Royal Princess’ ‘Mexican Rivera’ cruise that should have departed Long Beach yesterday afternoon (7 March) was abruptly cancelled yesterday evening.
Many of the 1500 passengers waited more than 6-7 hours at the terminal, to be told at around 17.40hrs that their cruise was cancelled.
The exact reason for the cancellation is not known, not has it been confirmed whether or not it is linked to coronavirus. But in a letter to guests, the cruise line said that it was unable to get the clearance needed from the Port Authorities. However, it has been suggested that the cancellation was due to a crew member from Grand Princess had transferred to Royal Princess and that led to the cruise being cancelled.
Update issued to Cruise Waves @ 9am 8th March
A Princess Cruises spokesperson said:
“Princess Cruises was requested by the U.S. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to share information about a crew member who previously served on Grand Princess and transferred to Royal Princess fifteen days ago. After sharing all information and details about the crew member, the CDC approved clearance for Royal Princess yesterday, to sail today, with no restrictions placed on the vessel. However, late this afternoon, the CDC informed us of their decision to issue a “no-sail order” until the crew member was tested for COVID-19. We have unfortunately been unable to obtain this test given the lateness of the request.
“The crew member is past the maximum incubation of COVID-19, has been evaluated and has never developed any respiratory symptoms or fever. The crew member had no known contact or exposure to other guests or crew who were ill on Grand Princess. The crew member received a precautionary screening by the Medical Staff upon boarding Royal Princess to test for respiratory symptoms, including fever.
“Due to the unknown timing of obtaining the test and results or anticipated response, we have cancelled the cruise.
“Our guest services and ground operations teams are activated and are working to assist guests who purchased air independently by providing lists of local hotels with availability. Princess Cruises will reimburse our guests up to $300 per booking for one night’s hotel costs in Los Angeles. Guests with Princess flights will be booked into a Los Angeles airport hotel for the night.
“We share in our guests’ disappointment in the cancelled cruise and are sorry we could not communicate sooner given the lack of information. Therefore, all guests will receive a full refund of their cruise fare, Princess Air, Princess Cruise Plus pre- and post-cruise hotel packages, prepaid shore excursions and other prepaid items purchased through Princess Cruises.
“Unexpected expenses, such as air change fees, reimbursement of reasonable non-refundable out-of-pocket expenses will be considered on a case-by-case basis when submitted to our office. As the cruise has been cancelled the day of departure, each guest will also receive a 100% Future Cruise Credit equal to the cruise fare paid on this voyage.”