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Carnival Cruise Lines Will No Longer Sail From Charleston, Starting In 2024
South Carolina will be bidding farewell to Carnival Cruise Lines in 2024. The state will be ending it’s deal with the cruise line after 14 years, resulting in the end of departures from Charleston.
Carnival is using the Union Pier Terminal in Charleston for departures and arrivals to the Caribbean and back. Starting in 2024, Carnival will still be able to use the port, but only during the day.
Charleston is home to the Carnival Sunshine, whose last cruise from the port set sail on April 27th, 2024. The cruise will be 5 days and stop in Nassau, Bahamas, and Half Moon Cay, an island owned by Carnival. The ship will return to Charleston for the last time.
Why South Carolina is not renewing the contract
In an effort to control tourism, the South Carolina Ports Authority is also limiting ships. Ships will not be able to visit more than 104 times per year with a 3,500 passenger limit.
Charleston is happy about this decision and its mayor says the city will be able to redevelop the Union Pier Terminal as well as have more opportunities for city growth.
Mayor John Tecklenburg says, “We’re grateful to the port for taking this critically important step, and we look forward to continuing the work with [South Carolina Ports Authority] to make Union Pier a beautiful and vibrant part of the city of Charleston.”
Key West also began limited cruise departures in 2020 to control tourism. The state of Florida has since reversed the decision to limit the number of cruise ships allowed to dock.