A Silversea-owned cruise liner docked at Darwin's Fort Hill Wharf in spite of a Coronavirus (COVID-19)-related ban on international cruise ships docking in Australia, but travellers will be required to self-isolate.
Silver Spirit, which was on a one-way sailing from Mumbai to Dubai docked Tuesday morning, March 17, with around 650 cruise passengers on board. Her arrival in Darwin following a 10-day trip from the port of Langkawi Malaysia came despite a 30-day ban on international cruise ships docking in Australia.
The Australian Border Force said that exemptions were being granted for some ships that were already at sea when the docking ban came into effect on March 15, in order to avoid people becoming stranded.
According to ABF Commissioner Michael Outram, no-one on Silver Spirit had reported feeling unwell, so their cruise time would count towards the 14-day self-isolation period. The cruise passengers will only need to isolate themselves for 4 days, until midnight on March 22.
A government spokesperson said arrangements were being made to take cruisers straight to the airport so they could be transferred home. Any guests remaining on the vessel will be required to self-isolate on Silver Spirit for the remaining 4 days but will be allowed to leave at any point in case they book a departure flight.
For Coronavirus updates on cruise ship quarantines (infected passengers and crew) and top-pandemic countries (COVID-19 cases and deaths, daily updated statistics) see at CruiseMapper's Norovirus page.