Carnival Swapping Ships at Jacksonville Port

Jacksonville, FL will soon be little more crowded. Carnival Cruise Lines and the Jacksonville Port Authority jointly announced on Tuesday that the line was switching out the 1,486-passenger Celebration and replacing it with the 2,052-guest Carnival Fascination, an overall capacity increase of 38 percent. Carnival Fascination will pick up Celebration's year-round four- and five-day cruises beginning September 20, 2008. Carnival Fascination currently operates three- and four-day cruises from Miami and will continue to do so through September 15 of next year. Future deployment plans for Celebration, which will remain in Jacksonville through next September, will be announced at a later date, Carnival says. Carnival is expected to carry 170,000 passengers annually from Jacksonville to its Caribbean ports of call. Vicki Freed, Carnival's senior vice president of sales and marketing, says Jacksonville has been a successful homeport, ideal for consumers living in the southeast who can drive there.