This month, the second Royal Caribbean cruise ship to leave South Florida and the third to leave the US has reported COVID-19 infections among crew members and passengers.
According to Miami Herald, at least 55 fully vaccinated crew members and passengers on Royal Caribbean’s Odyssey of the Seas tested positive for COVID on Wednesday. Last Saturday, the cruise ship departed from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and has since been denied entry to Curacao and Aruba.
An alleged guest on the cruise ship tweeted, “I’m stuck on a Covid ridden cruise ship….hearing about it on the news rather than from the captain.”
@RoyalCaribbean I’m stuck on a Covid ridden cruise ship….hearing about it on the news rather than from the captain. Only getting two days reimbursement…I think they spelled 100% reimbursement wrong #classaction
— Erin Heos (@ErinHeos) December 23, 2021
In a separate incident, 48 people aboard a Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas, the world’s largest cruise ship, tested positive last Saturday after returning from a week-long cruise.
Royal Caribbean’s health policy requires all adults to be vaxxed with at least two shots of Pfizer or Moderna or one shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Cruise ships have been lauded as one of the safest vacations due to their strict health policies of only allowing fully vaxxed adults — but as the vaccine efficacy wanes and the omicron variant is spreading rapidly around the world, cruise ships appear to be floating COVID infested traps.
Earlier this month, Norwegian Breakaway, owned by Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd, detected an outbreak of COVID despite a fully vaxxed ship.
Cruise Industry News reported that cruise ship operators had tightened their mask measures amid surging virus cases in the US. Still, that’s not going to help prevent infections as more and more Caribbean nations will deny US cruise ships as the variant’s spread causes alarm.
So what’s the point of even going on a cruise when you can’t visit the islands? It’s only a matter of time before people start canceling their cruises…