Carnival cruise ships to call at least weekly

Charleston Post and Courier
May 17, 2010

Tuesday touches off a new era at the Port of Charleston.

For the first time, a cruise ship will call the passenger terminal least once a week, thanks to Carnival Cruise Lines’ home port designation.

The sailings kick off with the Fantasy, which returns May 23, just a day before the Glory embarks.

That means 2,000 people loading and unloading every few days, and sometimes on consecutive days. It means hotel rooms booked, restaurants serving, but also extra traffic on the streets.

Drivers should take note of a street closure on Concord Street from north of Market Street to the intersection south of Hasell Street on Washington Street. To reach areas north of Union Pier Terminal, including the S.C. Aquarium, drivers can use Laurens, Calhoun and Charlotte streets.

Embarkation is expected to start at 11 a.m. and end by 3:30 p.m.

Carnival first came to Charleston in the 1990s, when the company used the port to give travel agents previews of new ships, said spokeswoman Jennifer de la Cruz. The company launched seasonal sailings a few years ago and saw Charleston as a viable market, especially for people driving in from around the Southeast, she said.

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