3rd Florida-Based Cruise Ship Has COVID-19 Outbreak

By The Associated Press
The Associated Press
The Associated Press
December 24, 2021 Updated: December 24, 2021

MIAMI—A COVID-19 outbreak took place on a South Florida-based cruise ship for the third time this week.

An undisclosed number of passengers and crew aboard the Carnival Freedom cruise caught the virus so the ship was denied entry to Bonaire and Aruba, Carnival said in a statement.

The ship has 2,497 passengers and 1,112 crew members and was scheduled to return to Miami on Sunday following an 8-day cruise. Passengers were required to be vaccinated and they were tested before leaving last Saturday, according to Carnival.

“Carnival Freedom is following all protocols and has a small number on board who are in isolation due to a positive COVID test,” the statement said. “Our protocols anticipate this possibility and we implement them as necessary to protect the health and safety of our guests and crew.”

Ashley Peterson, a passenger on the ship, shared a photo on Twitter of a Dec. 22 letter from the ship’s captain apologizing for being unable to make stops in Aruba and Bonaire. The letter said passengers would get $100 per room in onboard credit, as well refunds for planned excursions.

It was the third outbreak this week affecting cruise ships operated by Carnival and Royal Caribbean departing Miami and Fort Lauderdale.