In the world of cruising, the biggest splash was made with the headline: Carnival suspension extended.
Carnival Cruise Line is informing guests and travel agents that it has canceled select itineraries for specific operations in 2021, as it implements its plans for the resumption of cruising in 2021, including cruise operations in February from Miami, Port Canaveral and Galveston and moving the inaugural sailing of Mardi Gras until April 24, 2021. Carnival is also canceling the remaining itineraries scheduled to operate from Miami, Port Canaveral and Galveston through February 28, 2021.Carnival
As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, we regret to inform our guests that Carnival Cruise Line is having to cancel the following sailings
- All Ships sailings through and including February 28, 2021
- Mardi Gras sailings through and including April 17, 2021 (The inaugural sailing of Mardi Gras has been moved to Apr. 24, 2021)
The prior suspension canceled all cruises from all US ports through January 31, 2021, some ports through February, and one ship (Carnival Legend) sailing from Tampa, Florida through March 26. The suspension is part of Carnival’s path to resume safe operations outlined by the CDC at the end of October.
Suspending cruises through January and in some cases, February and March is closer to the timeframe I expected with the most recent CDC announcement. With the CDC outlining the steps for a safe return to cruising individual cruise lines have a lot of work to do before they can return, and even then, the restart will be slow and methodical to ensure the safety of guests, crew, and the communities where the ships visit.
As it continues to build and implement its plan to meet the requirements of the Framework for Resuming Cruise Ship Operations Order issued on Oct. 30 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Carnival Cruise Line has canceled additional cruises for the first part of 2021.Carnival
What has been canceled in the most recent Carnival suspension:
- All embarkations from U.S. homeports from January 1-31, 2021
- Additionally, Baltimore, Charleston, Jacksonville, Long Beach, Mobile, New Orleans, and San Diego embarkations through February 28, 2021
- Embarkations on Carnival Legend out of Tampa through March 26, 2021
Perhaps bigger news is that, consistent with CDC protocols, Carnival Horizon is scheduled to arrive in Miami this week, and Carnival Breeze will be the next ship, returning to Port Canaveral. In total, 16 Carnival ships are currently following the CDC process for an eventual resumption of guest service in 2021, including Carnival Conquest, Dream, Ecstasy, Elation, Freedom, Glory, Liberty, Miracle, Panorama, Pride, Sensation, Sunrise, Sunshine and Vista.
- All impacted guests will receive an email notification from Carnival which will include options for a combined future cruise credit (FCC) and onboard credit (OBC) package, or a full refund of the amount paid.
- Regardless of which option guests select, taxes, fees and port expenses, Carnival Vacation Protection, pre-paid gratuities, pre-purchased Carnival shore excursions, beverage and Wi-Fi packages, and Fun Shop purchase will be automatically refunded to the original form of payment.
Since the Carnival suspension was extended, the special offer for affected guests will remain the same as with previous cancelations. For cruises canceled by this suspension, cruises of 6+ days or longer can choose to receive 100% future cruise credit plus $600 per stateroom onboard credit while cruises 5 days or fewer receive 100% future cruise credit and $300 per stateroom obc. Guests may also choose to receive a refund and forfeit the OBC by filling out a form at Carnival.com by May 31, 2021.