A CRUISE ship that docked in Sydney with 800 Covid-positive passengers on board has continued its voyage to Melbourne, and will soon make its way to Tasmania.

Majestic Princess berthed in Sydney Harbour on Saturday (12 November) following a voyage from New Zealand.

The Carnival-operated cruise ship had more than 3300 guests on board, around 800 of whom had tested positive for Covid-19.

A majority of the Covid-positive passengers disembarked in Sydney on the day of the ship’s arrival.

Majestic Princess left Sydney on Saturday night, and has called Melbourne as part of a new voyage with different passengers.

Cruise itineraries indicate the vessel is on an eight-day return voyage that will then call Hobart, Port Arthur and Eden.

Out of more than 3300 passengers now on board, 220 guests were part of the previous voyage, but continued their journey after the vessel departed Sydney.

A spokesperson from the cruise company informed DCN a “very small” percentage of the guests and some crew are isolating in their rooms, following strict guidelines to keep themselves and other guests and crew safe.

Some of the 220 passengers of the previous voyage finished their journey in Melbourne on Monday (14 November) as planned. Covid-positive guests from this group left the ship in Melbourne and are now isolating in private accommodation.

However, most of the 3300 current passengers plan to continue on to Tasmania in the coming days.

Many Australian ports have been anticipating the start of the 2022 cruise season after international cruise activity was brought to a standstill in 2020.

Carnival Australia president Marguerite Fitzgerald said the cruise company had made more than 50 international and domestic voyages since cruising resumed in May this year.

She said the vast majority of more than 100,000 passengers travelling in that time had not been impacted by Covid.

“However, the emergence of Covid in the community has meant we have seen a rise in positive cases on the last three voyages,” she said.

“We take our responsibility to keep everyone safe very seriously. This extends to not only caring for our guests, but also for the wider community in which we operate and visit.”

Ms Fitzgerald said the tourism operators had strengthened their health and safety protocols over the past two years, and many people are now vaccinated,

“Carnival Australia has been proactively preparing for and managing incidences of Covid,” she said.

“This has meant implementing the most rigorous and strict measures which go well above current guidelines.

“These control measures are critical to the safe operation of an industry so many Australians rely on for their livelihood and for our guests who have been waiting years, to join us on a trip of a lifetime.”

Ms Fitzgerald said measures will remain in place for all voyages for the foreseeable future, and are continually evaluated to manage cases and limit exposure to the wider community.