Stranded Carnival Passengers Won't Reach Land Until Thursday

Yesterday we told you about the 3,300 passengers stranded off the coast of Mexico in a Carnival Cruise ship left without power following a fire in the engine room. Originally, the cruise line had hoped to have the boat towed back to port by yesterday afternoon. Well, that plan didn’t work out.

The ship will now reach port late Thursday, says Carnival. The reason for the delay — rather than have the Carnival Splendor towed to the Mexican port of Ensenada, the tugboats are going to San Diego.

From USA Today:

Carnival says some shipboard programming, including children’s programs and entertainment, are being provided, but air conditioning on the vessel remains down and there is no hot food service. Some cabin toilets also remain inoperable, though engineers have been able to restore toilet service in most cabins and all public bathrooms.

The USS Reagan arrived on the scene yesterday and has begun ferrying thousands of pounds of supplies by helicopter.

As mentioned yesterday, all passengers on this trip will receive a full refund plus a voucher for a future Carnival cruise. The line has canceled the Splendor’s next planned trip and is giving those passengers a full refund plus a 25% discount on a future cruise.

Passengers on fire-damaged Carnival Splendor face another trying day [USA Today]

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  1. Southern says:

    At least they’re giving a full refund AND a free (future) cruise.. When i first read about this story the other day, I was thinking they were just going to say “Sorry for the inconvienence, but thanks for your money!”..

    • b612markt says:

      That’s what I thought they’d do too. It seems they may have learned a thing or two.

    • Difdi says:

      As bad as many cruise lines can be, even at their worst they seem to beat most airlines. If this were United, we’d probably be hearing about no refunds, and $25 vouchers usable for a future fare.

  2. Blueskylaw says:

    “all passengers on this trip will receive a full refund plus a voucher for a future Carnival cruise”

    That’s all fine and swell, but are drinks free now?

    • erratapage says:

      No refrigeration?

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        alcohol doesn’t need refrigeration.

        • balthisar says:

          But mixed drinks need ice cubes, which come out of sub-zero refrigerators (I normally call them “freezers”). Apparently there’s no air conditioning on board now, so a gin tonic would be a real good way to cool off. Unless there’re no ice cubes.

          • Oranges w/ Cheese says:

            Not really – you make enough of them you can use up an entire bottle of shelf-stable juice before it needs refrigeration.

  3. Jason says:

    I actually think Carnival made a good move by giving each passenger a refund, travel, and free voucher to all who experienced this. Now let’s see how many stipulations are on those vouchers or even if the people want to venture out on a Carnival ship again. Unfortunate situation, but these things happen.

    • minjche says:

      So not even the company sacrificing the cost of 2.25 cruises is good enough for you? Is there really anything good about being so cynical?

    • HoJu says:

      Realistically, they shouldn’t have ventured out on a Carnival cruise in the first place.

  4. Grogey says:

    Other then it being a pain in the butt being on the cruise itself I would say carnival is doing a decent job at damage control.

    I bet the stories put on the internet and through the news will be ones of horror and imposable conditions but I hope that most people will be understanding and not complain to much. I guess that’s wishful thinking though.

    • pinkbunnyslippers says:

      Honestly, if you’re on a cruise ship in the first place, regardless of conditions, I think your opportunity to complain narrows quite thinly. There are a lot of people in this world worse off than someone stranded on a luxury vessel with no power/A/C but I guess it’s all in the eyes of the beholder.

      • failurate says:

        So people who can afford to buy things should not complain when those things suck because there are people out there who can’t afford to buy things?

    • webweazel says:

      That is pretty much wishful thinking. I really worry about our species in general when every single inconvenience is met with tears and hollering like they’re looking into death’s door. Didn’t we used to live in caves and under other terrible conditions during our history and survive pretty well? For a lot longer than a couple of days? “OOOOOH, the air conditioning is off. OH NO! I’m going to diiiiie!” Deal with it with aplomb you turkeys. But that won’t get them a sound byte on the news. It MUST be negative, or they won’t show it.

      • ElBobulo says:

        I noticed this also. Seems like every news item mentions “no air conditioning”, near the front of the problem list. Why is this a big deal? Do people go on cruises to sit in their air conditioned cabins?

        Might as well get drunk and enjoy the spam.

        • MrEvil says:

          See I’d love to be on a cruise where a disaster like this was guaranteed to happen. It’d be the most entertaining cruise EVER because I can watch all the “normal” people freak out over all their modern conveniences being taken away. I’d just sit back drinking room temperature beer and eat spam while watching the chaos unfold.

          As long as there’s fresh water to drink I’d be fine. You can always just take a dump in a bucket and toss it overboard.

  5. Chmeeee says:

    I question this though:

    “The line has canceled the Splendor’s next planned trip and is giving those passengers a full refund plus a 25% discount on a future cruise.”

    Seems like that would leave you deep in a hole for the money you spent on airfare which is now worthless.

    • humphrmi says:

      Which is why for cruises, you always want to buy trip insurance.

      • DeadFlorist says:

        Trip insurance? Seriously? A vacation going bad is really one of those risks that’s worth paying someone else to take on?

        • humphrmi says:

          In the case of cruises, yes. There are too many moving parts to a cruise vacation – airlines (volcanic ash, strikes, etc), ground transfers, hotels overbooked, boats catching fire, lost luggage, illness, etc. I took a cruise last summer and the total cost of trip insurance that covered all that plus “I just decided I don’t want to go” came out to about $300 per person for a cruise that totaled about $7K per person, including airfare hotels transfers etc. 4% is a small price to pay for peace of mind.

        • JohnnyP says:

          When ever we rent a house at the beach we usually get the insurance. Since we usually go during hurricane season. The cost is about $50 for $1000 in rental. I dont mind the extra cost.

        • Torchwood says:

          Seriously. When you board a ship that has a foreign registry, you are essentially on a foreign country, which is not covered by health insurance. In addition, (and this is the primary reason why I purchase travel insurance), in case of a major medical situation, I may have to be medically evacuated back to the United States. This can easily cost tens of thousands of dollars.

          • oldwiz65 says:

            And if you happen to be treated by a doctor on one of the cruises and something goes wrong, there’s no way to sue for malpractice. The cruise line is not responsible (the fine print on the contract), and the doctors are not U.S. citizens anyway.

    • DHL says:

      The left some stuff out in the USA Today report:
      Carnival has also made the decision to cancel the Nov. 14 seven-day cruise from Long Beach. Guests scheduled to sail on this voyage will receive a full refund of their cruise fare and air transportation costs, along with a 25 percent discount on a future cruise.

      http://carnival-news.com/2010/11/08/status-update-on-carnival-splendor/

  6. areaman says:

    Will Carnival pay for the services and supplies provided by Uncle Sam?

    • ajaxd says:

      We are talking about a ship in trouble in international waters close to US. Doesn’t matter who the ship belongs to you would expect some gesture of good will. Not to mention it’s mostly US citizens on board.

      • Emperor Norton I says:

        Why should the US taxpayers get the bill for a foreign registered ship that had a fire. Carnival, which is in reality a US corporation, builds its ships in foreign yards, registers them in a country that’s cheap so it doesn’t have to follow strict regulations in how it operates, hires a low paid crew, mostly from Asia, but carries almost no one but Americans. It gets around the Jones Act by having all of its cruises stop in at least one foreign port.

        They damn well better pay back Uncle Sam for this!

    • SPOON - now with Forkin attitude says:

      I gotta pay for a tow truck, on a us highway, with 4 passengers in my car. does Carnival have CSAA?

      (Cruise ship Association of America)

  7. umbriago says:

    That’s really got to be an experience. But what can you do? Mmmm, Spam and croissants!

    A question for anyone who has ever been on a cruise, do you have to sign a waiver? Something that says (in much more formal language) “Hey, it’s a ship on the ocean. Shit might happen. You may have to roll with the punches (including getting into lifeboats).”

  8. dolemite says:

    “Mr. Scotty! I need toilet pressure!”
    “I’m givin’ ‘er all she’s got keptin!”

  9. Cameraman says:

    The USS Reagan, on the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, rescuing a bunch of fat rich cruise goers. There’s a joke in there somewhere, but I’m too lazy.

    • chaesar says:

      the joke is the boat should be sending people TO Mexico

    • mrstu says:

      Um…. it’s a carnival cruise… most of the cruise goers aren’t ‘rich’, most likely… upper middle class, maybe, but Carnival is the mcdonalds of cruise lines, the truly rich are either gonna be in one of the nicest cabins, or on another line entirely.

      • MrEvil says:

        Or renting another rich fucker’s yacht. I hear Paul Allen and other large yacht owners will rent their ships out to you….for a price.

    • ophmarketing says:

      They sent the USS Ronald Reagan, which meant that only the top 1% of the wealthiest passengers got help, and the other other passengers were told that the rescue would “trickle down” to them.

  10. idx says:

    I feel like being stranded even with no ac and no hot food wouldn’t be that bad. Add in the refund and the free cruise and I’d be a happy camper.

  11. Macgyver says:

    Wasn’t this supposed to only be a three hour tour?

  12. Talisker says:

    There’s got to be a morning after
    If we can hold on through the night…

    Why does that preacher keep insisting that we go to the engine room?

  13. MercuryPDX says:

    I saw “ferrying thousands of pounds of puppies” by helicopter. and thought “Wow… they are really going all out to entertain the kids.”

    [need moar coffee]

  14. AllanG54 says:

    Hormel must be going wild because you can’t buy this kind of publicity….passengers are being fed SPAM by the caseload. Reminds me of the spam lamb episode on M*A*S*H

  15. daemonaquila says:

    Seriously – after this, who wants a voucher for another cruise? Plus, a free cruise doesn’t compensate people who are now losing income because they’re stuck on the ship and will miss time at work, etc.

    It’s nice they’re trying to compensate the passengers (a/k/a save their butts on the PR front), but I think they know that few will ever want to try the repeat cruise. Nice cost savings.

    • minjche says:

      I’m seeing Carnival reimbursing the cost for this cruise, another cruise, and 25% of a third cruise, plus airfare as “enough”. Lost wages is pushing it IMO.

      • Oranges w/ Cheese says:

        Not.. really, considering.

        Though, if the ship failed early enough in the cruise, it may not have yet passed its original end date. That would be a lucky break, indeed.

        • minjche says:

          Would you be able to elaborate and back up what you mean by “not really, considering”? I honestly have no idea what you’re getting at.

          • DHL says:

            This ship is returning to port before the original end of the cruise itinerary i.e. they didn’t miss any work that they originially didn’t already plan to be out of work on vacation.

  16. GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

    But is the buffet still open? What about the nacho cheese fountain?!?!

    • minjche says:

      The fountain is open but whenever anyone tries to eat from it, a crewmember makes the “that’s NA-CHO cheese!” pun and blocks them.

      It’s delicious torture, if you ask me.

  17. hennese says:

    I wonder if the Titanic passengers got offered a free cruise and their money back. I go on my very first cruise in 32 days… Praying nothing happens.

    • humphrmi says:

      I’m sort of a Titanic buff of sorts, not into it like others but just a minor hobby.

      There were indeed lawsuits galore, some went on for 50 years and didn’t amount to much compensation.

      That said, don’t worry. Lives lost at sea these days are mostly due to stupidity, i.e. someone drinking more than they should and falling overboard. Enjoy your cruise.

    • AllanG54 says:

      I’ve been on 22 cruises and have had a fantastic time on all of them. If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t be looking to book #23.

  18. DHL says:

    The USA Today report left out the fact that Carnival will also be paying for the air transportation costs for the cancelled Nov 14 cruise passengers.
    Carnival has also made the decision to cancel the Nov. 14 seven-day cruise from Long Beach. Guests scheduled to sail on this voyage will receive a full refund of their cruise fare and air transportation costs, along with a 25 percent discount on a future cruise.

    http://carnival-news.com/2010/11/08/status-update-on-carnival-splendor/

  19. Torchwood says:

    Some passengers will still complain about the situation as if the Splendor hit an iceberg.

    Which makes me wonder…. what type of compensation did White Star Lines give to the survivors of the Titanic?

  20. tinmanx says:

    I would take this deal! Camp out on a cruise ship for a few days and get a full refund plus a free trip in the future. I think Carnival did a good job in terms of compensation.

    • A Bay Horse says:

      I completely agree. This seems to be a minor inconvenience to me, as opposed to say, a natural disaster or some such. Being stuck with out some modern conveniences on a cruise ship? Where do I sign up? The way the media is portraying this you’d think it were comparable to, oh I don’t know, an earthquake in Haiti?

      • Rachacha says:

        Compared to an earthwuake in Haiti, this would be a walk in the park, but think of it this way. . You went on the cruise to take a vacation and relax, instead, you are on a ship, initially with no running water and with no AC and only minimal electrical power. There is no hot food, meaning that you are left to eat fruit, salads and bread products until assistance can arrive (and when assistance arrives they give you SPAM). You are in the tropics, which means that the interior of the ship is likely going to get warm and uncomfortable, you are unable to stop in port, so for entertainment you can either spend your time in the Casino (assuming it is still running), hang out playing Bingo for 20 hours a day, or possibly swim in a pool that does not have any active filtration or circulation. Factor in cranky kids (and adults) who were promised that they would be able to swim with dolphins, and are now stuck in a hot stuffy place, it won’t be fun.

        • humphrmi says:

          Those are all minor inconveniences. Plus, you get another vacation for free later.

        • baquwards says:

          they don’t filter those pools. They are filled with sea water every morning and emptied every night. Very few cruise ships have chlorinated filtered pools.

  21. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    Why is a Panamanian ship in Mexican waters being rescued by the US Coast Guard and US Navy?

  22. shadowboxer524 says:

    The Gipper to the rescue! …well, sort of.

  23. Cyclone says:

    Does this have anything to do with the EMP attack by China against a Carnival cruise ship I just read about?

    http://www.whatdoesitmean.com/index1421.htm

    • Grodoro says:

      I can assure you that it was not an EMP that caused the problems.
      1) An EMP would have very little effect on the operation of the engines, aside from shutting them down. It is doubtful that it would have caused a fire.
      2) If it would have knocked out the engine, it would have also knocked out the backup generators which are what is providing power to the emergency lights, as well as the plumbing and sewage systems.
      3) An EMP would have also killed all non-hardened electronics on board the ship. That includes the cell phones that the passengers are making shore calls with.

  24. rubicthecube says:

    My sister’s boyfriend’s whole family is on that ship. They were celebrating their grandfathers retirement. So far, all we know is what is on the news.