Carnival Cruise Ship Cancels Numerous Alaska Port Calls, Blames Mechanical Problem

Carnival Cruise Ship Cancels Numerous Alaska Port Calls, Blames Mechanical Problem
(10:00 a.m. EDT) — Carnival Cruise Lines is preemptively canceling a slew of Alaska port calls by Carnival Miracle scheduled for this summer due to a “technical issue” impacting the ship’s cruising speed. Ports affected are Skagway and Ketchikan . A limited number of Hawaii cruises will also see itinerary modifications, though no canceled ports.
Carnival spokesman Vance Gulliksen told Cruise Critic the mechanical issue has resulted in the reduction of the ship’s maximum cruising speed from 21 knots to 18 to 21 knots depending on wind and sea conditions. Repairs to the propulsion unit will not be completed until a scheduled dry dock in early 2015.
“Until that time, some itinerary modifications will be required for the Alaska and Hawaii cruises this summer and fall,” he added.
According to Carnival’s senior cruise director John Heald, who posted about the cancellations on his Facebook page , Carnival executives reviewed the option to put the ship in dry dock sooner but opted for the modified itineraries in order to avoid canceling sailings.
“We absolutely did not want to cancel the Alaskan cruise you have worked so hard for and deserve so much,” Heald wrote.
Affected itineraries are:
May 6 and May 13 Alaska sailings: A visit to Sitka will replace the scheduled calls in Skagway.
May 20 through August 26 Alaska sailings: All scheduled calls to Ketchikan will be canceled. The port will not be replaced but visits to Juneau and Victoria will be extended.
September 18 (Hawaii sailing): The scheduled two-day call in Maui will be shortened to one full day and evening call. The sequence of ports will be changed as well but no scheduled ports of call will be canceled.
Miracle’s April 28 and September 2 Alaska sailing, as well as the April 12 Hawaii itinerary will not require any changes, while passengers on the September 10 Alaska sailing will see a shuffling of ports but no cancellations.
Passengers booked on the May 6 through August 26 cruises and the September 18 cruise will receive $50 in onboard credit per person and a 25 percent discount on a future cruises. Passengers may also elect to cancel their cruises for full refunds.
–by Dori Saltzman, News Editor