With Covid-19 infections on the rise, domestic river lines continue to push back plans to resume cruising.

On Tuesday, American Queen Steamboat Co. (AQSC) said its first sailing would now be on Aug. 17 rather than July 20. And American Cruise Lines said it would delay some of its planned July departures.

“The decision to extend our suspension was disappointing but necessary in order to prioritize the well-being of our guests, crew and partners,” American Queen Steamboat Co. CEO and founder John Waggoner said in a statement. “We have continued to monitor the climate surrounding Covid-19, and we feel that extending our relaunch date is the most responsible way to uphold our commitment to the safety of each individual who steps on board one of our paddlewheelers and to the communities we visit.” 

AQSC said the sailings the American Empress sailings on the Columbia and Snake rivers have been suspended through at least Aug. 2, although no relaunch date has yet been set, while the American Duchess is scheduled to resume sailing the Mississippi on Aug. 17.

The company has not announced when its other two ships, the American Countess and the American Queen, will resume sailing.

Its other two ships, the American Countess and the American Queen, are scheduled to sail the Mississippi, Ohio and Tennessee rivers beginning Aug. 8, as previously announced.

American Cruise Lines, which operates river and coastal cruises, was forced to cancel its planned restart in the Pacific Northwest on June 28 due to a spike in Covid-19 cases in Oregon.

On Tuesday, the company said it would also push back some of its planned July cruises. The company, however, did not release further details, citing uncertainty surrounding the pandemic.

Correction: This story has been updated to correct the date of AQSC’s planned first sailing.


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