Passengers aboard a luxurious 104-day world cruise were ordered to go dark and remain silent at night for 10 days to thwart off possible “pirate threats,” according to reports.
The Sea Princess departed from Sydney, and as it approached and crossed the Indian Ocean, the Arabian Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the Suez Canal, it was turned into floating mass of darkness, according to The Telegraph.
Curtains had to be drawn, and there were no late-night evening strolls on the deck or movies under the stars, according to one passenger’s account.
“No lights, no party atmosphere, no lapping up tropical breezes on their balconies,” passenger Carolyne Jasinski wrote in an piece for news.com.au. “All around the ship, as the sun set, all curtains were drawn and all shutters closed. Bright lights, which normally signal the presence of the Sea Princess on the ocean, were dimmed or turned off altogether.”
Jasinski said the captain alerted the 1,900 passengers, apologizing for alarming them, but insisted they must be prepared for a possible pirate attack.
A spokesperson for the cruise line, who was not named, told The Telegraph: “Any measures aboard Sea Princess were simply taken out of an abundance caution and not in response to a specific threat and are common to international shipping sailing in the region.”
The Sea Princess, operated by Princess Cruises, is expected to finish its journey in September in Dubai, The National reported. The three-month cruise journey cost attendees nearly $40,000, according to The Telegraph.
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