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Four Florida cruise ports batten down for Hurricane Ian, more itineraries change (updated)

The five-day projected path as of 11 a.m. Tuesday
Key West, Port Tampa Bay, Port Canaveral and JAXPORT are battening down for Hurricane Ian and several lines have tweaked itineraries to avoid the storm and it's possible three ships may be delayed returning.

Ian was battering western Cuba early Tuesday and is forecast to pass west of the Florida Keys later today and approach the central Gulf Coast of Florida on Wednesday and Wednesday night before cutting north and eastward across the state.

Category 3 hurricane

Ian is a Category 3 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 115 mph/185 km/h, with higher gusts.

Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center in Miami issued a hurricane warning for parts of Florida's central Gulf Coast including Port Tampa Bay, while a tropical storm warning is in effect for the middle and lower Florida Keys including Key West.

Key West closed to ships

The Port of Key West and Port Tampa Bay are closed to maritime traffic, with the possibility of gale force winds within 12 hours. Carnival Paradise is currently the only cruise ship based at Tampa. 

Update: On Tuesday Port Canaveral went to Port Condition Yankee, with sustained gale force winds predicted within 24 hours.

Update: To the north, Jacksonville also went to condition Yankee and expects to close at noon Wednesday. Carnival Elation is currently the only cruise ship based at JAXPORT.

Royal Caribbean International

Allure of the Seas, on a six-night cruise from Fort Lauderdale, will skip a call at Roátan, Honduras, today.

Mariner of the Seas, on a five-night cruise from Port Canaveral, bypassed Labadee, Haiti, today and is remaining at sea.

Liberty of the Seas' current seven-night cruise from Galveston will skip Cozumel today.

Carnival Paradise, Elation, Glory, Ecstasy, Sunrise

Update: Carnival Paradise, currently sailing a five-day cruise that departed Saturday from Tampa, will extend today’s visit to Cozumel overnight, and is now set to depart Wednesday. Since Tampa Bay is currently closed to marine traffic, it is possible the sailing will be extended until the port reopens after the storm has passed.

Update: Carnival Elation, currently on a five-day getaway from Jacksonville, replaced a visit to Princess Cays with a sea day on Tuesday due to adverse weather. The ship added a call at Freeport on Wednesday in lieu of a scheduled sea day. Since it's expected JAXPORT will close to marine traffic, it is possible Carnival Elation’s return could be delayed past Thursday, the scheduled date.

Carnival Glory, which departed from New Orleans on Sunday for an eight-day cruise, is heading west instead of east and will now visit Mahogany Bay (Roatán), Belize City and Cozumel instead of Key West, Freeport and Nassau.

New: Carnival Sunrise, sailing a four-day cruise that left PortMiami Saturday, will not stop at Bimini on Wednesday, as planned. The ship instead will remain at sea and is expected to return to Miami as scheduled on Thursday.

In a minor change, Carnival Ecstasy, which departed Mobile on Monday for a six-day cruise, reordered port calls and will visit Progreso, Mexico, on Wednesday before Cozumel on Thursday.

Disney Wish may be delayed back

As of Monday night, Disney Cruise Line anticipated Disney Wish, Disney Fantasy and Disney Dream will sail as scheduled but said it's possible Disney Wish will return to Port Canaveral later than scheduled on Friday. The line said it will notify passengers should embarkation for Disney Wish's Sept. 30 cruise be delayed.

Norwegian Sky heads east instead of west

Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Sky switched from a western itinerary to an eastern one. The seven-night cruise that sailed from Miami on Sunday will now visit San Juan today, St. Thomas on Wednesday, Tortola Thursday and Nassau Saturday, instead of Grand Cayman, Roatán, Harvest Caye (Belize) and Cozumel.

Celebrity Infinity, too

Celebrity Infinity, which sailed from Fort Lauderdale Saturday on a weeklong cruise, also headed eastward, replacing calls to Belize City and Cozumel with Nassau and Labadee.

Update: See 'Carnival cancels two cruises, one from Tampa, one from JAXPORT'

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