Carnival Cruise Line fleet
Review of Carnival Cruise Line
Carnival Cruise Lines is a cruise ship company based in Doral, Florida (suburb of Miami USA). The company was originally independent, founded in 1972 by Ted Arison (1924-1999). The initial public offering of 20% common stock in 1987, provided capital which allowed its fleet expansion. Today, CCL is one of the 10 cruise ship brands owned by Carnival Corporation.
Carnival Cruise Line has the largest fleet in the Corporation's group of companies, accounting for 21% of the worldwide market share. Company's executive control is provided by the Corporation's North American division.
- Carnival is the pioneer in the concept of less expensive, shorter cruise itineraries. Its vessels are known for their Las Vegas-style entertainment and decor.
- Carnival calls its vessels "The Fun Ships", as there are a wealth of activities featured on board. Line's trademark is the red, white and blue funnel, which is shaped like the tail of a whale.
- In 1996, the 101,000-GT Carnival Destiny (now Sunshine) became the biggest passenger ship in the world and the first to weigh over 100,000 tons.
On October 26, 2012 it was announced that Carnival Corporation had ordered a brand new cruise ship for the Carnival Cruise Lines brand. The ship was to be built by Fincantieri and expected to be the largest they had ever created. It was also planned to be the first of a new class of ships with a 4,000-passenger capacity and a gross tonnage of 135,000. The new ship was named Carnival Vista and scheduled for delivery in spring 2016 (nearly 4 years after the Breeze entered service).
Carnival Cruise Line
Carnival Cruise Line is famous worldwide for implementing top-notch marine technologies, innovative construction methods and ship designs. Its clientele consists mostly of Americans, 30% of which are under 35, 40% - between 35-55, and 30% over 55.
The company's vessels offer spacious public spaces and staterooms that are one of the largest at sea with a huge variety of stateroom types in several categories. Between the high quality amenities are Carnival's terry robes and “Comfort Bed” sleep system with deluxe mattresses, linens, duvets and pillows - Suite guests can even choose from a “pillow menu”.
Carnival is famous for its great cuisine and multiple dining options. The long list of dining venues includes the Main Dining Rooms (with 5-course meals), Chef's Table (ship tour & gourmet cuisine), Supper Club with steakhouse favorites (reservations-only), BlueIguana Cantina (Mexican), Sushi Bar, European-style Patisseries and Cafes, Poolside Bars, themed Kids Dining, Midnight Buffets, 24-hour Pizza and Room Service.
Carnival Cruise Lines ships provide a variety of onboard activities - from napkin-folding classes, Vegas-style revues and gourmet & kitchen tours to cool deck parties, belly-flop pool competitions and waterslide races. Among the “cruising experience” upgrades is the vacation guarantee program allowing travelers who are unhappy with their cruise to get a 110% refund and disembark at the first port of the itinerary. The main facilities include Seaside Theatre (outdoors), Thrill Theatre (3D), Disco/Nightclub, Casino (gambling, tournaments), Stage Shows, Playlist productions, Hasbro Game Show, Carnival Waterworks (aqua park).
For those who love sports, Carnival has done a great job by creating the SportSquare with ropes SkyCourse, SkyRide and Basketball Court, also used also for Soccer and Volleyball. Since October 2016, Carnival Cruise Line ships offer bocce court activities, due to an inflatable court developed by the company Packaworld (New Zealand). The new activity was added following successful test trials (on Carnival Glory and Carnival Pride) run by American Bocce Company (USA).
- Bocce (aka bocci) is a noules sport similar to lawn bowls. However, the traditional courts are usually made of wood and sized 60x12 ft (1830x365 cm, which is a lot of space to install bocce on cruise ships. To overcome the problem, the NZ company Packaworld developed inflatable "Packabocce", making it easier to bring the game to new locations. The portable courts are sized 30x8 ft / 914x244 cm (recreation) and 22x6 ft / 670x180 cm (mini court) and can be set up in just minutes.
- The portable bocce courts are also available in some of the ship's indoor public spaces (including bars). The new onboard activity is offered fleetwide, including on the Australia-based ships, where are also available giant board games (like Trivial Pursuit, Guess Who, Cranium).
SkyRide is an outdoor / aerial bicycle ride on the newest Vista-class Carnival ships.
This is the industry's first pedal-powered open-air bike ride in hanging bikes encircling around an 800-ft / 245-m long suspended track on the ship's top deck, allowing 360-degree panoramic views 150 ft / 46 m above sea level.
Foosball and Ping-Pong tables are available, as well as a Walking/Jogging track and Fitness Center with a separate room for Yoga, Aerobics and Pilates classes.
There is also a Mini-Golf course and great golf cruise packages created for keen golfers.
Carnival caters for families with amazing kids programs. Kids club activities by “Camp Ocean” kids program feature “Dr Seuss at Sea” entertainment programming. At the same time moms and dads are able to unwind in the many relaxation lounges and complexes: Carnival Cloud 9 Spa, Serenity Adult Retreat, themed Bars (RedFrog, BlueIguana, Alchemy, Havana, Sports), big-size Swimming Pools and Whirlpools.
Carnival has been spending a lot on fleet refurbishments and upgrades since 2007. The initiative “Evolutions of Fun” cost US$350 million on eight Fantasy-class cruise ships and included new deck spaces, kids facilities, “WaterWorks” aqua park with water-slides. The “Fun Ship 2.0”, launched in 2011, cost US$500 million and featured new dining venues; transforming cabins; themed bars, lounges and clubs. The biggest part of the program was the transformation of Carnival Destiny into Carnival Sunshine in 2013 at the staggering USD 155 million for a 49-day drydock refurbishment.
The following official YouTube video reviews Carnival's Dream-class vessels (Breeeze, Dream and Magic) as facilities and onboard amenities.
At the following link you can compare Carnival's major rival - Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines (fleet and review of the RCI cruising experience).
ATM (cash) machines are available onboard all Carnival Cruise Line ships since 2009. The service is exclusively provided by Cardtronics and available to both cruise passengers and crew. In 2016, ATM cash machines were also installed in the ships' crew member sections. Each Carnival ship has all 4 ATMs - 2 located in high-traffic passenger areas and 2 are exclusively for the crew.
Carnival cruise gratuities (2017-2018 cruises)
Daily gratuities are per person (pp):
- USD 12,95 pp (standard staterooms - interior, oceanview, balcony, both adults and kids)
- USD 13,95 (suites). Suite perks (in addition to priority embarkation/debarkation in all ports, confirmed main dining room preference) also receive priority tender service, free in-cabin bottled water, 1 complimentary bag of laundry (per cruise), enhanced turndown service.
- Cruise gratuities for children - tips don't apply to kids less than two years of age.
- On Carnival ships departing from Australian ports tipping is not compulsory,
- On Cruises To Nowhere, the amount of gratuities PP per day is USD 12,95.
- Carnival Barbados deals (any itinerary visiting Barbados), all gratuities are prepaid and added upon booking.
- Daily gratuity is an automatic service charge added to the passenger's onboard account each day.
- Passengers can prepay gratuities.
- The amount of gratuities is split between the ship's staff (dining, housekeeping, cabin stewards).
- Room Service staff tipping is not compulsory.
- For drinks purchases, an automatic 15% gratuity is added to the bill. Charges are applied directly to the onboard account. An automatic 15% gratuity is added to "Chef's Table" (dining package) cover charge and applied directly to the onboard account.
Follows the breakdown of the tips on Carnival cruises (in USD, per day, per person):
- Housekeeping staff: USD 4,05 (standard cabins) USD 5,05 (suites)
- Dining / wait staff: USD 6,40
- Alternative Services (kitchen, entertainment, passenger services, other hotel staff members): USD 2,50.
The following table shows the total amount of gratuities (per person) based on the Carnival cruise itinerary duration:
Cruise length / tips (standard cabin) / tips (suite)
2 days / $25.90 / $27.90
3 days / $38.85 / $41.85
4 days / $51.80 / $55.80
5 days / $64.75 / $69.75
6 days / $77.70 / $83.70
7 days / $90.65 / $97.65
8 days / $103.60 / $111.60
9 days / $116.55 / $125.55
10 days / $129.50 / $139.50
11 days / $142.45 / $153.45
12 days / $155.40 / $167.40
13 days / $168.35 / $181.35
14 days / $181.30 / $195.30
15 days / $194.25 / $209.25
16 days / $207.20 / $223.20
17 days / $220.15 / $237.15
18 days / $233.10 / $251.10
19 days / $246.05 / $265.05
20 days / $259 / $279
NEW Carnival cruise ship Wi-Fi plans
In 2017, Carnival Cruise Line updated the cruise ship WiFi service fleetwide, introducing the option to pre-purchase Internet packages online.
Starting April 19, 2017, the company offers pre-purchasing internet plans (first introduced on Carnival Fascination and Carnival Vista). The option is available via "Manage My Booking’ (Carnival.com) where customers can select a package for the duration of the cruise.
The new Carnival WiFi plans can be purchased (at discounted rates) for either the entire voyage or for a day (24-hour period).
- "Social Package" (cost USD 5 per day) offers access most popular applications and websites, including Facebook (and Facebook Messenger), Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Linkedin, WhatsApp, plus the most popular airline websites. The Social plan doesn't include Snapchat, Facetime, iMessage, in-app calling or access to any other apps or websites.
- "Value Package" (cost USD 16 per day) offers access to all websites and apps, including e-mail, news, banking, sports, weather, all social media. The Value plan doesn't support music and video streaming or Skype calling.
- "Premium Package (cost USD 25 per day) offers the fastest possible Internet connection. Depending on coverage, speeds can be up to 3 times faster compared to the "Value Package". The Premium plan inncludes all apps and websites, plus streaming services and Skype video calling.
- Since May 2017, Carnival offers a new, convenient option for fully booked cruise passengers to select and pre-purchase Wi-Fi packages through carnival.com (“My Cruise Manager” tab). However, when purchasing W-Fi online, passengers must also pre-purchase an Internet package covering the whole cruise. Daily Internet packages are available onboard.
Booked Carnival cruise ship passengers can upgrade from one plan to another and are also allowed to use multiple devices per plan (including the ship's onboard computers), but only on one device at a time. All the new Carnival WiFi plans do not include video streaming (Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime) and don't support WiFi Calling (voice calls via the ship's Wi-Fi network) and Facetime (Apple's videotelephony) services. Printing services on the ship are provided at no charge.
Carnival "Future Cruise" booking
In May 2017, Carnival Cruise Line started offering new incentives to customers on current voyages if they book next cruise while on the ship.
- Cruisers are able to book a future Carnival cruise either while on the ship or within 2 weeks after the current cruise. Booking ashore can be done through travel agent or the Carnival HUB app. Onboard booking is through Loyalty and Cruise Rep. Before May 2017, passengers could only book future cruise through onboard reps.
- At the time of booking, passengers are entitled to the following perks: reduced deposit, 2-category cabin upgrade, 20% off "Early Saver" rates with price protection.
- Passengers who opt to change the cruise date lose their onboard credit. That credit is forfeited in case the price drops and customers opt to rebook. Before May 2017, the amount of onboard credit offered varied depending on itinerary's length, Now it is a flat rate of USD 25 per person (up to USD 50 per cabin) excepting suite staterooms, which receive USD 50 per person in onboard credit (up to USD 100 per cabin).
- Travel agents are able to book their customers into a group booking with the offer.
- Carnival's "Friends & Family" vouchers are not offered anymore. They used to allow passengers who may like to sail with you to get the same discount deal.
- Carnival Cruise Line is the only cruise company allowing its customers to take advantage of the "Future Cruise Vacation" promo up to 2 weeks after the end of the voyage / disembarkation.
Carnival fly-cruise deals Fly2Fun
Since 2015, Carnival Cruise Line offers a flight and cruise program (branded Fly2Fun) providing the company's potential customers with choice, convenience and value when making flight arrangements in connection with the cruise.
Fly2Fun deals allow customizing flight reservations with different options, including the specifying preferred departure ports, flight schedules, air line / carrier, type of accommodation. Confirmations are received after making the reservation. Flights can be customized to allow pre- or post-cruise hotel stays.
- The Fly2Fun program is operated with Carnival's "Flight Protection". It guarantees that in case of missing the cruise departure (due to aircraft mechanical or weather-related issues) Carnival will fully cover the airfare, plus all the expenses related to transportation, meals and hotels for the booked passengers to meet the ship in the next call port of the cruise itinerary.
- Within Carnival's flight cruise program there are 2 options available - "Restricted Air" and "Flexible Air".
- With Flexible Air, potential Carnival customers (or travel agents) can book cruise up to 4 days prior to departure with the “Book Now-Pay Later” feature. With this option, flights payment is collected together with the cruise's final payment. There are no fees if air changes are made outside of 60 days prior to departure.
- With "Restricted Air", flight tickets are non-refundable and due paid in full upon booking. Change fees are based on the airline's policy, once the flight tickets are issued.
- Fly2Fun (Carnival fly-cruise deals) are bookable only via phone. After the cruise reservation is made, customers can call "1-800-CARNIVAL" to make the flight reservation.
Carnival HUB app
HUB app is a free download mobile app allowing onboard chatting between Carnival passengers. The app also provides access to ship-related information. A fee of USD 5 per device per cruise is required to activate the chat feature. The other functions are at no cost.
The HUB app was last updated in June 2017 and now offers the хew features weather forecast (for each day of the itinerary), dining menus, tips info (dress code, shipboard events schedules, deck plans, ports info). App's design was also updated.
Hub app also allows checking the Sail & Sign onboard account, viewing maps, scheduled events, dining and drinking options, add favorites. On select ships via Hub app can also be purchased tours / shore excursions. The app is available for Apple and Android mobile devices.
"Carnival EasyPay" was introduced in June 2017. This is Carnival Cruise Line's pay-over-time program allowing customers to book a cruise and pay for it in 3 monthly installments.
- The program (cruise ship industry's first) is designed as a hassle-free cruise payment option. It allows booked passengers' to deduct cruise payments automatically (from the credit card on file). Then the payments are applied to the current balance over a 3-month period - interest-free.
- The customer makes the initial deposit, then the balance of the cruise is charged in 3 equal payments - taken out automatically (on the designated day) for 3 consecutive months.
- Booked cruise passengers can either register for "Carnival EasyPay" (at carnival.com) or call.
- Travel agents can sign up in order to process payments on behalf of their clients.
Since 2017, Carnival Cruise Line accept PayPal as digital payment method available from any device. Via PayPal, customers can securely choose their payment methods for purchases - credit card, debit card, bank account or PayPal balance.
PayPal can be used by cruise ship tourists upon making their initial deposits on the voyage or any balance due. In addition to PayPal, Carnival also accepts all major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, Diner's Club, MasterPass.
PayPal allows Carnival customers to make online purchases more quickly and securely. PayPal can be used as payment option for any of Carnival cruise itineraries with durations 3- to 15-days, visiting ports both USA and international ports and destinations.
Carnival cruise ship lifeguards
In April 2017, at the Clia Cruise 360 conference in Fort Lauderdale Florida, Carnival Cruise Line's president Christine Duffy reaffirmed that the company wouldn't add onboard lifeguards to the Fun Ships soon. Mrs Duffy stated that "the responsibility for pool safety must be with the parents onboard and our employees”.
On each of the Carnival ships there are three full-time attendants (at the waterworks facility/ aqua park with slides), which are swimming pool safety, CPR and first aid trained. Still, the safest system remains “vigilance and awareness”.
- For comparison, NCL Norwegian Cruise Line started employing certified lifeguards (on its largest vessels only) in summer 2017. NCL's lifeguards were employed fleetwide by 2018. The announcement made NCL the 3rd major cruise company with lifeguards onboard its ships - following Disney and Royal Caribbean. The onboard NCL lifeguards are stationed only at the family pools during scheduled swimming pool hours. This staff is "American Red Cross" trained and certified. NCL also offers complimentary swim vests for both adults and kids. Parents can obtain safety vests at the Lido Deck's towel station during daytime hours.
- NCL started testing monitoring through CCTV cameras at family pools (on fleet's largest ships only) since 2015. So adding full-time lifeguards was a decision for more safety on pool decks. However, it should be known that lifeguards don't replace parental supervision and that parents (legal guardians) remain the best form for preventing onboard accidents.
- RCI Royal Caribbean employs cruise ship lifeguards since February 2017 (by the line's "water safety program"). RCI's onboard lifeguards are dressed in special uniforms (bright red and white) and stationed at every onboard swimming pool, including at the Solarium (adults-only retreat) during the complex' opening hours.
- Disney Cruise Line employs certified lifeguards since 2013.
Carnival cruise ship draft beers
In May 2017, Carnival Cruise Line created a tropical-flavored draft beer via partnership with the Miami-based Concrete Beach Brewery. The special beer is served exclusively at the "RedFrog Pub & Brewery" on Carnival Vista - the first brewery found on a North America-based cruise liner. The new "Miami Guava Wheat Beer" was hand-crafted by Colin Presby (brewmaster on the shipboard brewery) and made with best ingredients.
- The Miami Guava beer has a light body and its primary ingredient is pink guava, also used in Miami's popular guava pastries. The new beer is available on a limited basis, and joins the 3 other original draft beers brewed on the Carnival Vista ship - ThirstyFrog Port Hoppin' IPA (floral flavor, with passion fruit and citrus overtones), ThirstyFrog Caribbean Wheat (unfiltered lager with banana aroma and spices) and FriskyFrog Java Stout (with hints of coffee).
- Concrete Beach Brewery is an "Alchemy & Science" beer brand, operating as an independent subsidiary of "The Boston Beer Company". Other "Alchemy & Science" breweries in the USA include Angel City Brewery (Los Angeles) and Coney Island Brewing Co (Brooklyn, NYC New York). Their most popular draft beers are named "Tropic of Passion" (Miami), Angel City IPA (LA), and Coney Island Mermaid Pilsner (NYC).
- US-homeported Carnival ships serve the Concrete Beach Brewery's Rica Wheat IPA, Angel City Brewery's Pilsner, Coney Island's Hard Root Beer and 1609 Amber. On a regional basis, Carnival ships leaving from Miami offer Concrete Beach Brewery's Stiltsville Pilsner, ships from Long Beach (Los Angeles) offer Angel City Brewery IPA, and ships departing from NYC offer Coney Island Mermaid Pilsner.
- Carnival Cruise Line also offers draft beers brewed either locally (in homeports) or within the homeport state. Such beers are offered on cruise ships leaving from NOLA New Orleans, Galveston TX, Baltimore MD and Tampa FL, as well as on ships to Alaska and Hawaii.
"Fun Ship Freddy" is Carnival's mascot in the shape of the company's distinctive funnel.
Itinerary of Carnival Cruise Line
Carnival's 2017-2018 program offers over 3500 itineraries (raging in length from 2 to 19-nights) on 24 ships. Of those, over 2500 itineraries are bookable as short cruise deals (duration between 2 and 5 days). These include departures from Miami and Port Canaveral with 4- and 5-day Bahamas cruises.
- The program offers over 70 destinations around the world and departures from nearly 20 different home-ports in North America.
- There are a total of 22 "Carnival Journeys" itineraries (longer in length) plus 13 "Bermuda" cruises leaving out of USA East Coast ports.
- There are 2 Carnival Panama Canal cruises (with partial transition) on Carnival Pride (out of Baltimore, Jan 2017) and out of Tampa (Feb 2017).
- New deployments for 2018 (departure ports) are the Carnival Breeze 7-day cruises from Galveston TX, Carnival Magic 7-day cruises from Port Canaveral, and Carnival Triumph 4- and 4-day Mexico cruises from NOLA (New Orleans).
- New Carnival Cozumel excursions (by the Cozumel Plus" program) offer longer land tour experiences. Cozumel Mexico is included as port of call in over 750 Western Caribbean cruise itineraries. The land tour programming includes snorkeling (Xel-Ha Park), "Secret River" (caverns exploration), Mayan ruins (Chichen Itza). Tours as length vary from 4 to 8 hours, and feature new local tour operator partnerships. Accordingly, Carnival ships will offer extended port stays to accommodate the longer excursions. The new itineraries are marked at the line's website as "Cozumel Plus".
- In July 2016, Carnival Cruise Line implemented the "staggered check-in embarkation" on all Ecstasy and Sunshine ships cruises (leaving out of Charleston SC, effective since July 9) and on all Pride ship cruises (out of Baltimore MD, effective since July 10). By the new embarkation procedure, all passengers are given pre-assigned ship boarding times. The new process was first tested in Galveston TX (in 2015's end) and was rolled out in Honolulu HI, Miami FL, New Orleans LA and Norfolk VA.
- In June 2017 Carnival Australia launched its 2018-2019 cruise program, offering Australians the ever largest number of itineraries. The new program (open for bookings June 15) includes over 70 itineraries out of Melbourne and Sydney, including a record 19 short breaks and weekend samplers. With 43 longer itineraries to South Pacific Islands and NZ. The 2017-2018 program represented an increase of 13% on 2018 voyages.
- Brand’s 2017-2018 Meet The Winemaker Cruises are a selection of cruises onboard Norwegian Dawn and Norwegian Escape during which passengers have the chance to wine & dine with top figures in winemaking industry. The Winemaker Cruises' full series was announced during season's first Winemaker Dinner cruise, held aboard Norwegian Escape and featuring president of Bodegas Hidalgo La Gitana, Antonio Hidalgo. Hidalgo represents the sherry winery's 8th generation. The Winemaker Dinner series is hosted at line’s venue The Cellars, Michael Mondavi Family Wine Bar. It is in celebration of NCL’s ongoing partnership with the family and beverage partners, including Moet Hennessy.
- In 2015, Michael Mondavi Family partnered with NCL to introduce the first branded wine bar of the line aboard Norwegian Escape - The Cellars, Michael Mondavi Family Wine Bar, which serves a curated wine list and service by a certified Sommelier of the Court of Master Sommeliers. The venue invites passengers to participate in various interactive, educational and fun wine activities, such as seminars, pairings, workshops and tastings. The partnership was expanded upon when in 2016 The Cellars opened on Norwegian Dawn after ship-wide enhancements.
(NEW) Carnival cruises to Princess Cays Bahamas
- Starting May 2017, these 6 Carnival ships to Princess Cays had scheduled a total of 40 visits (in 2017) and 98 (in 2018).
- Follows the list of Carnival cruise ships to Princess Cays on 2017 itineraries (in brackets are shown the itinerary's length and departure port): Carnival Pride (7-day from Baltimore), Carnival Ecstasy (5-day from Charleston), Carnival Conquest (8-day from Fort Lauderdale), Carnival Elation (5-day from Jacksonville), Carnival Liberty (4-day from Port Canaveral) and Carnival Sensation (4-day from Miami).
- Princess Cays is among the Carnival Corporation-owned private island destinations and exclusively operated cruise facilities, the list of which also includes Half Moon Cay (Bahamas), Grand Turk (Island, Puerta Maya (Cozumel Mexico), Mahogany Bay (Roatan Island, Honduras) and Amber Cove (Dominican Republic).
Follows a review of Carnival Cruise Lines itinerary program for 2016-2017-2018 scheduled itineraries. For sailing dates (departures, arrivals), ports of call times and Carnival cruise prices per person follow the ship pages listed below.
- Note: Carnival established cruise ship operations in China via a partnership with its local subsidiary company Costa Asia. Costa has been in China since 2008.
(home-ports Miami FL, Galveston TX) operates on round-trips to Eastern Caribbean (Grand Turk, Puerto Rico, St Kitts, St Maarten), Western Caribbean (Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Cozumel Mexico) and Southern Caribbean (Dominican Republic, Curacao, Aruba). REPOSITIONING: In May 2016, the ship starts departures out of Galveston Texas to Bahamas (Key West FL, Nassau, Freeport) and Western Caribbean (Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Roatan Honduras, Belize, Mexico - Cozumel and Costa Maya). In September 2018 Carnival Breeze will move to Port Canaveral.
(home-port Fort Lauderdale FL) operates on itineraries to Southern Caribbean (Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, Dominican Republic), Western Caribbean (Key West FL, Cozumel Mexico, Jamaica, Belize, Roatan Honduras), Eastern Caribbean (St Maarten, St Kitts, Puerto Rico, Grand Turk, Grand Cayman) and Bahamas (Freeport, Nassau, Half Moon Cay).
|Carnival Ecstasy (home-ports Miami FL, Charleston SC) operates on round-trips to Western Caribbean (Key West FL, Cozumel Mexico) and Bahamas (3-day to Nassau). REPOSITIONING: In February 2016, the ship starts departures out of Charleston to Bahamas (4- and 5-day to Nassau, Freeport, Half Moon Cay). On May 18, 2019 Carnival Sunshine begins her first cruise under full-time stay from Charleston and Carnival Ecstasy then shifts to Jacksonville, to operate 4- and 5-day cruises from the city.|
(home-port New Orleans LA, Jacksonville FL) operates on cruises to Western Caribbean from New Orleans (4-day to Cozumel, 5-day Cozumel and Progreso). REPOSITIONING: In April 2016, the ship started departures out of Jacksonville to Bahamas (4- and 5-day to Nassau, Freeport, Half Moon Cay). Carnival Cruise Line is bringing a unique cruise option to Jacksonville in spring 2018. The voyage is an 8-day round-trip cruise from Jacksonville beginning April 7 and offers an overnight visit to Heritage Wharf, Bermuda, along with an extended stay at Half Moon Cay. Including the newly added voyage on Carnival Elation from Jacksonville, in 2018 Carnival offers nineteen 4- to 8-day Bermuda departing from 6 East Coast U.S. ports, including Baltimore, Charleston, Fort Lauderdale, New York and Port Canaveral. Carnival Elation also sails a special 3-port, 6-day Bahamas cruise round-trip from Jacksonville between April 15-21, 2018 calling at Freeport, Half Moon Cay and Nassau. The new voyages complement the year-round 4- and 5-day schedule of the ship from Jacksonville. Carnival Elation is the only year-round ship of Jacksonville and carries approx 170,000 passengers per year from the port.
(home-ports Charleston SC, Miami Florida, Mobile Alabama) operates on Bahamas cruises out of Charleston (4-day Nassau, 5-day Nassau and Freeport). REPOSITIONING: In February 2016, the ship started departures from Miami to Western Caribbean (Key West FL, Cozumel Mexico) and to Bahamas (3-day Nassau, 5-day Nassau and Freeport). REPOSITIONING: In November 2016, the ship started departures from Mobile Alabama to Mexico (4-day Cozumel, 5-day Cozumel and Progreso). Since 2018, Carnival offers 7-day roundtrip Mobile cruise port departures to destinations no longer limited to Caribbean Mexico. On April 25, 2017, the company officially announced that the Carnival Fantasy ship will offer as ports of call destinations in Bahamas, Key West Florida, Grand Cayman Island, Costa Rica, Belize, Panama Canal.
(home-port Jacksonville FL) operates on cruises to Bahamas - 4-and 5-day to Nassau, Freeport and Half Moon Cay. REPOSITIONING: In April 2016, the ship starts departures out of San Juan Puerto Rico and Bridgetown Barbados - 7-day to Eastern Caribbean (St Lucia, St Kitts, St Maarten, St Thomas).
(home-port Galveston Texas) operates on 7-day round-trips to bahamas-Eastern Caribbean (Nassau, Freeport, Key West Florida) and Western Caribbean (Cozumel Mexico, Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Belize, Roatan).
(home-port Miami Florida) operates on 7-day round-trips to Western Caribbean (Grand Cayman, Roatan Honduras, Belize, Cozumel Mexico) and Bahamas and Eastern Caribbean (Half Moon Cay, St Thomas, Puerto Rico, Grand Turk). The ship also offers trips to Southern Caribbean (St Croix, Dominica, Grenada, Bonaire, Aruba, Curacao). Carnival Glory will take over Carnival Dream's New Orleans-based year-round 4-day schedule in May 2019.
(home-port Long Beach California) operates on Baja cruises to Ensenada Mexico (3-day) and to Santa Catalina Island and Ensenada (4-day).
(home-port Long Beach California) operates on Baja cruises to Ensenada Mexico (3-day) and also to Santa Catalina and Ensenada (4-day).
(homeports Sydney Australia, Melbourne Australia, Seattle WA) operates on round-trips to South Pacific Islands (New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji). REPOSITIONING (through Hawaii): During summer, Carnival Legend operates on Alaskan cruises out of Seattle. In 2018 Carnival Legend will be homeported in Melbourne.
(home-ports San Juan Puerto Rico, Bridgetown Barbados) operates on 7-day round-trips to Eastern Caribbean (St Lucia, St Kitts, St Maarten, St Thomas). REPOSITIONING: In April 2016, Carnival Liberty starts departures pout of Galveston TX to Mexico - 4-day Cozumel, 5-day Cozumel and Progreso.
(home-ports Galveston Texas, Port Canaveral FL) operates on 7-day round-trips to Western Caribbean (Cozumel Mexico, Belize, Roatan, Grand Cayman, Jamaica) and Bahamas (Key West FL, Nassau, Freeport). REPOSITIONING: Carnival Magic will be sent to Port Canaveral Florida in October 2016 for cruises to Eastern Caribbean (Dominican Republic, St Thomas, Puerto Rico, Grand Turk) and Western Caribbean (Costa Maya Mexico, Roatan, Belize, Cozumel). In 2017-2018 week-long Carnival Magic voyages will be offered from Port Canaveral. In September 2018 Carnival Magic will shift to Miami.
(home-port Long Beach CA) operates on 7-day round-trips to Mexican Riviera (Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta).
(home-port Tampa Florida) operates on round-trips to Western Caribbean - 4-day to Cozumel Mexico, and 5-day to Cozumel and Grand Cayman. Carnival Cruise Line’s Cuba sailings kick off on June 29, 2017 for a series of 4- and 5-night voyages from Tampa aboard Carnival Paradise and will make it the largest American cruise ship sailing to Cuba. Following strong response to Carnival's first-ever voyages to Cuba announced earlier in 2017, the cruise line added 5 more sailings featuring extended visits to Havana next year. The new trips aboard Carnival Paradise include a trio of 5-day cruises to Havana and Cozumel / Key West departing February 17, July 2 and September 5, 2018; a 6-day sailing including Havana and Grand Cayman departing August 26, 2018; and an 8-day voyage with visits to Havana, Grand Cayman and Cozumel departing August 18, 2018. All of the itineraries include a day-long visit and overnight in Havana with the 8-day cruise of August 18, 2018, offering 2 full days at the historic capital.
(home-port Baltimore MD) operates on round-trips to Florida-Bahamas (Port Canaveral, Nassau, Half Moon Cay, Grand Turk), and occasionally out of Tampa to Western Caribbean (Grand Cayman, Cozumel Mexico). Panama Canal experiences from Baltimore January 2017 and from Tampa February 2017.
(home-ports Florida - Port Canaveral, Miami) operates on round-trips to Bahamas (3-day Nassau, 4-day Nassau and Freeport, 5-day with Half Moon Cay), Western Caribbean (Cozumel Mexico, Key West FL) and Eastern Caribbean (Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Grand Turk, Dominican Republic).
(home-port Sydney Australia) operates on round-trips to Melbourne, Queensland, New Zealand, South Pacific Islands (Fiji, New Caledonia, Vanuatu) and also on Cruises to Nowhere (out of Sydney AU). Carnival Spirit will not be deployed to China (as it was announced) for Australian winter season in 2018 after a scheduled dry dock in Singapore. The ship will instead stay in Sydney.
In May of 2018 Carnival Spirit offers a 19-night repositioning cruise from Sydney to Singapore, visiting Darwin, Bali, and with maiden calls to Phuket, Koh Samui and Ho Chi Minh City (overnight). Prices started at USD 2,550 pp (double-occupancy Inside Cabin rates).
For winter 2017-2018, the ship will be repositioned to Asia and homeported in China following the scheduled drydock refurbishment in Singapore. The ship has been homeported in Sydney NSW Australia since 2012.
Spirit will be the first Carnival ship to operate itineraries leaving roundtrip from China. In spring 2018 it will return to Australia. In 2019, to Asia (China) will be deployed Carnival Splendor.
(home-port Miami Florida) operates on round-trips to Eastern Caribbean (Puerto Rico, St Thomas, Dominican Republic) and Western Caribbean (Cozumel Mexico, Belize, Roatan, Grand Cayman).
In 2018 Splendor will sail on seven-day Mexican Riviera cruises from Long Beach. Continuing the expansion of Carnival Journeys longer enrichment sailings, Carnival Splendor will operate a round-trip 14-day Alaskan adventure from Long Beach CA, featuring awe-inspiring sites like majestic Hubbard Glacier and a day-long call on Icy Strait Point, an unspoiled wilderness area which offers some of the best whale and bear watching and the longest zip-line in the world.
REPOSITIONING: Carnival Splendor will be sent to China in spring 2019 to offer Asian cruise itineraries.
NEWS: The ship was to be transferred to the fleet of P&O Australia in late 2019. However, in September 2017 was officially announced that the ship stays with the Carnival fleet.
(home-ports Port Canaveral Florida, Charleston SC, Norfolk VA, NYC New York) operates on round-trips to Bahamas (Nassau, Freeport, Half Moon Cay), Eastern Caribbean (Puerto Rico, St Thomas, Grand Turk, Dominican Republic), Canada New England (Saint John, Halifax, Boston), Bermuda, and also on Cruises to Nowhere (out of New York and Norfolk). Carnival Sunshine sails from Port of Charleston beginning May 2019, with regular 4- and 5-day cruises to the Bahamas. Sunshine replaces Ecstasy as the main ship sailing from Union Pier. The first cruise under the full-time stay of Carnival Sunshine in Charleston is on May 18, 2019. 4-day cruises visit Nassau while 5-day sailings include stops at the Bahamian port city and the private island of Half Moon Cay. Sunshine also operates 11-day Carnival Journeys voyage round-trip out of Union Pier from December 3-15, 2019, with calls at St Thomas, Bonaire, Aruba, Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay.
(home-ports Galveston TX, New Orleans LA) operates on round-trips to Western Caribbean - 5-day Mexico (Cozumel, Progreso) and 4-day Mexico (Cozumel). In 2017-2018 4- and 5-day Carnival Triumph sailings from New Orleans.
(home-ports Port Canaveral Florida, San Juan Puerto Rico) operates on round-trips to Bermuda and Southern Caribbean (St Thomas, Barbados, St Lucia, St Kitts, St Maarten); 2017-2018 cruises out of Miami.
(home-port Miami Florida) operates on round-trips to Eastern Caribbean (Grand Turk, Puerto Rico, St Kitts, St Maarten), Western Caribbean (Grand Cayman, Jamaica, Roatan, Belize, Cozumel) and Southern Caribbean (Dominican Republic, Curacao, Bonaire, Aruba). In September 2018 Carnival Vista will reposition to Galveston.
Carnival cruise itinerary changes
- During winter 2017-2018 season, Carnival Spirit will be repositioned to China to offer Asia cruises roundtrip from Shanghai (homeport). The seasonal redeployment is due to a scheduled drydock refurbishment in Singapore. Spirit has been homeported in Sydney Australia since 2012 performing strongly on the local market. The decision makes Spirit the first ever Carnival cruise ship departing from China. The ship will return to Australia in spring 2018 to continue the previous year-round itinerary program from Sydney. The other Carnival Asia ship is Carnival Splendor (to be repositioned in spring 2018).
- In 2018, Carnival Legend will be home-ported in Melbourne Australia (for the period February-March 2018). During that time, the ship will offer a total of 6 round-trip itineraries - three 3-night "Cruise to Nowhere" short breaks, one 4-night cruise to Tasmania, one 10-night to South Pacific islands and one 11-night around New Zealand.
- Carnival will operate cruises in Europe (starting in 2018) with the line's newest Vista-class ship (still unnamed). The new vessel, which is currently under construction in Italy, is of the same design as the new Carnival Vista.
Carnival's "FUNomenal Group Sail" booking promotion 2017-2019
Carnival Cruise Line's new promotion “FUNomenal Group Sail” reduces the company's required initial deposit (paid upon booking) by 50% for group cruise bookings on select itineraries. The company also offers an enhanced free cruise berth program. The promotion is for cruises departing between 2017 (August 15) and 2018 (April 30).
As an additional bonus for travel acencies, Carnival gives 1 free cruise berth for every 10 full-fare passengers. The line’s general program offers 1 free cruise berth for every 15 full-paying passengers.
Group booking rates applicable to the promotion are available on bookings made up to March 15, 2017. These fares start at USD 229 PP (for 3- to 5-day itineraries) and from USD 459 for 6-day and longer itineraries.
Carnival cruises to Cuba from Florida (Miami and Tampa)
- Itineraries (4- and 5-night in length) start in June 2017, and all include overnight stays in Havana.
- The first Carnival cruise to Cuba is on June 29.
- The 4-night itinerary's departure dates in 2017 are June 29, July 13, August 24, September 7 and 21, October 5 and 19, and in 2018 - May 3.
- The 5-night itinerary's departure dates in 2017 are August 14 and 28, September 25, October 9.
- 4-night cruises are to Havana exclusively, while the 5-day cruises also visit either Key West FL or Cozumel Mexico.
The current list of passenger shipping lines offering cruises to Cuba in 2017-2018 includes:
- Carnival Paradise leaving from Tampa Florida - cheapest prices (from USD 480 pp) since June 2017
- Royal Caribbean (ship Empress of the Seas) from Miami and Tampa since April 2017
- MSC Cruises (ship MSC Opera, leaving from Havana)
- Holland America (ship Veendam) leaving from Fort Lauderdale since December 2017
- Oceania Cruises (ships Marina and Regatta) starting in 2017, Cuba circumnavigation, stops in Cienfuegos and Havana, also part of some Panama Canal transition itineraries.
- NCL (ship Norwegian Sky) 4-day itineraries with Havana overnights - starting May 2017
- Azamara Cruises (ship on Azamara Quest from Miami)
- Compagnie du Ponant (yacht Le Ponant, leaving from Miami Florida)
- Pearl Seas Cruises (ship Pearl Mist, leaving from Fort Lauderdale Florida) since January 2017
- Thomson UK / Marella Cruises (ship Marella Dream) 7-day, leaving roundtrip from Jamaica (Montego Bay) to Havana
- Lindblad Expeditions (chartered sailing ship MS Panorama II, leaving from Havana)
- Celestyal Cruises (ship Celestyal Crystal, leaving from Havana and Montego Bay Jamaica)
- Grand Circle Cruise Line (ship MV Clio / ex Tere Moana) one-way from Miami to Havana, or the reverse from Havana to Miami (embarkation/disembarkation in port Cienfuegos).
- International Expeditions (leaving from Havana, charter flights out of Miami)
- Victory Cruise Lines - MS Victory I (former MS Saint Laurent) - fly-cruises from Miami to Havana (home-port Cienfuegos /departures)
- Note: According to the current Cuban law, US citizens of Cuban origin (born in Cuba) are not allowed to visit the island country (including on cruise ships). Regardless of their US citizenship status, Cuban-born Americans were denied booking on cruise itineraries visiting ports in Cuba. However, the situation changed in April 2016, after Carnival Corporation negotiated with the Cuban government for allowing ships with Cuban-born passengers, as such US citizens are allowed to visit the country on USA-Cuba charter flights. The Carnival-fathom cruise line started Miami to Cuba cruises in May 2016 with the transferred from P&O UK ship Adonia (now Azamara Pursuit). The brand was terminated in April 2017.
- Alaska Airlines offers regular nonstop flights to Havana from Los Angeles (California USA). An 80-min ling JetBlue flight from Fort Lauderdale (Florida) to Havana costs less than USD 100. Previously, air travel from USA to Cuba was thought charter flights only.
Carnival Journeys cruise itineraries 2017-2018
Since 2015, Carnival Cruise Line offers the so called "Carnival Journeys" itineraries. These are longer than usual sailings with length ranging between 9 and 15 nights and some of them are one-ways (relocation cruises). "Carnival Journeys" offer more in-depth port of call experiences than the shorter itineraries of 7-8 nights. Among the highlights are live entertainment and exotic culinary experiences that reflect the local cuisine and cultural traditions. The onboard "journey" experiences feature local cuisine specialties served in the Main Dining Room, cooking demonstration, Academy of Fun (expert lectures), traditional dance performances, themed deck parties, crew connections (opportunities to connect with the ship's staff and crew). The new 2016-2017 Carnival itinerary program "Carnival Journeys" to feature destinations, such as Hawaii, Caribbean, Panama Canal. Follows the list (updated) of such voyages and the ships on which they can be booked:
- May 15, 2017 - SUNSHINE - 10-days round-trip from Charleston SC
- Sept 2, 2017 - MIRACLE - 14-days Alaska round-trip from Los Angeles (Long Beach) CA. This is the Carnival's ever first Alaskan itinerary including the Icy Strait Point. It also features a full-day passing through Glacier Bay. The list of onboard activities includes Alaska-themed cultural and culinary events and themed seminars (photography, arts, crafts, cooking, celestial navigation). The list of Alaskan shore excursion includes hiking, sea kayaking, canoeing, helicopter flightseeing tours, lake snorkeling.
- Sept 12, 2017 - LEGEND - 10-days Alaska repositioning from Vancouver to Honolulu Hawaii
- Oct 28, 2017 - FREEDOM - 14-days partial Panama Canal transit roundtrip from Galveston TX
- Nov 5, 2017 - ECSTASY - 10-days Caribbean roundtrip from Charleston SC
- Dec 4, 2017 - PARADISE - 10-days partial Panama Canal transit roundtrip from Tampa FL
- Aug 25, 2018 - SPLENDOR - 14-day Alaskan cruise roundtrip from Long Beach (Los Angeles) California.
In February 2016, Carnival Cruise Line opened reservations for its fleet through April 2018, with more than 3,500 sailings of 2 to 19 days offered across its 24 cruise ships, as well as the brand new Carnival Vista set to debut on May 1 in Europe. The voyages will explore more than 70 destinations throughout Alaska, Hawaii, Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean and other popular regions. Cruises depart from around 20 North American homeports, which provides consumers with cost-effective means for getting to/from their cruise.
Among the wide variety of offers are more than 2,500 cruises of up to 5 days, providing Carnival guests with an array of options in short cruise market, including new 4- and 5-day deployments for Carnival Valor from Port Canaveral and Carnival Victory from Miami, providing an unparalelled number of balcony staterooms on the two popular routes. There are 22 longer Carnival Journeys visiting exotic ports and 13 Bermuda cruises departing from 7 East Coast USA homeports. Carnival will also offer 2 unique Panama Canal experiences aboard Carnival Pride from Tampa.
New Carnival Caribbean cruise shore excursions
Since July 2015, Carnival Cruise Line offers new shore excursions, new customized private tours and new family-friendly enhancements with complimentary beachside activities and complimentary land tours in select Caribbean ports of call. The min age requirement is 5 yo.
The new tour deals pertain to over 50 call ports in Mexico, Hawaii, Bahamas, Caribbean, Canada New England, South America.
- Cozumel (‘La Casa en la Playa’) 5-hour tour offers luxury limited to 30 participants who have an access to a beach house for the day with 5-star service provided by wait staff and personal chef. They also can learn Mexican cooking, making Margaritas and mojitos.
- Cozumel (‘Photo Safari and Beach Expedition’) is a 2-days tour starting with 1-hour photo seminar on the cruise ship. On the next day the tour continues with visiting a national park and beaches.
- Ocho Rios (‘Eat, Drink and Dance’) is a food themed tour about Jamaica’s culture, music and food. After food tasting at jerk hut, passengers enjoy dining at Miss T’s Kitchen. Follows a visit to a beach bar (where mixologists create rum cocktails), then ends with reggae dance lessons.
- Ocho Rios (‘Jamaican Home for the Day’) is a day-long tour on which cruise passengers enjoy their own Jamaican home, with included home-cooked lunch.
- Charlotte Amalie / St Thomas Island (‘"Eat, Drink and Walk") is a walking tour starting with bus drive to StPeter Mountain Great House and Botanical Gardens. Passengers can try 24 different local rums and learn how to make banana daiquiri and local food.
Carnival also offers new “family friendly” cruise shore excursions in Bahamas, Mexico and Caribbean. On these tours, kids aged 5 and under receive complimentary beach excursions if their parents book the excursion.
- Freeport Bahamas (‘Family Beach Escape’) tour starts with a bus ride to a beach resort, where kids enjoy treasure hunts, face-painting, sandcastle-making competitions and other supervised outdoor activities. Lunch is included.
- Cozumel (‘Island Beach Escape for Families by Power Catamaran’) tour starts with power catamaran ride to Passion Island and its white-sand beaches and resort facilities. Adults enjoy water trampolines, pedal boats, beach volleyball, while kids play is a dedicated beachside playground. Mexican-style buffet is included.
- Nassau Bahamas (‘Family Treasure Hunt with Lunch at Blue Lagoon’) - discover hidden treasures, answer trivia questions, win Pirate’s Bounty. Grilled lunch at Blue Lagoon Island is included.
- Montego Bay Jamaica ("All Inclusive Family Beach Resort Getaway’) tour is at Seawinds Beach Club and includes live entertainment and complimentary buffet lunch.
For more authentic tour experience, Carnival offers private tours via motor coaches, yachts and helicopters. These excursions are all guided by experienced locals. Carnival cruise ships have a new onboard lounge tour dispatch system, from where these tours depart as tour operators board the ship to meet the participants.
All of the new Carnival cruise tour offers complement the company's "Shore Excursion Best Price Guarantee" that provides 110% refund in OBC (onboard credit) should clients find a better price on similar tours.
Each of the Fun Ships also has a dedicated shore excursion desk with experienced staff to answer any questions and to recommend particular tours. Carnival's shore excursion section on carnival.com was revamped with enhanced navigation, more tour videos and photos, online reservations. Guest-written tour reviews are also available there.
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