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Cruise Lines Cancel Sailings in China Due to Coronavirus Outbreak

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Travelers scheduled to set sail in China over the coming weeks should be aware that at least five cruise lines have canceled departures amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

According to The Mirror, Astro Ocean Cruises, Costa Cruises, Genting Cruise Lines, MSC Cruises and Royal Caribbean have all canceled itineraries that included China as health officials try to contain the coronavirus in the Wuhan area.

Royal Caribbean spokesperson Jonathon Fishman said the Spectrum of the Seas ship—the cruise line’s only China-positioned vessel—has canceled voyages from Shanghai on January 27 and 31.

“We are working with our guests to provide full refunds for the cancellation,” Fishman said in a statement. “The health and safety of our guests and crew is our primary concern, and we continue to work with the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control, and government health authorities to monitor the situation.”

Officials from MSC Cruises also announced a January 28 departure of the MSC Splendida from Shanghai was canceled as a result of the viral outbreak, with customers able to receive a full refund or rebook another cruise later this year and receive additional onboard credit.

As for Costa Cruises, the company has canceled upcoming sailings for four of its ships, including the Serena (January 31), the Atlantica (January 27 and 31), the Venezia (February 2) and neoRomantica (January 30 and February 2).

Costa’s Venezia ship returned to port in Shenzhen Monday, with medical teams boarding the vessel and evaluating all 4,973 passengers and 1,249 crew members. Four passengers were sick and required further coronavirus evaluation, while the 148 passengers from Wuhan were isolated for a “stricter screening.”

Last week, several of the top carriers in the U.S. announced they would waive change fees for travelers flying to airports in Wuhan, Beijing and Shanghai, including American, Delta and United. Change fees will be waived through March.

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