Mask-Free Cruise Ship Forced To Cancel Caribbean Voyage
The SeaDream I has been forced to cancel its cruise as well as the next sailing due to several passengers onboard the current voyage testing positive for coronavirus. The ship returned to Barbados late Wednesday night.
The 53 guests currently onboard have been quarantined in their staterooms since yesterday afternoon after one guest wasn’t feeling well and tested positive.
Five people have now tested postive in two tests (one on board rapid PCT, one by Barbadian authorities PCR) now onboard SeaDream I. We are unsure what will happen from here but we will keep you posted…feeling slightly anxious now! #Covid pic.twitter.com/mwAuUXjUsk
— Cruise with Ben & David (@CruiseWithBD) November 12, 2020
On Saturday, the ship set sail on its first Caribbean voyage after making the transatlantic sailing from Europe.
Guests who were embarking on the ship had to undergo a test before arriving in Barbados, take another test prior to embarkation, with each guest requiring a negative result with each test.
Journalists onboard started posting photos around the ship showing crew and passengers not wearing their masks in public spaces, which the U.S. Centers for Disease Control has made mandatory for North American cruise ships.
Because SeaDream is not calling into any North American ports, they were not required to make its guests or crew wear masks.
However, after building pressure from journalist’s photos, the ship imposed a mask mandate effective Monday evening.
Live from the first #Caribbean #cruise since March: @SeaDreamYC #SeaDream1’s hotel director, staff are giving arriving passengers a warm welcome, including Champagne, cold towels, as they climb the gangway after testing negative for #covid at the pier. Sailaway in 90 minutes! pic.twitter.com/7F8XYcVEZT
— Gene Sloan (@CruiseLog) November 7, 2020
In a letter to travel agents, the company wrote, “I wish to inform you that Seadream has paused its current Caribbean voyage and returned to Barbados after guests’ tests for Covid 19 returned assumptive positive results.”
It went on to say, “Our ship’s medical staff has tested all crew members and all tests have come back negative. We are currently re-testing all guests. We are awaiting authorization from the Barbados government to disembark guests safely and we continue to follow all protocols recommended by the health authorities.
“In an abundance of caution, we will be canceling our next voyage which departs from Barbados this Saturday, November 14th,” the letter concluded. “Our reservations team is reaching out to those guests and travel partners affected by this change.”
Those on board the ship have since reported that at least five people, all in the same group of passengers, have tested positive.