In one of the clearest indications yet that cruise lines finally see a path to return to U.S. waters, Carnival Cruise Line set JUL dates for a resumption of sailing from several American homeports – even in Alaska, which is doubly-hamstrung by both CDC restrictions as well as Canada’s ban on cruising through 2022.
A notice published by the cruise line on social media Tuesday read:
“We work toward plans for a July restart in the U.S. on select ships, including sailings from Alaska, pending approval from U.S. and Canadian authorities.
“We hope to begin operating sailings on three ships from Florida and Texas, including Carnival Vista (beginning July 3) and Carnival Breeze (beginning July 15), both from Galveston, and Carnival Horizon from Miami (beginning July 4).”
In a subsequent media release, Carnival Cruise Line provided further details. The line said it hopes to begin sailing Carnival Vista and Carnival Breeze from Galveston, TX and Carnival Horizon from Miami, FL. “Further, if Carnival can find a solution to allow cruise ships to visit Alaska, Carnival Miracle will assume some of Carnival Freedom’s departures from Seattle.”
Carnival’s president, Christine Duffy added, “We continue to have constructive discussions with the CDC but still have many questions that remain unanswered. We are working diligently to resume sailing in the U.S. and meet the CDC guidelines.”
No indication was given about any possible agreements forthcoming that would provide a workaround to Canada’s ban on cruise ships that effectively shuts down this year’s Alaska cruise season, too.
Carnival did acknowledge, “there is still some uncertainty in our ability to operate these cruises,” and accordingly announced that guests booked on those sailings may cancel without penalty by 31MAY and receive a full refund.
The company is cancelling sailings on all other ships through 30JUL, 2021. Guests whose cruises are cancelled are eligible for a future cruise credit and onboard credit or a full refund.
Affected guests and travel advisors are being notified.