The Coral Princess cruise ship has departed PortMiami with 13 healthy passengers still onboard due to travel restrictions.
Coral Princess Heads Back Out to Sea With Guests
It hasn’t gone to plan for the Coral Princess which is operated by Princess Cruises since the cruise line voluntarily suspended operations in March. We have already reported that the vessel arrived in PortMiami on April 4 after permission to disembark passengers.
In new developments, the cruise ship has departed the port with still 13 guests onboard. Due to current travel restrictions by a number of countries, 13 international passengers have been unable to disembark the vessel. Local authorities in Florida will also not allow them to remain ashore in any hotel. The guests have now been forced to undergo their 14-day isolation onboard the ship rather than on land.
Additional Princess crew members have joined the Coral Princess to help take care of the remaining passengers for the quarantine period. The crew members already onboard will also undergo a 14-day quarantine and any symptoms will be monitored. The ship departed Miami yesterday at around 5:30 PM and according to the cruise ship tracker is currently sailing north along the Florida east coast.
The cruise line arranged charter flights for those guests who were able to disembark and anyone who needed shoreside medical care were transferred to local hospitals. On April 6 there were only 274 guests still onboard and over the days the number was reduced as further flights were arranged.
Due to measures in place by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Princess Cruises has only been able to arrange charter flights and not been allowed to book normal commercial flights to get guests back home. Also, any sick guests have needed approval from the ship’s medical team to disembark.
The ship was sailing a South American voyage that departed San Antonio in Chile on March 5 which was before the cruise industry came to a standstill around the world. Coral Princess’s voyage was originally scheduled to end in Buenos Aires, Argentina on March 19. It was hoped the vessel could complete the cruise or even disembark guests earlier but travel restrictions and port closures have made a huge impact.