Cruise lines will deny boarding to passengers and crew who have recently been in China as cases of deadly coronavirus grew.

More than 17,000 cases of the virus have been confirmed and 361 deaths in mainland China alone.

There are more than 150 confirmed cases outside China, including two in the UK, with the first death reported in the Philippines.


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Cruise trade body Clia announced the clampdown on Friday, denying boarding to those passengers or crew who have travelled from or through mainland China in the previous 14 days.

A number of cruise ships have already cancelled China sailings and altered Asia itineraries, including departures from Shanghai.

The association said: “Clia and its member lines maintain close contact with health professionals and regulators around the world, including the World Health Organisation, and are continually assessing and modifying policies and procedures as developments emerge.

“This includes the modification of itineraries, where needed, in light of evolving circumstances, as well as health, travel and contact screening where appropriate, for guests and crew who have recently travelled from or through the affected area consistent with prevailing guidance from global health authorities.

“Screening protocols allow for informed decisions on a case-by-case basis whether a guest or crewmember will be denied boarding.

“Clia members have suspended crew movements from mainland China and will deny boarding to any individual, whether guest or crew, who has travelled from or through mainland China within the previous 14 days.

“Importantly, the cruise industry is one of the most well-equipped and experienced when it comes to managing and monitoring health conditions of passengers and crew.

“Cruise lines take precautions to conduct passive as well as active screening of passengers and crew for illness prior to boarding when circumstances demand.

“Furthermore, Clia members implement outbreak prevention and response measures and their ships must be fitted with medical facilities, shipboard and shore side medical professionals available around the clock, 24/7, to provide initial medical care in the event of illness and prevent disease transmission.”

MoreCoronavirus outbreak updates [Jan 27]

Royal Caribbean and MSC cancel sailings over coronavirus fears

British Airways cancels flights as travel firms respond to China travel warning