Carnival Cruise Line Announces New Ship Debut Date, Plans for Current Fleet

carnival cruise fleet adjustments new ship debut date
A rendering of an Excel-class ship - Photo by Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line has just announced new plans for its fleet, including the debut month for a new ship that was previously announced. 

New Ship

As part of Carnival’s 50th birthday celebration in 2022, a November 2022 delivery date for the unnamed, second Excel-class ship has been confirmed from the Meyer Turku shipyard. The sister ship to the highly-anticipated Mardi Gras will showcase many of the same features, including BOLT, the first roller coaster at sea. As previously announced, the vessel will sail out of PortMiami. Bookings for this ship will open this fall, and travelers can register to be the “first to know” about itineraries and special promotions at

Downsizing the Fleet

As part of Carnival Corporation’s recent announcement to reduce its overall capacity and focus on updated and new ships, Carnival Fantasy and Inspiration have been sold. Carnival Fascination and Imagination will be moving to a long term lay-up status, with no specific timeline yet determined for a return to operation date. 

New Homeports and Itineraries

Carnival Sensation will be moving from Miami, Florida to Mobile, Alabama, and will take up itineraries previously assigned to Carnival Fantasy and Fascination. Travelers booked on those two ships are being re-accommodated on Carnival Sensation

Carnival Sunrise will move from Port Everglades to PortMiami and assume the itineraries previously operated by Carnival Sensation, providing a larger, updated ship for short itineraries. Many new features were installed during Sunrise’s $200 million transformation that included her renaming in 2019. Passengers booked on the Sunrise 4 and 5-night itineraries from Port Everglades will automatically be moved to sailings from PortMiami. The ship is also going to be part of Carnival’s 50th birthday celebration, and there will be no changes to her birthday sailing, which is scheduled for March 5, 2022. 

These special birthday sailings have been in high demand, and will feature special entertainment, at-sea ship rendezvous, and exclusive onboard activities and perks. For more information on this special group of March 2022 itineraries, visit

Carnival Fascination itineraries from San Juan and Barbados have been canceled for 2020 and 2021 as the cruise line focuses on its return to operations on the mainland U.S.

Itineraries for Carnival Imagination and Inspiration from Long Beach have been canceled through April 19, 2021. Carnival Panorama will continue to operate 7-night cruises from the port, while Carnival Miracle will operate shorter voyages from San Diego to Baja Mexico.

READ MORE: Carnival Releases Details on Mardi Gras

Carnival Radiance will now move directly from Europe after its $200 million transformation and homeport in Long Beach in April 2021, where it will assume the short Baja Mexico itineraries previously served by Carnival Imagination and Inspiration. Passengers booked on these two ships after April 22, 2021 will be re-accommodated on Carnival Radiance, where they will experience upgrades and new features including Shaq’s Big Chicken Restaurant as well as an expanded WaterWorks aqua park. 

Additional Updates from Carnival

Carnival also notified its Australian guests that it has extended its pause of operations there, and has canceled six cruises scheduled to operate between September 25 and October 29, 2020.

“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. “We have a great variety of ships across the Carnival Cruise Line fleet and we are thrilled to have been able to confirm a delivery date ahead of what we had anticipated for our second Excel ship, which is exciting news for guests interested in sailing from PortMiami on the sister ship to Mardi Gras!  At the same time, we will continue to invest in the four remaining Fantasy class ships that we are keeping in the fleet. We have many guests who prefer our Fantasy class ships which work so well for shorter itineraries from smaller ports that cannot accommodate our larger ships. With a fleet that gives guests lots of choices in ships, homeports, destinations and features including a multitude of dining, entertainment and accommodation choices, we are very excited about the future for Carnival Cruise Line.”

Guests and travel agents are being notified directly about impacted sailings, re-accommodations, and cancelations. Duffy thanked guests and travel agent partners alike for their continued patience, loyalty and support during this unprecedented time for the cruise industry. “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.,” she said.

Join the discussion

Are you planning to sail on any of Carnival's 50th birthday celebration cruises? How do you feel about these fleet adjustments?

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