Cruise ship restart for Queensland
Brisbane has welcomed its first large cruise ship since COVID-19 at the new $177 million Brisbane International Cruise Terminal.
The P&O Cruises Australia’s Pacific Explorer was the first ship to dock at the terminal which signals an exciting restart to the industry.
By the end of 2022, Queensland is expected to welcome back up to five large cruise ships to restart the state’s $1 billion cruise sector, including itineraries from Carnival Australia, P & O Cruises, Silversea and Royal Caribbean.
With the reintroduction of these major tour lines, Queensland is set to become the epicentre of cruising in Australia with Cunard vessels including Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2 are set to visit Queensland ports including Brisbane, Airlie Beach, Cairns and Port Douglas, next summer.
To ensure the safety of passengers and crew, the Queensland, NSW, Victorian and the Australian Governments has introduced strict health protocols, with all people boarding a ship required to be at least double vaccinated and return a negative COVID test before they are permitted to board. The protocols include:
- All passengers over the age of 12 and crew will need to be fully vaccinated to board domestic and international cruises (as defined by the Commonwealth for international border entry requirements);
- All passengers and crew will be required to have a negative COVID test before embarkation and will require the wearing of masks at embarkation and disembarkation;
- Covid safe plans will be developed for all shore excursions, which will consider the specific needs of local communities, particularly regional communities;
- Covid safe plans have also been developed for disembarkation of any COVID positive cases and close contacts;
- Cruise operators will provide for a range of enhanced on board public health measures to reduce the risk of transmission, including information to travellers about covid safe practices including social-distancing, enhanced cleaning, and the availability for on board Covid-19 testing.