Cruise Barbados Sees Changes to Schedules Following Hurricane Irma and Maria Damage
Cruise line operators, including Barbados’ primary partners – Royal Caribbean and Carnival Corporation, have rearranged their Caribbean cruise schedules in response to recent damage from hurricanes Irma and Maria. Hurricane Maria impacted Puerto Rico’s sea port, the hub for Southern Caribbean cruise itineraries.
As a result, six cruise line operators will be making an additional 34 calls at the Bridgetown Port. Two of six are the luxury Wind Star and Seabourn Cruises. Wind Star Cruises is set to make an additional 25 cruise calls on Barbados between its three vessels – Wind Surf, Star Breeze and Wins Star. Seabourn Cruises’ Seabourn Odyssey, will make an additional five calls. Other callers include the independent Viking Ocean Cruises’ Viking Sea, and MSC Cruises’ MSC Divina.
Royal Caribbean Corporation is also reporting changes. Their fortnightly vessel, Adventure of the Seas, which homeports out of Puerto Rico, cancelled last week’s Thursday call. However, Royal Caribbean’s Celebrity Cruises will make an additional call on Barbados via its Celebrity Summit vessel. Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Eclipse is also set to do an extra day in Barbados to supplement its itinerary.
Carnival Corporation is similarly rearranging business. The weekly Carnival Fascination, which also homeports out of Puerto Rico has cancelled three calls including today’s sailing. However, under the Carnival U.K. umbrella, several lines will be doing more business in Barbados. Carnival’s P&O Cruises operates three vessels – Britannia, Azura and Adonia – all of which will spend an extra night in Barbados. So too will Aida Diva, a vessel operated by Aida Cruises, which also falls under Carnival Corporation. Lastly, Carnival U.K.’s Costa Cruises, will also be making an additional call on Barbados via its vessel Costa Pacifica.
Cheryl Franklin, Director of Cruise at the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI), commented on the changes. “Since the passing of hurricanes Irma and Maria, we have been working closely with local stakeholders, particularly the Bridgetown Port, as well as our cruise line partners, as part of our ongoing assessment and monitoring of the situation on a weekly basis. We are confident that Barbados is in a position to accommodate these changes, and we continue to extend sympathies to our neighbouring Caribbean islands which have been impacted.”