CruiseNorwegian Cruise Line and Carnival Cruise Line’s ships are all back on the high seas, with Royal Caribbean and MSC Cruises soon following suit.

Full fleet, full steam ahead for cruise lines

The return of Norwegian Spirit marks NCL’s full fleet resumption.
The return of Norwegian Spirit marks NCL’s full fleet resumption. Photo Credit: Norwegian Cruise Line

The cruise industry seems to be nearing complete recovery from the pandemic as Carnival Cruise Line and Norwegian Cruise Line celebrate full fleet sailings, with Royal Caribbean and MSC Cruises close behind.

Carnival Cruise Line was the first major cruise line to put its 23-ship fleet back in service for the first time since Covid-19 struck when Carnival Splendor, set sail on 2 May from Seattle to Alaska.

Shortly after, Norwegian Cruise Line announced the completion of its Great Cruise Comeback with the sailing of Norwegian Spirit, the 17th ship and final ship in its fleet.

Norwegian Spirit made its grand return after an extensive US$100 million refurbishment. It now features 14 new venues, additional and updated staterooms, enhanced public areas, and new hull art. The ship’s spa and fitness centre have been expanded in size, and new complimentary dining venues have been added.

The ship departed from Tahiti on 7 May on a 12-day sailing to eight ports in the South Pacific and will disembark on 19 May in Honolulu.

"This is an incredibly important day in our history and a defining moment for our future,” said Harry Sommer, president and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line. “We are moving full speed ahead, having already welcomed more than half a million guests for an exceptional vacation at sea.”

Royal Caribbean International is close behind on bringing its 24 ships back in action by the end of May. Meanwhile, MSC Cruises is awaiting the return of its final 19th ship, the MSC Musica, that will sail out of Venice on 5 June.

By September, Princess Cruises will be expected to make its full fleet return.

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