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Carnival Plans to Restart U.S. Cruises on Aug. 1

By Eric Volkman – May 5, 2020 at 10:35AM

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At the start, only eight ships out of the company's sprawling multi-brand fleet will sail.

Shares of Carnival Cruise Lines (CCL 3.60%) (CUK 3.60%) had some good momentum behind them going into Tuesday, as the company announced tentative plans to restart cruise operations -- albeit to a very limited extent.

The first phase will kick off on Aug. 1, with a total of eight ships sailing from three major ports: Galveston, Texas, and Miami and Port Canaveral in Florida. Meanwhile, the company's cancellation of all other U.S. cruises has been extended through Aug. 31.

Carnival trainees on the bridge of a ship.

Image source: Carnival.

Carnival also mentioned three specific cruises that are temporarily being suspended. All Carnival Spirit Alaska cruises departing from Seattle fall will get the chop, as will the Carnival Spirit Vancouver-to-Honolulu cruise scheduled for Sept. 25, and the Honolulu-Brisbane sailing penciled in for Oct. 6. Finally, the company plans to cancel all Carnival Splendor cruises in Australia from June 19 to Aug. 31.

The company says customers who have tickets for canceled cruises are being informed via email. They will have a choice of receiving either future cruise credit plus an onboard credit package, or a full refund. Carnival did not specify how much in credit the customers would receive if they chose the first option.

In a follow-up press release, the company said its phasing in of cruises (and the timing thereof) will have to conform to SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus mitigation actions mandated by authorities. "Any resumption of cruise operations -- whenever that may be -- is fully dependent on our continued efforts in cooperation with federal, state, local and international government officials," the company wrote.

On Monday, both classes of Carnival stock rose on the back of the encouraging news, exceeding the gains of numerous peer consumer goods titles.

Eric Volkman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Carnival. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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