Tweet (6 p.m. EDT) -- Hurricane Earl, the Category Three storm that's nearing the East Coast of the United States, has sparked a number of port cancellations and itinerary changes for ships on Canada and New England cruises and transatlantic cruises, as well as vessels based in northeast U.S. homeports. (Note: Follow the link for a full update on Hurricane Earl.)
Update: Holland America changed the route for Eurodam, which left from Amsterdam on August 19 on an 18-night transatlantic cruise. HAL has now canceled Eurodam's September 3 replacement call in Halifax (original call was for Syndey, Nova Scotia). The ship will stay at sea instead on September 3. On September 4 and 5 the ship will also be at sea so it can remain out of the projected path of Hurricane Earl. The cruise will finish as planned on Monday, September 6 in New York, where passengers will embark for the next cruise, a 10-night Canada and New England voyage, as scheduled.
Maasdam, in the midst of a seven-night Canada and New England Cruise that left from Quebec on August 28, will sail a dramatically altered itinerary. On Tuesday, August 31, Maasdam departed from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island as scheduled, and the ship sailed directly to Boston, the debarkation port, arriving this evening. As a result of the early arrival in Boston, port calls at Sydney and Halifax, Nova Scotia, as well as Bar Harbor, Maine were canceled. According to a statement from Holland America, "This put the ship safely alongside in Boston ahead of the storm's anticipated arrival." Passengers are being allowed to stay onboard the ship until Saturday morning, the originally scheduled departure time. The statement from HAL adds that, "Subject to receiving approval from the various governmental agencies that are involved in the disembarkation process, [the line] will try and make it possible for guests who want to leave the ship on Friday to do so. No changes are currently planned for Maasdam's September 4 cruise from Boston, a seven-night Canada and New England sailing.
Holland America has tweaked the itinerary for Veendam, which departed from New York on August 29 for a seven-night Bermuda cruise. On Friday, September 3, Veendam will depart Hamilton a few hours early, and the ship is scheduled to arrive in New York as planned on Sunday, September 5. Passengers embarking on the September 5 sailing will do so as scheduled.
Queen Mary 2, which is currently sailing across the Atlantic, will arrive in New York as scheduled tomorrow, but the ship will now remain in N.Y.C. until 5 a.m. on Saturday, September 4. As a consequence, its originally planned Saturday call in Newport has been canceled. QM2 will now proceed directly to Boston, where the ship will arrive on Sunday, September 5, as scheduled.
Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival Pride is skipping tomorrow's scheduled call in Freeport, Bahamas. The ship will now steam directly for its debarkation port of Baltimore, where it is scheduled to arrive at 9 a.m. on Sunday.
A Carnival spokesperson explains the change as follows: "Since we are expecting rough seas as we return to Baltimore, the ship must reduce its speed in the interest of guest safety and comfort. That said, to ensure a timely arrival in Baltimore the Pride is skipping the scheduled call at Freeport."
Carnival Miracle, which is currently on an eight-night cruise roundtrip from New York, will now arrive back in New York on Friday, September 3, one day earlier than originally scheduled. The ship will dock overnight in New York (a sea day has been nixed), and the cruise will conclude on schedule on Saturday, September 4.
Princess Cruises has canceled Caribbean Princess' scheduled call today in Halifax. The ship will now sail directly for New York to avoid the worst of Hurricane Earl. Caribbean Princess will make a call in Manhattan on Friday, September 3, and during the early morning of Saturday, September 4, the ship will reposition to the cruise terminal in Brooklyn in time for disembarkation Saturday morning.
According to a Princess spokesperson, "We expect embarkation for the next voyage to commence as planned and Caribbean Princess will sail from New York at 5 p.m. Saturday evening."
Celebrity Summit will no longer call on both Saint John (Bay of Fundy) today and Halifax, Nova Scotia on Friday. Summit will now visit Halifax today and spend Friday and Saturday at sea. Celebrity Cruises also says that it is closely monitoring Hurricane Earl's potential impact to Summit's next sailing, which is scheduled to depart Cape Liberty, New Jersey on Sunday, September 5.
More Hurricane Earl Itinerary Changes: Caribbean Cruises
--by Dan Askin, Associate Editor
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Hurricane Earl Itinerary Changes: Canada and New England Cruises, Northeast Homeports
September 2, 2010