Hurricane Irma Cruise Updates: Ports Close, RCL Evacuates

Norwegian Escape
Norwegian Escape sailed from Miami Thursday with 4,000 guests who were unable to secure flights home ahead of the storm.

Port Everglades, Port Canaveral and PortMiami are closing ahead of Hurricane Irma, which is set to hit Florida and the Florida Keys Sunday morning. PortMiami and Port Everglades closed to inbound ships at 8 a.m. Friday morning, while Port Canaveral is set to cease operations at 3:00 p.m.

Ahead of the storm, Royal Caribbean is using the Enchantment of the Seas to evacuate its Florida-based employees, CNN Money reports. The hurricane had already forced the cancellation of its weekend cruise. The ship will now depart Miami at noon, to return once the storm passes.

Norwegian Cruise Line closed its Miami headquarters at 2 p.m. yesterday afternoon, and says it will reopen as soon as is safe and practical. Key staff are being relocated outside of the storm zone, while call centers will be operated remotely, which could lead to longer than normal hold times. Travel agents are directed to use the lines dedicated booking portal on NCLU.

Carnival Corporation has likewise closed its South Florida headquarters as essential personnel continue to work remotely and from the companys hurricane-resistant facility in Miami.

Cruise Itinerary Cancellations and Alterations

The storm has prompted a number of additional itinerary cancellations and alterations. Carnival Cruise Line has cancelled the following sailings:

  • Carnival Liberty – Sept. 7 three-day Bahamas cruise from Port Canaveral
  • Carnival Victory – Sept. 8 three-day Bahamas cruise from Miami
  • Carnival Splendor – Sept. 9 – five-day Eastern Caribbean cruise from Port Everglades
  • Carnival Ecstasy – Sept. 9 – six-day Bahamas cruise from Charleston
  • Carnival Liberty – Sept. 10 – four-day Bahamas cruise from Port Canaveral

Guests will receive a full refund. Other upcoming Carnival cruises have been modified: