Alaska cruise ends early after passengers test positive for COVID-19; next sailing canceled

Jul 10, 2021

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

A cruise on one of the first vessels to restart operations in Alaska is ending early after two passengers and a crew member tested positive for COVID-19.

Small-ship specialist American Cruise Lines‘ 170-passenger American Constellation is returning to its home port of Juneau, Alaska, four days ahead of schedule after the positive cases were discovered on Friday.

The ship was visiting the small Alaska town of Petersburg at the time.

For more cruise news, reviews and tips, sign up for TPG’s new cruise newsletter

“American Cruise Lines has implemented its COVID-19 response plan in Alaska and is coordinating with state and local health officials following the detection of COVID-19 on board,” the line said early Saturday in a statement sent to TPG. “Out of an abundance of caution, the line’s small ship will return to port in Juneau and the next cruise, scheduled to depart on July 14th, will be canceled.”

The two passengers and one crew member who tested positive for COVID-19, along with their close contacts, were taken off the ship in Petersburg and isolated, the government of Juneau said in a press release.

The ship was sailing with 162 passengers and 52 crew members, including an onboard nurse — all of whom were tested for COVID-19 after a passenger began feeling ill.

All of the passengers were required to be fully vaccinated to sail. Many, but not all, of the crew were fully vaccinated.

The government of Juneau said unvaccinated crew members will be quarantined on board the ship in Juneau for 10 days. The remaining passengers on board will be flown home from Juneau.

Isolated cases of COVID-19 on the cruise ships that have restarted operations in recent months are not unusual, and cruise lines have new protocols in place designed to minimize both the spread of the illness and the disruption to the cruise experience when such cases occur. The situation aboard American Constellation is unusual in that it is resulting in the early cancellation of the current sailing and the next sailing of the vessel.

Indeed, American Constellation is the only cruise vessel that has restarted operations in North America in recent months to have a sailing cut short due to COVID-19.

American Cruise Lines was one of the first cruise operators in North America to restart sailings and until this week had carried more than 10,000 passengers on 130 sailings this year without incident, according to the line.

The Connecticut-based line is the leader in small-ship cruises in U.S. waters with 13 vessels that sail along coastal waterways and on rivers from New England to the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.

A spokesperson for the line told TPG that passengers on this week’s American Constellation sailing would be compensated for the portion of the trip they will miss.

Planning a cruise? Start with these stories:

Featured image of American Constitution, a sister vessel to American Constellation, courtesy of  American Cruise Lines.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases within the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn a $200 statement credit after your first Delta purchase within the first three months. Offer ends 7/28/21.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months and a $200 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Limited Time Offer: Plus, get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable 15.74%-24.74%. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
0% on purchases for 12 months
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.