Coronavirus is becoming more and more of a topic, especially when it comes to traveling. Celebrity recently (yesterday) updated their guidelines for who can and cannot cruise with them based on criteria developed by discussions with professionals in the health industry, WHO, CDC, etc. They also set secondary screening guidelines for individuals that have traveled through certain countries within 15 days.
How can this effectively be enforced? I believe the short answer is that it can't.
Truly they are depending on individuals being HONEST when they are checking in and being screened. It becomes a logistic nightmare to determine where an individual may have traveled prior to embarking on a cruise. I was in Singapore 3 weeks ago. I have been back in the States for over 2 weeks. Will the check in agent go through each and every passport? Will they be able to read each stamp in the book and understand what they are looking at? Aside from my honesty, how would one determine my course of travel and where I had been outside of the United States within the past couple weeks.
Below is the email being sent by Celebrity to passengers cruising the Caribbean in the coming weeks. Does anyone see how this can effectively be enforced?
We look forward to welcoming you aboard for your upcoming Celebrity Cruises vacation. Before you embark on this exciting journey, we would like to provide some new and updated information regarding your upcoming travel plans.
As we monitor global developments related to the coronavirus, our priority remains the health and safety of our guests and crew, as well as providing you an amazing vacation experience. After further consultation with public health authorities and medical experts, we have decided that any guest, or crewmember, who has traveled to, from, or through China, Hong Kong, Macau, Iran, South Korea, or the Italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto within 15 days of departure will be unable to board our ships. As well as coming in to contact with people who reside in these areas – this includes guests who had connecting flights in China, Hong Kong, Macau, Iran, South Korea, or the Italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto. The CDC characterizes contact with an individual as coming within six feet (2M) of a person. Additionally, anyone that feels unwell or demonstrates flu-like symptoms will not be permitted to sail.
As a result, it is imperative that you check your air travel itinerary closely to ensure you do not transit through any gateway in China, Hong Kong, Macau, Iran, South Korea, or the Italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto. Guests who have air travel booked through Flights by Celebrity will be re-accommodated on alternate routes and receive new flight information automatically. Guests with independent air travel arrangements need to contact their air carriers directly to make all required adjustments and changes to their air travel.
We have elected to take this precautionary step due to the recent increase in coronavirus cases around the world, to help avoid the spread of the virus and to ensure the continued safety of our guests and crew. While vacations are our passion, our primary responsibility is to maintain a safe and healthy environment onboard our ships, as well as in the ports we visit.
We have also increased secondary health screening requirements. The following guests will need to undergo extra screenings at the cruise terminal:
Any guest who has travelled to, from, or through Japan, Singapore, Thailand or Italy (all regions other than Lombardy and Veneto) in the past 15 days.
Guests who are uncertain about contact with individuals who have traveled to, from, or through mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Iran, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Thailand or Italy, in the past 15 days.
Guests presenting with fever or low blood oximetry in the specialized health screenings will be denied boarding.
We’ve also taken numerous proactive steps to maintain high health standards onboard our ships:
Thoroughly sanitizing the cruise ship terminal before and after every sailing.
Special sanitizing of high traffic areas onboard multiple times a day.
Adding extra medical staff on each sailing.
Providing complimentary consultations with medical experts for all guests and crew.
Plus, the Captain will make daily announcements during your cruise reminding everyone of how to stay healthy onboard.
Finally, you can contribute to a healthy onboard environment by taking a few simple steps that will help prevent colds, flus and stomach viruses – both onboard and on land.
Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds after using the restroom and before any meal or snack.
Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue (or with your upper sleeve) if you happen to sneeze. Avoid sneezing or coughing into your hands or without covering your nose and mouth.
Use hand sanitizer as often as possible. Rub the gel thoroughly, and in-between your fingers, until your hands are dry.
If you don’t feel well while onboard, it’s imperative that you visit our onboard medical facility immediately for a complimentary checkup. Our onboard doctors and nurses are always available and ready to assist.
If you or someone in your stateroom has traveled to, from, or through, mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Iran, South Korea, or the Italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto please contact your Travel Advisor immediately or contact us at 1-844-418-6824 in North America or (316) 554-5961 worldwide. You can also visit www.celebritycruises.com/contact-us for a complete list of global contact information.
We look forward to welcoming you aboard for a truly incredible vacation.