It was only a few weeks ago that we posted on the recent spate of Norovirus outbreaks occurring on the high seas. This week, we’ve been riveted reading about the epic tale of the Carnival cruise that has gone from bad to worse.
It would seem that the cruise industry just can’t catch a break!
In case you hadn’t heard, the Carnival Triumph was supposed to have been a 4-day cruise headed to Cozumel, Mexico. The ship set sail out of Galveston, Texas on a Thursday. By Sunday, a fire in the engine room knocked out key systems including the propulsion, air conditioning and heating, power and sewage.
Left adrift in the Gulf of Mexico, two towboats set out to pull the Triumph to the nearest port that could accommodate her: Mobile, Alabama. Whilst passengers waited for help to arrive, they were subjected to backed up toilets and having to do their business in red biohazard bags, hours-long lines for sandwiches consisting of ketchup and ham slivers on a bun and sleeping on the decks in loungers or mattresses pulled from rooms and placed in lounges and common areas.
On their way back to being towed to Alabama, one of the tow ropes broke and had to be replaced, which only added to the growing frustration of passengers. Then, once the ship reached land, some passengers were unfortunate enough to have had the bus that was shuttling them to New Orleans to catch flights home break down on the highway.
With that said, I think we can honestly say that this really is the cruise from hell and makes an outbreak of Norovirus a walk in the park.
Thankfully, passengers are being fully refunded the cost of their cruise and any extra expenditures related to their transport back home. But travel industry experts believe that not only will this experience force everyone to take a good hard look at the growth spurts in the industry as a whole, it should force cruise companies to examine their emergency contingency plans for ships with 1,000+ guest lists (the Triumph had 3,143 passengers and 1,100 crew on board).
So, what does this mean for you, a potential cruiser? Well, being that we’re all about saving money and finding amazing deals, we can think of no better time to take advantage of the potential drop in cruise fares, especially on Carnival. As horrible as this may sound, bad press means savings!
At the date this blog was published, we found a 4-day Carnival cruise leaving Los Angeles headed to Ensenada, Mexico for $299 pp. Of course, we expect the prices to come down in the next few weeks, so it’s worth it to keep an eye peeled.