Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Catches Fire near Jamaica

Office_Fire_ExtinguisherA fire broke out aboard Royal Caribbean Freedom of the Seas Wednesday injuring one crew member. Passengers were moved to assembly stations but not evacuated.

The incident happened at about 9:30 a.m. while the cruise ship was pulling into the port of Falmouth, Jamaica. Royal Caribbean International said on its Twitter page that the fire started in a mechanical area and was extinguished a short time later. The passengers were told to put on their life jackets and gather on the deck. The fire suppression system for the vessel was immediately activated and the fire did not spread. Photos posted on social media showed a thick plume of grey smoke coming from an upper deck of the 154,407-ton Freedom of the Seas. Continue reading

Carnival Granted U.S. Approval for Travel to Cuba

800px-Carnival_Cruise_ShipCarnival Corporation will sail to Cuba in a new deal, the world’s largest cruise ship company announced Tuesday. Princess, the parent company of Carnival, will launch seven-day “people-to-people” travel to the island beginning in May 2016. The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Department of Commerce granted the company approval to begin traveling to Cuba. Continue reading

Richard Branson Launches Virgin Cruises in Miami

RichardBransonByDavidShankboneThe British entrepreneur Richard Branson officially announced that his latest travel venture, Virgin Cruises is planned to launch from Miami in early 2020. The Virgin founder made the announcement at a press conference on Tuesday, in Miami.

The company had signed a letter of intent with the Finacntieri shipyard in Italy to build three 110,000-ton ships with 1,430 cabins. The ships are expected to be delivered in early 2020, 2021 and 2022. Each vessel will have room for over 2,800 passengers and 1,150 crew members, said Tom McAlpin, Virgin Cruises CEO. Continue reading

The Next Biggest Cruise Ship Starts to Take Shape

800px-Voyager_of_the_seas1The Harmony of the Seas had its final block of ship structure lowered into place at the STX France shipyards in Saint Nazaire earlier this week.

The ship is getting ready for a bon voyage during its initial trip from Barcelona to Rome in April 2016. Continue reading

Carnival Cruise Line Bans Carry-on Bottled Drinks

800px-Sparkling-bottled-waterCarnival Cruise Line will ban passengers from bringing their own beverages aboard its ships, starting this summer.

The Miami-based cruise operator announced its new beverages policy in a statement earlier this week. Passengers and travel agents are being sent a letter explaining the new rules. Continue reading