Carnival ‘reviewing’ plans to call in Mexico in wake of US travel warning


Industry giant Carnival is reviewing its decision to go ahead with cruise ship calls in Mexico this week in the wake of the U.S. government warning that Americans should defer all non-essential travel to the country due to a potentially deadly outbreak of swine flu.

“We are aware that the CDC has recently issued a Travel Health Warning which recommends the postponement of non-essential travel to Mexico,” the line said this morning in a statement. “We are currently reviewing the implications of this new development and will provide an update on our plans by 5:00 p.m. today.”

Carnival’s statement notes there currently are no reported cases of swine influenza on Carnival ships or in any of the ports that the line visits in Mexico.

“We are consulting closely with public health officials and government agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Department of Homeland Security to monitor the situation,” the line added.

The line also noted that it has well trained medical staff on its ships and a high standard of cleanliness and sanitation that helps to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. “We do not anticipate that our guests’ cruise experience will be impacted by this type of illness,” the line noted.

Financial analyst Robin Farley of UBS noted in a report to clients today that cruises stopping in Mexico account for about 17% of Carnival’s business. But as Farley notes, the line could re-route many of its Mexico-bound cruises sailing out of East Coast ports to other Caribbean destinations.