Singapore’s Royal Caribbean cruise turns again after passenger checks optimistic for Covid-19
(CNN) – A Royal Caribbean cruise ship has returned to Singapore port after a passenger tested positive for Covid-19.The Quantum of the Seas ship hosted a three-day, four-day “nowhere cruise” route around Singapore. The cruise was part of a much-touted program to revitalize Singapore domestic travel amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Royal Caribbean has confirmed to CNN that a passenger on board the ship tested positive for the virus after checking in with a member of the ship’s medical staff.
After the confirmed positive test, the Quantum of the Seas informed the Singaporean officials of the news and returned to port. Guests are not permitted to leave the ship until full contact tracing has been carried out.
“We have worked closely with the government to develop a thorough system that tests and monitors all guests and crew members and that follows public health best practices,” said a Royal Caribbean representative. “The fact that we were able to identify this individual case quickly and take immediate action is a sign that the system works as it was developed.”
Annie Chang, director of cruises at the Singapore Tourism Board, told The Straits Times that all of the infected passenger’s close contacts have tested negative for the coronavirus but are being isolated as a precaution.
“The well-being and safety of our local community as well as passengers and crew remain a top priority. All passengers undergo a mandatory Covid-19 test before boarding, with strict hygiene and safety measures in place throughout their passenger journey,” said she added.
The ship was 50% full. All passengers had to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test in order to be able to board and wear masks at any time outside of their cabins. Only Singaporean citizens were allowed to purchase tickets for the cruise, and crew members from around the world spent 14 days in quarantine in the city-state to be cleared for work.
As an additional hygiene measure, fresh air was routed through the ship regularly, Royal Caribbean said.
The Quantum of the Seas debuted too much fanfare in 2015. On-board amenities include bumper cars, a Bionic Bar where you can order an iPad, a skydiving simulator and 19 restaurants, including one with an Alice in Wonderland theme. It cost $ 1 billion to build and equip.