My 2009 Swine Flu Cruise & How I Found An Even Better Deal Right Now!

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Taking the tender from Carnival Paradise to Catalina Island.

Cheap Cruise Deals Coronavirus

Back in 2009 Mexico had an outbreak of the Swine Flu also known as H1N1. During the outbreak in the Spring of that year, much of Mexico was closed off in order to contain the virus. Much like today, this caused many cruise cancellations and some great deals!

My First Western Style Mega-Cruise

In 2009 I was settling back into life following our 18 month around the world trip which ended in September, 2008. Naturally I was itching to hit the road again and when a $99 cruise fare on the Carnival Paradise came up I couldn’t refuse! So I called up a friend and we packed up our bags and drove down to Long Beach for the four day cruise!

That four day cruise on the Carnival Paradise was my first western style cruise. Yes, we had done some boat journeys and “cruises” on our trip including a memorable two night Chinese owned cruise down the Yangtze and a couple of nights on Halong Bay, but this was the first time I was able to experience the cruise industry as we know it in America.

Catalina Island

An Altered Itinerary

To this day Carnival runs the same itinerary from their port in Long Beach. Depart the port and spend a day in Catalina Island, a day in Ensenada and a day at sea. During our 2009 Swine Flu cruise the only difference was that we didn’t dock in Ensenada. We sailed all the way down there and pulled into the port, but never docked nor left the ship. Not bad for $99 plus tax.

Not Once In A Lifetime?

Apparently this type of cruise deal isn’t once in a lifetime. As you might have guessed I was inspired to write this post because of current events. Naturally there are a TON of great cruise deals worldwide, but I went right to checking my old standby swine flu itinerary and it turns out there is a heck of a deal. How good? That same itinerary from 2009 is now only $119 per person, but it isn’t even requiring a second guest! $224 all-in buys a private inside stateroom for four nights. Wow!

You don’t even need a second person to score this deal!

Our small inside cabin came with everything including an old fashioned tube tv!

Carnival Paradise docked in Long Beach.

Bottom Line

I wrote the other day about how we most likely will be swapping out our trip to Europe in a couple of weeks with an old fashioned U.S. road trip. While that is still the plan, am I crazy for wanting to go hop on a cruise ship for four days? Getting stuck in quarantine in an inside cabin would be miserable, but the price is right! 😉

Have you booked or seen any amazing cruise deals? Share your finds in the comments below!

Shawn Coomer
Shawn Coomer earns and burns millions of miles/points per year circling the globe with his family. An expert at accumulating travel rewards, he founded Miles to Memories to help others achieve their travel goals for pennies on the dollar. Shawn also runs a million dollar reselling business, knows Vegas better than most and loves to spend his time at the 12 Disney parks across the world.

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  1. Don’t do it even if it’s free. You will be miserable if you’re quarantined in an inside cabin for 14 days

  2. There are a ton of good cruise deals out there and I was planning on booking one until some of the ports have stopped the cruise ships from stopping. Jamaica, Caymans, etc. There are some really good deals on 14 day cruises, cruises from Italy are super cheap but the best deal I’ve seen is March 9th out of Miami with an Oceanview 4 day at $109 plus tax and fees.


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