Carnival Cruise Ship Suffers Propulsion Issue, Port Cancelled

The Carnival Pride cruise ship has developed a propulsion issue, forcing the cruise line to cancel a port of call and head back to Germany.

Carnival Pride will not be visiting Gothenburg, Sweden as scheduled on Wednesday, July 19, 2023, due to the development of a propulsion issue that has impacted the ship’s maximum cruising speed.

The problem developed on Tuesday evening, when tracking data noted the vessel cruising at very slow speeds with occasional dead stops at different times in the open waters of the Baltic Sea.

Propulsion Issue on Carnival Pride

Guests currently sailing on Carnival Pride’s 12-night European itinerary roundtrip from Dover, England have been notified via a letter delivered to their staterooms that they will not be visiting the final port of call on the ship’s itinerary, Gothenburg, Sweden, as planned.

“The ship has developed an issue that is affecting its maximum cruising speed and our engineers are actively working on a repair plan,” the letter reads. “Regrettably, as a result of this issue, we will not be able to visit Gothenburg today. We know you were looking forward to your time there and apologize for this unexpected change of plans.”

Carnival Pride Cruise Ship
Carnival Pride Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: Mario Hagen / Shutterstock)

All pre-purchased Carnival shore excursions for Gothenburg, as well as applicable taxes, fees, and port expenses, are being refunded to guests’ Sail & Sign accounts.

Read Also: How Fast Do Cruise Ships Go?

Furthermore, all staterooms are being given a $100 (USD) onboard credit as compensation for the missed port of call. The credit is per stateroom, not per guest, and can be used for onboard purchases such as drinks, spa treatments, photographs, souvenirs, or specialty dining.

Ship Returning to Germany

The nature of the propulsion issue has not been disclosed, nor has there been any information given on how repairs can be made or whether or not the ship’s return to Dover on Friday, July 21, will be impacted.

Guests onboard Carnival Pride, however, have reported an announcement from the ship’s master, Captain Renato Bendinelli, that the ship will be returning to Kiel, Germany, which is confirmed by updated tracking data.

It seems unlikely that the vessel will be able to return to that north German port, effect repairs, and then sail on to Dover for debarkation as planned.

Carnival Pride Cruise Ship
Carnival Pride Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: StudioPortoSabbia / Shutterstock)

The ship’s hotel operations and other onboard power usage does not appear affected, nor are any safety systems compromised.

There is no word yet on any impact to the next sailing, a 9-night Europe itinerary scheduled to depart from Dover, England on Friday, July 21 and visit various ports in Scotland and Ireland.

Carnival Pride is a 88,500-gross ton, Spirit-class vessel capable of welcoming 2,124 guests at double occupancy and as many as 2,680 passengers when fully booked.

The ship is currently homeported from Dover for the summer and is scheduled to offer several sailings from Rome in September and October before moving to Tampa and offering Caribbean sailings for the winter.

Recent Drydock

Carnival Pride was in drydock for an extensive refit and refurbishment at the Navantia Shipyard in Cadiz, Spain just weeks ago, from April 28 through May 27, 2023.

During that refit, new venues were added to the vessel, the spa was renovated, the ship received the new red-white-and-blue hull livery, and various mechanical and technical upgrades were made.

Carnival Pride Drydock

Whether or not the engines were worked on or updated has not been disclosed, but when a ship is in drydock for such a lengthy time, all major systems are generally included in repair and maintenance work.

Previous Propulsion Issues

This is not the first time Carnival Pride has suffered propulsion issues. In March 2019 – ironically, shortly after the ship’s previous Fun Ship 2.0 drydock upgrades in February 2019 – the ship’s maximum cruising speed was impacted. This caused delays for returning to its homeport, which at that time was Baltimore, and delayed the next sailing by several hours.

Other Carnival ships have also suffered from propulsion issues, ranging from slight delays to fully adjusted itineraries with cancelled ports of call. Carnival Sunshine, Carnival Victory, Carnival Vista, Carnival Elation, the former Carnival Fantasy, and other ships have all experienced a variety of propulsion or engine troubles.

Engine difficulties can result from many different factors, as a cruise ship’s propulsion is one of its most technically complex systems. Onboard engineers continually monitor the engines and associated equipment, and are on hand to make repairs even as a ship continues sailing at a reduced speed.


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