Carnival Corp will reroute 12 ships to avoid passage through the Red Sea. The cruise company says it will likely impact its earnings by up to 8 cents per share for 2024.
It says the decision to shift ships out of the region came after discussions with various government officials and security experts.
It affects ships in seven Carnival brands due to transit to the Red Sea by May. Princess Cruises confirmed it will mean adjusted itineraries on two world cruises aboard Island Princess and Coral Princess.
World cruises impacted
“Regrettably, Island Princess’ world cruise will no longer visit the Middle East (including Dubai) or Asia,” the cruise line said. It will instead make ports of call in Australia and sail to South Africa. From there, it will sail north up the west coast of Africa.
MSC Cruises is taking similar action by sailing empty ships to reposition in Europe. Royal Caribbean and Silversea have also adjusted or canceled cruises to avoid the Red Sea. Carnival brand Costa Cruises recently said it would scrap a repositioning voyage through the Red Sea in March.
Bookings at record levels for 2024
Despite the financial hit caused by the geopolitical tension in the region, Carnival Corp remains upbeat, with overall booking volumes at record levels since late 2023. It says ships are almost fully booked throughout the first half of 2024.
Carnival said customers booked on the upcoming rerouted Red Sea sailings will be contacted by the respective cruise lines or their travel agent with rebooking options.
The changes come amid heightened tensions in the region as Houthi forces in Yemen target commercial shipping. This has led to retaliatory strikes by the US and UK.