Whether or not you read the news these days, it’s hard to avoid stories about COVID-19 - more commonly known as coronavirus. While the vast majority of cases have been confined to the inland Hubei region of China, around the globe travellers are beginning to question whether this virus should have them altering their plans. We’ve got all the latest on what it means to go cruising at this time of international turmoil and media-stoked anxiety.
First things first: yes, there have been cruise ship cases. Many cruise fans will be aware of the plight of the “coronavirus cruise ship” Diamond Princess, currently a quarantine cruise off the coast of Japan. Holland America Line’s MS Westerdam also ran into some coronavirus-related difficulties, as various Southeast Asian ports refused to let it berth, purely as a precaution, before she was able to let her guests make landfall in Cambodia. While instances like these can be alarming, does this really mean that you should be rethinking future cruise holidays?
How bad is it?
Before rushing to conclusions, there are a few factors worth considering:
Of all the cruise ships sailing around the world at the moment, the Diamond Princess is the only vessel out there which has become a coronavirus cruise ship. This is very much the exception to the rule, and while it’s an unfortunate situation for those stuck in quarantine, this is anything but a common issue.
While the spread of the virus has been largely restricted to east Asia, making it vanishingly unlikely to encounter issues outside this region, even on Asia based cruises it’s highly unlikely that you would encounter those exposed to the novel coronavirus.
Tips for the cautious
If you’re wondering what you can do to take extra good care of your health while on your next cruise, there are a few easy ways to safeguard yourself against not only a coronavirus cruise ship, but also much more common pesky illnesses.
The most effective (and easiest) way to keep your health tip top at sea, is simply to keep your hands clean. Fortunately, cruise lines are very much onboard with this, and on most cruise ships you’ll find hand sanitising stations at the entryway to public spaces, especially those which serve food. To be extra certain of excellent hand hygiene, you can always carry a small bottle of alcohol based sanitiser with you.
If you’re still a little anxious around mealtimes, you could always opt for the main dining room or specialty restaurants instead of gravitating to the buffet. Having food brought out to you by wait staff will always be a more germ-cautious choice than self-serving at the buffet.
To sum it all up, while there are a number of precautionary steps you can take to help keep your health in tip top shape on a cruise, there’s absolutely no good reason to let the media-hyped spectre of COVID-19 (largely contained to a single province in mainland China) stop you from enjoying an amazing cruise holiday. So take the first step today and find your perfect getaway with Cruise Sale Finder.