In an aerial view, the Explorer of the Seas (front), a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, along with other cruise ships dock in Port Miami as the cruise industry waits to resume operations on May 26 2021
Joe Raedle | Getty Images News | Getty Images
Royal Caribbean Cruises said on Friday it would not change its sailing plans this summer despite reporting two positive cases of Covid-19 aboard its Celebrity Millennium cruise ship on Thursday.
The two guests who tested positive in end-of-cruise tests were asymptomatic and were placed in isolation. Royal Caribbean announced on Friday that everyone who was in close contact with the two guests tested negative for the virus.
Finding the cases is a first test of whether the cruise line’s security protocols are effective in detecting the virus on board the ship.
The Celebrity Millennium, which left St. Martin on Saturday, was one of the first cruises in North America to resume sailing after being moored for over a year. The company’s first ship to leave a port in the United States will be the Celebrity Edge, which departs on June 26 from Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
The Celebrity Millennium has a fully vaccinated crew, and all guests over 16 must show proof of vaccination and a negative Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours of departure. Routine tests were also carried out throughout the weeklong cruise at each port.
The ship will dock in a port in Saint-Martin on Saturday.
The company’s stock fell less than 1% on Friday. It has grown 20% this year, giving it a market cap of almost $ 23 billion.
A passenger on the ship told TBEN that the mood on the ship has not changed and normal activities continue.
The cruise industry has been among the last sectors to resume operations since the pandemic. There have been several high-profile outbreaks aboard cruise ships over the past year.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has allowed ships to resume navigation this year, after putting in place very strict safety protocols and requirements to prevent the spread of the virus.
– TBEN Sema Mody contributed to this report.