Jewel of the Seas Returns to Dubai After UAE Closes Cruise Ports

Mar 11, 2020

United Arab Emirates Transport Authority announced that all cruises operating out of the UAE have been suspended. The latest precautionary measure announced Tuesday night come as a response to stop the spread of coronavirus the government said.

The cruise ship Jewel of the Seas who already announced the cancelation of Muscat from the current 7-day Arabian Sea voyage from Dubai was scheduled to arrive in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday. Instead, hours after departing from Dubai the ship authorities received news by the port of Abu Dhabi and Sir Ban Yas informing them that these ports will be closed for cruise traffic. Jewel of the Seas turned back to its homeport and is currently docked in Port Rashid, Dubai.

Upon arrival guests and crew were informed by the ship's captain that there are two ill passengers onboard, one with gastrointestinal issue and another with a sore throat, none of them showing Coronavirus symptoms. As a precaution measure, health authorities in Dubai decided to transfer one passenger to the hospital for additional screening.

In a letter sent to passengers Royal Caribbean said “As Standard cruising industry and immigration practice, we shared information with the port of Dubai regarding two individuals who are feeling under the weather. In abundance of caution and given the current global status, Dubai authorities requested an additional screening of the individuals' issues. Please note, neither of these 2 individuals meet the CDC or WHO criteria to be tested for COVID-19. But as you can imagine, the world is extra sensitive these days. Our doctors onboard have examined and tested both individuals, and their assessment is that one is gastrointestinal issue and the other a thorat infection.

The good news is both are isolated in their staterooms and recovering nicely. While we wait for the additional screening completition, we'll remain alongside until advised otherwise, and all guests must remain onboard”

Jewel of the Seas passengers have been informed they will receive a full refund regardless of whether the voyage continues or the ship stays in port. Royal Caribbean will provide assistance with air fares if guests decide to return home earlier to use the cruise ship as their hotel for the duration of the cruise.

Ben and Dave, the creators of the popular YouTube Channel Cruise With Ben & Dave shared the following video of the ship's current status.