The Jewel of the Seas sailed from Amsterdam on May 20th with 1,752 guests onboard the Royal Caribbean cruise ship. There were twelve (12) crew members and three (3) guests who initially tested positive for COVID-13. After two days of the cruise, the number of guests who tested positive for the virus increased to seven (7).

This information comes from a trusted source on the ship who wishes to remain anonymous. The crew member has provided accurate information in the past about the number of infected guests and crew members on this particular ship over the course of the last year. Like other cruise lines, Royal Caribbean does not voluntarily disclose information regarding the number of either infected guests or crew members, althought this information is invaluable to a comsumer evaluating the risk of becoming infected during a cruise.

The Jewel of the Seas is currently on a week long cruise around Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England. The ship is scheduled to return to Amsterdam on Friday, May 27th.

The ship has recetly focused on the fact that, according to Royal Caribbean, there has been an increase in the number of infected crew members, leading to a senior officer reminding the crew to wear KN95 masks on the ship.

The ship’s Staff Captain, Frank Jensen, recently sent this email to the crew:

“Good morning fellow Ship Mates,

We have unfortunately lately seen a spike in the COVID19 cases among our crew!

Please ensure following is strictly adhered to in order for us to break this inclining curve of C+ cases:

KN95 Masks are to be worn at all the times, except when in your cabin or when eating, drinking or smoking.

We will keep you posted.


As far as passengers are concerned, the wearing of masks on the ship is strictly optional. As a practical matter, no guests seem to wear masks voluntarily. Royal Caribbean does not instruct guests to wear mask though it knows that COVID-19 cases are “spiking” among the crew.

As we previously reported, the Jewel of Seas had as many as one hundred (100) to two hundred (200) infected crew members at any given time late last year and earlier this year during a surge in cases as the Omicron variant emerged. The Jewel was one of three Royal Caribbean cruise ships (including the Serenade of the Seas and the Vision of the Seas) used by the cruise line as a floating quarantine hotel / walk-in clinic at sea for infected crew members. The ship previously would rendevous with other Royal Caribbean ships to pick up hundreds of other infected/ill crew members. It is our understanding that Royal Caribbean is no longer housing infected crew members on quarantine-ships after the Omicron variant surge largely abated. 

Nonetheless, it remains risky to board a cruise ship maskless, as Royal Caribbean seems to privately realize.

We will report regarding the number of infected crew and guests when the Jewel of the Seas returns to Amsterdam.

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Top – Jewel of the Seas – By Dave souza – CC BY-SA 2.5, commons / wikimedia; Jewel of the Seas – middle – Royal Caribbean Press Center.