Ida Breaks Up But May Reform by Thursday

November 10, 2009

Update, 1:00 p.m. EST -- Tropical Storm Ida has dissipated, and this will be our last report.

(6:30 p.m. EST) -- After being downgraded to a tropical storm, Ida hit the U.S. Gulf Coast last night. According to the Associated Press, the storm caused some flooding and other damage after killing more than 130 people in El Salvador and leaving about 13,000 homeless in Nicaragua.

Remnants of Tropical Storm Ida continue to move to the northeast and into the Mid-Atlantic, according to the National Hurricane Center. Flood and flash-flood watches, warnings and advisories are in effect along portions of the U.S. Gulf Coast.

The storm is currently located about 145 miles west of Tallahassee, Florida and about 170 miles southwest of Columbus, Georgia. Maximum sustained winds have decreased to about 25 miles per hour. The storm is expected to continue moving eastward along the Florida panhandle overnight. By Thursday morning, it is expected to redevelop and strengthen off the Carolina Coast.

Cruise lines that left over the weekend for Western Caribbean cruises from other ports -- namely Fort Lauderdale'sPort Everglades, Miami and Tampa, along with Galveston -- departed on schedule but did rearrange itineraries for ships such as Princess' Crown Princess and Carnival's Inspiration, Liberty and Conquest.

Cruise Ship Itinerary Changes

Carnival Fantasy and Carnival Triumph were slated to depart today for their first-ever cruises from their new homeports of Mobile, Alabama, and New Orleans, respectively. Due to Ida, Carnival Fantasy will now depart from Mobile on Wednesday, November 11; the scheduled six-night cruise will now be a five-nighter, calling on Costa Maya and Cozumel. Carnival Triumph will also delay its inaugural cruise by one day. Originally a four-night voyage, the cruise will now sail for three nights, departing New Orleans on Wednesday, November 11. The ship will not make any port calls.

Crown Princess rearranged the port calls for its November 7 itinerary to avoid Ida. The ship did depart Fort Lauderdale as scheduled, and the new cruise itinerary is as follows: Princess Cays; sea day; Grand Cayman; Roatan, Honduras; Cozumel, Mexico; sea day; return to Fort Lauderdale.

Carnival announced Sunday that passengers on Carnival Conquest, which sails seven-night Western Caribbean voyages, will also notice a shakeup in the itinerary; the ship will still call at Grand Cayman, Cozumel and Montego Bay.

Royal Caribbean, which also has ships cruising in the Western Caribbean this week, has reported that there are no changes in itineraries.

Weather Outlook: Next Affected Ships & Ports

Cruise Critic readers on cruises in the Caribbean this week are reporting that sea conditions have been a bit rambunctious.

There's likely some flooding and beach erosion at this point in Cozumel, Playa del Carmen and Grand Cayman, but Hurricane Ida will not have a great impact on the ports for visitors this week.

We'll keep you updated.

--Updated by Ashley Kosciolek, Copy Editor