Panama Canal Cruises

We list here only one-way ship repositioning Panama Canal cruises 2024-2025 schedule of transition itineraries offered in Spring and Fall. You can compare here all Panama Canal cruise ships as destinations, departure ports, and sailing dates. Learn how to discern the regular one-way Panama Canal transition cruises from the authentic, cheap repositioning cruises through Panama Canal operated seasonally with discount cheap deals.

Panama Canal Repositioning Cruises

When talking about repositioning cruises through Panama Canal, the predicament here is that most Panama Canal transition cruises are full transits (crossings with one-way itineraries). Panama Canal cruise ships are usually leaving either from Florida or California ports. Transition sailings usually last for about 2-weeks.

Panama Canal cruise ships relocation

These are two special “Panama Canal ship relocation” hints for you (serving almost like shortcuts): the always funny one is “follow the money”, and the not so funny one is “mind the season”.Panama Canal Reposition Cruises COM

  • Destination. Panama Canal cruise relocation is very often in the category of long Coast to Coast voyages (Florida-California and California-Florida, and New York to California and California to New York). And some itineraries start in South America to end in Florida, Boston or NYC, New York (and the reverse).
  • Season. It all happens in Spring (April and May) and Fall (September) when all Panama Canal repositioning ships relocate (to and from) Alaska according to their summer Alaskan season schedule. Repositioning cruises on ships passing through Panama Canal with itineraries to/from South America usually start in some of the Winter months.

As to the money part, you’ll know the Panama Canal reposition cruises by their ticket prices. Deals will vary greatly (depending on the line, ship, and cabin category), but always with pleasantly low rates which could be easily defined as “top-luxury inexpensive to really really cheap”.

Panama Canal cruise transition – facts and statistics

  • Repositioning Cruises Panama CanalThe total length of the Panama Canal is 77,1 km (48 ml).
  • Locks size. Panama Canal’s lock chambers determine the max size of a ship to be able to pass through. Most cruise ships are built to the max lock size allowed (Panamax ships). Larger size ships belong to the group of Post-Panamax ships. The length of each lock is 320 m (1,050 ft), their walls thickness range from the bottom (15 m / 49 ft) to top (3 m / 9,8 ft).
  • The longest ship transiting the Panama Canal was a bulk-carrier – length 296,6 m (973 ft), width 32,3 m (106 ft).
  • Draft restrictions (max 12,6 m / 41,2 ft). Since the draft is determined by the ship’s weight, Panamax ships (able to pass through the canal) have cargo weight restrictions to ~52,500 t.
  • Panama Canal cruise ship transition tolls are based on the ship’s size (vessel type and cargo type for freighter ships). Cruise ships through Panama Canal pay rates based on their passenger capacity (number of berths/beds). The current Panama Canal cruise ship fee (for bigger ships) is US$92 for unoccupied and US$115 for occupied beds. Panama Canal cruise ships of less than 30,000 t or less than 33 t per passenger are charged as the same per-ton fees as cargo ships. These tolls are (in USD) $3,90 per ton (first 10000 t), US$3,19 pt (second 10000 t), US$3,82 pt (third 10000 t) and US$3,76 pt thereafter.
  • The most expensive Panama Canal cruise ship transition toll was charged to the NCL Pearl cruise ship on its westbound repositioning cruise in Spring 2010 (passing on April 14th). NCL Pearl paid US$375,600 (for comparison, the average fee is ~US$55,000).
  • There are also priority passing fees – the highest was paid in 2006 (US$220,300) by a tanker ship bypassing 90 other ships waiting to move through the canal. The cargo ship avoided a 7-days delay by paying the regular toll 16 times (the normal fee was only US$13,400).

Repositioning Cruises Panama Canal cruise ships transition infographics

These are two Panama Canal related links. For all things Panama-related – the Republic of Panama official website VisitPanama.com. For all history-technology-facts stuff – see this Wikipedia link. For details on itinerary and to compare prices (indicative rates) follow the line-links from the table below.

Repositioning Panama Canal cruises 2024-2025 schedule

Cruise lines/ships Spring 2024-2025 Summer Fall 2024-2025 Winter
CCL-Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival Legend 2025 Apr 24 – 14day from Tampa to San Francisco 2025 Oct 6 – 16day San Francisco to Galveston
Carnival Miracle 2024 Oct 1 – 15day from San Francisco to Galveston)
Carnival Spirit
  • 2025 Mar 30 – 15day from Miami to Seattle
  • 2024 Oct 9 – 16day from Seattle to New Orleans
  • 2025 Oct 11 – 16day from Seattle to New Orleans
Celebrity Cruises
Celebrity Summit
  • 2024 Apr 20 – 14day from Miami to Los Angeles)
  • 2024 Sept 19 – 15day from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale)
Cunard Line
Queen Victoria
DCL-Disney Cruise Lines
Disney Magic
HAL-Holland America Line
MS Eurodam
  • 2025 Apr 12 – 14day from Fort Lauderdale to San Diego)
Nieuw Amsterdam
  • 2025 Apr 13 – 17day from Fort Lauderdale to San Diego
  • 2024 Oct 4 – 16day from San Diego to Fort Lauderdale)
MS Oosterdam
  • 2025 Mar 19 – 17day from San Antonio to Fort Lauderdale)
  • 2024 Nov 14 – 17day from Fort Lauderdale to San Antonio)
NCL-Norwegian Cruise Lines
Norwegian Bliss
  • 2025 Feb 22 – 15day from Miami to Los Angeles)
  • 2024 Dec 6 – 15day from Los Angeles to Miami)
Norwegian Encore
  • 2025 Mar 30 – 21day from Miami to Seattle)
  • 2024 Oct 13 – 21day from Seattle to Miami)
Norwegian Jewel
  • 2024 Nov 7 – 17day from Los Angeles to Tampa)
Princess Cruises
Island Princess
  • 2025 May 2 – 15day Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles
  • 2025 Jan 5 – 15day Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles
RCI-Royal Caribbean International
Brilliance Of The Seas
  • 2024 Sept 28 – 14day from Los Angeles to New Orleans)
Radiance Of The Seas
  • 2024 Oct 5 – 16day from Los Angeles to Tampa)
Serenade Of The Seas
  • 2025 Apr 13 – 16day Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles
Viking Ocean Cruises
Viking Sea
  • 2025 Mar 31 – 17day from San Juan to Los Angeles)
  • 2026 Mar 29 – 15day San Juan to Los Angeles
  • 2025 Oct 2 – 17day Los Angeles to San Juan
Viking Sky
  • 2024 Dec 19 – 17day from Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles)
Viking Neptune
  • 2025 Apr 5 – 17day Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale
  • 2024 Oct 10 – 17day from Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles)
Marella Cruises UK
Marella Explorer
Marella Explorer 2
Marella Discovery
Marella Discovery 2
Marella Voyager

Small and Luxury cruise lines’ ship relocation

Oceania Vista

Know that with time prices on Panama Canal repositioning cruise deals usually go down with time. Still, the economic law of “Supply And Demand” will always rule – cruise lines will price their deals and cabin categories accordingly. So good luck with those, and happy Panama Canal “reposition” vacations!

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