Does Carnival Own Royal Caribbean?

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Carnival Cruise Line is a renowned name in the cruise industry. A subsidiary of Carnival Corporation & PLC, it is a powerhouse in cruising. Since its inception in 1972, Carnival has been instrumental in transforming the image of cruising from a luxury only the elite could afford to a vacation option accessible to a broader demographic.

Over the years, Carnival has expanded its fleet and services, making it one of the most recognisable brands in cruising. From its first ship, the Mardi Gras, Carnival has grown to a fleet of 25 ships, offering a range of cruise deals and destinations to cater to diverse tastes.

The line is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, further solidifying its prominent position in the industry. Now, let’s discuss and find out whether does Carnival own Royal Caribbean or not.

Aerial view of the Mardi Gras cruise ship in Miami, flanked by the vibrant blue waters of the bay with the city's lush residential areas in the backdrop.

Does Carnival Own Royal Caribbean?

Royal Caribbean is a well-known name in the cruise industry, renowned for its luxury cruises to destinations worldwide. It is often mistaken as a subsidiary of Carnival Cruise Line, but that is not the case. Royal Caribbean is owned by the Royal Caribbean Group, a global cruise holding company that also owns several other cruise lines, including Silversea Cruises, TUI Cruises, and Celebrity Cruises.

The Royal Caribbean Group, formerly Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., is a publicly traded company with shares listed on the New York Stock Exchange. This means that ownership of Royal Caribbean is shared among the many investors who hold its shares. While Carnival Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean are fierce competitors in the cruise industry, one does not own the other.

It’s essential to understand that while Royal Caribbean and Carnival are significant players in the cruise industry, they operate independently, with unique offerings and target markets.

Related reading: List of Royal Caribbean Ships By Size and Age.

What Is Carnival Cruise Line?

Carnival Cruise Line is more than just a single cruise line; it’s a conglomerate of several cruise lines operating under the Carnival Corporation umbrella. This includes some of the most recognised names in the cruise industry. Among the cruise lines that Carnival owns and operates are:

Holland America Line

The MS Noordam cruise ship of Holland America Line majestically sails the calm blue ocean, leaving a trail of white foam as it cuts through the water.
MS Noordam

Holland America Line, one of the oldest and most respected cruise lines in the world, is a member of the Carnival family. With a history dating back to 1873, Holland America began as a shipping and passenger line transporting people and goods between Europe and the Americas. However, as air travel became more popular, the company shifted its focus to leisure cruises. Holland America Line perfectly complements Carnival’s diverse portfolio with a rich heritage and a reputation for premium cruising experiences.

Princess Cruises

The Royal Princess cruise ship from Princess Cruises majestically sails the open sea, its white and blue livery glistening under the sun against a backdrop of calm blue waters and a soft sky.
Royal Princess

Another jewel in Carnival’s crown is Princess Cruises, one of the world’s largest premium cruise lines. Since its inception in 1965, Princess Cruises has been synonymous with relaxing and enriching vacations. The cruise line gained mainstream popularity through the hit TV show ‘Love Boat’ and continues to be a favourite among those seeking a premium cruising experience. From Europe to Asia to South America, Princess Cruises sails all over the planet, living up to its tagline of “Come back new.”


Seabourn Encore luxury cruise ship gliding through the ocean at sunset, its white hull reflecting the warm light, with a backdrop of scattered clouds across the sky.
Seabourn Encore

Seabourn is a notable member of the Carnival Corporation family. Unlike the longstanding Holland America Line, Seabourn has a comparatively shorter history. The first Seabourn ship launched in 1988, just a few years before Carnival Corporation’s acquisition. Even though the Norwegian-owned line didn’t see early success, it still managed to solidify its place as a reputable and luxurious cruise line.

AIDA Cruises

AIDA Cruises' AIDAblu cruise ship adorns the ocean with its distinctive art, featuring vibrant lips and eye motifs on the hull, set against the serene backdrop of the clear blue sky and calm sea.
Photo: AIDA Cruises

AIDA Cruises is a distinctive part of the Carnival Corporation, catering to the German-speaking market. Its ships, easily recognisable with their iconic kissing mouth logo, offer a relaxed and casual approach to cruising. AIDA Cruises is the proud operator of 13 ships in its fleet, making AIDA Cruises the third-largest cruise line within the Carnival Corporation. For those seeking excellent cruise deals, AIDA Cruises provides a range of options that combine comfort, relaxation, and adventure.


The majestic Cunard Queen Mary 2 cruise ship embarks on its voyage near New York, its distinctive red funnel and black hull illuminated during the early evening, with the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge spanning the background.
Queen Mary 2

Known for its history and excellence in maritime travel, Cunard is another jewel in the Carnival Corporation crown. The line, founded in 1840, operates four ocean liners, including the Queen Mary 2. From transatlantic cruises in record time to luxurious trips aboard ships, Cunard offers unique and enriching travel experiences.

Related reading: The Best Carnival Cruise Ship (For Every Kind of Cruiser!)

Carnival vs Royal Caribbean

Comparing Carnival and Royal Caribbean can be like comparing apples and oranges, as both cruise lines have carved out their unique niches in the cruise industry. Founded in 1968 in Norway, Royal Caribbean International was founded to create a unique cruise experience. Under the leadership of Michael Bayley, President and CEO of Royal Caribbean International, and Jason Liberty, CEO of Royal Caribbean Group, the company has become one of the world’s biggest cruise lines.

On the other hand, Carnival Cruise Line, which is part of the larger Carnival Corporation & PLC, offers cruises known for their fun, relaxed, and family-friendly vibe. Each of these cruise lines has its own fleet of ships, with Royal Caribbean boasting some of the world’s biggest cruise ships, such as the Oasis of the Seas and the Symphony of the Seas.

To sum up, Royal Caribbean and Carnival are two of the biggest names in the cruise industry, each with unique offerings and target markets. While they are fierce competitors, one does not own the other. Instead, each operates independently under its own holding company, delivering unique cruise experiences to millions of travellers annually.

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I'm Hannah and I've been cruising for as long as I can remember.

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