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Concerns for San Diego cruise ships following COVID outbreak

Cruise ship
Posted at 5:31 PM, Dec 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-07 01:14:46-05

San Diego (KGTV)- More than a dozen people contracted COVID on a cruise ship in New Orleans. The Port of San Diego says it is monitoring all developments that could potentially impact the local cruise ship industry.

Its been two months since the first cruise ship set sail from San Diego. The Port of San Diego estimated 100 cruise calls this season back in October. That can add up to 185,000 to 225,000 passengers.

“The return of the cruise ships to the water has really inspired people to take cruises once again,” says Doug Shupe with the Automobile Club of Southern California.

Shupe says the cruise ship industry is on the mend from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Port of San Diego reported about 300 million dollars in lost revenue while ships were docked.

“It’s really a time where the entire travel industry has worked to meet the challenges related to covid 19 and the pandemic,” says Shupe. “What we have seen is the cruise line industry has gone above and beyond to make sure passengers feel safe.”

Shupe shared a video with ABC 10News he took aboard a cruise ship from San Diego to Mexico. Aboard the boat, COVID protocols included wearing masks, medical-grade cleaning, and no more self-serve buffets.

Although there haven’t been any significant outbreaks in San Diego, that is not the case in other areas.

Seventeen passengers aboard a Norwegian cruise in New Orleans tested positive for COVID-19. One of the cases is possibly linked to the Omicron variant. A spokesperson for the NCL says all of the passengers were asymptotic.

As we continue to see an increase in the Omicron variant across the country, the Port of San Diego released a statement to ABC 10News saying in part:

“The Port of San Diego, along with the cruise lines, are monitoring all developments related to COVID-19. At this time, the cruise lines have not made any changes to their schedules for San Diego. Health and safety remains the Port of San Diego’s top priority….”

According to AAA, many of the cruise lines sailing in the U.S. require passengers to be fully vaccinated and get a negative COVID test 48 hours before boarding.