(Updated February 4, 2020; 8:53 a.m EST) – Cruise lines have been restricting travelers recently returned from China from boarding their ships. Now countries are enacting restrictions and travel bans that would keep people coming from China within a certain time frame from getting off the cruise ships.
The following countries have enacted restrictions upon entry or reentry for cruisers and travelers who have recently been to China:
Bahamas: Fears of the coronavirus spreading to The Bahamas have prompted the country to bar all non-resident visitors, regardless of nationality, who have visited China in the last 20 days from entering the country.
A statement from the Minister of Health states: "Following the Level 3 travel advisory issued by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) concerning the recent Coronavirus outbreak in China, along with travel restrictions in France, the United Kingdom, Australia, Jamaica and other sovereign nations, the Government of The Bahamas has implemented a travel ban, restricting all travel from China to The Bahamas."
The time frame designated by the Ministry of Health is longer than that being followed by many cruise lines, which could lead to confusion as to who is permitted off the ship. For instance, all brands under Carnival Corp. are barring passengers who have been to China in the past 14 days from boarding, while all Royal Caribbean brands are following a 15-day rule.
Conceivably, a passenger could be permitted onboard one of these cruise ships, but then barred from entering The Bahamas because they fall within the 20-day rule.
Guatemala: According to Reuters, Guatemala is banning visitors who have been to China in the last 15 days. This includes cruise ship crew members; any crew member that has been to China within 15 days of visiting Guatemala will be quarantined if they try to get off the ship in port.
Singapore: Singapore is also banning entry to all travelers with a history of travel to mainland China within the last 14 days. The ban applies to transiting passengers, as well.
Jamaica: Jamaica has imposed a ban on travel to and from China, in the wake of the World Health Organization declaration of the coronavirus as a global health emergency. All persons entering the island from China will be subject to immediate quarantine for a minimum of 14 days.
For more information on cruise cancellations and itinerary changes, see our coronavirus cruise line coverage.