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Carnival (CCL) to Resume Cruise Operations With Up to 75% Capacity

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Carnival Corporation & plc (CCL - Free Report) recently announced that it anticipates resuming cruise operations with 65% of its total fleet capacity by the end of 2021 across eight of its nine brands. The company is optimistic about increasing the capacity to 75% by the end of 2021. Following the news, the company’s shares increased 7.5% on Jul 20.

The company’s eight of the nine brands — AIDA Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, P&O Cruises (UK) and Seabourn plan to resume guest operations on 54 ships to date through the end of 2021.

It continues to resume cruise operations from ports around the world in a gradual, phased-in approach, which include sailings in the United States, Caribbean, Europe and Mediterranean.

Roger Frizzell, chief communications officer for Carnival said, “With strong ongoing demand for cruising, we look forward to serving our guests with additional ships announced across eight of our brands and nearly three-quarters of our fleet capacity returning by the end of this year, marking an important milestone for our company and all those who rely on the strong economic impacts generated by the global cruise industry.”

It recently announced plans to resume operations for three ships in September and four ships in October 2021. The company plans to restart three vessels — Carnival Glory (from New Orleans), Carnival Pride (Baltimore) and Carnival Dream (Galveston) — starting Sep 5, Sep 12 and Sep 19, respectively. It plans to restart four additional ships — Carnival Conquest (from Miami), Carnival Freedom (Miami), Carnival Elation (Port Canaveral) and Carnival Sensation (Mobile) — effective from Oct 8, Oct 9, Oct 11 and Oct 21, respectively.

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Price Performance

Shares of the company have gained 39.9% in the past year, compared with the industry’s growth of 34%. The company is benefiting from cruise resumption, impressive booking volumes for all future cruises and brand recognition. During the second quarter, booking volumes for all future cruises increased 45% compared with the prior quarter. The company stated that cumulative advanced bookings for full year 2022 are ahead of a very robust 2019 as of May 31, 2021. These bookings were achieved by negligible advertising and marketing.

Zacks Rank & a Key Pick

Carnival — which shares space with Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NCLH - Free Report) and Royal Caribbean Group (RCL - Free Report) in the Zacks Leisure and Recreation Services industry — carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

A better-ranked stock in the same space is Camping World Holdings, Inc. (CWH - Free Report) , which sports a Zacks Rank #1.

Camping World Holdings’ 2021 earnings are expected to surge 51.4%.