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Carnival Confirms July Relaunch From Galveston And Miami; Shares Jump

'We appreciate the progress and support for our U.S. restart from the CDC and other key federal agencies (but) our alternative is to operate our ships from the U.S. during the month of July with vaccinated guests,' Carnival says.

Carnival Corp.  (CCL) - Get Report shares jumped higher Monday after the cruise line operator confirmed plans to restart passenger voyages next month. 

Carnival said cruises from its port in Galveston, Texas will begin on July 3 via its Carnival Vista vessel, with the Carnival Breeze launching on July 15 from the Port of Miami. Passengers who have received their final dose of a CDC-approved coronavirus vaccine at least 14 days prior to sailing are eligible for travel, the company said. 

"We appreciate the progress and support for our U.S. restart from the CDC and other key federal agencies; however, the current CDC requirements for cruising with a guest base that is unvaccinated will make it very difficult to deliver the experience our guests expect, especially given the large number of families with younger children who sail with us," said Carnival president Christine Duffy. "As a result, our alternative is to operate our ships from the U.S. during the month of July with vaccinated guests."  

Carnival shares were marked 2.1% higher in early trading Monday to change hands at $31.20 each, a move that would extend the stock's year-to-date gain to around 45%. 

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Carnival said in a business update release in mid-April that its adjusted loss for the three months ending in February would come in just under $2 billion, but noted it closed out the year with around $11.5 billion in cash and equivalents, a $2 billion improvement from the start of the year.

Carnival, which operates the AIDA, Costa and Princess cruises, also said its cash burn rate was flat to last quarter's improved monthly rate of around $500 million, and that advanced 2022 bookings were running ahead of 2019 levels recorded through the month of March.

First quarter bookings, Carnival said, were up 90% compared to the three months ending in November, while customer deposits held steady at $2.2 billion.