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9-Month Cruise Included Stops in Russia, Israel but Rerouted to Avoid Conflicts, Says Passenger (Exclusive)

"They added a couple of places" and "moved some things around," Royal Caribbean Ultimate World Cruise passenger and podcaster Brandee Lake tells PEOPLE

<p>Courtesy Brandee Lake</p> Brandee Lake on Royal Caribbean

Courtesy Brandee Lake

Brandee Lake on Royal Caribbean's 9-month Ultimate World Cruise

Brandee Lake and the more than 600 other passengers who signed up for the entirety of Royal Caribbean's 9-month Ultimate World Cruise will see a whopping 60 countries — but three that were initially on the itinerary were scrapped due to ongoing political conflicts.

"The itinerary has changed a bit a couple of times. Because when we first signed up, Russia and Ukraine were on it," Lake, a podcaster who has been documenting the cruise on TikTok since its departure from Miami on Dec. 10, tells PEOPLE.

And now? "Definitely not," she adds. "Israel was also on [the itinerary], and now it's not."

But according to Lake, 46, "They added a couple of places" and "moved some things around," and she will still hit her goal of having visited 100 countries (and counting) by the end. Each time a destination was removed, she says, Royal Caribbean sent out an official update to passengers ahead of time and included the new ports they'd visit instead.

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JEAN-FRANCOIS MONIER/AFP via Getty Royal Caribbean's Serenade of the Seas
JEAN-FRANCOIS MONIER/AFP via Getty Royal Caribbean's Serenade of the Seas

Related: TikToker on 9-Month World Cruise Says ‘I Hate It Here’ Amid Canceled Excursions, Hate from Other Passengers

On Wednesday, Royal Caribbean issued a statement after rumors began to swirl on board that the cruise would be cut short due to the current unrest in the Red Sea and Suez Canal.

A popular content creator named Adita (who goes by @aditaml2759 on TikTok) shared a post on Tuesday that revealed she’s been “hearing a couple of rumors” that had her feeling “a little worried.”

“The rumor that I’ve been hearing is that Royal Caribbean is thinking of ending the World Cruise in Los Angeles due to problems in the Middle East and us not being able to go through the Red Sea and the Suez Canal,” she says in the video.

In a statement to PEOPLE, Royal Caribbean confirmed it will continue its journey as planned.

“This adventure will complete its first segment in February, and we can’t wait to kick off the next part of the journey shortly after and begin exploring Asia," the statement says in part.

Related: 9-Month Cruise Passenger Is 'Praying for the Best' as Ship Approaches Treacherous Drake Passage (Exclusive)

<p>Courtesy Brandee Lake</p> Brandee Lake on Royal Caribbean's 9-month Ultimate World Cruise

Courtesy Brandee Lake

Brandee Lake on Royal Caribbean's 9-month Ultimate World Cruise

In the first 30 days of the nine-month voyage, passengers onboard Royal Caribbean's Serenade of the Seas had already visited 10 countries or territories and multiple World Wonders, including Chichén Itzá in Mexico, Christ the Redeemer in Brazil and Iguazu Falls in Argentina.

The Ultimate World Cruise is planned to continue until September 2024 and will span all seven continents. Guests recently got a glimpse of Antarctica, after traversing the treacherous Drake Passage. Currently, the Serenade of the Seas is trekking up the West Coast of South America, with multiple planned stops in Chile.

Despite what many who have been following those posting about the cruise on social media may think, there is little drama among the passengers, according to Lake.

"Honestly, and I'm not just saying this, we all are a group. It's funny to me that people think that we're all so separate," the Brannon Files co-host tells PEOPLE.

<p>Courtesy Brandee Lake</p>

Courtesy Brandee Lake

Related: Royal Caribbean Addresses Rumor Spreading Among Passengers That 9-Month Cruise Could Be Cut Short

Asked what the best parts of living on a cruise ship have been so far, Lake replies, "I feel like it's a mobile hotel."

"You get to just go to sleep and wake up in a new place and you didn't have to pack up all your stuff, make it to the airport, get ready. You have whatever you have and it just comes with you," she says.

And the most challenging part? "Balancing my eating. This first month has felt kind of like vacation, and now I feel like it's starting to settle into this is home," Lake explains. "And I think for me, it's even more portion control because I'm gluten intolerant."

"I have some dietary restrictions, which stop me from going completely off the rails, but yet, still ... the desserts!" she adds.

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Read the original article on People.