Stranded Carnival Cruise Ship Finally Reaches Port

After several days without power, phones, air-conditioning or hot water, the 3,300 passengers and more than 1,000 crew members on board the Carnival Splendor finally reached land in San Diego on Thursday morning.

The ship’s cruise director had nothing but good things to say about the passengers: “[G]uests have been magnificent and have risen to the obvious challenges and difficult conditions onboard.”

But he wasn’t so forgiving about his own hygiene: “I don’t smell of roses at the best of times but as the laundry is not working and I only have two pairs of underpants I smell like Paris on a hot summer’s day,”

On Monday morning, the ship had become stranded off the coast of Mexico after a fire in the engine room left the vessel without enough power to return to port. It was pulled back to San Diego by a fleet of tugboats.

Carnival has said that passengers will receive a full refund plus a voucher for a future cruise of equal price.

Stricken cruise successfully docked in San Diego [MSNBC]


Edit Your Comment

  1. Blueskylaw says:

    At least the drinks were free, sans the rocks.

  2. Angus99 says:

    At the least the cruise director’s sense of humor is intact. This has pretty much got to be the nightmare scenario for that particular job. It’s the Kobayashi Maru.

  3. nodaybuttoday says:

    Two pairs of underpants? How long was this cruise?

  4. D0rk says:

    Is anyone else disturbed by the fact that the cruise director only brought two pairs of undergarments for a SEVEN day cruise to Mexico?

  5. dumblonde says:

    2 pairs of underpants… Yeah I travel with at least 7 pairs if the trip is a week long. Underwear does not take up any space!

    • raydee wandered off on a tangent and got lost says:

      yeah. I might skimp on the bra front, but underpants? “A pair for each day and a spare” has always been my policy.

      • dumblonde says:

        Extra underwear is always a good thing. I remember one time we got snowed in in Washington for a full 2 days. My extra underwear made things much much better for me. My roommates on the other hand had to wash their underwear in the bathroom sink.

  6. UltimateOutsider says:

    Dude, what was with the burn on Paris?

  7. elangomatt says:

    They reached port an hour ago, anyone know how many lawsuits have been filed against Carnival so far?

    • benbell says:

      I am fairly certain that all of these issues are covered in the contract every passenger agreed to.

      Nobody was hurt or died AFAIK.

      There is really no reason for a lawsuit unless it is proven that Carnival was negligent in maintaining its basically brand new ship.

      So we will surely have a bunch of merit less lawsuits to clog up our court system even more.

      • oldwiz65 says:

        Even then it’s very difficult to sue cruise ships since they are registered in different countries to avoid the lawsuits. When you accept cruise ship terms, you also can’t sue the doctors either.

  8. ganzhimself says:

    …And, this is another reason why I will never set foot on a cruise ship.

  9. ganzhimself says:

    …And, this is another reason why I will never set foot on a cruise ship.

  10. Bagumpity says:

    “Full Refund” doesn’t cover:
    1. Loss of vacation days (or income, for those of us who are self-employed)
    2. Travel to/from plus pre/post hotel stays
    3. Money paid for drinks, casino losses, cost of food from non-inclusive all-inclusive restaurants.
    4. Tips (*cough* *cough* bribes *cough*) paid to room stewards (*cough* *cough* slave-labor servants *cough*) for good service (*cough* *cough* for not pooping in your luggage *cough*)

    The price of the cruise is just the entry fee to the fleecing. If you leave the boat w/o spending twice what you paid to get on it, you’re not a good (*cough* *cough* stupid *cough*) customer (*cough* *cough* sucker *cough*).

  11. evilpete says:

    What bothers me is that it is clear that the ship does not have a reliable backup power system nor did Carnival have an adequate plan for such an emergency.

    • yulingo says:

      I would understand this happening to an older ship, but this one is brand new. How did they manage to design an entirely new ship with no reliable back-up power?

    • Fantoche_de_Chaussette says:

      The ship had quite adequate backup generators, enough to run essential systems.

      Air-conditioning and hot showers are not “essential.”

      I have zero sympathy for the passenger whinefest here. Their ship had a freaking engine room fire, but they nonetheless were brought safe and sound back to shore in a couple days, having experienced no greater hardship than having to eat cold non-perishable food. It’s not anyone’s idea of a vacation, but it’s a pretty darn good outcome from a major shipboard fire.

      • evilpete says:

        I guess toilets not “essential” when their are 3,300 people on board ?

        There is a difference between “emergency” and “backup” systems….

      • colorisnteverything says:

        Sorry, but AC is a necessary thing for some of us. Had I been on this ship, I would probably have been so sick by the time I got back to shore I would have been in the hospital. As someone with asthma, I don’t go places where I know I will be in the heat for a long period of time without the option of AC.

        So, while I know this was unforseen, I don’t see this as a “nonessential” system. It’s not like people living in places without windows could get fresh air. And I am not sure that the rest of the windows even open. I don’t cruise, though, I get seasick in a lake.

  12. scgirl_212 says:

    Also doesn’t mention that the ship was scheduled for another cruise next week, and it was cancelled, leaving those would be passengers with just a refund and a discount for another Carnival cruise. They were the ones that got screwed (imo)!

  13. Suaveydavey says:

    Carnival needs to stop using those GM Oldsmobile diesel engines.

  14. evilpete says:

    I wonder how long it will take to fix an clean the ship.

    Humm, 3,300 people sh*ting once a day for several days

    that is a lot of “stuff” to clean up !!!

  15. NumberSix says:

    I can see it out of my office window three blocks away. I doesn’t seem that much bigger than any other cruise ship that docs here.

    I wonder; why are they making such a big deal about it’s size on our local news?

  16. INsano says:

    I’d like to see an article about a cruise ship that *did* make it into port without engine trouble, H1N1, food poisoning, hijackers, storms or international incident. Has it ever happened?

    WHY are people still taking cruises?

    • evilpete says:

      I bet there will be some *sweet* deals on Carnival cruises soon,

      • oldwiz65 says:

        They will probably start keeping Spam on board in the future. Maybe the military could also get them a good deal on MREs (Meals Ready To Eat). They are all lucky they were not in the Caribbean and in the path of a major storm or hurricane.

  17. dotkat says:

    We need a cruise ship rule like the airline rule that says you are only allowed to be held hostage in the aircraft for 3 hours. Why wasn’t there a replacement ship available to pull up next to the damaged ship and offload the people? Airlines have to have backup planes. Why aren’t cruise lines required to have backup ships?

    • benbell says:

      You MUST be joking.

      If not, then you really should have at least SOME clue what you are talking about before you post.

    • oldwiz65 says:

      You have to be kidding.

    • stevenpdx says:

      Where are these mysterious “backup planes” you speak of? Airlines don’t have fleets of jets sitting around waiting for trouble. For an airline, if a plane isn’t in the air, it isn’t making money.

  18. Torchwood says:

    I have taken two cruises, both of which were fairly trouble-free. If you don’t mind doing your homework and research beforehand (isn’t that a Consumerist mantra?), you can have a enjoyable time. After all, I consider a cruise ship to be a floating hotel. Some things that I’ve learned:
    * Always purchase travel insurance. Remember, most cruise ships are flagged with another country, and when you board that ship, you are in another country, and some US-based policies may not apply. In addition, should something happen on a shore excursion, you may have to be flown back to the United States. That can easily run $100,000, and the sole reason why I have travel insurance.
    * Each day of the cruise, you are given a daily “newspaper” of what is happening on board ship. Especially on sea days, you may want to take along a yellow highlighter and highlight what you might be interested in.
    * Remember, unless they specify otherwise, there are no free drinks. In fact, there is often a tip added to the drink price.
    * There is always a crowd at the doors when it’s dinnertime. Arriving about 5 minutes after dinner opening, and there is no crowd.
    * Be sure to pack extra batteries and memory cards for your camera. Heck, you get some interesting shots of people during the mandatory muster drill.
    * Parents: If you bring your kids along, remember that parenting is NOT on vacation.
    * On the last night, when you pack your bags, please wear what you will be wearing when you get off the ship while you pack. Otherwise, it can lead to a embarrassing situation.
    * Don’t be afraid to meet new people.

    • HogwartsProfessor says:

      Thanks for the tips. My sis-in-law is a travel agent and she and my brother have cruised several times. They say it’s awesome. I want to try it someday.

  19. Calcbunny says:

    I heard the crew on the cruise ship was pissed, they said they sent up a flare and no one saw it.

    • El_Fez says:

      No, there was another liner five miles away, but the radio operator had turned in for the night and the captain thought there was a party going on at the other ship so he ignored it.

  20. HogwartsProfessor says:

    I’m glad it wasn’t worse. It could have been. And points to Carnival for giving refunds.