An NSW health statement said passengers who are infected with COVID on the Coral Princess likely got COVID before boarding.
The statement reads: “While a small number of passengers have been diagnosed with COVID-19 since boarding the Coral Princess, their infections were most likely acquired prior to boarding and they subsequently tested positive.
“The vast majority of COVID-19 cases on the ship are currently in crew members. All COVID-positive people are isolated and being cared for by the onboard medical team.”
The statement also confirmed that crewmembers would not disembark at Eden, where the ship called yesterday, and passengers were asked to return a negative RAT before disembarking.
The ship will also stop for a day in Sydney. There are currently 118 confirmed cases of COVID on board, of which 114 are crewmembers.
Despite the current situation, it was all smiles this morning as the city enjoyed its first cruise ship visit in 27 months.
Local artisans waited excitedly at their stalls and the welcome center buzzed with anticipation as the 90,000-ton Coral Princess welcomed the seaside city.
The city on the south coast has long been a favorite port of call for cruise ships and local tour companies.
Destination specialist Natalie Godward wrote on LinkedIn: “987 Queenslanders explored the Eden and Sapphire Coast on our first cruise visit in 28 months.
“The town was vibrant, passengers were happy, our locals were happy and we all felt alive with cruise visitors again after such a long hiatus. And yes, Covid wasn’t absent from the conversation, but with strong health protocols in place from Carnival Australia and NSW Health the visit was not only safe, but it was also a huge success!
“Thank you Princess Cruises for including Eden in the itinerary, we look forward to welcoming you back next month. And thank you to our team, it’s great to be doing this all again with you!”
Earlier, Cruise Eden held its first pre-cruise season briefing since the pandemic hit.
“And what a turnout we had with the local community, all of whom are very excited about the return of cruise ships to the Port of Eden,” wrote Ms. Godward.