Major Cruise Lines Cancel More Departures, Change Port Calls Due to Storm
By Theresa Norton Masek
October 29, 2012 4:31 PM
Carnival Cruise Lines cancelled the Oct. 28 departure of the Carnival Pride from Baltimore due to U.S. Coast Guard restrictions imposed for Hurricane Sandy. The line previously cancelled the Carnival Glory’s Oct. 28 cruise from Norfolk because the cruise terminal is located behind a flood gate that was closed as Hurricane Sandy.
The Carnival Pride voyage was cancelled after guests had already boarded. “The U.S. Coast Guard has just made us aware that we will not be able to depart from the Chesapeake Bay,” Carnival wrote in its storm update. “At this time, it is uncertain when this restriction will be lifted. We respect the Coast Guard’s decision and, since we do not know when we will be cleared to sail, we will not be able to operate this cruise.”
Guests will get a full refund within two weeks and a 25 percent future cruise discount. Parking expenses were be refunded as guests left the parking facility, and the line’s Guest Logistics team was on hand to help those who needed to find a hotel room. Carnival also offered to cover dining expenses up to $30, with receipts to be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org. Due to the cancellation, a new two-day cruise to nowhere will depart on Nov. 2. The cruise will have a day at sea and return to Baltimore on Nov. 4.
“I have to say I can’t remember a storm that has affected so many ships and forced the cancellation of ports and … two cruises,” John Heald, senior cruise director for Carnival, wrote on his Facebook page. He reported that Half Moon Cay, the private island in the Bahamas, sustained minor damage, such as beach erosion.
Meanwhile, Royal Caribbean International cancelled the Oct. 30 port call by Brilliance of the Seas to Bar Harbor, Maine. Instead, the ship called at St. John, New Brunswick, on Oct. 29 and, as scheduled, and will remain in port until Oct. 30. “This will provide the ship with the most shelter from the weather and ensure a safe and comfortable experience for all guests and crew onboard,” the company said.
Enchantment of the Seas will be unable to call on Kings Wharf, Bermuda, as originally scheduled. Instead, the ship sailed out to sea to try to find the calmest seas possible. Monarch of the Seas will call at CocoCay, Bahamas, on Nov. 1 instead of on Oct. 30, as originally scheduled.
Norwegian Cruise Line said Norwegian Gem will remain at sea Oct. 29. “At this time, we anticipate that, with the current forecast of the storm’s path, the ship could potentially embark guests on Oct. 31,” the company said. Norwegian Dawn was in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Oct. 29 and planned to overnight there. Norwegian Jewel is en route to Port Canaveral and will arrive as scheduled on Oct. 30.
Crystal Cruises said Crystal Symphony will remain at the Port of Boston until the morning of Oct. 30, when it was planning to sail to New York City as originally scheduled. Disembarkation and embarkation for the next scheduled voyage is planned to take place on Oct. 31 in New York City. Crystal Symphony will remain in New York until 9 p.m. EST, extended from the original schedule of 5 p.m., to provide additional time for guest arrival due to potential flight changes and delays. Booked guests who cannot make it to New York on Oct. 31 can board Nov. 2 in Charleston, S.C.