The long wait for cruising to return to the United States is finally coming to an end. Royal Caribbean Group RCL recently announced that it will resume cruising from United States after more than a year of suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The company will resume cruising on Jun 26 with Celebrity Cruises' Celebrity Edge departing from Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has given a go-ahead signal to Celebrity Edge after all new norms for providing a safe and healthy cruise experience for guests and crew were met. Notably, all guest and crew members need to be fully vaccinated for cruising.
Richard D. Fain, Royal Caribbean chairman and CEO said “After months of working with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other government officials, our Healthy Sail Panel and industry partners, we can again offer cruise lovers the chance to enjoy the wonders of cruising. We are truly thankful to reach this special milestone.”
Earlier, the company announced that it has carried over 125,000 passengers out of which only 21 COVID-19 cases were reported. The coronavirus positivity rate was 0.01%. During first-quarter 2021, more than 55,000 guests have enjoyed vacations through Royal Caribbean International, TUI cruises, and Hapag-Lloyd brands.
So far this year, the company’s shares have surged 23.8%, compared with the industry’s rally of 22.1%. Due to the pandemic, bookings for 2021 have declined significantly. It expects to report net loss on both a GAAP and adjusted basis for the second quarter and 2021 fiscal year.
Despite the coronavirus pandemic, the company continues to add new cruises. During first-quarter 2021, the company added Odyssey of the Seas to its fleet. Meanwhile, the company stated that it anticipates adding Silver Dawn to the Silversea fleet during fourth-quarter 2021. Moving into 2022, the company has two ships scheduled for delivery namely — Wonder of the Seas and Celebrity Beyond.
Zacks Rank & A Key Pick
Royal Caribbean — which shares space with Carnival Corporation & Plc CCL and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. NCLH in the Zacks Leisure and Recreation Services industry — carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
A better-ranked stock in the same space is RCI Hospitality Holdings, Inc. RICK, which sports a Zacks Rank #1.
RCI Hospitality fiscal 2021 earnings are expected to soar 405.9%.
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