YEAR-ROUND CARNIVAL IS OVER
CARNIVAL Cruise Line shocked the industry last month when it announced the withdrawal of its Carnival Spirit from Australasian waters during winter of 2018. The move is a rare hiccup in Australia’s ever-increasing cruise capacity, and means the operator will no longer have a yearround deployment here. Instead Spirit is being sent to China, with the company saying it was the logical option based on “availability and proximity” after a planned dry dock in Singapore in autumn 2018. Carnival Cruise Line president Christine Duffy said it was important for the Carnival brand to establish a presence in the Asia cruise market. She said the decision was taken after evaluating many different options, with Carnival Spirit replacing the previously planned 2018 China deployment of Carnival Miracle which will remain cruising in North America. Despite the winter pullout she insisted that Carnival Spirit had performed strongly in the Australian market since debuting here in 2012, with the ship returning along with Carnival Legend for the 2017-18 and 2018-19 Australian summers. “The two ships have proven extremely popular and we look forward to continuing to deliver Carnival’s fun holiday experience to existing and new Australasian guests over the coming years,” she said.