Guests on MSC Cruises’ MSC Meraviglia have been cleared to disembark in Cozumel, Mexico, after the ship was turned away from two ports in the Caribbean due to a guest and crew member who had contracted the flu.
In its latest update MSC said that the guest and crew member were given “a clean bill of health” by Mexican health officials after tests determined both had the flu, and not the coronavirus. The results were tested at a Mexican Ministry of Public Health laboratory in the city of Chetumal, MSC said.
On February 25 disembarkation for the cruise ship’s scheduled port call in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, was delayed by local health authorities after the cruise line reported that a crew member had tested positive for the flu. It is standard practice when a vessel approaches each port of call to report any illness onboard to the relevant local health authorities, the cruise line noted. After waiting in port for nearly four hours for formal clearance, ship’s command decided to leave Ocho Rios for the next port of call as the long wait had compromised the passengers’ proposed time at the destination.
On February 26, the ship was again refused disembarkation by local health authorities at its scheduled port of George Town, Grand Cayman. The ship arrived at Cozumel, its next scheduled port of call, February 27.
Today, February 28, guests will be able to spend a full day in Cozumel. The ship will depart later tonight to return to its homeport of Miami, Florida, on Sunday, March 1.
MSC Cruises has told all of its 4,580 guests on board that they will receive a 100 percent refund of their cruise fare due to the disruptive nature of their vacation.