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Frustrated Port Canaveral CEO Says Cruise Lines Taking “Unfair Hit”

FILE PHOTO: Port Canaveral relies heavily on cruise ship revenue and is the second busiest cruise port in Florida after Miami

PortandTerminal.com, June 3, 2020

Murray’s frustration is understandable even though his assessment of the cruise industry’s well-documented culpability and mismanagement of the coronavirus crisis is factually wrong.

Port Canaveral’s CEO has spoken out against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s “No Sail” order, which currently extends through July 24, 2020.

Port Canaveral Chief Executive Officer John Murray stated that the CDC seems to have painted the cruise industry “as the folks that brought (the coronavirus) to the United States, and that’s far from the truth.”

Murray’s frustration is understandable even though his assessment of the cruise industry’s well-documented culpability and mismanagement of the coronavirus crisis is factually wrong.

Port Canaveral relies heavily on revenue from its cruise operations – only about 10% of its 2018 revenue came from cargo operations.

The port is home to four major cruise lines – Disney Cruise Line, Carnival Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Royal Caribbean Cruise Line – making it the second busiest Florida port based on volume. Port Miami takes the number one spot.

(Carnival) leadership, including Arnold Donald (Carnival Corp CEO), all knew about the scale of the coronavirus outbreak. At least seven more of the company’s ships at sea have become virus hot spots, resulting in more than 1,500 positive infections and at least 39 fatalities.

Bloomberg News, April 16, 2020

Murray shared that Port Canaveral, which is also a major tourist destination due to its proximity to Florida’s Space Coast/Cape Canaveral, is losing an average of $7.5 million a month in revenue while cruise lines are docked.

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