Harvey Update: Carnival Aims to Start Docking in Galveston Friday

An aerial view shows significant damage caused by Hurricane Harvey in Rockport, Texas. // Army National Guard photo by Sgt. 1st Class Malcolm McClendon

The Port of Galveston is expected to remain closed until later this week due to the catastrophic flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey. Carnival Cruise Line has released an updated schedule for when its three Galveston-based ships – the Carnival Breeze, Carnival Valor and Carnival Freedom – are aiming to return to the port.

All three ships had deviated course to New Orleans, where guests were able to disembark if they wished to make independent arrangements for onward travel, or stay onboard. About half of Carnival Freedoms guests chose to remain onboard, while slightly more than half elected to stay onboard Carnival Breeze and Carnival Valor, the cruise line said.

Carnival Valor and Carnival Freedom will depart New Orleans this afternoon and resume course to Galveston, Carnival said. Carnival Breeze will overnight in New Orleans today and will start making its way to Galveston on Thursday evening.

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Assuming the port reopens later this week, Carnival has released the following plan for disembarkation and future cruises:

  • Carnival Freedom will dock on Friday and disembark guests from its previous cruise. Embarkation for the September 2 voyage will take place on Saturday as scheduled.
  • Carnival Valor will also arrive in Galveston on Friday to disembark guests. The August 31 sailing of Carnival Valor has been cancelled. A full refund will be provided to all guests who were scheduled on cancelled voyages. The September 4 sailing will operate as scheduled.  
  • Carnival Breeze is scheduled to arrive on Saturday evening to disembark guests from the previous cruise. Embarkation for the September 3 sailing will take place on Sunday as scheduled.

Guests scheduled to depart on Carnival cruises from Galveston this weekend can sign up for text alerts by texting the codes below to CRUISE (278473).

  • Carnival Freedom 09/02/17 - CCL1   
  • Carnival Valor 09/04/17 - CCL2      
  • Carnival Breeze 09/03/17 - CCL3   

While flooding continues to devastate Texas, the storm made landfall a second time in Louisiana this morning. Organizations across the travel industry are reaching out to offer aid to hurricane victims, including Carnival Cruise Lines parent company Carnival Corporation, which has offered a total of $2 million (including a matching donation from Chairman Micky Arison and his wife, Madeleine).

Flight Update

Houston Hobby and George Bush Intercontinental Airport have announced that they will be resuming limited flight operations starting 4 p.m. Wednesday. Major airlines are continuing to offer flight waivers for those impacted by the storm:

United Airlines customers booked through September 12 can rebook for new flights departing through November 15 in the same cabin between the same city pair. For those rebooking new flights that depart after November 15, United will waive the change fee, but a difference in fare may apply.

American Airlines customers who bought their ticket by August 28 and are scheduled to travel through September 7 can rebook through September 20 between the same city pair in the same cabin (or pay the difference).

Delta customers scheduled to fly through September 7 can rebook through September 20 for new flights to depart no later than that day.

Southwest Airlines customers booked to fly through September 12 can rebook in the original class of service or travel standby within 14 days of their original departure date between the same city pair.

Finally, JetBlue customers booked through September 5 can rebook for travel through September 15.

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