A ship, which cruised from Thailand almost a month ago on a repatriation sailing, was due back in the UK on Tuesday, April 14.
CMV-Cruise and Maritime Voyages-owned liner Columbus was carrying 907 cruise passengers including 602 Britons and 619 crew on the 9020-miles / 14520-km voyage from Phuket. The altered itinerary included a technical stop in Colombo Sri Lanka and a Suez Canal transit. Five cruisers were dropped off (tendered) in Gibraltar and Valletta Malta.
The ship docked at London Cruise Terminal (Port Tilbury) at 8 am. CMV Columbus had been on a 120-night world voyage which left Tilbury on January 6 prior to being diverted back to the UK (on March 18) because of the global Coronavirus pandemic.
CMV stressed that no COVID-19 cases had been recorded with any passengers or crew - neither on Columbus or on any other of its (all 6) vessels in the fleet.
A spokesperson said the ship had "remained under heightened levels of hygiene protocols during the repatriation voyage. CMV carried out a unique passenger transfer operation at sea, just off the coast of Phuket, in order to transfer British Nationals from CMV’s Vasco da Gama to Columbus to bring them home to London. At the same time, Australian passengers were transferred from Columbus to Vasco da Gama in order to repatriate them to Fremantle.”
All other CMV ships returned to their homeports except Vasco da Gama which is expected in Port Tilbury on April 30, and without passengers.
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.