@mellon1 We have asked these same questions ourselves. I have a couple of risk factors, the highest being asthma. I have gotten sick every season we cruise without fail, though we cruise for months at a time so that’s not a huge surprise. I was very apprehensive about our cruises to Alaska, not so much on the Nieuw Amsterdam because it had such a reduced passenger load, but on the Majestic Princess. Our first Majestic Princess cruise was 3300 passengers, which was much higher than its been sailing recently.
I was extremely antisocial. I wore a KN95 mask every time I wasn’t eating or drinking. I didn’t get on full elevators, and even stepped out when people crowded in. Still, I got sick on our Majestic Princess cruises last month. Frankly, I think I picked up something at the MTG luncheon. It’s the only time I was around others without a mask.
Having COVID-like symptoms on a ship these days is a whole different sport. I did phone the medical center (trying to do the right thing). I was told to stay in the cabin, and for my husband to stay there too. Someone wearing full protective gear showed up and did a medical exam and I was tested for COVID, despite the fact that I had just been tested two days earlier. The senior doctor phoned me to tell me it was negative, but that I had to stay in the cabin for another 24 hours until a second test came back negative. My husband was free to come and go. I wasn’t charged for my care and I was thanked (many times) for being honest and reporting my symptoms.
Luckily, it was a rainy day in Juneau, and I had internet, so I wasn’t unhappy. The next morning I was tested again, it was negative and I was free to resume my cruise. For my cooperation, and missing out on using the ship’s facilities for a day, I received a FCC worth 1/7 of the cruise fare. I returned home 5 days later, and then a few days after that tested negative again. I ended up in the ED last week, and was tested yet again. All negative. Yet I’m still fighting this virus.
My point is that COVID is not the only game in town. It is certainly not the most prevalent virus around. Cruising, for those of us with diminished immune systems, has always been risky, and, even with good quality masks, it still is.
I’ve now received the COVID booster, will get my annual flu shot (must be at least two weeks after the booster) and will be cruising again next month. I am hoping for a different result. If my husband wasn’t so hell bent on going somewhere, I’d be quite happy staying home.