Carnival Cruise Line has advised guests and travel agents that it has extended its operational pause in North America through Sept. 30, 2020.
“During this unprecedented pause in our business, we have continued to assess the operating environment and confer with public health, government and industry officials,” Carnival Cruise Line President Christine Duffy told booked guests and travel agents in a letter sent today. But she added that following the cruise industry’s announcement on Friday that it would voluntarily extend its pause in North America, Carnival Cruise Line is now cancelling all cruises through September 30.
“We have watched with great interest as commerce, travel and personal activities have begun to start back up, and once we do resume service, we will take all necessary steps to ensure the health and safety of our guests, crew and the communities we bring our ships to in order to maintain public confidence in our business. Nevertheless, we apologize for disrupting your vacation plans and appreciate your patience as we work through these decisions,” Duffy said in the letter.
Carnival initially announced a voluntary 30-day pause in operations on March 13, and has now extended that pause three times, reflecting the public health challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. It is currently completing the repatriation of nearly 29,000 crew members to more than 100 nations who serve its fleet of 27 ships.
As with previous pause announcements, Carnival is giving guests who wish to move their booking to a later date a rebooking offer that combines a Future Cruise Credit (FCC) and either a $300 or $600 Onboard Credit (OBC) that has proven very popular with their guests. Guests, as always, have the option to receive a full refund. The process is fully automated so that guests can submit their preference online and they have until May 31, 2021 to make a selection.
“We appreciate the patience and support of our loyal guests, and recognize how much they want to get back to cruising. When the time is right, our outstanding onboard team will be waiting to welcome them back and give them the great vacation that they deserve,” said Duffy.
Further reading: Last week Carnival Corporation provided an update on the financial consequences of COVID-19. In an effort to minimize costs and maximize liquidity the company will dispose of six ships in the next three months. Find out more here.