Hurricane Harvey Disrupting Cruise Vacations Out of Texas Ports

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Four Galveston-bound cruise ships with a combined 20,000 passengers on board are forced to remain in the Gulf of Mexico as they await Harvey's passage, according to port officials.

Two of the Carnival ships are diverting to New Orleans, where they will let people off if they don't want to wait around until it's safe to dock in Texas.

The Freedom and Valor's next cruises will be on a shortened itinerary that will be determined in the next few days, officials said. Earlier today, Harvey strengthened to become a Category 3 level storm.

To keep guests safe the ship is spending an overnight in Cozumel and will then head back up to Galveston on Sunday away from the storm.

The port, which hosts all three ships year-round, closed Friday ahead of the storm and remained closed Saturday afternoon.

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A third ship, the Carnival Breeze, will extend its stay in Cozumel, Mexico, and begin sailing back to Galveston this weekend, the company said.

While we're posting about the cruise ships we would also like to update readers that Liberty of the Seas which is operated by Royal Caribbean is still on scheduled to dock in Galveston on Sunday and the cruise line has not made any adjustments yet.

To avoid those situations, the ships - which are now positioned in the southern Caribbean and along the Mexican coast - could stay on the back side of the storm until it passes. Again, all of this is contingent upon the Port of Galveston actually reopening.

'We're working with the cruise lines, the Coast Guard and the pilots to see what can be done to bring the cruise ships in as quickly but as safely as possible, ' Simons told the paper. They also have the option to cancel without a penalty and will receive a future cruise credit, the spokesperson said. "We are actively monitoring path and progression of Hurricane Harvey and will make sure to inform our guests of any itinerary changes".

With the Port of Galveston closed to all marine traffic, two Carnival Cruise Line ships scheduled to arrive Saturday are being redirected to New Orleans, according to a company spokeswoman.

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