Carnival, NCL, MSC and Royal Caribbean ordered to pay US$400 million in wake of Cuba sailings
Old Havana Cruise Terminal, Cuba

Carnival, NCL, MSC and Royal Caribbean ordered to pay US$400 million in wake of Cuba sailings

MIAMI — Four of the biggest names in cruising have been ordered to pay more than US$400 million after their brief foray into Cuba sailings a few years ago.

Carnival, NCL, MSC and Royal Caribbean were all ordered by a U.S. judge to pay the U.S. company that operated Cuba’s Havana Docks millions of dollars in damages and legal fees, according to a report from the Miami Herald.

In 2015 the Obama administration eased rules for U.S. citizens wishing to travel to Cuba, in a move that opened the floodgates for high levels of pent-up demand for Americans looking to visit Cuba.

In 2017 President Trump announced a revised Cuba policy restricting individual U.S. travel to Cuba. U.S. airlines and cruise ships, however, were still allowed to service the island.

Then in 2019 the Trump administration brought back travel restrictions on visits to Cuba by U.S. citizens, banning stops by cruise ships and ending a heavily used form of educational travel as it seeks to further isolate the communist government.

The Miami Herald quotes a Carnival Corp. rep as saying: “Carnival Corporation engaged in lawful travel explicitly licensed, authorized and encouraged by the U.S. government. We strongly disagree with both the ruling and the judgment, and plan to appeal these decisions.”