A CRUISE ship which docked in Sydney with 800 Covid-positive passengers on board continued its journey to Melbourne and will soon visit Tasmania.
majestic princess docked in Sydney Harbor on Saturday (November 12) after traveling from New Zealand.
The Carnival-operated cruise ship had more than 3,300 guests on board, around 800 of whom had tested positive for Covid-19.
The majority of Covid-positive passengers disembarked in Sydney on the day the ship arrived.
majestic princess left Sydney on Saturday evening and stopped over in Melbourne on a new voyage with various passengers.
Cruise itineraries indicate that the ship is on an eight-day round trip which will then call at Hobart, Port Arthur and Eden.
Of the more than 3,300 passengers currently on board, 220 guests were part of the previous voyage but continued their journey after the ship’s departure from Sydney.
A spokesperson for the cruise line informed RCD a “very small” percentage of guests and some crew are self-isolating in their rooms, following strict guidelines to protect themselves, other guests and crew.
Some of the 220 passengers on the previous trip completed their journey in Melbourne on Monday November 14 as scheduled. The Covid-positive guests in this group have left the ship in Melbourne and are now self-isolating in private accommodation.
However, most of the current 3,300 passengers plan to continue to Tasmania in the coming days.
Many Australian ports have anticipated the start of the 2022 cruise season after international cruise activity halted in 2020.
Carnival Australia chairman Marguerite Fitzgerald said the cruise line had made more than 50 international and domestic trips since cruising resumed in May this year.
She said the vast majority of the more than 100,000 passengers traveling during this period were unaffected by Covid.
“However, the emergence of Covid in the community has meant that we have seen an increase in positive cases over the last three trips,” she said.
“We take our responsibility to keep everyone safe very seriously. This extends not only to the care of our customers, but also to the wider community in which we operate and visit.
Ms Fitzgerald said tour operators have tightened their health and safety protocols over the past two years and many people are now vaccinated,
‘Carnival Australia has proactively prepared for and managed the implications of Covid,’ she said.
“This has meant implementing the most rigorous and stringent measures that go well beyond current guidelines.
“These screening measures are essential to the safe operation of an industry that many Australians rely on for their livelihoods and for our customers who have been waiting years to join us on an unforgettable journey.”
Ms Fitzgerald said the measures will remain in place for all travel for the foreseeable future and are continually being assessed to manage cases and limit exposure to the wider community.