Update: Where Are Carnival Conquest and Ecstasy?

September 14, 2008
(8:05 p.m.) -- Update: Carnival Conquest will debark passengers in New Orleans on Monday, September 15. Passengers can choose to disembark on Monday or Tuesday. Carnival Ecstasy will also arrive in New Orleans, but on Tuesday, September 16 at 2 p.m. local time. Passengers can choose to disembark on Tuesday or Wednesday. Cruise travelers on either ship can also choose to sail with the ship back to Galveston. Although Carnival's plan is to send the ships back to Texas as soon as posibble, it's still unclear when the Galveston port will reopen. Passengers who booked their flights through Carnival will be reassigned to new flights out of New Orleans. All other passengers who choose to disembark in New Orleans will need to make their own transportation arrangements -- Carnival will not run buses back to Texas.

(4:33 p.m.) -- Carnival announced earlier today that Sunday and Monday's departures of Carnival Conquest and Carnival Ecstasy are canceled as the Port of Galveston is not ready to accept cruise passengers. Mysteriously, the cruise line has not given any information about where the two cruise ships currently are and where they will disembark passengers.

Carnival Ecstasy departed Galveston on September 11 on a five-night cruise. Its last call was in Veracruz, Mexico, and it was supposed to return to Texas on Monday. Carnival Conquest departed Galveston on September 7 for a seven-night cruise to the Western Caribbean. It was last in port in Cozumel, Mexico, and had its return to Galveston rescheduled from Sunday to Monday. Neither of these ships will be debarking passengers in Galveston this week.

Carnival has not yet returned our calls inquiring about the two ships. Member EBoedeker's parents are cruising on Ecstasy and they report the ship is headed for Mobile, but we have not confirmed if their information is correct. Conquest's destination remains a mystery. We also don't know what has happened to any cars left at the port's parking structure. Not only will passengers on these two ships have to deal with returning home from a different cruise port, it may be some time before they'll know whether their cars suffered water damage or break-ins during the storm and if they can retrieve their vehicles or not.

We'll continue to keep you posted as new information is available.

--by Erica Silverstein, Associate Editor