The Carnival Glory departed the Port of New Orleans today, the first cruise since COVID paused operations 18 months ago.
When the ship left, two Lafayette residents were on board.
"Today we're excited. We love Carnival, and we've been waiting," says Lafayette resident Marty Guidry, who was a guest on the cruise. "We're just so happy to be the first ones to board the Glory. This is my 14th cruise. I just love Carnival, and it's in our backyard. I don't know why anybody would want to go anywhere else.
Today's cruise departed from the Erato Street Cruise Terminal and is set to include visits to three popular Bahamian destinations: Bimini, Freeport and Nassau.
To commemorate the occasion, a “Back to Fun” event was held in the terminal during which Carnival’s Vice President of Guest Operations Sarah Beth Reno, Carnival Glory Captain Nicola Iaccarino and Port of New Orleans President and CEO Brandy D. Christian cut the ceremonial ribbon and officially welcomed the first guests on board.
“Carnival Cruise Line has been a part of the New Orleans community for more than 25 years and we’re absolutely thrilled to provide our guests an opportunity to get Back to Fun, while supporting the local economy in one of our most popular homeports,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “Carnival is the number one cruise operator from New Orleans with the greatest variety of cruise choices and itineraries and we are so happy to bring our unique brand of fun back to this fantastic city.”
“Carnival Cruise Line is a valued longtime partner and we are proud to welcome Carnival Glory back for the first oceangoing cruise from New Orleans since March 2020,” said Brandy D. Christian, Port of New Orleans President and CEO. “We applaud Carnival’s commitment to the New Orleans market and for exceeding health and safety requirements to protect guests, crew and the community. The return of Carnival cruises from Port NOLA will be a boost to our local economy as guests are once again able to experience our famous New Orleans hospitality when they sail from our vibrant city.”
Carnival Glory is among the first in Carnival’s fleet to feature the line’s stunning new red, white and blue hull design that pays homage to maritime tradition and its legacy as America’s Cruise Line. Popular features on the ship include Guy’s Burger Joint developed in tandem with Food Network star Guy Fieri, Blue Iguana Cantina, the cocktail pharmacy-themed Alchemy Bar, and a WaterWorks aqua park.
A statement from the company states that Carnival Cruise Line launched the first year-round cruise program from New Orleans in 1994 and over the years has expanded the number of ships, capacity and cruise options, carrying upwards of 4.5 million guests.
The company says that, on Nov. 1, Carnival Valor will join Carnival Glory in New Orleans and resume its popular short cruise schedule of four- and five-day cruises to Mexico. With Carnival Glory and Carnival Valor, Carnival Cruise Line expects to carry 400,000 passengers annually from New Orleans – more than any cruise operator.
Carnival’s offerings from New Orleans include:
o Six-, seven-and eight-day cruises to the Caribbean, Bahamas and Mexico;
o Four- and five-day cruises to Mexico;
o 14-day Carnival Journeys featuring a partial transit of the Panama Canal and visits to popular Caribbean destinations.
Officials say that Carnival’s operational protocols exceed the recommendations of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For more information on the company's protocols, click here [carnival.com].