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Another Carnival cruise ship heads for the scrappers

Oct. 24, 2022
4 min read
Carnival Ecstasy ship
Another Carnival cruise ship heads for the scrappers
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It's official: Carnival Cruise Line's Carnival Ecstasy won't be making a comeback with another cruise operator.

The still-loved, 31-year-old cruise ship, which sailed its final voyage for Carnival earlier this month, has filed a trip plan for Aliaga, Turkey, the site of a major ship scrapping operation that has become the final resting place for such notable vessels as Princess Cruises' Pacific Princess — the original "Love Boat."

On Monday, ship tracking sites showed Carnival Ecstasy crossing the Atlantic just southeast of Bermuda, on its way to the Mediterranean and Turkey.

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A spokesperson for Carnival on Monday confirmed to TPG that Carnival Ecstasy was on its way to Turkey for "recycling."

Built in 1991, Carnival Ecstasy is the line's oldest vessel and one of the last remaining ships in Carnival's hugely successful, eight-ship Fantasy-class series that debuted in 1990 and was instrumental in the growth of the cruise industry.

At the time Carnival Ecstasy arrived, Carnival had just a small number of ships. The arrival of the vessel and its seven sisters between 1990 and 1998 catapulted the line into the big leagues of North American tourism.

Related: Why I'm sad Carnival is retiring its oldest ship

For many years, the Fantasy-class ships formed the core of the Carnival fleet. However, Carnival has rapidly phased them out to cut costs since the COVID-19 pandemic began in early 2020.

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Carnival retired four of the eight Fantasy-class ships soon after the COVID-19 pandemic began, and earlier this year it removed the fifth vessel in the series from its fleet — Carnival Sensation.

Carnival Ecstasy is the sixth of the original eight Fantasy-class ships to depart the Carnival fleet.

While still much beloved by Carnival fans, in part for their intimate size, the Fantasy-class ships notably lack a large number of balcony cabins — the cabin type that everyone wants these days. Most of the cabins on these ships are ocean-view cabins that only offer a window or a porthole, or windowless inside cabins.

Related: The ultimate guide to Carnival ships and itineraries

Carnival Ecstasy docked in New Orleans. PAUL J.RICHARDS/AFP/GETTY IMAGES

The Fantasy-class ships also have relatively fewer amenities and venues than the newer and bigger Carnival ships.

Whether you’re road-tripping or globetrotting, the suite life is always better. Download the free TPG App to upgrade your travel!

At 70,367 tons, Carnival Ecstasy was one of the biggest cruise ships in the world when it first began sailing. Its passenger capacity of 2,052 people, based on double occupancy, was a lot at the time. Now it doesn't even come close to cracking the list of the 50 biggest cruise vessels, some of which can hold more than 5,000 people. Cruise ships have gotten bigger and bigger over time.

Carnival's newest ship, the recently unveiled Mardi Gras, is more than twice as big as Carnival Ecstasy at 181,808 tons. It can carry 5,282 passengers at double occupancy (6,465 with every pulldown bunk and pullout sofa filled).

Related: The 8 classes of Carnival ships, explained

Carnival Ecstasy was one of the most productive ships in Carnival history, having sailed more than 2,300 voyages in 31 years from eight home ports — Miami, Port Canaveral and Jacksonville, Florida; Galveston, Texas; Long Beach, California; New Orleans; Charleston, South Carolina; and Mobile, Alabama.

The line has said it carried nearly 5.5 million passengers over its long career.

With the departure of Carnival Ecstasy, Carnival is left with just 23 vessels in its fleet. However, the line will soon take delivery of a 24th vessel, the 5,282-passenger Carnival Celebration. The ship is currently under construction at a shipyard in Italy.

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Featured image by JEFFREY GREENBERG/EDUCATION IMAGES/UNIVERSAL IMAGES GROUP/GETTY IMAGES
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Best for the well-traveled foodie
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4 / 5
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4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
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    670-850
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There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

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  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees