Key West Port, South Florida

The Port of Key West is opening back up for cruise ships as the popular cruise destination recovers after Hurricane Irma.

Cruise Ships are set to return to Key West with the first cruise ship docking at the popular south Florida destination on Sunday, September 24. Hurricane Irma has badly damaged not just Key West but all of the Florida Keys but recovery efforts are in full swing. The sooner cruise ships can start calling there the better for local businesses and the economy.

Empress of the Seas operated by Royal Caribbean will be the first cruise ship to dock in Key West since Hurricane Irma hit almost two weeks ago. The cruise line has already confirmed the scheduled port of call for the ships 4-night September 23 sailing from Tampa, Florida. In addition, the ship has already started its regular calls to Havana, Cuba.

Here’s what Royal Caribbean posted:

We are happy to announce that we received confirmation that we can return to Key West starting this weekend with our call on Sunday, September 24th.  With both Havana and Key West ready, and excited to welcome us, we are now able to offer the Royal Caribbean vacation guests are looking forward to.

Immediately following Hurricane Irma we recognized guests may have had concerns visiting Cuba and offered the ability to cancel and receive a future cruise credit.  As Havana and Key West are both ready to welcome guests, our offer will end by close of business Sunday, September 24. All cancellations to receive a cruise credit must be completed by this time so we can offer the stateroom to another traveler.

Also Read: Footage Emerges of Popular Duval Street in Key West After Irma

More cruise ships from other cruise lines are expected in the coming days as ship itineraries try their best to stay on schedule. Even though Key West is back open for thousands of cruise ship passengers, not all services may yet be operating as normal and it will take some time for Key West to recover.