests can get personalized, which also serve as great holiday gifts! It’s so fun watching the artistry in action as cast members hand paint a name on each ornament. And good news – the ornament personalization will be available for purchase year-round.


This welcoming space is brought to guests by the store proprietress, named Miss Evelyn Toro. She is a world traveler, collecting unique pieces of holiday décor as she goes, and brings the treasured items back to display in her store. The warm, wood-paneled store fits perfectly in the Victorian era of Main Street, U.S.A.


photo credit: Disney Destinations


Universal Orlando Resort


Universal Orlando Mardi Gras is returning February 5 to April 24, 2022.


Forget about your inhibitions. Forget about who’s watching. It’s time to let loose at Universal’s Mardi Gras. This ain’t no fancy tea party. The beads are back. The parade and concerts are back on select nights. And every day and night you can enjoy food from New Orleans and dishes inspired by diverse tastes and flavors from from around the world (available for purchase.) Enjoy a dazzling Mardi Gras parade with authentic floats direct from New Orleans on select nights. It’s Florida’s Biggest Party, and it’s the loudest, wildest blowout this side of the Bayou.


Prices, times, dates, entertainment, event and/or experience details are subject to changes and/or cancellation without notice.


photo credit: Universal Parks & Resorts Vacations


Some changes are upcoming for attractions in Universal Studios Florida.


  • Fear Factor Live will be permanently closing on November 1, 2021.

  • Fast & Furious Supercharged will be temporarily closed November 8-11, 2021.

  • Revenge of the Mummy will be closed for maintenance beginning January 7, 2022 through late summer 2022.

  • Shrek 4D and its corresponding gift shop will be permanently closing on January 10, 2022. The Meet Shrek and Donkey Experience will continue to operate daily for guests after the closure.


Cruise News


Disney Cruise Line


One of Guests’ favorite holiday season traditions is curling up in front of the television to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.


There will be an extra sprinkle of pixie dust on the Parade this year as Disney Cruise Line’s brand-new cruise ship float embarks on its maiden voyage in New York City as part of the 95th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!


The imaginatively designed “ship” has been christened “Magic Meets the Sea” and is inspired by the fantastical style of the Disney Wish, which sets sail in summer 2022. The new float showcases the majesty of a Disney Cruise Line vessel and features iconic design elements including a Mickey Mouse-inspired color palette, towering red funnels and an intricate filigree motif along the hull.


The float will also spotlight 15 favorite Disney friends who represent the stories and experiences on board the Disney Wish, including Captain Minnie Mouse, Princess Tiana, Aladdin and Jasmine, Cinderella and more.


Guests should be sure to gather their friends and family and tune in to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on NBC-TV on November 25 from 9 a.m. to noon in all time zones.


photo credit: Disney Destinations

The Disney Wonder will return to sailing from New Orleans, LA, on February 2, 2022, with a variety of Western Caribbean cruises.


Please note that the 6-night sailing on February 18, 2022 will now visit Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico instead of Key West, Florida and Disney Castaway Cay.


As a thank you for sailing with Disney on this revised itinerary, each stateroom will receive a $400 non-refundable onboard credit that can be used toward onboard purchases.


Disney Wonder Guests on this sailing may modify their sail date or cancel their sailing without any Disney-imposed cancellation fees, if applicable, by October 27, 2021. Please note that cancellation fees imposed by third-party suppliers, including airlines, as well as travel insurance, are not refundable. Refunds will be processed back to the original form of payment. Standard cancellation policies and terms and conditions apply for any cancellation or modification requests received on or after October 28, 2021.

Considering CDC guidance, Guests who are vaccinated and wish to disembark the ship with unvaccinated children will need to purchase a Disney Cruise Line Port Adventure, except when at Castaway Cay.


All Guests are required to be vaccinated in order to explore ports of call at their own leisure, except at Castaway Cay. Should Guests wish to explore with their unvaccinated children, they must purchase a Disney Cruise Line Port Adventure.


Carnival Cruise Line


Carnival Cruise Line announced plans for more ship restarts for January and February, as it works towards the return of its full fleet sailing from U.S. homeports in the spring of 2022.


With 17 ships scheduled to be operating by year-end, Carnival Sunshine will restart from Charleston on January 13 and Carnival Liberty from Port Canaveral on February 11.


With this announcement, Carnival’s U.S.-based operations will cover the following homeports and ships by February, and represents 90 percent of Carnival’s U.S.-based capacity:

  • Galveston: Carnival Breeze, Carnival Dream and Carnival Vista

  • Miami: Carnival Freedom, Carnival Horizon, Carnival Sunrise and Carnival Conquest

  • Port Canaveral: Mardi Gras, Carnival Elation, Carnival Magic and Carnival Liberty (effective February 11)

  • New Orleans: Carnival Glory and Carnival Valor

  • Long Beach: Carnival Panorama, Carnival Radiance and Carnival Miracle

  • Baltimore: Carnival Legend

  • Tampa: Carnival Pride

  • Charleston: Carnival Sunshine (effective January 13)

Cruises on Carnival’s three remaining U.S.-based ships – Carnival Ecstasy from Jacksonville, Carnival Paradise from Tampa, and Carnival Sensation from Mobile – have been cancelled through February.


In addition, Carnival Splendor from Sydney, Australia is cancelled through February 7, 2022 and Carnival Spirit from Brisbane, Australia is cancelled through February 20, 2022.


Carnival Vista, photo credit: Carnival Cruise Line


Royal Caribbean Cruise Line


Royal Caribbean announced that it has had to cancel its Australia 2021-2022 season.


"A clear pathway for the return of cruising is yet to be established by the Australian Government. As a result, we’ve reviewed our Australia 2021-2022 season."


This affects scheduled Ovation of the Seas sailings from Sydney between December 13, 2021 - March 31, 2022.


Regent Seven Seas Cruises


Seven Seas Explorer®, has welcomed luxury travelers back on board for the first time since the voluntary industry-wide pause in operations. Excited guests embarked the ship known as the most luxurious ever built on October 15, 2021, in Trieste, Italy, for an unforgettable journey through Italy, Croatia and Greece, whilst experiencing the highest benchmarks of service in lavishly designed suites, restaurants, bars and lounges.


Sailing with the cruise line’s enhanced SailSAFE™ Health and Safety Program - which includes 100% vaccination of both guests and crew – Seven Seas Explorer is the second of the Regent Seven Seas Cruises® fleet to return, joining their newest ship Seven Seas Splendor®


Helmed by Captain Rosario Vasta, Seven Seas Explorer is cruising the Adriatic and Mediterranean Sea on an 8-night itinerary, visiting Ravenna, Italy; Zadar, Croatia; Dubrovnik, Croatia; Bari, Italy; Corfu, Greece; Taormina, Italy; and Sorrento/Capri, Italy. The ship arrives in Rome, Italy on October 23, after which she will continue to cruise Southern Europe before crossing the Atlantic to Miami, Florida for a season in the Caribbean from mid-November until March 2022.


The next ships in The World’s Most Luxurious Fleet™ to resume sailing will be Seven Seas Mariner® on December 18, 2021, and Seven Seas Navigator® on January 6, 2022, both from Miami, Florida. Seven Seas Voyager®, Regent’s final ship to return will sail on February 15, 2022 from Barcelona, Spain.


Seven Seas Explorer, photo credit: Regent Seven Seas Cruises



MSC Cruises


MSC Cruises has welcomed the U.S. government’s announcement that November 8, 2021, will be the date that international travelers from many parts of the world can enter the country provided they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


The world’s third-largest cruise brand described the news as ‘a tremendous boost’ for European-based and other international tourists wanting to vacation in the Caribbean during its winter 2021/22 sailing season.


MSC Cruises has three of its ships sailing from Florida for the entire season – the Company’s new flagship MSC Seashore, the award-winning MSC Meraviglia and the popular MSC Divina. The line’s ships will welcome non-U.S. residents onboard starting November 8.


MSC Cruises’ flagship MSC Seashore will be based in Miami from November 20 following her official naming ceremony at Ocean Cay. From November 28, MSC Meraviglia will move to her new homeport of Port Canaveral, Orlando whilst MSC Divina will move to Miami offering a range of 3-, 7- and 11-night cruises. The three ships will offer a range of different Caribbean itineraries throughout the winter season and all itineraries will include a call at Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve.


MSC Seashore, photo credit: MSC Cruises


In the World News


Mexico


AMR™ Collection is pleased to take this opportunity to announce a new Dreams® branded property, Dreams® Cozumel Cape Resort & Spa.


Dreams Cozumel Cape Resort & Spa features a charming setting, white-sand beaches, coral reefs and calm ocean waters - making it a haven for scuba diving and snorkeling, and unique natural surroundings to celebrate family vacations, honeymoons, and romantic getaways. With the charm of a coastal getaway, Dreams Cozumel Cape Resort & Spa offers an intimate island escape with a world-class spa and on-site Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) dive center as well.


Opening in the first quarter of 2022, this family-friendly property is an all Preferred Club suite resort and offers stunning and contemporary architectural design, the signature Unlimited-Luxury® concept guests have come to know and expect, as well as amenities including:

  • 154 Preferred Club suites with luxurious equipped, modern décor and elevated amenities

  • Family-friendly accommodations with a “family suites concept” that can accommodate up to six people in connecting rooms

  • Four gourmet à la carte restaurants

  • Four bars and lounges, including one Preferred Club lounge

  • Daily activities and entertainment, as well as nightly events

  • The Explorer’s Club for children ages 3-12, and the Core Zone Teens Club for teens ages 13-17

  • The largest spa on Cozumel Island, Spa by Pevonia®, featuring a hydrotherapy circuit, Pilates and yoga

Additionally, guests of all ages staying at Dreams Cozumel Cape Resort & Spa will have access to neighboring Sunscape® Sabor Cozumel, including their five restaurants, while guests 18 and older will have access to nearby Secrets® Aura Cozumel, including their eight restaurants.



Argentina


Borders will open to fully vaccinated travelers on November 1st, 2021. Travelers are required to show proof of vaccination, a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure from their originating destination AND a negative rapid Antigen test on arrival. Non-vaccinated travelers (including minors) must quarantine for 7 days.




Canada


Canada is open to fully vaccinated American travelers. Travelers must still provide proof of a negative molecular COVID-19 test (Rapid tests are not accepted) taken within 72 hours of departure from their originating destination. Vaccination results and proof of vaccination must be uploaded to the ArriveCAN app on their mobile device.



Anguilla


All visitors to Anguilla who are eligible to be vaccinated against COVID-19, are required to be fully vaccinated at least three weeks before arrival (i.e. persons 18 and older). Exemptions include: Pregnant woman and children under the age of 17 years old. No medical exemptions will be granted.


Anguilla’s Executive Council has lifted all quarantine requirements for international leisure visitors staying at hotels or villas, regardless of their length of stay.


Travel Requirements:

  • Submit your application for travel

  • Submit negative Covid-19 test taken 2-5 days before travelAccepted tests...

  • Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction tests (RT-PCR)

  • Nucleic Acid Amplification tests (NAA)

  • RNA or molecular test

  • Antigen tests completed via a nasopharyngeal swab

  • NOTE: Self-administered home tests and antibody tests will not be accepted

  • $50 USD fee for testing on arrival

  • You will be tested upon arrival. You must remain in place until the receipt of your negative arrival test result (~24 hours).

  • If your test is negative, there is no requirement to quarantine. However, returning residents and visitors staying in Anguilla for more than 8 days may be required to undertake a day 4 test.


Hawaii


The governor of Hawaii, David Ige announced that visitors will be welcomed back to Hawaii as well as non-essential travelers beginning November 1, 2021.


Ige said, "Our hospitals are doing better, and we have fewer Covid patients in them. Most importantly, our healthcare system has responded, and we have the ability to move forward with economic recovery. Because of this, it is now safe for fully vaccinated residents and visitors to resume nonessential travel to and within the State of Hawaii."


Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa





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