Carnival Down But Not Out; Planning Reduced-Capacity Cruises Say Reports

One option currently under consideration for when its cruises restart is to stop passengers from booking specific cabins, sources told Business Insider. For instance, the only cabins available for booking would be alternate cabins or those with fresh air access.

In fact, according to the travel agents and industry experts, Carnival is already reporting solid demand trends for 2021, says the LA Times.

An online poll by suggests that 75% of cruise passengers plan to rebook at the same rate or even more often than before the coronavirus outbreak.

Similarly UBS wrote on March 31 that cruise booking volume for 2021 was up 9% in the last 30 days compared with the same time last year. Even though this includes credit for canceled sailings, the volume still “shows a surprising resilience in desire to book a cruise” says the firm.

Carnival stock has plunged 75% year-to-date following major coronavirus outbreaks on a number of cruise ships, including Carnival’s Diamond Princess cruise ship.

And for now analysts are staying firmly on the sidelines. In the last three months, the stock has received 7 buy ratings, 2 sell ratings and just 1 buy rating. Meanwhile the average price target stands at $30. (See CCL’s stock analysis on TipRanks)

“While we expect consumers will be generally eager to return to normalcy once coronavirus concerns abate, we believe the cruise industry is likely to have a much slower recovery given the amount of negative media coverage around coronavirus outbreaks and ships without ports, and maintain our Market Perform rating” wrote William Blair analyst Sharon Zackfia on April 1.

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