Royal Caribbean’s Independence of the Seas has canceled three sailings from Port Canaveral in Florida, including two charter cruises that were supposed to be departing on January 14 and January 22, 2022. Guests have been notified of the cancellations.
Independence of the Seas Cruise Cancellations
The Royal Caribbean cruise ship is not departing its homeport of Port Canaveral as the cruise line has canceled three sailings. The January 14 charter cruise, a short voyage departing January 22, and another charter cruise on January 24, 2022, will no longer go ahead due to COVID-related issues.
Independence of the Seas was originally scheduled to depart today on the much-anticipated eight-day The SuperCruise XIV. The vessel was set to make calls to Aruba, Curacao, and Bimini and be a dedicated sailing for those interested in jazz, soul, comedy, gospel, and funk!
Capital Jazz, which chartered the vessel for the special voyage, had already informed guests on January 7, 2022, with a statement on its website saying, “The SuperCruise program scheduled for January 14-22, 2022 has been canceled due to the recently issued CDC level 4 alert for cruise ships. If you are booked on the 2022 cruise, please check your inbox later today for details on refunds.”
The following January 22 two-night departure from Port Canaveral is also canceled. It was a short voyage to Royal Caribbean’s private island of Perfect Day at Cococay in the Bahamas. The cruise line sent out a communication to impacted guests, “As a result of ongoing COVID-related circumstances, Royal Caribbean international is canceling the -2-night January 22, 2022, sailing onboard Independence of the Seas.”
The cruise line continued to say, “Regretfully, this means your reservation will be cancelled. We know how much time and effort go into planning your vacation, and we’re sorry for the impact to your plans. We do hope you will take advantage of the options below and find another sailing to join us on.”
The second charter cruise departing on January 24, 2022, is also canceled. The K-Love Cruise will no longer take place as announced by the company: “Over the past few months we have been diligently working with our friends at Royal Caribbean to make this year’s K-LOVE Cruise the best one ever. We have been counting down the days until we can be together onboard. As anyone who has cruised with us before knows that there are many things that make the K-LOVE Cruise unique – the concerts, the worship, the fellowship – we are a close family of forever friends. Unfortunately, the current health and wellness challenges make it impossible to deliver the K-LOVE Cruise experience at this time.”
The five-day K-Love Cruise was scheduled to sail the Bahamas and include calls at Nassau, CocoCay, and Freeport before returning on January 29 to Port Canaveral.
Situation Remains Fluid
Both cancellations are due to COVID-related issues, the only reason provided by the cruise line. In recent weeks, multiple Royal Caribbean cruise ships have been denied at ports despite having only a limited number of cases on board. Some cruise ports are also changing entry requirements to protect residents from the Omicron variant.
Royal Caribbean has already been working hard to keep cases among the crew low by transferring those infected to other ships in the fleet, which are being used to house all the positive crew members.
The situation remains fluid, but cruising continues safely, as backed up by the CDC director in a recent senate hearing committee. Royal Caribbean has also extended its Cruise with Confidence program through March 2022.
Four Royal Caribbean cruise ships have already temporarily suspended operations to keep guests and crew safe. Norwegian Cruise Line has also canceled multiple sailings for most of its fleet due to the COVID situation impacting the cruise industry.
Independence of the Seas will return to service from Port Canaveral on January 29, 2022, with a short two-night voyage to Perfect Day at CocoCay, in the Bahamas.