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Carnival Postpones Australia Cruises, Cancels Select Carnival Splendor, Spirit Voyages
Cruise ship under red sky in Sydney (Photo: Tim Faircloth)

Carnival Postpones Australia Cruises, Cancels Select Carnival Splendor, Spirit Voyages

Carnival Postpones Australia Cruises, Cancels Select Carnival Splendor, Spirit Voyages
Cruise ship under red sky in Sydney (Photo: Tim Faircloth)

September 16, 2020

Aaron Saunders
By Aaron Saunders
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(1:33 a.m. AEST) -- Carnival Cruise Line today announced delays to its Australia cruise programme, electing to cancel several Carnival Splendor sailings into 2021 and to postpone all Carnival Spirit cruises departing from Brisbane until June 2021.
Carnival Splendor's sailings from Sydney between 19 December 2020 to 7 January 2021 have now been cancelled by the line. The move comes just days after Celebrity and Royal Caribbean cancelled their sailings in Australia and New Zealand through the end of 2020.
Carnival stated that Carnival Splendor may need to be redeployed to assist in supporting crew movements due to limited international air service.
The line stated it is in the process of contacting guests on affected voyages with a list of available options.
"Carnival will resume cruising in Australia when the time is right and will do so with enhanced health measures developed in conjunction with government authorities, public health experts, and the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA)," noted the line in a statement.
Carnival also confirmed the sale of Carnival Fascination, along with sister-ship Carnival Imagination, and announced further suspension of sailings for four other ships until after their scheduled 2021 drydocks.
The 1994-built Carnival Fascination had until recently made its homeport in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where it sailed weeklong voyages to the eastern and southern Caribbean. While a buyer wasn't announced, it is expected the ship will be sold to shipbreakers in Turkey.
Sister-ship Carnival Imagination, built in 1995, arrived this week off Aliaga, Turkey where it will be run aground for final demolition. The ship had been based for several years in Long Beach, California, operating three-and-four-night cruises to Baja Mexico.
Both vessels had previously been placed on long-term layup with Carnival. There were no plans to return the two Fantasy Class ships into the fleet.
Carnival did, however, confirm that the remaining four Fantasy Class ships -- Carnival Ecstasy, Carnival Sensation, Carnival Elation and Carnival Paradise -- would return to service once operations resume.
Two Fantasy Class ships, Carnival Fantasy and Carnival Inspiration, are already being scrapped in Turkey.
"While we are sad to see Carnival Fascination and Carnival Imagination leave our fleet, it is a necessary move as it allows us to focus on ships that offer the greatest variety of features and stateroom accommodations for our guests," said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.  
Carnival also announced entry-into-service delays for four other ships, which are being pushed back until their scheduled drydocks can be completed in early 2021.
Affected ships include:
  • Carnival Magic
    itineraries operating from Miami will be cancelled until 13 March  2021
  • Carnival Paradise
    itineraries operating from Tampa will be cancelled until 19 March, 2021
  • Carnival Valor
    itineraries operating from New Orleans will be cancelled until 29 April 2021 (including the transatlantic cruise from New Orleans on 25 January 2021 and the return from Barcelona on 26 February 2021)
  • Carnival Spirit
    itineraries operating from Brisbane will be cancelled through 16 May 2021, with the first sailing being the Singapore to Brisbane voyage embarking on 12 June, 2021.
Carnival's Duffy said in a statement to media that the extended pause in cruise operations has impacted shipyard availability, which has necessitated the rescheduling of drydock space. 
"As we continue to work through issues related to our eventual return to operations, we are committed to providing our guests and travel agent partners with certainty where we can, although we regret disappointing our guests," said Duffy.  "We appreciate the continued support and understanding of our guests and hope to welcome them back on board soon."
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