Puerto Rico has now stepped up measures when it comes to cruise ship visits due to the coronavirus which continues to spread.
Puerto Rico Cruises Under Threat
As the deadly coronavirus continues to spread around the world and causes major problems across the cruise industry there are now further limits for cruise ships sailing to Puerto Rico.
Any cruise ship which is calling to the popular eastern Caribbean cruise destination will now have to provide evidence to authorities that there are no cases of COVID-19 on board. There must be no suspicious cases that match the symptoms of the virus including travel history to restricted countries.
Authorities have stated on social media and confirmed by Governer Wanda Vazquez Garced:
“We have ordered that any cruise ship that intends to enter Puerto Rico has to confirm that it has no passengers on board with suspicious cases and meets the federal government’s symptoms and travel history criteria regarding COVID-19.”
Trying to prove to officials that there are no cases on board when a cruise ship visits may cause even further disruption to cruise ship itineraries. There could be delays letting guests off ashore like we’ve seen with the Carnival Magic in Grand Turk and even vessels could be turned around if officials are not satisfied.
However, it is good that the policies from Puerto Rico are clear and in line with the government’s symptoms and travel history criteria. Other popular cruise destinations including Jamaica and Grand Cayman have already denied ships to dock as they still try to work their policies out regarding cruise ship visits.
This comes as the Purto Rico governor also announced that a woman who arrived at the island via a cruise ship from Fort Lauderdale is under isolation and being tested for COVID-19.
The San Juan cruise port is extremely busy and an essential port of call for many cruise lines including Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises, Costa Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line and MSC Cruises. All the major cruise lines call here and over the coming days larges ships such as Norwegian Encore, MSC Seaside, and Harmony of the Seas will be making calls to the island.
At the moment there are over 108,000 cases of coronavirus around the world and over 3,800 have died. Several cruise ships have been impacted by the virus, directly and indirectly, due to tests and port delays.