It was supposed to be the dream trip: a month on the high seas in Asia, passing through the United Arab Emirates, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and, finally, Japan.
That is until the coronavirus appeared and thwarted preparations for the cruise that will leave Dubai on March 21. Now, a group of at least 50 Brazilians wants to abort the trip, but the operator, MSC, is charging a 60% penalty for cancellation.
The company has changed part of the roadmap and says it will not allow people with symptoms of the disease or those who have recently been to the most affected areas to board. He also says that he will isolate guests who have a fever on the way.
Whoever paid about R $ 15 thousand for the trip, apart from the plane ticket, however, does not want to risk it. Most travelers are retired and over 50 years old. Some of them have respiratory diseases such as asthma, pneumonia, bronchitis, and pulmonary emphysema.
Covid-19 is a virus that can cause respiratory diseases ranging from common colds to SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome). According to WHO (World Health Organization), 72% of infected people were over 40 years old, and in 40% of cases, patients had other diseases, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular problems.
The group wants to cancel the trip without having to pay the fine and receive the money-back, since, in all countries where the ship must pass, there is at least one infected person. Some are willing to do another cruise far from Asia or receive a bonus or credit from MSC to travel on another date.
Translated by Kiratiana Freelon