Carnival Outlines Plans to Expand Cruise Fleet
Global cruise giant Carnival Corp. has unveiled plans to launch four new ships in 2016 across four of its ten global cruise brands.
The new ships are part of the 17 ships scheduled for delivery for Carnival Corp.’s 10 brands through 2020, “creating measured capacity growth over time that enables the company’s global fleet to meet accelerating demand for cruise vacations in every region of the world,” said Carnival CEO Arnold Donald.
The four new ships scheduled to join Carnival Corp.’s industry-leading fleet of 99 ships in 2016 are the Carnival Vista, the M.S. Koningsdam, the AID Aprima, and the Seabourn Encore.
Delivery of the Carnival Vista is expected in April. The largest ship in the Carnival fleet, the 133,500-ton ship will have accommodations for 3,954 passengers and enter service on May 1, 2016, initially sailing from Europe. After repositioning to New York for a series of voyages in November 2016, Carnival Vista will reposition to Miami to launch year-round Caribbean service later that month.
Holland-America’s M.S. Koningsdam is slated for delivery in April 2016 and is currently in the final stages of construction at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard in Italy. The 99,500 gross-ton, Pinnacle-class Koningsdam will have a capacity of 2,650 passengers.
The AID Aprima, with delivery expected in April, will serve as the newest flagship for AIDA Cruises, with 1,643 cabins at 124,100 gross tons. In addition to being one of the most technologically-advanced and environmentally-friendly vessels in the world, the ship will feature a new air lubrication system that will pump bubbles below the waterline, reducing friction and lowering fuel consumption by allowing the ship to ride on a cushion of air.
The 40,350-gross ton, Odyssey-class Seabourn Encore will be delivered in December and will be configured with one additional deck and new expanded public areas, and is expected to carry 600 guests, based on double occupancy.
In December, Carnival Corp. signed a memo of agreement with Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri S.p.A. to build four additional new cruise ships. Two of the four new ships will be built for Costa Asia for deployment in China, and one will be built each for P&O Cruises Australia and Princess Cruises.
Earlier last year, the company announced the finalization of a contract with Meyer Werft to build four next-generation cruise ships with the largest guest capacity in the world. The ships will be built for Costa Cruises and AIDA Cruises, and they will be the first in the cruise industry to be powered at sea by liquefied natural gas (LNG).
With these new agreements, Carnival Corporation has 17 new ships scheduled to be delivered between 2016 and 2020. Together, the company’s subsidiary cruise lines operate 99 ships totaling 216,000 lower berths with 17 new ships scheduled to be delivered between 2016 and 2020.
The Miami, Florida-headquartered Carnival Corp. maintains a portfolio of 10 cruise brands in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia, comprised of Carnival Cruise Line, Fathom, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn, AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard, P&O Cruises (Australia) and P&O Cruises (UK).