Skip to main content

Maritime Law--Carnival Announces Cruises from Miami to Cuba

The world's largest cruise ship operator could be heading to Cuba by May 2016. Various sources report that Carnival Corp. has received U.S. government licenses to offer "purposeful" cruises from the U.S. to Cuba for people-to-people, humanitarian and other exchanges. Carnival says it would become the first American cruise company to visit Cuba since the 1960 trade embargo. The trips will be through its new "fathom" brand, which focuses on trips where passengers sail to a destination in order to volunteer there.
 
The weeklong cruises are reported to be aboard ADONIA, a small cruise ship which carries 710 passengers. ADONIA is relatively small for the industry, as ships sailing under the company's namesake line can carry nearly 3,000 passengers. ADONIA is a deluxe ship that offers no casino or Broadway-type shows but rather features Spanish classes and workshops on the island's art and heritage.The itinerary is still being finalized, as Carnival is awaiting approval from the Cuban government. The ship is expected to visit several ports and passengers will sleep onboard each night. Carnival is expecting high demand for the voyages and has priced them accordingly. Prices start at $2,990 per person plus taxes and port fees. A similar service-oriented trip on the same ship to the Dominican Republic starts at $1,540 per person.
 
 
Cuba is still closed for general tourism for Americans under the terms of the U.S. embargo against communist-led Cuba, unless they have family on the island. This measure must be lifted by Congress. Nevertheless, new rules permit U.S. visits to Cuba without a prior license in 12 categories of travel, including the people-to-people type tours now planned by Carnival. Carnival's license comes as part of recent approvals for six passenger vessels from the Treasury Department. The U.S. government has not named the companies who have received these licenses, though as I previously blogged on May 6, 2015, Airline Brokers Co., Baja Ferries USA, Havana Ferry Partners, United Caribbean Lines and America Cruise Ferries have all announced that they have received these licenses. See that article here => Ferries Between Florida and Cuba.
 
Of the six that have received the licenses, four of them are reportedly authorized to allow passengers and crew to spend the night aboard. The vessels are not allowed to stop at other countries, so an ADONIA cruise from Miami to Cuba will not be a typical Caribbean cruise where the ship will stop at four or five other ports. 
 
There is a lot of interest in waterborne travel to Cuba. Tourism is reportedly a $2.6 billion-plus industry in Cuba and has been one of the main economic drivers keeping Cuba's economy sputtering along. Last year, the country reportedly welcomed a record 3 million visitors. Several sources report that Cuban officials estimate that 1.5 million Americans would travel to the island annually if all restrictions were removed, potentially adding some $2 billion a year to Cuba's economy.
 
There are many challenges ahead for the country as it opens up to U.S. visitors. There is not enough infrastructure to handle the demand. Reportedly major travel companies including Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, United Airlines, Hilton Worldwide and Marriott International have been closely eyeing developments in Cuba. JetBlue, which has run charter flights from Florida to Cuba for years, just launched a new nonstop flight from New York. It is only open to travelers who are approved to visit Cuba. American Airlines and Sun Country Airlines also offer charters.
 
If you are interested in contacting me, you may do so by writing to me at mov@chaloslaw.com.

Comments

  1. Its always good to learn tips like you share for blog posting.I think your suggestion would be helpful for us. I will let you know if its work for me too.
    Shipping & Logistics Quote Online

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Maritime Law--U.S. Crewmember Required to Arbitrate Claims Applying Norwegian Law

In Alberts v. Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd., No. 15-14775 (11th Cir. Aug. 23, 2016), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit held that a U.S. citizen, working aboard a Royal Caribbean cruise ship is required to arbitrate his claims against Royal Caribbean.
Plaintiff, a United States citizen, worked as the lead trumpeter on a passenger Royal Caribbean cruise ship. The ship is a Bahamian flagged vessel with a home port in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Royal Caribbean, the operator of the vessel, is a Liberian corporation with its principal place of business in Florida. After plaintiff became ill while working for Royal Caribbean, he filed suit alleging unseaworthiness, negligence, negligence under the Jones Act, maintenance and cure, and seaman’s wages and penalties. Royal Caribbean moved to compel arbitration, and the district court granted the motion. This appeal presented an issue of first impression: Whether a seaman’s work in international waters on a cruise ship that calls o…

Maritime Law--Tour Boat Captain Implicated in Tragedy Off Nicaragua

As reported in the Daily Business Review on January 25, 2016, Nicaragua's police, army and navy will investigate the captain of a tourist boat and his assistant for the deaths of 13 Costa Rican passengers killed on January 23rd when the vessel capsized in bad weather. The Reina del Caribe, Spanish for "Caribbean Queen," was carrying 33 people when it went down Saturday amid rain and strong winds as it ferried between the Corn Islands, a popular tourist destination, off Nicaragua's Caribbean coast. The Daily Business Review article can be accessed here=> Daily Business Review article.

The government clarified on the 24th that the boat was carrying 25 Costa Ricans, two Americans, two British citizens, a Brazilian and three Nicaraguans. Previous reports had said there were 32 people on board, including four Americans. All the dead were Costa Ricans.

Nicaragua's naval commander for the southern Caribbean region said the boat's captain was detained because the …

Maritime Law--Lawsuits Filed Over RCCL's "Storm Cruise"

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd ("RCCL") faces lawsuits by passengers accusing the company of negligently endangering their lives by letting Anthem of the Seas sail into a February 7, 2016 storm.  One class action lawsuit filed in federal court in Miami specifically states that RCCL should be required to pay punitive damages to passengers on its ship for "knowingly sailing directly into" a strong winter storm with 120-mph winds. It is also alleged that people aboard the ship were "subjected to hours of sheer terror as the gigantic cruise ship was battered by hurricane-force winds and more than 30-foot waves."

The vessel reportedly encountered 100 mph winds and 30-foot waves, and RCCL said the storm was more severe than expected. RCCL later turned the ship around, and it returned to New Jersey on February 10. Anthem of the Seas’ port azipod reportedly burnt through “all four clutches” during the storm. RCCL reported four minor injuries among more than 6,000 p…