Royal Caribbean cruise ship delayed to wait for home port to reopen

Royal Caribbean International has provided an update for the independence of the seas, announcing that the ship will be delayed arriving at Port Canaveral. It comes as Port Canaveral works to reopen after Tropical Storm Nicole.

While land operations at Port Canaveral have been cleared to resume, all sea-related operations are suspended pending a channel survey.

The independence of the seas delayed by a day

Royal Caribbean International has been forced to make changes to two onboard cruises independence of the seas. The Freedom-class cruise ship was scheduled to return to Port Canaveral today, November 11. However, Port Canaveral remains under ZULU condition and is closed to all marine traffic except government vessels.

independence of the seas is currently at sea, passing Freeport in the Bahamas, and will be heading for Port Canaveral in the evening and night, hoping to be able to dock at Port Canaveral tomorrow morning, November 12.

It also means that the three-night cruise set to depart on Saturday will be reduced to just two nights. independence of the seas was scheduled to travel to Nassau on Saturday, but that call has now been cancelled.

Royal Caribbean is offering guests a day’s worth of the cruise fare as a refundable onboard credit. Guests will also receive a pro-rated, refundable onboard credit for purchases made before the cruise, such as internet or beverage packages. All pre-purchased shore excursions for Nassau will also be returned as a refundable onboard credit.

Photo credit: Ceri Breeze /

If guests decide to cancel the trip, they will receive a 100% future cruise credit for the cruise fare paid. Customers can cancel the cruise until November 12.

Royal Caribbean said there is no other impact to planned itineraries at this time. In the coming days, sailor of the seas will leave Port Canaveral on Saturday. This Sunday, November 13, the two jewel of the seas and wonder of the seas have scheduled calls to Port Canaveral. So far, these cruises will sail as scheduled.

Port Canaveral remains in a Zulu state

Although Tropical Storm Nicole passed Port Canaveral, the port remains closed for all inland and onshore ship operations. The port is open to all land operations, which means businesses are allowed to return to the port to assess their premises and resume operations safely.

Port Canaveral tide gauges reached major flood stage during Hurricane Nicole before falling back to normal levels after the storm surge subsided. No significant damage was reported at the port.

Cruise ships in Port Canaveral
Photo credit: Melissa Mayntz

Port Canaveral released a statement that said: “Port Canaveral conducted initial port security assessments following Hurricane Nicole. An “All Clear” has been issued for surrounding roads. For land operations, the port is now OPEN.

The port remains closed to all marine traffic as port management and the U.S. Coast Guard must conduct surveys of the main channel and conduct vessel restriction assessments.

Also Read: Hotels in Port Canaveral with Cruise Shuttle Service

Nearby Jetty Park, a popular place to watch cruise ships entering the harbour, the boat launches at Rodney Ketcham Park, Freddie Patrick Park and Canaveral Lock all remain closed until further notice.

Yesterday it was expected that the port could reopen today; it remains to be seen if the port will actually open today or if it will be pushed back to tomorrow.

Royal Caribbean's Independence of the Seas cruise ship

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