Carnival Cruise Line on Thursday made a number of announcements that will see its fleet transformed over the coming years.
“We have used this pause in operations to think carefully about our fleet and to build a plan that gives our guests new choices and upgrades to current ship offerings,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.
The first was that Carnival will launch a sister-ship to the upcoming Carnival Mardi Gras in 2022 to coincide with the line’s 50th birthday. The ship, which will sport a lot of the features of the upcoming Mardi Gras including the BOLT roller coaster, has been confirmed from the Meyer Turku shipyard and is set to start sailing out of PortMiami in 2022.
Carnival is expecting to open up bookings for the ship, which is not yet named, this fall.
Carnival also announced that it is going ahead with its plan to trim its fleet—Carnival Fantasy and Carnival Inspiration have both been sold and Carnival Fascination and Carnival Imagination are moving to a long term lay-up status with no timetable for a return. The news also means that Fascination will not sail its 2020-2021 San Juan and Barbados itineraries.
Carnival Imagination and Carnival Inspiration will not sail their scheduled itineraries from Long Beach through Apr. 19, 2021. Instead, Carnival Panorama will continue to operate its seven-day cruises from Long Beach and Carnival Miracle will operate shorter itineraries from San Diego to Baja Mexico.
Also at Long Beach will be Carnival Radiance, which will be moving from Europe to California right after the completion of its $200 million transformation. From there, Radiance will take over Imagination and Inspiration’s short itineraries to Baja Mexico.
Carnival is letting all of its travel partners and guest know of its new plans this week.
“With our future fleet plan resolved, we are focused on ensuring we are ready to return to operations once it is determined that the time is right to resume cruising in the U.S.,” Duffy said.