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21 cruise ships around the world have been affected by the coronavirus so far - here is a list

Brittany Chang , Business Insider US
 Mar 18, 2020, 08:53 AM
Photo by The Asahi Shimbun via Getty Images
  • The cruise ship industry has now been disrupted by the spread of the novel coronavirus across several cruise ships, leaving multiple passengers infected or dead.
  • This includes the Diamond Princess that left one-fifth of its 3,711 passengers occupants infected, USA Today reported.
  • The US Department of State has advised against traveling by cruise ship, and Princess Cruises has already cancelled many of its planned trips.
  • At least 21 cruise ships around the world have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic resulting in extended voyage due to rejected dockings and in some cases increased transmission of the disease.
  • For more stories go to  

The US Department of State has advised against attending cruise ship trips amid the global spread of coronavirus, which has already disrupted several cruise ships across the world with resulting COVID-19 deaths.

Several cruise ships have started reporting coronavirus-positive passengers aboard its ships following the initial devastation of the Diamond Princess Cruise trip that left eight passengers dead, prompting a shake-up across the cruise industry. And the paranoia has now spread past the confinements of the ships: even cruises that have had no reported cases of COVID-19 have been barred from docking in certain countries and ports.

See also: Covid-19 update: SA now has 85 known cases, with local transmission in GP, KZN, and WC

Princess Cruises has been hit more than many other cruise lines. Its Diamond, Grand, Regal, Golden, Pacific, Caribbean, and Royal Princess cruises have all been affected in some way, whether it be coronavirus-related deaths caused by contaminated ships and passengers, or the cancellation of trips just before its departure date out of general COVID-19 fear.

The novel coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan, China, has now infected over 196,000 people globally and killed over 7,800. Several of those deaths are directly related to the spread of COVID-19 throughout cruise ships: almost 700 people have been infected as a result of being on a cruise ship, according to data compiled by John Hopkins University.

Now, several cruise lines have changed its cancellation, rebooking, and refund policy to accommodate the pandemic.

Keep scrolling to see the cruises that have been disrupted since the start of what WHO claims to be a global public-health emergency:

The Diamond Princess is the first known cruise ship to have had positive COVID-19 patients onboard, which left the ship quarantined off the coast of Japan.

Japanese health officials were heavily criticized after passengers were kept inside of their rooms for two weeks, confused by the situation.

Source: Business Insider

So far, eight passengers that were aboard the Diamond Princess have died from coronavirus, the CDC reported.

Source: CDC

Almost 20% — 696 of the 3,711 passengers — of the entire ship ended up infected by the time everyone disembarked.


The Grand Princess cruise ship that had 2,422 passengers onboard docked and began disembarkation on March 9 in Oakland after at least 21 out of 46 coronavirus tests administered onboard came back positive for COVID-19, USA Today reported.

Source: USA Today

The CDC has reported that 28 people onboard tested positive for COVID-19.

Princess Cruises

Source: CDC

The ship and its quarantined passengers had been floating awaiting orders from the CDC for several days, CNN reported.

Source: CNN

The ship was initially infected by the passengers from the Grand Princess's previous trip in late February.

Source: Los Angeles Times

About 12 people from that prior trip later tested positive for COVID-19, including one man in Placer County, California who later died.

Grand Princess reported that 2,042 passengers on the ship were disembarked by March 15 and were set to continue quarantine off-board at medical facilities or military bases.

Source: Princess Cruises

By March 16, all passengers and half of the crew members also disembarked, USA Today reported.

Source: USA Today

The ship has since been moved to the San Francisco Bay.

The remaining crew members will be disembarked and tested. Princess Cruises is working with the local, state, and federal government and agencies to coordinate the disembarkation and repatriation of the remaining crew members. Crew members who are symptomatic or sick will not be allowed to take the charter flights home and may instead be moved to a medical facility.

Source: Princess Cruises

The Regal Princess was originally supposed to dock the morning of March 7, but was given a "no-sail order" by the CDC and had to idle off-coast while two crew members were being tested for coronavirus.

Source: The Hill, Associated Press

It was finally allowed to dock in Florida that evening after the tests came back negative, according to Princess Cruises.

Source: Princess Cruises

The two crew members in question had been working on the Grand Princess cruise ship at least two weeks prior to their start on the Regal Princess.

The Regal Princess has been considered the nastiest cruise ship since before the coronavirus pandemic.

Source: Business Insider

The MSC Meraviglia was initially rejected by Jamaican and the Cayman Island ports after crew members onboard tested positive for the flu, but not the coronavirus, the New York Times reported.

Source: New York Times

There were over 4,500 passengers and 1,600 crew members onboard.

The MSC Meraviglia crew members and passengers all passed health screening tests before embarking on the cruise trip.

The ship was finally allowed to dock in Cozumel, Mexico before being moved to Miami.

MSC then proceeded to disembark its 3,877 passengers without medical screening on Sunday after US health officials cleared the ship.

The passengers were allowed to disembark despite the news that a passenger on the MSC Meraviglia's prior trip had tested positive for COVID-19, the Miami Herald reported.

Source: Miami Herald

That passenger was on the cruise for eight days, and 103 passengers and the ship's crew members who were on the cruise with the coronavirus-positive passenger stayed on the boat to continue into this trip.

However, MSC Cruises said it had quarantined seven crew members on-board who were in close contact with the coronavirus-positive passenger following the news of the passenger's positive test result.

Caribbean Princess received a no-sail order mid-journey so that the CDC could test two of its crew members.

Source: Business Insider

The two Caribbean Princess's crew members were transferred from the Grand Princess over a week prior to the no-sail order, the Miami Herald reported.

Source: Miami Herald

The tests ultimately came back negative, and the ship was allowed to dock in Florida on March 11, according to a Princess Cruise announcement on March 10.

Source: Princess Cruises

A Royal Princess cruise trip from the Port of Los Angeles to Mexico was put under a no-sail order and canceled after Princess Cruises said in a tweet that a crew member working the ship had recently been transferred from Grand Princess.

Source: Twitter, CBS Los Angeles

The cruise was originally set to depart March 7.

Italian cruise ship Costa Fortuna was denied permission to dock in Thailand and Malaysia over coronavirus fears. However, nobody onboard actually tested positive for COVID-19.

Source: Business Insider, Twitter

It eventually disembarked in Singapore and the passengers were all screened and found to be in good health, The Straits Times reported.

Source: The Straits Times

Holland America Line's Westerdam attempted to dock at ports in five countries — Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines, Thailand, and the US territory of Guam — before it finally docked in Cambodia, TIME reported.

Source: TIME

Its docking was repeatedly denied after a rumor spread that an 83-year-old American woman on board had coronavirus, prompting the cruise line to halt disembarkation.

Her tests came back negative, and after another 1,500 tests of passengers aboard the Westerdam came back negative, the ship was deemed no to low risk.

Misinformation also left MSC Opera, a cruise ship that had no known COVID-19 positive passengers presently on board, unable to dock at one of its planned stops in Malta, Seatrade Cruise News reported.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

The rumor that there were coronavirus-positive passengers on board stemmed from a report that an Austrian passenger from a previous trip had tested positive after leaving the ship.

At least 12 crew members aboard the A Sara, a Nile river cruise, tested positive for COVID-19 and were put in isolation on March 6, the New York Times reported However, the crew members had already worked multiple trips on the boat, reported the Independent.

Source: New York Times, Independent

This left hundreds of passengers potentially exposed to COVID-19 from previous and the then-current trip. Passengers then-aboard the A Sara were tested when the ship reached Luxor, Egypt, revealing 33 coronavirus-positive passengers on board.

The CDC has reported that there have been at least 60 cases reported in 15 US states as a result of "multiple Nile River voyages."

The MS Braemar was denied docking in multiple Caribbean ports after at least five of the over 600 passengers aboard the cruise tested positive for COVID-19, CNN reported.

Source: CNN

As of March 17, Braemer is five miles (8 kilometres) off the coast of Cuba and will dock after charter flights have arrived in the country to take the passengers "deemed fit" back to the UK, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines said in a statement. There are now 25 guests and 27 crew members showing flu symptoms in isolation.

Source: Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

A passenger on the Silver Shadow tested positive for COVID-19, as confirmed by the Royal Caribbean on Sunday, CNN reported.

Source: CNN

The ship is now docked in Brazil, and Silver Shadow's 609 passengers have been in quarantine since March 12.

An 83-year-old Silver Explorer passenger tested positive for coronavirus, Royal Caribbean confirmed on March 15, CNN reported.

Source: CNN

The cruise, carrying 111 passengers and 120 crew members, is now docked in Chile.

The Golden Princess was not allowed to disembark in New Zealand on March 15 because of a suspected COVID-19 case on the ship, The Straits Time reported.

Source: The Straits Time

The Golden Princess is carrying 2,600 passengers and 1,100 crew members. Three passengers are currently in quarantine, and one is a suspected COVID-19 case. The ship will also begin testing passengers who were recently on a flight from Los Angeles with a coronavirus-positive passenger, CNN reported.

Source: CNN

Norwegian Jewel is struggling to find a port to dock at after being denied at four ports, The Guardian reported. It's currently traveling to American Samoa for a refuel, but no passengers will be allowed to leave.

Source: The Guardian

However, there are currently no confirmed COVID-19 cases aboard the ship.

While no one aboard the Pacific Princess has tested positive for COVID-19, the cruise ship — currently on a global voyage for 111 days — is having a difficult time finding a place to dock, CNN reported.

Source: CNN

Several of its planned stops have now been canceled. Its next destination was planned for Australia on March 21, but the country has now closed its ports from cruise ships, making the docking fate of the Pacific Princess uncertain.

Three passengers aboard the Costa Luminosa have tested positive and have disembarked and moved to hospitals as of March 8, the Miami Herald reported. A passenger on the Luminosa's previous trip has also tested positive and died from the virus.

Source: Miami Herald

The cruise is now headed towards France, and all of the passengers aboard the ship have been ordered to stay quarantined inside of their rooms.

While no one aboard the Celebrity Eclipse has tested positive for COVID-19, the cruise ship is having a difficult time disembarking its passengers, BuzzFeed News reported.

Source: BuzzFeed News

The ship attempted to dock and disembark in San Antonio, Chile, which has closed its port to cruise ships, USA Today reported. Now, it will dock in Chile just to refuel so the cruise ship can sail to San Diego and begin disembarkation there. The ship was originally set to disembark in San Antonio.

Source: USA Today

The Azamara Pursuit, and its 675 passengers and 389 crew members, is currently off the coast of Chile, Click 2 Houston reported. Authorities banned the ship from docking over concerns that someone aboard has COVID-19, The New Paper reported. The Azamara Pursuit is now working on a disembarkation plan.

Source: Click 2 Houston, The New Paper

Carnival Fascination was also denied disembarkation at Puerto Rico until all passengers had met the "health clearance requirements", the captain of the ship announced on March 15. However, no one onboard has displayed any symptoms, KSST Radio reported.

Source: KSST Radio

The ship is now headed to Miami instead.

Royal Caribbean's Freedom of the Seas was also denied entry at Puerto Rico and will now be disembarking in Miami as well, USA Today reported.

Source: USA Today

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