(Photo by Andy Newman/Carnival Cruise Lines)

Gazebo Gazette

The Royal Caribbean’s “The Majesty of the Seas” vessel will dock at the Port of Gulfport March 24-27 to allow for crew members who have completed their employment contract to disembark and be repatriated to their home countries. All processed crewmembers will be transported, by cruise line chartered transportation services, to New Orleans Louis Armstrong International Airport (MSY) where they will begin travel to their respective home country.

 Prior to disembarking the vessel, crewmembers will be evaluated by the ship’s medical staff to ensure there are no signs or symptoms of any illness. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will then conduct normal departure procedures for vessels docked in port. As needed, crew members will depart the vessel and undergo immigration repatriation procedures with CBP.

 “U.S. Customs and Border Protection in Gulfport is supporting our Department of State and CDC partners in facilitating the disembarkation of these crewmembers as smoothly and expeditiously as possible,” said Rodolpho Chacon, CBP Gulfport Director.

 “This is a joint effort between the Port of Gulfport and CBP to ensure that all maritime activities are taking place in accordance with federal law and that we are able to accommodate the needs of Royal Caribbean,” said Jonathan Daniels, Port of Gulfport executive director and CEO.

 The arrival of the “Majesty of the Seas” follows Carnival Cruise Lines’ announcement on March 15, 2020 that Carnival Valor and Carnival Freedom would be docking at the Port of Gulfport during the company’s voluntary month-long pause of its operations.

 “Our shared goal is to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved,” said Steven Stavinoha, CBP Director of Field Operations. “Our CBP officers will maintain situational awareness throughout the entire process.”

 The public should expect to see the cruise vessels in and out of the port over the coming weeks as they take this down time in the industry to conduct crew training exercises and maintenance on the vessels.