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  • Writer's pictureDavid Natale

What happens afterwards?

You had a great week and everyone tested negative before disembarking, what do you do if a fellow passenger returns home and tests positive?

Some of you have been following the fantastic week we had on my #ReOpentheRhine trip with the #AmaSiena on #AmaWaterways and happily there was much to talk about on this week's Round Table Talk episode. As great as it was, and as I discuss in RTT, every trip is about assessing the risks and deciding what is acceptable to you.

Up til now, most of my commentary has been on what would be possible, allowed, and when things would re-open. It's been about logistics and possibilities. Yet it is also important to consider what happens if someone tests positive while you are traveling or when you return.

What are your obligations and responsibilities? Does your insurance cover any Covid related expenses?

While the likelihood of vaccinated travellers getting Covid is low, sometimes it could happen. So what would you do and who must you tell if you feel unwell or test positive?

Today I got the chance to find out.

This morning I awoke to a cold dachsund nose on my face and an email from AmaWaterways to inform me that someone from our sailing who had tested negative while on board had returned home and started to have cold-like symptoms a few days later. They took an antigen test that returned a positive Covid result, but the person was feeling better. Ama alerted those who had been sitting with this guest and anyone who might have had personal contact with her, with the advisement to get a test if they felt any symptoms at all.

Further, they asked the person in question (and anyone else who ever might test positive) to get a PCR test to confirm that what they have is indeed Covid. It is important to note, especially when it comes to travel, that antigen tests very often return false positive results, and vary by brand. Therefore a PCR test is urgently needed to confidently diagnose an actual case of Covid and to trigger Covid protocols which state that anyone having any symptoms or who tests positive within 5 days of their returning home, should please alert them.

It is also essential that you contact the cruise line first. This particular case was actually reported to a third party who reported it to a cruise line representative that was in transit traveling.

She then alerted others.

As of today (9 days since the end of the trip) the person in question has still not provided those PCR results, however, Ama still took the steps of communicating the information to all the guests who have returned home and suggested they be alert and get tested immediately should they exhibit any symptoms.

So what does this mean for those of us who were also on board? It is important to note that as much as we keep looking to cruise lines, airlines, and other institutions to protect us, we also have obligations to them. We are part of the system and we also need to think of our fellow passengers.

We are also obligated to ourselves and our fellow passengers to follow all the protocols to keep our risk minimal.

Rather than shy away from telling anyone, it is urgent that we let those who had been around us know.

You never know where your dominoes will fall and who that could affect, so please have courtesy and concern for your fellow guests and share any suspicion, as well as confirmed test results as soon as possible.

My only contact with the person in question was being in the same room for an hour on August 1st, but I still took a test.

Negative, as I suspected it would be since I feel beyond good, have had no symptoms.

The others in my group are in the midst of testing.




So far everyone is negative, although one person got a false positive antigen test and then was found to be negative thru the more conclusive PCR test. Even so, they had 48 hours of worry, but also the hassle of pulling kids out of school, self isolating until the results came back, etc.

While no one else that I know of has had any symptoms, many still felt better being tested, whether for peace of mind or obligation to others in their lives. I will have to go back to the Facebook page later for any other updates, but what is clear is that there is more to think about when traveling during Covid times other than just can I.

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