Carnival Cruise Line will no longer homeport a cruise ship in Charleston beyond 2024, according to a report from Live 5 News.
As South Carolina Ports Authority decides not to extend its homeport cruising contract, Carnival is ending a 14-year partnership with the port.
The decision will provide more space for the redevelopment of Union Pier Terminal and unlock a transformational opportunity for the city, the report said.
While port-of-calls will continue to be welcomed in Charleston, “SC Ports will continue to evaluate the market and looks forward to continued partnerships and opportunities,” the port authority told the local news.
In a statement published by the report, Carnival said to be proud to be part of the “continued growth of Charleston’s tourism economy.”
The cruise line also confirmed it will no longer homeport a ship in the city after 2024, adding that it “will work with the Ports Authority to explore future opportunities in Charleston.”
In the meantime, the Carnival Sunshine continues to operate its previously announced year-round schedule from the port.
The 3,000-guest vessel has been sailing from Charleston since May 2019, offering mainly four- and five-day cruises to the Bahamas.
Longer cruises to the Eastern Caribbean are also part of the program and include visits to St. Maarten, Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, Grand Turk, St. Kitts and more.
Sunshine’s last currently scheduled cruise from Charleston departs on April 27, 2024. A five-day itinerary, it features stops in Nassau and Half Moon Cay.
As the biggest and more modern Carnival ship to ever sail from the South Carolina port, the vessel replaced the 2,040-guest Carnival Ecstasy, which had been based in Charleston since 2016.
Carnival kicked off its homeport operations in South Carolina in 2010, with the 1990-built Carnival Fantasy.