Cruise Ship Damage Forces Itinerary Change; Passengers Offered Full Refund

January 4, 2013

(4:30 p.m. EST) -- Passengers departing on a seven-day cruise onboard Carnival Splendor today have been offered a full refund due to damage forcing an itinerary change.

The seals on the ship's propulsion shafts were damaged on a previous cruise by fishing nets located underwater, and as a result the ship has been forced to make an overnight call in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. All other shipboard systems and hotel services continue to function as normal.

The original itinerary called for two full days in Cabo San Lucas and a day-long call in Puerto Vallarta while the revised itinerary includes a day-long call in Cabo San Lucas and an overnight stay in Puerto Vallarta.

The latest incident first came to light on the Cruise Critic message boards, where qsuzi wrote: “Do you have any additional information regarding problems with the Carnival Splendor? Just got e-mail offering full refund for 1-6-13 cruise because of damage to seal of propulsion shafts and 2 nights in Puerto Vallarta (for repairs)? but says no issue of health & safety.”

A spokesman for Carnival Cruise Lines told Cruise Critic:

“During a recent cruise of the Carnival Splendor, the seals on the ship's propulsion shafts were damaged by fishing nets located underwater. In order to provide adequate time to make the necessary repairs, the itinerary for the Carnival Splendor's next cruise, a seven-day voyage departing Long Beach, Calif., Sunday, January 6, has been modified to include an overnight call in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
"Guests scheduled to sail on the January 6 Carnival Splendor cruise have the option of cancelling and receiving a full refund. Carnival sincerely apologizes to its guests for this disruption in their vacation plans.”
It is just over two years since a fire broke out in Carnival Splendor's engine room leaving it without power and adrift off the coast of Mexico. The ship was safely towed to shore and spent several months in dry dock being extensively refitted before returning to service.

--by Adam Coulter, U.K. Editor