Cruise ships around the world will deny boarding to persons who have traveled or passed through specific countries, including China, in response to the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) announced on Wednesday.
The ban is part of the cruise industry’s recent adoption of additional enhanced screening measures in response to COVID-19.
“While we regret that these changes will result in the denial of boarding for some of our guests, travelers should know that their health and safety is the absolute priority for the industry,” said Kelly Craighead, President and CEO of CLIA.
The changes are effective immediately and CLIA members are to:
– Deny boarding to all persons who have travelled from or transited via airports in South Korea, Iran, China, including Hong Kong and Macau, and any municipality in Italy subject to lockdown (quarantine) measures by the Italian Government, as designated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, within 14 days prior to embarkation.
– Deny boarding to all persons who, within 14 days prior to embarkation, have had contact with, or helped care for, anyone suspected or diagnosed as having COVID-19, or who are currently subject to health monitoring for possible exposure to COVID-19.
– Conduct pre-boarding screening necessary to effectuate these prevention measures. Enhanced screening and initial medical support are to be provided, as needed, to any persons exhibiting symptoms of suspected COVID-19.
“The adoption of these measures further demonstrates the cruise industry’s unique ability to respond quickly as circumstances evolve,” CLIA’s president said.
The association said that it will closely monitor for new developments related to COVID-19 and will modify these policies as necessary, in coordination with cruise lines, medical experts and regulators around the world.
“With strict measures in place, as guided by national and international health authorities, CLIA and its member lines, in concert with pronouncements from the World Health Organization, do not believe restrictions on the movement of ships are justified,” CLIA’s announcement said.