Carnival to expand fleet world-wide
Carnival Corporation, the world's largest travel and leisure company, has signed a multi-billion dollar contract to build four next-generation cruise ships with the largest guest capacity in the world.
The four new ships will feature a revolutionary "green cruising" design. The ships will be the first in the cruise industry to be powered at sea by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) – the world's cleanest burning fossil fuel, representing a major environmental breakthrough.
The company said two of the ships will be manufactured for AIDA Cruises at Meyer Werft's shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. Additional information about the ships, including which new ships will be added to each brand, will be made available at a later date.
Based on Carnival Corporation's innovative new ship design, each of the four next-generation ships will have a total capacity of 6600 guests, feature more than 5000 lower berths, exceed 180,000 gross tons and incorporate an extensive number of guest-friendly features. A major part of the innovative design involves making much more efficient use of the ship's spaces, creating an enhanced onboard experience for guests.
Each new ship will be specifically designed and developed for the brand and the guests it will serve, underscoring the company's goal to consistently exceed guest expectations and provide first-time and repeat guests with the vacation experience of a lifetime on each and every cruise.
Carnival Corporation CEO Arnold Donald said the contract is consistent with the company's measured capacity growth strategy to replace ships with less efficient capacity with newer, larger and more fuel efficient vessels over time.
"We are looking forward to executing on the next step in our fleet enhancement plan," Mr Donald said.
“It will be exciting to see our shipbuilding team bring these new ships to life,” Mr Donald said. “Every step of the way, our focus is on designing state-of-the-art ships that provide a vacation experience our guests will love, and we are putting all of our creative energy and resources into making sure we achieve that goal."
The new ship order will allow the Costa Group to continue to build on its leadership position in the European cruise market – a market in which five out of 10 cruise guests in 2014 sailed onboard a Costa Group ship. The Costa Group – along with Princess Cruise Lines, also part of the Carnival Corporation family -- also occupies the leading position in the rapidly growing cruise market in China.