The end to a nightmare two weeks quarantined inside a cruise ship cabin is hopefully just hours away for Alfredton mum Lyn Hedger and her daughter Clare.
The pair have been quarantined on the Diamond Princess moored off Yokohama, Japan, since the last day of their cruise on February 4 after fellow passengers were diagnosed with the potentially-deadly coronavirus.
They hope to be among the more than 200 Australians evacuated off the ship overnight - but must make it through five health tests before being allowed to board a Qantas flight to Darwin.
"We are good ... just waiting around and hoping we will pass the screenings to get on the flight," Clare told The Courier.
"We should be more than fine as we do not have any symptoms."
The federal government has organised a charter flight for Australian passengers that will take them to Darwin before they are transferred to a former workers site near Howard Springs for another two weeks of quarantine.
Of more than 2500 guests and almost 1050 crew on the ship, about 542 have caught the virus including at least 16 Australians.
Everyone leaving the trip will be required to wear a face mask for the duration of their travel to the quarantine camp.
Ms Hedger said the Australian passengers had received a rundown of the evacuation plan, with the first round of pre-flight screening having begun about 10.30am Wednesday.
Passengers were ordered to have their bags packed, tagged and outside their rooms by 5pm with passengers given colour coded wrist bands to aid in check in.
The flight is scheduled to take off from Haneda airport about 1am Thursday, arriving in Darwin about 8.30am.
Speaking to The Courier earlier this week, Ms Hedger said she was happy to be heading back to Australia.
"We will just be happy to be back in Australia, be closer to Australian health care if required and be one step closer to home," she said.
Mother and daughter have been confined to their cabin for 23 hours a day and allowed on the deck for one hour for fresh air and exercise.
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