Carnival Cruise Line announced that three more ships will resume guest operations in September, and another four in October – bringing the total number of ships to 15 – as the line’s successful restart of operations continues to ramp up. Based on the success of its initial resumption of service and the guest response to the onboard experience and health and safety protocols that have been implemented, Carnival will continue to operate all its ships as vaccinated cruises through at least October.
The three ships for September are Carnival Glory from New Orleans, starting Sept. 5, Carnival Pride from Baltimore, starting Sept. 12, and Carnival Dream from Galveston, starting Sept. 19.
Turning to October, the four additional ships to restart will be Carnival Conquest from Miami, effective Oct. 8, Carnival Freedom from Miami, effective Oct. 9, Carnival Elation from Port Canaveral, effective Oct. 11, and Carnival Sensation from Mobile, effective Oct. 21.
Related to this announcement, Carnival is notifying guests and travel agents of an extension in its pause of operations through Sept. 5 for Carnival Pride from Baltimore, Sept. 11 for Carnival Dream from Galveston, Oct. 4 for Carnival Conquest from Miami and Oct. 16 for Carnival Sensation from Mobile. Cruises on Carnival Sunshine from Charleston, Carnival Ecstasy from Jacksonville and Carnival Liberty from Port Canaveral will be cancelled through Oct. 31. In addition, a three-day cruise on Carnival Miracle from Long Beach on Sept. 24 is being cancelled, and then Carnival Miracle will begin sailing from Long Beach on Sept. 27.
“We are very excited about our restart and greatly appreciate the support of our guests, travel agents and port and destination partners,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “By the end of July, we will have five ships in our restart plan, including the introduction of service on Mardi Gras, and we are seeing a great combination of strong demand and strong guest satisfaction scores tied to the positive guest experience on board.”
Carnival will continue to welcome unvaccinated guests on board, but all unvaccinated guests including children under the age of 12, will be subject to pre-cruise and pre-embarkation testing and testing again prior to debarkation (on cruises longer than four days) along with a $150 per person charge to cover the costs of testing, reporting and health and safety screenings. At this time, Carnival is limiting operation of its supervised youth programs to vaccinated children and youth 12 years and older. Unvaccinated guests departing from Florida (effective July 31) and Texas (effective Aug. 2) will also need to show proof of travel insurance coverage, based on the itineraries being sailed and the requirements of ports and destinations visited. These additional measures will be in place through at least October but may be extended based on guidance from public health and medical advisors and the requirements of destination partners.
“The decision to sail with vaccinated voyages was a difficult one to make, and we recognize this is disappointing to some of our guests especially the many families with children under the age of 12 who we love to sail, and who love to sail with us,” said Duffy. “It’s important to remember that this is a temporary measure given the current circumstances. In consultation with our medical experts and advisors, we’ve determined this plan is in the best interests of the health and safety of our guests, crew and the destinations that we bring our ships to. It’s very important that we continue to maintain the confidence of our destination partners, so that we can provide our guests with the optimal cruise experience and sail our itineraries.”
“Our plan envisions successfully bringing back our entire fleet by the end of the year, returning to full service – most especially for the millions of families who sail with us – and building back our business for the benefit of our guests, employees and the tens of thousands of jobs and local businesses that depend on our company. We will continue to offer exemptions to our unvaccinated guests on a limited, capacity-managed basis within 14 days of sailing as we finalize the vaccinated guest count. The more bookings we initially secure for our cruises with fully vaccinated guests, the more exemptions we can ultimately offer for those unvaccinated guests already booked and those wishing to sail,” Duffy added.
Booked guests and travel advisors are being notified of the plans for the returning ships, the cruise cancellations and the process by which they are being asked to follow to confirm traveler vaccination status and to apply for an exemption to the vaccination standard. Guests who want to change their plans, who are unable to wait to see if they receive an exemption, or who cannot meet the vaccination standards may change their reservation without penalty or request a full refund. Guests, travel advisors and news media with additional questions are encouraged to review Carnival’s Have Fun. Be Safe. page and FAQ on Carnival.com.