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Caribbean Cruise News

Carnival Cruise Line is telling guests of more cruise cancellations and extending a pause in all operations from U.S. ports through June 30, 2021.

Booked guests get the option of a future cruise credit or a full refund. Carnival also is extending final payment deadlines for all July sailings to May 31, 2021, with the ability to cancel without penalty.

“We know that this is very disappointing to our guests who continue to be eager to sail, and we remain committed to working with the Administration and the CDC to find a workable solution that best serves the interest of public health.  We are asking that the cruise industry be treated on par with the approach being taken with other travel and tourism sectors, as well as U.S. society at large,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. 

“While we have not made plans to move Carnival Cruise Line ships outside of our U.S. homeports, we may have no choice but to do so in order to resume our operations which have been on ‘pause’ for over a year. We appreciate the continued patience and support from our loyal guests, travel advisors and business partners as we work on a return-to-service solution.”

Meanwhile, Royal Caribbean announced that it is resuming Caribbean cruises in June that embark from the Bahamas.

New Norwegian Itineraries

Palm Beach Aruba
Aruba is one of the ports of call for the Norwegian Encore’s 11-day cruise to the southern Caribbean

Norwegian Cruise Line has announced new itineraries for eastern, western and southern Caribbean cruises during the winter of 2022 and 2023.

Some of the highlights of the winter itineraries include Norwegian Encore on an 11-day cruise from Miami to the southern Caribbean on Dec. 23, 2022. It will visit St. Lucia, Antigua, Aruba, Curaçao, Bonaire, St. Thomas and Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.

Norwegian Breakaway, the largest ship in the cruise industry at this time, will sail from New Orleans. It will offer five, seven and nine-day roundtrip cruises to the western Caribbean beginning Nov. 20, 2022.

Norwegian Bliss will take a series of of seven-day cruises to the western Caribbean from Dec. 17, 2022, to April 1, 2023. It will visit Roatan, Harvest Caye in Belize, and Costa Maya and Cozumel in Mexico.

Cruise fans in the New York City region can take the Norwegian Getaway from that city on a 12-day to the southern Caribbean. The cruises will take place between Jan. 8 and Feb. 26, 2023. The itinerary includes Antigua, San Juan, St. Kitts, St. Lucia, Barbados, Puerto Plata and St. Thomas.

Disney Cruise Line logo

Disney Cruise Line has announced that the Disney Wonder ship will return to San Diego in March and April of 2021. It will embark on cruises to the Mexican Riviera.

The Wonder’s schedule include two-night cruises with a Friday departure to Ensenada to San Diego. These weekend getaways attract cruisers who aren’t taking a week off from work as well as visitors to San Diego. Ensenada is on the northern coast of Baja Peninsula.

The schedule also includes four- and five-night cruises to Cabo San Lucas on the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula or Catalina Island off the California coast. Cabo San Lucas is the most popular destination for Mexican Riviera cruises.

Carnival Accepting Reservations for New Megaship

Carnival Cruise Line logo

Carnival Cruise Lines is now accepting reservations for its newest XL class ship that debuts in November 2022.

The ship, Carnival Celebration, is part of the company’s 50th birthday events. It will have its first cruise, a 14-day transatlantic trip, on Nov. 6 and then begin regular trips starting Nov. 21. The ship’s main port of debarkation will be Miami, FL.

Celebration is a sister ship to Mardi Gras, Carnival’s first XL class ship which will begin sailing in 2021. The Mardi Gras is currently the largest Carnival ship with a maximum capacity of 6,500 passengers. Among other features, it will have the first roller coaster at sea.

Ports of call for the inaugural cruise include Southampton, England; La Coruña and Vigo, Spain; Funchal (Madeira), Portugal; and Tenerife (Canary Islands), Spain.

Back in Miami, Celebration will have a six-day Thanksgiving cruise that visits Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos; Amber Cove, Dominican Republic; and Nassau, Bahamas from Nov. 21 to 27, 2022.

It will begin year-round, seven-day cruises on Nov. 27, 2022, that depart on Sundays for the eastern and western Caribbean. Eastern Caribbean cruises ports of call include Amber Cove, Dominican Republic; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and St. Thomas, U.S.V.I. or St. Maarten in the Netherland Antilles. Western Caribbean ports of call include Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico; and Mahogany Bay, Isla Roatan.

Two eight-day cruises will depart Dec. 11 and Dec. 19, 2022. They will stop at Grand Turk, Amber Cove, San Juan and St. Thomas. A one-time five-day cruise will go to Amber Cove and Grand Turk from Jan. 3 to 8 in 2023.

Scott S. Bateman is a professional journalist who has traveled widely throughout the Caribbean and the Americas. He is the author of four books about cruising in the Caribbean, Alaska and Mexican Riviera.
April 10, 2021