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Canceled San Juan Port for Mardi Gras in JN 2023


Lillian Ortiz

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I'm very upset with change in our itinerary for Mardi Gras cruise set for Jan 21-28. 2023. The stop in San Juan has been removed due to ?protests against LUMA.

My 91 yr PR father thought he would be seeing PR for one more time since flying is difficult for him.  I'm heart broken about having to tell him of change.

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I think it is a good idea to change ships that will go to PR on January or February.  I see there are numerous options from Miami.  Have you tried calling your TA or Carnival?  You might still be able to save it.  Hoping for the best for you and your Dad.  For sure he misses his home country.

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While I understand their decision to remove San Juan due to fuel cost, I think it’s pretty mediocre & shows how much carnival doesn’t care about trying to provide better experiences & itineraries. It’s why Royal is kicking them in the teeth. While other ships do include San Juan during their sailings, not having the largest crown jewel of the fleet sail actual eastern caribbean itineraries is disappointing & frankly concerning. Branding 7night voyages as eastern caribbean sailings and then not even sailing further than DR really should be rebranded as northern caribbean or something similar.. especially during winter sailings where the Bahamas & other nearby ports can remain cooler if you aren’t sailing further East/west/south. Does anyone else feel this way? It’s why my family has started sailing Royal significantly more again.

Edited by Zac
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On 10/26/2022 at 1:30 PM, Feeling Duped and Cheated said:

They are just trying to maximize profits on a sold-out cruise. Their fuel costs will be reduced substantially by not going on to San Juan. 

 

5 hours ago, Zac said:

While I understand their decision to remove San Juan due to fuel cost, I think it’s pretty mediocre & shows how much carnival doesn’t care about trying to provide better experiences & itineraries. It’s why Royal is kicking them in the teeth. While other ships do include San Juan during their sailings, not having the largest crown jewel of the fleet sail actual eastern caribbean itineraries is disappointing & frankly concerning. Branding 7night voyages as eastern caribbean sailings and then not even sailing further than DR really should be rebranded as northern caribbean or something similar.. especially during winter sailings where the Bahamas & other nearby ports can remain cooler if you aren’t sailing further East/west/south. Does anyone else feel this way? It’s why my family has started sailing Royal significantly more again.

 

I don't really think fuel cost is the issue.  As the announcement said, it was due to "operational issues" which could be most anything.  As @DeanneB mentioned, there are many other Carnival cruises going to San Juan in the month of Jan, 2023 — a total of 6 itineraries covering 8 different departure dates based on a quick search I just did.  These include among others, both the Carnival Celebration (the brand new flag ship debuting in a couple of weeks) as well as the Mardi Gras.  Both are the XL class and LNG powered.  I'm thinking more to the point is port logistics being the cause of the re-shuffling.

As a side note, for the whole year of 2023, Carnival has 19 cruise itineraries that include San Juan covering 61 different departure dates.  And, again, these include both the Celebration and Mardi Gras.  So, I think saying that they don't do Eastern Caribbean sailings or include their flag ships is a real mischaracterization.  There's bound to be an option out there for you.

So, @Lillian Ortiz while change is indeed hard, it's part of cruising.  Rather than cursing the fact, contact your TA, or PVP at Carnival, or Carnival directly, and work to make the change happen for the best outcome.  Flexibility is key here.

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Feel for all...on a date not cancelled YET...chose date to meetup with 50+ HS class reunion activity...if expected to be cancelled I want out and awaiting info from PVP switch $ to another cruise get me to Old San Juan, w/wo reunion!  

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Seems we all bought in for this cruise and paid our fares in full - then they rearrange ports, start limiting times and amounts at which we can eat - perhaps their needs to be protections for passengers as Carnival is showing that their cruise contract protects them and provides zero protections to the consumer.  

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When I inquired about changing my Jan 21 sailing on Mardi gras to a different port , I called twice and two separate agents advised of this which is copied and posted from Carnival site, "

  1. Cruise Cancellation and Itinerary Change PolicyIf it is necessary to cancel any or multiple ports, we will do our best to find alternative destinations. However, if we are unsuccessful in doing so, there will be no compensation for missed ports..."
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@wmrad007 yes I can understand why you're upset and as a consumer you have the right to inform others if you are upset explaining your views ....as you have on here + also if you are unhappy with Carnival then just don't cruise with them again.

One thing I'd like to add ....Don't go on your cruise with negative thoughts and feeling annoyed. You just have to accept what has happened has happened and whilst on your cruise, be determined to enjoy every minute of your cruise, relax, have fun and enjoy the sun, keep a smile on your face and hopefully you'll feel a lot better 🥳 🥳 😎

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  • 3 weeks later...

I agree and with Lillian, I would be upset as well. We spend a lot of time and money planning and taking a cruise, what itinery's, ports of call, time of year. ect. We are not flexible.

San Juan is in my opinion one of the best ports of call in the Carribean. The port is right in the heart of Old San Juan, and you have lots of options to enjoy the city, the Forts, the towering cliffs overlooking the Forts, the pristine waves. We have done 2 cruise's to San Juan and that's the main reason we booked those cruises.  Now to side step to Nassau???? Boring, boring, boring. The cruise lines should at least inform with detals why they changed ports of call and should offer a refund or another cruise. 

We had a short 5 day cruise last year, and they changed our Itinery, from Grand Turk to Bimini. I did not care that much since it was our first cruse after Covid, where we had 6 cancelled cruises. Turns out Bimini is the worst port of call of anywhere we have been, every thing is an up charge and about the only thing there is boring beaches. Would never book a cruise with Bimini as a port again. By the way, our last cruise on Carnival Pride was understaffed, and the worst prepared food in the main dining area we have had on a Carnival ship.

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  • 3 months later...

@Mark Morel I also love San Juan in the Caribbean! I agree that it's better than Nassau, but Nassau keeps gaining popularity. I prefer the less populated Caribbean ports of call. The staffing shortage in November was truly impacting the guest experience. Before it was due to the lack of people to work, and now it's due to all sorts of financial cutbacks.

@riseagain30At least Carnival Cruise Line brought back the Fun Times newsletter! That's a start!

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We flew into San Juan on Friday Feb 24th and were surprised to see ZERO cruise ships in the port of Old San Juan.  When we embarked on the Celebrity Millennium On Saturday there was only one ship in port. This was surprising since we are at the beginning of spring break. 

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@FJB That's so bizarre that Old San Juan had zero cruise ships. I have seen cruise itineraries that embark from San Juan. Do you have any tips for flying in and cruising out of this area? I don't think flights are very pricey from the U.S., but I'm always hesitant about the logistics to get to an unfamiliar port on unfamiliar territory. I would imagine San Juan is a popular port of call for spring break cruising! I wonder if it was just an off day. Our spring breaks are beginning in the next week or two.

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8 hours ago, 3Sisters said:

@FJB That's so bizarre that Old San Juan had zero cruise ships. I have seen cruise itineraries that embark from San Juan. Do you have any tips for flying in and cruising out of this area? I don't think flights are very pricey from the U.S., but I'm always hesitant about the logistics to get to an unfamiliar port on unfamiliar territory. I would imagine San Juan is a popular port of call for spring break cruising! I wonder if it was just an off day. Our spring breaks are beginning in the next week or two.

San Juan is an easy place to navigate but expensive!  It's only about a 15 minute taxi ride from the airport to Old San Juan or the cruise terminal.   There are plenty of hotels all within 5-15 minutes of the cruise terminal. Plenty to see in Old San Juan if you are coming in a day or 2 before the cruise, which of course is always a good idea.  

The problem is the flights departing San Juan back to the USA after returning from the cruise.  Most flights that I saw left after 5pm.  We were able to get a day pass to one of the local hotels to store our luggage and spend the day relaxing and drinking by the pool before flying back home - highly recommended.  www.resortpass.com

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@FJB You have some seriously great tips for cruising out of San Juan! I always end up figuring embarking on a cruise outside of the general U.S. region is going to be significantly more expensive than cruising out of my normal Floridian ports of call, but I'm ready to branch out. I have family and friends near most of the ports in Florida so I can always stay with them and have them shuffle me to the port which is so very convenient. If I were to cruise out of another port of call, such as San Juan, I would want to stay a few nights before or after. This idea of getting a day pass is so genius! How far was this resort from the airport? 

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2 hours ago, Kendall James-Vargas said:

@FJB You have some seriously great tips for cruising out of San Juan! I always end up figuring embarking on a cruise outside of the general U.S. region is going to be significantly more expensive than cruising out of my normal Floridian ports of call, but I'm ready to branch out. I have family and friends near most of the ports in Florida so I can always stay with them and have them shuffle me to the port which is so very convenient. If I were to cruise out of another port of call, such as San Juan, I would want to stay a few nights before or after. This idea of getting a day pass is so genius! How far was this resort from the airport? 

We did the day pass at the Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino - less than 3 minutes from the cruise port and 15 minutes from the airport.  

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2 hours ago, Kendall James-Vargas said:

@FJB I have always been pleased with my stay at Sheraton hotels. They are usually very clean and convenient. Did the Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino have an airport or cruise port shuttle? That could actually be the most convenient offering if transportation was bundled into the experience. 

It did not have a shuttle that I was aware of for the cruise or air ports.  I think it did have a shopping shuttle though.  

For 4 people with a tip, the taxi to the airport was $35.  

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9 hours ago, Cruising Caribbean said:

@Zac Have you been able to cruise onboard Royal Caribbean's new mega-ship, Wonder of the Seas? It ended up over-booking for spring break! 

@FJB What was your favorite part of cruising onboard Celebrity Millennium? Were you able to do any good shopping in Old San Juan?

Favorite part?  Probably the unlimited included alcohol LoL. The ship was beautiful- recently “revolutionized”. The service was outstanding. The crew was fabulous. The food was great. 
 

We are not shoppers so no shopping in San Juan. 

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@FJB Unlimited alcohol could make any cruise fun! If I remember correctly, you upgraded your drink package to get the premium alcohol package, didn't you? If that was the case, it seems you really took advantage of this upgrade. Yes, I noticed that Celebrity Millennium was recently "revolutionized" and has all of the latest and greatest amenities. I guess you would give your cruise experience a 10/10! The ship even got new mattresses in each stateroom, so you must have slept like a baby. 

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