Black Country couple stuck on cruise ship after not being allowed to disembark in Argentina

By Jordan Reynolds | Willenhall | Coronavirus | Published:

A Black Country couple are stuck on board a cruise ship after not being allowed to disembark in Argentina.

Phil and Judy Dowell on the cruise off the coast of Rio

Phil and Judy Dowell, from Willenhall, have been on board the Coral Princess since March 5 and were supposed to end their journey in Argentina last Wednesday, but were not allowed off the ship.

The grandparents, both aged 69, are being updated every day on board, and were originally told they were sailing to Fort Lauderdale in Florida, which would take two weeks, but now the cruise is aiming for Rio de Janeiro within the next few days.

Phil said: "The situation is changing all the time.

"We've just had a message come through to say we might be getting off soon in Rio, which would be fine.

"Otherwise we would be heading for Fort Lauderdale, but we haven't got travel insurance or a visa for America and they'd probably just put us in a quarantine for two weeks, so I'm not sure how we'd get home.

"But there are worse places to be stranded than a cruise ship - there is no virus on board. The ship has been very good.

"There's plenty of food and drink and even some entertainment still.


"Obviously our family is worried about how we are going to get home.

"It has been a long time, but we're only anxious for our family."

Phil said there are 400 British people on board the ship, most of which have been involved in daily meetings, with some acting as spokesmen.

"We want to stick together and go home at the same time," Phil added.


Phil's sister, Angela Miller, who is at home on Coppice Farm, said: "They seem OK and they are being looked after, it's just the unknown.

"It's very worrying, but he said fortunately the weather is good and the sea has been very calm.

"In a way they are safer on there than we are here as there's no one on board with the virus."

Jordan Reynolds

By Jordan Reynolds
Reporter - @jreynolds_star

Senior reporter at the Express & Star.

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.


Top Stories


More from the Express & Star

UK & International News