Posted by: Jerry Garrett | November 10, 2010

Fire-Damaged Carnival Splendor Out of Service Until February

Screenshot 11/15 9:00 p.m. EST: Lights were back on, but repairs proved too extensive for Carnival Splendor's Nov. 21 cruise.

[UPDATE 1/8/2011: The fire-damaged Carnival Splendor cruise ship is out of service until at least until late February 2011. Eleven cruises were scrubbed for November, December and January. On December 15, Carnival announced another five were cancelled – taking the ship out of service until February 20.

The ship was to be moved in mid-January to a dry dock facility in San Francisco for additional repairs.

Its ports of call in Mexico estimate the economic costs of missing 11 scheduled cruises at $11 million or more. That total has not yet updated with the additional cancellations.]

Carnival Cruise Lines scheduled its fire-damaged ship, Carnival Splendor, to be back in service, in regular duty, Nov. 21. But after five days of round-the-clock repairs, the cruise ship company cancelled all voyages on the ship until January 16, 2011.

The ship was pulled into San Diego for repairs, after a catastrophic engine fire Nov. 8 left it bobbing helplessly in the Pacific Ocean 55 miles off the coast of Baja California, some 200 miles south of the u.S. border. The ship was towed back to port, arriving in San Diego the morning of Nov. 11. (Watch Splendor being repaired – live – on this downtown San Diego webcam.)

Screenshot of webcam at noon 11/13

Questions immediately arose as to where repair work could be done on the huge cruise ship – Carnival’s largest when it was launched in 2008. It must be repaired on the West Coast, because it is too wide to fit through the Panama Canal, and a voyage around the tip of South America is not an option.

Dry dock facilities on the West Coast for a ship of this size are scarce to say the least. The closest suitable facilities in the U.S. would appear to be in Honolulu, Hawaii. Another possibility: A large dry dock is located in  Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. In either case, transporting a crippled ship, in an uncertain time of year weather-wise, across such great distances would appear to be problematic – if not impossible. Besides, David Strawford, a Carnival technical services expert, has said reservations must generally be made six to 12 months ahead of time, to book such dry dock space.

Carnival Splendor back in San Diego, Nov. 11 (Photos from May Garrett's iPhone4)

So, for now, the cruise line said it would try to have the ship repaired in San Diego, before returning to its home port of Long Beach, Calif.

“We are in the process of developing a detailed repair plan and will be in a position to disclose these plans in the near future,” a Carnival spokesman said Tuesday.

The cause of the fire was a broken crankshaft on its No. 5 engine. The ship is equipped with six massive diesel engines from Finland’s Wartsila.

“Splendor was on the first leg of a seven-day Mexican Riviera cruise that departed Sunday, Nov. 7, from Long Beach, Calif.   The ship’s normal itinerary includes stops in Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas.  The ship, which measures 113,000 gross registered tons and first entered service in July 2008, was carrying 3,299 guests and 1,167 crew,” the cruise line said in a statement.

Passengers disembarked immediately upon arrival in San Diego.

Carnival said it would refund the money of all passengers on the fated cruise, and offer them free passage on a later cruise.

As to the voyages subsequently cancelled for November, December and January, Carnival’s statement 11/16 said:

Guests who were scheduled to sail on these voyages will receive a full refund of their cruise fare and air transportation costs, along with a 25 percent discount on a future cruise.

Carnival Splendor was towed to San Diego following the fire which occurred off the Mexican coast on November 8.  A team from the U.S. Coast Guard, NTSB and flag authorities, along with Carnival’s engineers and technicians, is currently on board investigating the cause of the fire.  Carnival personnel are being assisted by representatives of the shipyard that built the vessel and other manufacturers of engine room components in assessing damage and necessary repairs.

“We realize how much guests look forward to their vacations and know that they are very disappointed by this news.  We too are disheartened that we are not able to fulfill the dreams of those who have entrusted us with their important vacation plans. We sincerely apologize to everyone who was scheduled to sail on these cancelled voyages and look forward to welcoming them aboard in the future.  Now that we have a full technical team engaged in the assessment, we wanted to provide this information as quickly as possible,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival president and CEO.

Carnival is contacting travel agents and guests on the affected sailings and providing assistance in finding alternate cruises.  Travel agent commissions on the cancelled sailings will be protected.

Repairs started immediately at the Port of San Diego

This is similar to the financial arrangement made earlier for customers who had purchased tickets on the cancelled Nov. 14 sailing were to receive full refunds, plus a 25 percent discount on a further cruise, Mr. Cahill added.

The popular Nov. 21 sailing, which spans the Thanksgiving holiday and for which Carnival charges a price premium, was only a few days from leaving, with customers being told the cruise was still on. But tickets could not be purchased on the Carnival website. As repairs continued, Carnival stopped selling tickets for more and more cruises, until Nov. 15 the ensuing month’s worth of cruises were pulled off the booking site. See the screenshot below, and accompanying update:

Screenshot of Carnival's Splendor booking site, as of noon 11/15

A Carnival spokesman had explained the disappearing booking options as “increased interest in the ship has resulted in these cruises selling out.”

Yet, 11/28 Splendor cruise still on Kayak, as of 11/13

The next Splendor sailing for which Carnival is now showing availability was the January 16, 2011 7-day itinerary to the Mexican Riviera.

[For additional information, read questions from readers and answers below.]

Jerry Garrett

Nov. 10, 2010 (with twice-daily updates)


  1. Where did you obtain your information regarding the 11/21 sailing? The ship hasn’t even come into port yet to assess the damages?
    Could you please email me with your response? I am scheduled to be on this ship’s Nov. 21st sailing and I’ve heard nothing. I greatly would appreciate it.

    • Thanks for writing, Cindy. My information comes directly from Carnival, its website and statements the company has made. The extent of the damages was determined by the crew onboard. Parts were ordered and readied before the ship even came into port. That said, the schedule for making all the repairs needed seemed a bit tight, especially since ship repair facilities on the West Coast are rather limiting.

      • I’m schedules to sail on the 1-16-2011 cruise.
        Do thet really think that they will be able to be ready to sail?
        It seems to me that there are too many qyestions that need to be answered about what happened.

  2. 16 family members and I are booked for the Nov 21st cruise. We are waiting to hear whether or not it’s been canceled so we can make alternate plans for the Thanksgiving holiday. It will be disappointing if it is canceled, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

    • Lisa…we will keep updating this blog as we get any more information. Carnival has pledged to “make it right” for any passengers who might be affected by this incident. As of right now, your cruise is still on. This has been confirmed to me personally by a Carnival executive this morning.

  3. My wife and I are booked for the Nov. 21st sailing of the Splendor. We cannot find any information on the Carnival website regarding the status of the ship. Do you happen to have an update that will let us know what damage was done and if it was more (or less) than originally estimated?

    We are very disheartened at Carnival’s silence during this ordeal. Many people have a great deal of money wrapped up in their vacations. We tried to opt out of the cruise to get a refund and rebook with another cruise line. Carnival was unwilling to allow this to happen. It just shows me that Carnival is more interested in their bottom line than retaining a long-time customer.

    • Carnival still believes it can fix the ship in time for the Nov. 21 sailing. Here is a statement at 12 noon EST 11/12 from Carnival spokesman Vance Gullicksen: “We recognize that many of our guests scheduled to sail on the Carnival Splendor are anxious to hear about the status of their upcoming sailing. At this time, [only] the November 14 voyage has been cancelled.” Some repair work started while the ship was still at sea. More repairs were initiated as soon as it docked in San Diego and damage assessment teams could safely enter the stricken ship’s areas of concern (the No. 5 engine, which is in the aft engine room, and a vital circuit board that fried). It was not immediately clear why the forward engine room, and its three engines, could not run independently of the damaged engine in the aft. Generally speaking, in ship design, a problem in one engine room could be isolated – allowing the ship to continue operation with its remaining engines. In this case, that was not possible for some reason. It may be a design issue; this is a relatively new ship – only two years old.
      “Our technical teams are working round the clock to assess the damage and necessary repairs,” Carnival said in a statement Friday. “We expect to have additional information early next week and will inform all guests accordingly.”
      I hope this is helpful. I will continue to update this blog throughout the weekend with new information, as it becomes available. But passengers who have booked the Nov. 21 cruise may not know anything until early next week; for now, assume the cruise is on.

  4. Jerry,

    Thank you for the follow-up. I will say that given Carnival’s position on issuing refunds for this cruise (they won’t do it), they have lost all our future business. Regardless if they cancel or not. I’ll be checking the blog daily for updates on this situation.

    Again, thanks for the quick and informative reply.

    • Just found a webcam atop a downtown building in San Diego, which you can aim to watch repairs on Splendor – which are indeed going on 24/7! Check out the link that I added to the story above.

  5. Jerry,
    Do you know if they will have to repair/replace engine five or is more of a focus to correct the issue of the power failing to switch over when the event occured. Do you know if they have any plans on having to dry dock the ship to complete the repairs??
    I also want to thank you for providing what I consider to be very helpfull updates. It seems you have been able to do a better job of providing information on your blog than Carnival can ssem to give either on thier website or over the phone. My family and I thank you.

    • Thanks for writing Shawn. The stricken engine will have to be replaced because the damage caused by a crankshaft breaking is too catastrophic to merely repair. As to dry dock possibilities: A Royal Caribbean captain told me recently that major repairs of a ship on the West Coast are problematic because the only dry dock repair facility for a ship as large as Carnival’s Splendor is in Honolulu!
      I will say this about the repair process in general for Splendor: Broken parts can be fixed, replaced, etc. But the trick is to find out what the culprit was that made the parts break in the first place. That could prove the most daunting task here, because a complete power loss, with the way this ship was supposedly wired, makes no sense.

  6. Jerry,
    When does Carnival plan on letting guests scheduled to leave on the November 21st know if we are for sure set to sail? There are six of us going and we are leaving a few days early. Would like to know so we can make other plans, to reschedule later?

    • Hi Sam,
      I cannot speak for Carnival. But I believe they will have to comment on the matter by midday Monday, Nov. 15. They should have a better handle on how repairs are going by then. It is my personal opinion that they have been holding off saying too much over the weekend, until they are more sure of where they at. I wish they would be a little more forthcoming, because I believe Carnival has a rather heroic story to tell about how everyone at the line has sprung into action since this unfortunate accident happened – and have stayed at their posts, sometimes working around the clock since Nov. 8 to provide for the passengers who have been affected, to arrange for the logistics of helping displaced passengers, set up a repair facility, bring in the right people, and make these repairs as fast as possible. An idle ship, as they say in the cruise industry, makes no money. So, besides the humanitarian aspect here, Carnival is losing millions every day this ship sits idle. I cannot make an accurate estimate of the cost so far to the line, but this incident to date has to have cost over $10 million in lost revenue, extra expenses, etc., to date. I have heard that Carnival execs have, in some cases, not left their offices since Nov. 8. They’ve been sleeping on couches, cots, on the floor, etc, to stay “all hands on deck” 24/7, so to speak. They have, however, chosen not to blow their own horns on this. Admirably, I suppose. Perhaps they will all be more amenable to taking a bow, once this problem is fixed and behind them. I know they are working as if they think these repairs can be made in time to save the Nov. 21 cruise. No effort is being spared to make this repair effort pay off for all involved. If it were me, I’d act as if the Nov. 21 trip is full speed ahead, and make plans to enjoy your vacation to the fullest. If Carnival runs out of time to make the repairs necessary – or feels less than 100 percent good about the shape of the ship – they have promised that they will try to make it right by you.

      • While I’m sure most of us understand that Carnival is doing all that it can to repair the ship, what’s upsetting is that the people who wished to opt out of the cruise based on their individual circumstances cannot unless we/they are willing to lose @ least 50% of the cost of the cruise. This is unacceptable. This is one of those “extraordinary circumstances” that SHOULD have moved Carnival to allow its customers to get a full refund to make other arrangements. We understand that this situation was beyond Carnival’s control, but IMHO they are doing a crappy job of damage control.

        Like I noted above, regardless of the outcome of this ordeal, we (me and my immediate and extended family) will never sail with Carnival or it’s subsidiaries again. It’s unfortunate because we really enjoy the Carnival cruises. They are a great value and the staff onboard are almost always very friendly and helpful.

      • Myron,
        This waiting must be hell for you, and everyone else who has spent their hard-earned money to book this cruise. I can only tell you to hang in there; I would if it were me. Act and plan like the cruise is going to happen. I would not cancel, and lose any of my money. If you cancel, YOU will lose money. If Carnival cancels, THEY will lose – not you. You may not be happy with the outcome, but at least you won’t be out any money, and Carnival will probably offer you a sweet deal off a future cruise, to try and make it right with you. If I get any hint at all of what Carnival is going to do, I will post it here. I hate to criticize the company when I know they are making such a monumental effort – everything that they possibly could do, I believe, under the circumstances – to fix this ship, but a little more information, more regularly would certainly be welcome.

  7. Hey Jerry,
    I am sure you are getting lots of responses about the Carnival Splendor. I was wondering what site you got the webcam of the Carnival Splendor.
    Also do you have any new information on the November 21st sailing?
    Thanks for the information.

    • Hi Christa,
      The webcam link is in the current version of my story, so just click on it and it will take you there. It’s the downtown San Diego webcam, if you just want to google it. You may have to turn it yourself, if you go into it that way, because it slowly turns 360 degrees. I have frozen the view, looking right at the Splendor. If you go from my site, through the link to the webcam, after you get there, be sure to refresh the page – or you may not get the most current view.
      A Carnival spokesman told today that he had no new information for me, but he promised to pass along anything he hears. I have to say this about my source: he could have ducked me easily, but he’s been a real pro, and always writes me back, even if he has nothing new for me. He’s been on his Blackberry all weekend, so if anything has been decided, I believe he would have told me. Stay tuned for a statement by noon on Monday; I really believe we will have some new info by then.
      I consider it a good sign tonight (Sunday) that the lights are still on at that tent city they have set up alongside the ship. If there was no hope of fixing it in time, I believe, there would be no lights.

  8. You mentioned that the Carnival Splendor had a broken Crankshaft but every report I have read or heard said it was a broken crankcase. Do you know something the rest of us don’t?

    • Hi Val…my information comes from a U.S. Coast Guard source, who was not authorized to speak publicly about Splendor engine room matters. You’re right, this has not been confirmed by Carnival. But the crankcase didn’t break by itself; something went awry inside the engine, causing crankcase breakage. Something major, not minor. Even if it were other parts that broke, the crankshaft would likely be damaged, broken or bent by a catastrophic event such as that.

      • yes as the crankshaft spins in the crankcase,if lets say a bearing goes out it will freeze up the spinning crankshaft causing it to break.thus breaking apart the crankcase,its all relevent.not to say that there could have been casting flaws in these parts or something me i have had this happen to me at 100mph+.i spun whats called a rod bearing and snapped a rod at 8000rpm,blew out of the side of the block on my racecar and the oil ignited on the hot exhaust manifold.caused a oil fire,car was crippled but luckily i run a halon fire system that put out the fire.i believe boats also have a similiar system that they can flood compartments with.were booked on the dec 5th cruise wich they stopped selling yesterday,doesnt look good,well see i guess

  9. […] Posts 28 Nils Posted: Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 03:41 AM rated by 0 users Report Abuse   | Quick Reply Previous Next Page 1 of 1 (1 […]

  10. OK, broken crankshaft would cause a cracked crankcase…
    Wouldn’t the hull have to be cut open to remove & replace the engine/gen power plant??
    Thanks, you are helping us to understand…

    • The logistics of engine replacement in a cruise ship of the Splendor’s design are mind-boggling: Cutting through the hull, cutting through decks – not to mention lifting the aft of the ship out of the water, to get at the location of the engine room…

      • What I thought…
        The engines are installed & the ship built around them…
        Thanks for all of your help…

        Carnival no longer shows the Dec. 19th sailing…
        No smoke from the stack…

  11. OT – dirtracer27x that sucks, glad you’re OK though. Looks like it’s time for a oil pressure gauge and a 3 qt Accusump. Thank god I have billet steel oil pump gears with the above mentioned parts.

  12. Anymore news?

    • Yes, there is. In just a few minutes, I will be posting a new column on my site about new a series of changes in the December itineraries for Carnival Splendor. The December 5 and December 12 cruises, like the November 21 and November 28 sailings, were removed overnight from Carnival’s booking website. Something is up.

  13. […] of November 13-14, Carnival Cruise Lines devised new itineraries for its fire-damaged ship, the Splendor (click on that link to read about repair […]

  14. Couldnt the cruise just be sold out, hence that its not showing up on the site?

  15. To me the big decision is – will the ship have to be dry docked to carry out repairs. If the decision to dry dock is made i am not confident of joining ship for 6 March cruise,
    Regards Brian Gordon, ex chief engineering mechanic, Royal Australian Navy

  16. i just got this email from carnival:

    Good afternoon,

    Thank you for contacting Carnival Cruise Lines. We appreciate the opportunity to be of assistance.
    We do apologize for any inconvenience this may be causing, as of yet, the Carnival Splendor is still sailing on November 21, 2010. We have not been told other wise. If any changes occur, you will be contacted via email/automated call or the carnival website will have an update on future sailings.
    If there is anything else we can do for you please don’t hesitate to ask.


    Jason Vega
    Carnival Cruise Lines
    Reservation Specialist Support

    • Thank you for sharing that with us here, Christa. That’s an important piece of information – direct from the source.

  17. I too am very upset with carnival. We have plans to sail on the 21st. I called carnival stating my concern and ask to be let out of this trip without penalty They will not do anything for us at this time which I find disturbing due to the short time we will have to make other plans. Not only will it be tough to make other plans with the holiday week coming up but the cost is going to increase by the hour. The longer they make us wait the more stress and cost we are going to have to endure. Shame on you carnival!!

  18. I too am booked for the November 21st cruise. I understand Carnival’s reluctance to commit to this cruise. If they say it is off, and then manage to fix the ship between now and the departure date, they have lost all the passengers. If they say it is on, and they cannot fix the ship, it will be a complete wash out plus other costs. I understand that, but do not appreciate it. One more clue to a no sail is that on the Long Beach terminal sailing list, the November 21st departure has been removed. That makes it appear as though our cruise has been canceled regardless of the delaying tactics of Carnival.

    • Thank you sir, this seems like a very significant piece of information. I appreciate you sharing it with us. Wonder if it is possible for the Nov. 21 cruise to depart from San Diego, if Carnival were willing to transport everyone there on the day of departure?

  19. Here is a a web address / link from the port of Longbeach departure calendar.It cleary is missing the Carnival departures for the 14th and the 21st not sure what this means.

  20. It is encouraging that the lights are on the ship

  21. So i see the lights on that could be a good sign that the ship is running on its own power or is it plugged in some how to show some light? Im going on that ship on the 21st. So you think it will be ready and fixed by sunday? Everytime i call Carnival they give me a different answers. One says yes it will be ready the other says your guess is as good as mine and another says well its not canciled yet. I just hate being stuck on the end of a hook hanging there.

  22. Well I am starting to think my family and I are going to need counseling after this. My wife called the port of long beach to do some detective work on the issue of the Splendor not showing on the calendar for the 21st. What she was told was that it is not uncommon for the port not to know of a scheduled arrival or departure of a ship until the day of in cases such as the current issue of the Splendor. The port staff referred her to follow the updates being provided by Carnival. With this being said I am going to pour myself a drink and and keep on hoping. I really do believe that Carnival must really be under the impression that they can pull this off in time. I really do not want to believe that a company that is focused around family fun would put us all through so much hell just because they can. So drink up and I hope to see you all on the 21st.

    • I consider it a good sign, whether it is hooked up to ground power on not. The ship has been dark the three previous nights.

    • Congratulations on your excellent detective work!

  23. I too am on the 21st cruise along with 20 or so friends, or my backup plan of Disneyland. Is there any concrete info on a broken crankshaft which in turn would have broken the crankcase?

    What are the possibilities that Carnival is trying to get out on the water with 5 of 6 engines or if there are 3 engines per room as I have heard 3 out of 6?

    What kind of damage did the co2 do to the room or the fire itself do? Then I understand they had to cool off the engine room. With what? Water, and did that do further damage to electrical systems?

    I am usually pessimistic, but in this case I may be a realist.

    • Nobody is saying how much damage was done, but consider this: John Heald’s wonderful blog on the Carnival website is full of clues. I recommend reading it. John says it took FOUR HOURS to get the fire out. A working fire suppression system is supposed to get the job done in a matter of minutes. The intensity and heat generated by a four-hour fire would do unthinkable damage to everything around it. Hence, the fried wiring and circuit boards. The ship’s main circuit board went out, so that had to have something to do with the catastrophic loss of power. If the engine room crew was able to confine that mess just to the affected engine bay, they would all deserve medals for heroism. And nobody got injured or killed? That’s a miracle too. This also is likely to have affected a large area of the ship; reading on the Wartsila website about the specifications for this engine, one thing caught my eye: Each engine is 22.6 meters long – that’s 74 feet!

  24. After a bit of deductive reasoning, I believe I know what Carnival is planning re; the November 21st cruise date and the status of the Splendor. They know that the generator cannot be removed/replaced in time for the November 21st cruise. That will require a dry dock. However I’ll bet that the ship can run with 4 of the 5 generators without experiencing any loss in ship services. Hell, they can probably run with 3 generators with some limits in ship services. So to that end, Carnival is probably working to find and repair the electrical glitch that caused all of the power to go out when #5 generator failed.

    If I’m right, they are running PR damage control so that their paid customers won’t know that the ship they will be on for 7 days is going to sail crippled. That’s why they have been less than forthcoming with the repair progress.

    So Mr. Cahill, if you are reading this blog, take heed; your customers are not children. We don’t need protection from the big bad truth. The least you can do is let us know what’s going on. You already have my money hostage by not allowing me to get a refund without taking an unreasonable loss.

    • If Splendor operates without the damaged engine – which I think it would be capable of doing – it would not be the first time a large cruise ship has done it. I believe the Queen Mary 2 and RCCL’s Freedom of the Seas operated previously on partial power. If I am wrong on this, I’m sure someone can (and should) write in and correct me. But that is my recollection.

      • Jerry,

        I believe you’re right, however if the ship is already crippled with a loss of a generator, their contingency plan for another power emergency will be severely compromised. I like knowing that the ship I will be on for 7 days has a little cushion if there is another power failure.

        On a different note; while I can’t speak for everybody here who has posted on your blog, my wife and I are appreciative and grateful for the time and energy you’ve invested in bringing up to date information to a small group of people in need. Thanks :~)

    • yes i do believe the ship can still run with 4 generators.
      i just think it might be a little slower going than full blast

    • actually there is 6 generators
      3 in the front and 3 in the back
      I would assume that it could still run

  25. My wife and I are also scheduled for 11/21 departure, so I am of course worried and interested in getting any status updates that apparently Carnival cannot officially provide in a timely fashion. Somehow, you are able to get information that Carnival is unable to release officially. Thank you!

    • I appreciate your kind remarks. I am working around the clock to find out what I can. I also have to thank the many good people who have written in and helped provide us with additional insights, facts, and suggestions. If I can find an answer for you, I promise I will.

  26. Yes carnival is holding us hostage for this 21st sailing. The least they can do is let us out of our commitment with a full refund so we can make other plans. My holding us hostage we will not be able to make plans in time for the holiday week. Any plans we will be able to come up with if this cruise is indeed cancelled will cost us a pretty penny due to short notice. Carnival should have let us out of this commitment right away. They have lost our family and friends for any future travels.

  27. I am too booked on carnival splendor sailing on Nov. 28th. I paid top dollar for a grand suite. They will not give out information and they refuse to give me a refund. How awful, I am disappointed. I don’t want to sail on this ship after this incident and I am being forced to sail on this ship why can’t they refund our money. This is not fair for they people who are booked and made plans already. Are they going to wait until the last minute to let us know? I have fears of sailing on this ship but they won’t refund my money.

    • Too bad Carnival’s new policy announced just last month does not apply until January 1, 2011:


      Carnival Cruise Lines is introducing a “cancel for any reason” enhancement to its travel protection program, the Cruise Vacation Protection Plan. The new feature will be included in all plan purchases for voyages departing on or after January 1, 2011.
      With the new enhancement, those who purchase Carnival’s Cruise Vacation Protection Plan will be able to cancel their cruise — regardless of the reason — and receive a future cruise credit equal to 75 percent of cancellation charges, provided they notify Carnival prior to the ship’s departure. Those who cancel for a covered reason will receive 100 percent cash reimbursement.
      The “cancel for any reason” feature further bolsters the line’s current vacation protection plan, which offers a package of benefits, ranging from trip cancellation/interruption, trip delay, emergency medical evacuation, medical, baggage loss and baggage delay. The program also provides a 24-hour emergency assistance hotline. Last year, the plan was expanded to include severe weather watch/warning protection, as well as job loss protection.
      “With the new ‘cancel for any reason’ enhancement, as well as the severe weather and job loss protection, our Cruise Vacation Protection Plan provides consumers with much-needed peace of mind knowing their vacation investment is protected regardless of the circumstances involved,” said Lynn Torrent, Carnival’s executive vice president of sales and guest services.
      All plans purchased for voyages departing next year will be eligible for the “cancel for any reason” benefit, including those plans that were already purchased for an upcoming 2011 voyage. The price of the plan remains unchanged.
      The plan is administered by BerkelyCare, a recognized leader in travel insurance. Prices begin at $49 per person and vary by cruise cost. Guests must purchase the plan no later than the final payment date for the cruise to be eligible for the “cancel for any reason” benefit.

  28. It seems likely that part of the “sold out” status might be due to removing some cabins from inventory too. Some cabins were reported to have been flooded and others may have been damaged/contaminated. People without toilets do some pretty strange things. They may have time to replace carpets and such right now, but can they get the necessary materials this quickly?

    If they are going to be continuing repairs at sea they’ll need cabins for repair crews too.

  29. Don’t you think its strange they sent the cruise director for the next 2 sailings back to the UK, that they arent selling rooms until late December and that the port of long beach’s website shows no Splendor for the next 2 Sundays. On another forum a mom of one of the entertainers said they had already reassigned some of the other entertainers to other ships and the rest would get a briefing today. Clearly Carnival knows something we don’t OR our sailing on 11/21 is going to be lacking in terms of the things like entertainment and a cruise director.

  30. Still no update as to the wether or not we will be cruising for sure this weekend. I have now spent all our tip money on stress meds. I encourage others to hold on to their tip money and refuse to pay the tips. We may not be able to cancel but we sure can state our frustration with the company this way. Sorry the employees will have to suffer but it is what it is!!!!!!!!

  31. John:

    What a terrible thing to say, I’m also booked on the November 21st cruise and have been stressed out waiting for a decision but it has not even crossed my mind to take it out on the employees by not tipping.

  32. John, I’m booked on teh Nov 21st cruise too and believe me I’m about to pull my hair out like you and everyone else.
    I understand your frustration believe me I do, but I would never withhold tip money from crewmembers. They work so hard to make everything right and to penalize them for this utter disregard of our holidays by the company just isn’t right. That doesn’t hurt the company at all. They won’t be paying their tips to make up for it and their wages are so low they can’t support their families without the tips.
    Just my 2cents.
    At this point, I’d like to cancel the whole thing. I was fine until yesterday after seeing Carnival’s latest update. Now I just have a bad taste in my mouth about the whole thing and will rethink cruising altogether if this is how all Cruise Line contracts work and they don’t have to provide us even information.
    Please reconsider they tipping though. I totally with you about being frustrated.

  33. I know for a fact (don’t ask me how) that all the crew worked extremely hard to minimise discomfort for the guests on the ill fated cruise. The fact that the engine blew up is not their fault. The tips that passengers pay in many cases make up the bulk of the wages paid to staff. I hope they will not be made to suffer for the sake of ‘striking a blow’ at Carnival. It is clear that the company is making huge efforts to get the ship back out there and to compensate passengers if and when they cannot deliver. I am sure Carnival will advise people in a timely way as soon as they have more information. They are no more crystal ball gazers than any of us.

  34. All cruises are canceled until 1/16/11

  35. Carnival Splendor cancels sailings until Jan 16, 2010.

  36. All cruises from the 21st through the 16 Jan have been cancelled on the Splendor.


    • Yes. Just announced. See updated post (above). Sorry, folks.

      • We bought our air fares through SouthWest, wander how they will handle it??

      • (Ah, one correction to you caption at the top of the page, it will only be out for two months…)

  37. Well, I didn’t see this coming….;~0 Carnival FUBAR’ed this situation big time and likely lost a good deal of future business.

    Again, I want to say thanks Jerry for keeping abreast of this story and providing updates. Best wishes to you and yours for a safe and festive holiday season.

    The Ybarra Family

  38. Since I was on the 11/21 cruise, I just received an email from Carnival with additional details about cancellation options, airfare, etc. Here is a direct link it:$/doc.html

    • Thanks Alan. I hope, for all, that Plan B is a serendipitously pleasant surprise.

  39. Thank you Jerry for your information throughout all of this.

    • Thank you for that, sir. I will continue to update this story, if I have anything to update it with. In fact, Carnival is going to be sharing (soon, I hope) its detailed repair plan for Splendor. I want to thank everyone who has been so helpful and supportive to my efforts to report on this situation. The contribution of so many really nice people has touched me greatly. I hate to see your vacations spoiled. In fact, I was hoping to join the Nov. 21 sailing and blog about your happy experiences, the heroic stories about the crew, and a miracle repair job. Sadly, not to be…

  40. Fire-Damaged Carnival Splendor Out of Service Until January ……

    Here at World Spinner we are debating the same thing……

  41. Well we contaced Carnival to rebook and we managed to get the whole family booked on the 9 day Jan 28date. cruise on the Spirit for only 19 bucks more than what we paid for the 11-21 7 day Although I think Carnival did a pretty good job helping us reshedule and knocking down cost to almost making it a wash. I do feel they did a really @#$%^ up job being honest and up front about the entire issue of keeping us waiting to know what was really going on. I hope in the future that Carnival will realize that is way better to be up front with the bad news rather than leaving thousands of people to wonder and stress out, not to mention it made for a tuff week for my liver:)

    • I love a happy ending! You were smart to be pro-active and rebook right away. Your choices were better, and Carnival was probably anxious to make it right…or as right as it’s ever gonna get. Thanks for following up. That 9-day cruise is even better than the 7-day itinerary.

      • Jerry,
        Was it a coincidence that the additional cancelations came within hours of when you noticed that some of the ship’s lights were back on? I’m guessing (of course) that maybe they were holding out a sliver of hope that things were not quite as bad as feared but could not know for certain until they reached that point. Thanks again for staying on this story past the usual 24 hour news cycle!

      • There’s also the theory they were holding off making the announcement until they could put in place an orderly system for handling up to 30,000 cancellations. Making the announcement without that in place would have resulted in utter chaos. Thanks for your kind words.

  42. Called my Carnival Rep. yesterday, Shay worked on our cancel & refunds quickly although they were playing catch up…
    Will get a full refund on the Nov. 28th cruise as well as a 25% discount on a future cruise…
    I was instructed to Fax in my SouthWest docs. to get a refund, hoping for the best on this, time will tell…

    • Though you may not be able to get the vacation you originally thought you might, it seems from the stories I’ve heard so far, Carnival is doing an admirable job of trying to give you an even better experience – and better value – on a future cruise. It seems too that they are willing to go above and beyond to make it right. I know many people had blocked out their schedules for their original plans, but if you are able to be flexible, you might just have an even better time! Thanks for sharing your story!

      • Thanks Jerry…
        We may do the Spirit on Jan., 2012 where the cabin prices are low & we can apply the 25% discount also…
        May do the 9 day cruise also…
        Still waiting to see what happens on our already paid for air tickets…

  43. Splendor being moved today to another location for repairs.

  44. as usual public relation do not know what they are talking about
    with the kind of dammage to generator and electrical switchboard it is doubtfull if it can be repaired on short notice
    the back up system had not worked with 5 remaining generator this imply that dammaged are major
    it is regardless to say to have ship crusing again without full repair is non sense

  45. First post for me, but I’ve read everything here so far.. Thanks Jerry for your prompt, professional and positive spin on all of your reports! We were booked on the Dec 5th cruise. It would have been my 10th (VIP!) and 12th Carnival for my husband. We are now booked on a Celebrity cruise out of Fort Lauderdale on the same date. Not because we are unhappy with Carnival – because we think they have handled this unsettling time incredibly well and I have even more confidence in their ability to step up to the plate, and go above and beyond when called to action. We just happen to find another vacation deal that worked for us financially and with our schedules. We can’t wait to go on the Splendor! Hopefully in the spring of 2011.

    • Glad you found something that works for you, and still gets you out on the water on your timetable! Thanks for sharing another success story!

  46. Of Interest

    Carnival’s Cruise Ship Splendor Moved to 10h Ave. Terminal for Repairs
    Reported by: San Diego 6 News Team
    Last Update: 7:50 am

    Print Story | ShareThis
    SAN DIEGO – The Carnival Splendor, which was left dead in the water off the coast of Baja California last week due to a fire, was moved from B Street Pier to Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal Thursday.

    The move is being made because the 952-foot cruise ship will require major repairs better accomplished in an industrial facility, according to Carnival Cruise Line, which owns the ship.

    Shipyard equipment and staff “are more accessible from the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, which is part of the working waterfront area,’ said Joel Valenzuela, director of maritime operations for the port.

    “It is the more suitable location for a major repair undertaking such as this,” Valenzuela said.

    There are three major shipyards in the area — General Dynamics NASSCO, Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems — but they are south of the Coronado Bridge, which has a clearance of 200 feet. The 113,000-ton Splendor is 215 feet tall.

    The 2 1/2-mile trip from the B Street Pier to Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal will take about three hours to complete, according to the Port of San Diego.

    The cruise line has estimated that the vessel could be stationed at Tenth Avenue for several weeks.


    • Yes, she disappeared from our webcam yesterday morning. We will try to keep track of her & update with photos when possible. Thank you Tom!

  47. When cruses were cancelled, they told that do nothing and you will get your refund within 10 working days. So far I have not seen my refund.

    Did any body got his refund?

  48. Just got notice that my cruise is cancelled (and any other cruises through 2/20/2010).

    • Are you saying the 2-20-11 cruise is cancelled?

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  51. […] Fire-Damaged Carnival Splendor Out of Service Until February …Description : I am sure you are getting lots of responses about the Carnival Splendor. I was wondering what site you got the webcam of the Carnival Splendor. Also do you have any new information on the November 21st sailing? …http://jerrygarrett.wordpress. .. […]

  52. With havin so much content and articles do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright infringement?
    My blog has a lot of exclusive content I’ve either authored myself or outsourced but it seems a lot of it is popping it up all over the web without my agreement. Do you know any solutions to help prevent content from being ripped off? I’d really appreciate it.

    • This a huge problem. I don’t know how to solve it. My New York Times editors went after someone in Russia who was a leading culprit. But there was only temporary relief. After awhile though it seemed to be less of a problem. Or else, I just gave up. Sometimes you can just re-post something that has been copied or aggregated. And note it’s a re-post in the title. My re-posts have been left alone (so far).

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