Royal Caribbean’s Movie star Edge Departs from Fort Lauderdale to Change into First Cruise Ship Voyage in 15-Months

95% of those who board the Celebrity Edge are vaccinated

ABOVE VIDEO: Celebrity Cruise set sail for the first time in 15 months. (Yahoo Finance Video)

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA (CBS NEWS) – The first cruise ship to board passengers in a U.S. port in 15 months will depart from the industry’s hub in South Florida on Saturday, a symbolic step towards normalcy that health experts call vaccines the spread of the coronavirus is being closely monitored.

Industry officials are hoping the Royal Caribbean’s Celebrity Edge ship’s voyage will serve as a bookend for people who first felt the severity of the pandemic in the alarming reports of fatal outbreaks on overcrowded ships last year and sick passengers in the Ports carried away on stretchers.

“We’re excited to be a part of it,” said Russ Schwartz, a Florida school principal who is honeymooning on the ship and is confident it will go smoothly.

“Things have changed drastically. We really didn’t know much about the virus at the time. Cruises were not yet prepared at this point. “

Celebrity Cruises says at least 95% of the passengers aboard the Celebrity Edge have been vaccinated against the coronavirus in accordance with the health requirements of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the ship is operating at a reduced capacity.