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Carnival Cruise Line threatens to move ships from US home ports like Miami

Carnival Imagination
This Sept. 16, 2011 photo, shows the Carnival Imagination cruise liner, foreground, docked in the Port of Miami awaiting departure for a three day cruise to Nassau. Carnival Corp.’s third-quarter net income rose 3 percent as the cruise operator was helped by lower costs and strong ticket prices during its peak summer season. (AP Photo/J Pat Carter)

Carnival Cruise Line is threatening to move its ships out of U.S. waters after being forced to cancel all cruises departing from 14 home ports including Miami through June 30.

“While we have not made plans to move Carnival Cruise Line ships outside of our U.S. homeports, we may have no choice but to do so in order to resume our operations which have been on ‘pause’ for over a year,” Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line, said in a statement provided by spokesperson Vance Gulliksen.

Carnival has 14 home ports along the east and west coasts and the Gulf of Mexico in the U.S., Gulliksen said.

“We remain committed to working with the Administration and the CDC to find a workable solution that best serves the interest of public health,” Duffy said in the release, adding that Carnival is asking that the “cruise industry be treated on par” with other sectors of the travel industry “as well as U.S. society at large.”

The cruise industry has been shuttered in U.S. waters since March of last year while other sectors have been allowed to continue to operate or reopen with health and safety modifications including airlines and theme parks such as Walt Disney World in Orlando.

On Tuesday, Norwegian Cruise Line announced its official return to service would begin in July in Europe and the Caribbean sailing at 60% capacity with completely vaccinated passengers.
And last month, Royal Caribbean International announced sailings in Israel, Bermuda and the Bahamas and its sibling line, Celebrity Cruises, added itineraries for St. Maarten – all with specific vaccine requirements.

Carnival said it is notifying guests whose cruises have been canceled and are providing options for a future cruise credit with added onboard credits or a full refund.