Just when coronavirus concerns related to the arriving cruise ships Maasdam and Norwegian Jewel seem to have abated, another cruise ship is sitting off Honolulu Harbor, waiting to dock.
The 594-foot Oceania Cruises Regatta is about four miles off the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport reef runway, according to cruisemapper.com.
The ship, which normally can carry about 700 passengers, is visible just off Oahu.
Shelly Kunishige, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Transportation, said today, “The Regatta has no passengers on board and will be coming in to fuel and resupply after the Jewel departs.”
According to cruisemapper, the Regatta was scheduled for a 10-day round trip from Papeete, Tahiti, sailing through French Polynesia before returning to Papeete March 15 to 25.
Oceania said on its website: “Sleek and elegantly charming, Regatta is the flagship of the Oceania Cruises fleet. Her decks are resplendent in the finest teak, custom stone and tile work, and her lounges, suites and staterooms boast luxurious, neo-classical furnishings. Regatta offers every luxury you may expect on board one of our stylish ships.”
Oceania said the ship has 400 staff.
Approximately 2,000 passengers on the Norwegian Jewel cruise ship are being allowed to disembark in Honolulu after the ship experienced propulsion problems that required repairs, according to DOT. That process started Monday and was expected to continue today. The passengers were bused immediately to charter flights at Honolulu airport.
There are no confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 associated with the Norwegian Jewel, DOT said. Passengers embarked Feb. 28 in Sydney and were last able to disembark on Fiji on March 11.
Six Hawaii residents, and an injured passenger and her spouse were allowed to leave the Holland American cruise ship Maasdam docked at Honolulu Harbor on Friday, meanwhile.
No passengers in the group of eight had a fever or displayed any coronavirus symptoms, the DOT said. The Maasdam had approximately 850 passengers onboard. The DOT said the remaining passengers would not be allowed to leave the ship.
The state Senate Special Committee on COVID-19 held its first meeting last week and said, “Cruise ships are being allowed to come into Hawaii ports to refuel and resupply, but only Hawaii resident passengers will be allowed to disembark.”
Cruise ships to Hawaii are on a 30-day pause in operations that took effect March 14. Neither the Maasdam nor the Norwegian Jewel had originally planned to make Hawaii its final destination for passengers.
The DOT said there were 16 cruise ships that had canceled scheduled visits to Hawaii during the 30-day suspension in operations.