TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Port Tampa Bay is welcoming back the Carnival Cruise Line at 5:30 p.m. Sunday.
This is monumental as it is the first time a Carnival cruise ship is sailing from the port since the COVID-19 shutdown in March 2020.
After rough waters last year, many hope for smooth sailing ahead. In March 2020 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a no-sail order due to the global pandemic.
Sunday, more than a year and a half later, ‘Pride’ is set to embark on a week-long Western Caribbean cruise.
The cruise industry makes up 20 percent of the port’s income, which translates to $7.5 million.
The owner and founder of Fit Bowl Company at Sparkman’s Wharf, Trent McAree, recently told 8 On Your Side that the bottom line of his business thrives on tourism.
“It seems like people are really excited to get back on cruises as well so we’ll definitely we a safe haven and give them that option before and after,” McAree said.
There’s a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10:45 a.m. Sunday, and Carnival Pride is scheduled to depart at 5:30 pm later that day.