A Bay Area couple are ready to get back on board, even after being quarantined on the same ship that has become the primary focus of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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âWe are returning to the Grand Princess in December, the same ship,â said Maureen James.
James from San Mateo is planning a vacation aboard the same ship she and her husband Bill were quarantined on in February 2020 due to a massive outbreak of COVID-19.
“We went around in circles for several days before going to the Port of Oakland and then two weeks of quarantine at Travis Air Force Base,” she added.
Maureen said she and her husband tested positive for COVID-19 after disembarking from the ship but were asymptomatic.
Over a year later, the Grand Princess and other cruise ships are ready to sail again, some from Pier 27 in San Francisco.
VIDEO: Grand Princess passenger says quarantine of windowless ships was like isolation
“We have reservations, we have reservations as strong as they were before the pandemic, so we will welcome cruise passengers,” said Port of San Francisco executive director Elaine Forbes.
Princess Cruise Lines says ten cruises will depart from San Francisco starting in October, but with strict guidelines.
In a statement, the company said:
“Princess Cruises cruises through 2021 are available to passengers who have received their final dose of an approved Covid19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to the start of the cruise and who have proof of vaccination.”
Despite vaccination protocols and evidence, last week two guests aboard the first major cruise since the start of the pandemic tested positive for COVID-19. It happened aboard the Celebrity Millennium from Saint-Martin.
James says that even after her experience, she doesn’t worry about her next trip.
VIDEO: This is what life was like aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship
“We love cruising, it’s a lovely relaxing vacation without having to pack and unpack the luggage. We’re scheduled for December 5 and are planning for 2022 as well,” said James.
The return of cruise ships and hungry passengers is what restaurants like Pier 23 nearby have been waiting for.
âIt means we’re getting back to normal, it’s going to bring a lot of people and we’re looking forward to it,â said Pier 23 owner Mac Liebert.
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