Carnival Corp. has been granted approval by the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Department of Commerce to begin travel to Cuba under its newly launched fathom social impact travel brand.
Carnival Corp. and fathom intend to begin Cuba travel in May 2016, Carnival Corp. said in a statement.
Carnival Corp. intends to operate fathom travel itineraries directly to Cuba for the purpose of providing cultural, artistic, faith-based and humanitarian exchanges between American and Cuban citizens. Authorized under current U.S.-to-Cuba travel guidelines, the new Cuban itineraries on fathom will comply with U.S. Department of Treasury rules that allow licensed travel companies to transport approved travelers to Cuba to engage in activities that support the Cuban people, Carnival Corp. said. Carnival Corp. is in active discussions and plans to work with the appropriate authorities in Cuba so that Cuban approval is granted.
When fathom was first announced, Travel Agent caught up with Roger Frizzell, chief communications officer for Carnival Corp., on whether or not fathom would explore Cuba itineraries. His response at the time:
“Today our focus is on the launch of our initial effort with our first partners in the Dominican Republic. A big part of the success of an effort like this is the strength of your local community partners on the ground - something we feel we have in the Dominican Republic.” Frizzell said: “As you would expect, we are exploring other potential locations and additional ships, but today our focus is on the Dominican Republic.”
Launched June 4 as Carnival Corp.’s 10th brand, fathom is designed to drive sustainable social impact on a significant scale. The brand expects to attract 37,000 annual travelers who collectively could spend a total of more than 100,000 days a year either volunteering or immersing in educational and cultural exchanges in local communities.
Beginning in April 2016, fathom will embark on weekly seven-day voyages from Port Miami aboard the MV Adonia, a 710-passenger vessel redeployed from Carnival Corporation’s P&O Cruises (UK) brand. Fathom’s first destination will be the northern region of the Dominican Republic, where Carnival Corp.'s new port of call, Amber Cove, will serve as home base.
Travel Agent got a chance to tour Amber Cove during this year's Dominican Annual Tourism Exchange (DATE). The new cruise destination on the Dominican Republic's North Coast will welcome its first ship, the Carnival Victory, on October 6. You can read our firsthand account here: www.travelagentcentral.com/dominican-republic-eastern-hispaniola/amber-cove-inside-look-caribbeans-newest-cruise-port-51386
Following the inaugural April month of voyages to the Dominican Republic, fathom intends to offer both Dominican and Cuban itineraries on a regular basis.
Prices for the seven-day trip to the Dominican Republic start at $1,540 per person, which includes an exterior cabin with a view, all meals on the ship, onboard social impact immersion experiences, three on-shore social impact activities and related supplies, taxes, fees, and port expenses. Prices will vary by season.
Prices for seven-day itineraries to Cuba start at $2,990 per person, excluding taxes, port and other government and related fees, and including all meals on the ship, onboard social impact immersion experiences and certain on-the-ground cultural immersion activities.