"" Writer's Wanderings: Cruising After COVID

Friday, June 26, 2020

Cruising After COVID

The dreaded Norovirus has caused cruise lines to come up with a protocol for cleansing and treating ships so that the next bunch of passengers can cruise safely. Some of the things we have experienced after an outbreak on ships are no serving yourself in the buffet, even to get drinks, no library books, and staff squirting sanitizer into your hands more often. Many times they will have someone standing at the drink stations the first few days to serve so you don't touch the common touchpoints. 

Of course, hand sanitizer has always been a big part of keeping passengers healthy. I remember an incident on the QM2 where the attendant would not give me a tray until I sanitized my hands--again--because she hadn't seen me do it the first time. 

Now we have COVID-19 and while cruise lines are still not operating and cruises are canceled mostly through October, I can't help but wonder what precautions will be in place when we start cruising again.  We have a cruise planned for 2022 and hopefully this will all be past history with a vaccine in place but I wonder if we will have to present proof of vaccination before boarding. There has always been a health form to fill out but who is going to say they had a cough or fever and forego the cruise they have paid for? 

Will we have to wear a mask? Perhaps some social distancing? I wonder if the number of passengers will be reduced for a time? I'm guessing there may be a natural reduction in passengers simply because many will be a bit leary of cruising after all the stories of those caught in the COVID mess and certainly those who have never cruised before may not be willing to start anytime soon.

From what I've read, cruise lines are hard at work coming up with new ideas to assure passengers of the safety of cruising. The problem is that so much of the preparation depends on knowing the facts about the virus and those facts seem to change as more and more is learned. While patience has never been my strong suit, I will not begin to panic until we get closer to our World Cruise date. By then this too, hopefully, will have passed.

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