Major Cruise Lines Sell Ships to Reduce Cash Burn

As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to keep cruise ships halted, many cruise companies have decided to sell off ships. A majority of these ships in question are older and less efficient than the modern mega-ships that the top cruise companies have and continue to build and operate.

Carnival Corporation:

The largest leisure travel company, Carnival Corporation, is set to reduce its global ship capacity by 29%, with 14 ships being sold off from its nine cruise lines. “To reduce our cash burn and have a more efficient fleet once we do resume cruising, we have aggressively shed less efficient ships,” said Arnold Donald. Carnival Corporation is currently burning $650 million per month and a reduction in fleet size will reduce that by nearly $250 million.

Courtesy of Fred Olson Cruise Line

Holland America Line:

HAL has announced that they will be selling off Amsterdam, Maasdam, Rotterdam, and Veendam with the ships being sold in pairs. The Amsterdam and Rotterdam will depart and sail for Fred Olson Cruise Line under Bolette and Borealis names. Maasdam and Veendam's buyer has yet to be disclosed.

Costa Cruises:

Costa was the first Carnival brand to confirm that ships were to be sold off. Costa Victoria was originally thought to have been sold to be used as an accommodation ship at the port. Upon arrival, the mayor of Piombino, Italy Francesco Ferrari, announced that it arrived to be dismantled.

Courtesy of Celestyal Cruises

Costa NeoRomantica has been purchased by the Greek cruise line, Celeyetal Cruises, which announced they would not sail ships again until March 2021.

Courtesy of P&O Cruises

P&O / P&O Australia

Pacific Dawn and Aria were sold prior to the COVID-19 shutdown. P&O Oceana has been sold off in an effort to reduce fleet size. Pacific Dawn's retirement, set for February 2021, has been accelerated to reduce cash burn for Carnival Corporation.

Carnival Cruise Line:

Carnival Fantasy, Inspiration, and Imagination, have been sold, beached, and are currently in the process of being scrapped. The Carnival Fascination has been also been sold and will be scrapped.


Princess Cruises has sold off both Princess Sun and Star both ships are set to immediately depart the fleet and have been sold to undisclosed buyers. Princess Cruises had this to say in a statement “Sun Princess and Sea Princess contributed to significant growth in Australian cruising,” said Princess Cruises president Jan Swartz. “Both ships defined the premium cruise experience with Australians and New Zealanders spending close to 14 million nights aboard these ships. While it is never easy to say goodbye to any ship in our fleet, this will allow us to deploy newer ships enhancing our offerings for Australia cruisers and focus on exciting newbuilds like the upcoming delivery of Enchanted Princess.”

AIDA Cruises

Carnival Corporation,s German-based line, AIDA, has not confirmed any ship sell-offs just yet. AIDA will resume sailings in mid-august 2020.


One of Carnival's luxury brands, Seabourn, has not released any plan to reduce its fleet size.


As the smallest fleet in the Carnival Corporation company, Cunard will not sell or retire any ships.

Royal Caribbean Group

The second-largest cruise company, Royal Caribbean Group, has not been as quick to jump to ship sales or retirements, just yet. Royal Caribbean Group consists of Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Azamara, Silversea, HAPAG-LLOYD CRUISES, and TUI Cruises. Pullmantur is no longer listed as a brand on

Richard Fain, chairman of Royal Caribbean Group, said that the line does not have any plans to sell ships off at this time. Sadly one of Royal Caribbean's subsidiaries, Pullamtur, filed for reorganization and has confirmed that Sovereign and Monarch, former Royal Caribbean International ships, are undergoing scrapping in Turkey. The Royal Caribbean Group held a 49% stake in Pullmantur.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings

NCLH has managed to remain out of the news during this shutdown. Many of its ships are safely docked at different cargo ports around the globe. NCLH is the parent company of Norwegian Cruise Line, Regent Seven Seas, and Oceania. The company has no confirmed plans to sell any ships.

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