In an email sent to booked guests, Carnival Cruise Line announced an itinerary change for the May 21, 2022 sailing on Carnival Magic.
Instead of calling at Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas, the ship will now sail to Bimini. Since the cruise is over a month away, passengers have plenty of time to plan the change of port of call.
Nassau cancelled, ship to visit Bimini instead
The email, dated April 15, says “As we continue to refine our operational plans for your cruise, we have replaced our stopover in Nassau, Bahamas with a visit to Bimini, Bahamas.”
The ship’s call on May 23 in Nassau was scheduled to be from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m., but instead, the visit to Bimini will be from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Nassau and Bimini are approximately 150 miles apart, and due to this change, the call times for the next port – Freeport – are also slightly modified. The ship was originally scheduled to be in Freeport from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 24. Instead, the port of call will only be from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Carnival Magic departs on the affected sail on Saturday, May 21 from Norfolk, Virginia. Day one is a day at sea, followed by Bimini and Freeport on Monday and Tuesday, then another day at sea on Wednesday before the ship returns to Norfolk on Thursday May 26.
This 5-night itinerary is part of a series of six round-trip sailings Carnival Magic made in Norfolk. Five of the cruises are visits to the Bahamas, while the May 26 cruise is a 4-night trip to Bermuda.
In mid-June, the ship will reposition to New York to spend the summer season offering cruises to Bermuda and the Eastern Caribbean, before returning to Norfolk for four more cruises in October, after which Carnival Magic will be based in Port Canaveral during the winter and until spring 2023.
Shore visit options
Customers who have already booked Nassau shore excursions will have these visits automatically refunded to their original form of payment. If customers have arranged independent excursions to Nassau, they should contact tour operators as soon as possible to arrange cancellations and refunds, if applicable.
Shore tours are now available for guests to book for Biminiand include a range of tropical favourites, including beach days, stingray adventures and snorkeling, including an exciting option to dive with reef sharks or explore a wreck.
“Thank you for understanding. We look forward to welcoming you on board for a fun and memorable cruise,” the email concludes.
Why the route change?
No details were provided on the reasons for this route change, but such port of call changes are not uncommon.
Three other cruise ships are scheduled to be in port in Nassau on May 23: Carnival Exhilaration, MSC DivinaRoyal Caribbean Enchantment of the seas. Together, these ships have a capacity of over 9,500 passengers if fully booked.
Nassau is also a popular tourist destination for guests traveling to the city or arriving by ferry.
Heavy crowds can make tours less enjoyable for everyone, as tour operators may not be able to add capacity to their excursions, especially if social distancing and additional sanitation and cleaning measures remain in place. square.
For this reason, it is not uncommon for cruise ships to adjust their itineraries to better balance the number of guests in different ports each day, in order to provide more enjoyable experiences.
On the other hand, Carnival Magic is set to be the only cruise ship in Bimini on May 23, ensuring more exclusive experiences for all guests.