Carnival Corp. will likely place an order for one or two new ships this summer for delivery in 2017, according to a Wall Street analyst.
Robin Farley, with UBS Investment Research, said in a note to investors that Princess Cruises or Costa Cruises would be the likely brands to get the new vessels – which she predicted would carry approximately 3,600 passengers each.
Princess just debuted its new 3,560-passenger Regal Princess in Europe, and Costa's 3,724-passenger Costa Diadema is slated to debut in November.
While neither Princess nor Costa has additional ships on the books, Farley noted other Carnival brands have new ships on order – including Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line and Seabourn, which all have new builds coming in 2016.
Farley said the window for placing an order with a shipyard and still allowing enough time for delivery in 2017 would be around August.
One possibility, she said, is that Carnival Corp. will order a ship design that could be used across several brands, without specifying a specific brand until a later date.
Competitors with new ships on the books for 2017 include Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line and MSC Cruises.
By Fran Golden, Special for USA TODAY
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