MIAMI -- With
Tropical Storm Katrina looming, the U.S. Coast Guard halted vessel
traffic in and out of the ports of Miami and Fort Lauderdale on
Aug. 25 at 8 a.m.
Now a Category 1
hurricane, Katrina was packing maximum sustained winds of 75 mph as
of the latest National Hurricane Center advisory.
bearing down on Florida, several cruise lines altered their
itineraries to avoid the storm.
Lines Imagination, which was scheduled to end a cruise in Miami on
Aug. 25, will stay at sea two extra days and return to Miami on
Aug. 27. The voyage that was originally scheduled to depart on Aug.
25 was converted into a two-day Bahamas cruise departing on Aug.
27; passengers will receive a 50% refund and a 50% future cruise
Fascination, which was to finish a cruise in Miami on Aug. 26 will
stay at sea until Aug. 27; the voyage that was to depart on Aug. 26
was converted into a two-day Bahamas cruise departing on Aug. 27;
passengers will receive a 35% refund and a 50% future cruise
Internationals Empress of the Seas, meanwhile, will not return to
Fort Lauderdale on Aug. 25 and will instead finish its cruise in
Tampa. Passengers on the sailing will be bussed back to Fort
Lauderdale -- passengers on the cruise that was to depart Aug. 25
from Fort Lauderdale will be bussed from Fort Lauderdale to the
Empress in Tampa. The ship will return to Fort Lauderdale on Aug.
29 as scheduled.
In addition, Royal
Caribbean's Majesty of the Seas, is now scheduled to return to
Miami on Aug. 27, a day late. The ships Aug. 26 sailing was moved
to Aug. 27 and shortened to a two-day cruise; passengers will
receive a 50% refund and a $100 per-cabin onboard
reporter Rebecca Tobin, send e-mail to [email protected].