But Marty, who’s cruised so many times that he’s a Platinum VIP in the company’s rewards program, was shocked when a representative told him he couldn’t go on the inaugural trip because of where he was born: Cuba.
Now, as travelers get their bags ready for the first cruise to Cuba in more than 50 years, Marty is part of a new class-action lawsuit claiming that Carnival is discriminating against Cuban-Americans looking to travel to their homeland.
The lawsuit, filed by Marty and fellow traveler Amparo Sanchez, alleges that the company is violating federal civil rights laws and discriminating against Cubans by denying them tickets.
A spokesperson for Carnival responded to the lawsuit in a statement, writing, “This is not a decision by our Fathom brand, but rather a Cuba decision.”
The statement cites a Cold War-era Cuban law that does not allow Cuban-born individuals to enter the country by ships, only via plane.
Carnival said the company requested a change in the regulation and has been working with the Cuban government on the issue for months.
But for Marty, that isn’t enough.