AIDA Cruises sells AIDAcara, the ship that started the cruise line in 1996

AIDA Cruises has confirmed the sale of AIDAcara, the oldest cruise ship in its fleet, and the first cruise ship that was ever built for the line.

AIDAcara has been sailing for AIDA Cruises for 25 years, but will soon leave the fleet as AIDA Cruises seeks to become more sustainable and efficient.

AIDAcara was the first cruise ship purpose built for AIDA Cruises in 1996

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A buy for AIDAcara was not named, leaving open the possibility that she might have been sold for scrap, along with several other former Carnival Corp ships that were sold out of the fleet during the pandemic.

AIDAcara entered service for the cruise line in 1996 as the AIDA, the first cruise ship in the fleet, and is well-loved part of the annual German cruise season.

AIDA Cruises said the fleet move gives it the opportunity to optimize its fleet structure with a view to achieving its sustainability goals, which aims to operate zero-emission cruises by 2040.

The sale of AIDAcara is bound to be an emotional moment for the German cruise market, which AIDA Cruises serves almost exclusively.

AIDAcara laid the foundations for the cruise line’s hugely popular seagoing “club resorts” concept back in the 90s, introducing the on-board amenities and facilities that AIDA has used to attract younger, more active passengers to sea.

Many of the concepts AIDAcara introduced back then were continuously developed further in the construction of all subsequent ships and have also been incorporated into the design of AIDAcosma, the cruise line second Excel-class ship, due in 2022.

AIDAcara sailing alongside AIDAprima

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The announcement of the sale of AIDAcara comes after AIDA’s parent company Carnival Corporation announced that AIDA’s third unnamed and unbuilt Excel class ship will instead be built for Carnival Cruise Line, while fellow Carnival-owned Costa Cruises will transfer Costa Magnifica to the Carnival Cruise Line fleet.

The delivery of AIDAcosma, which was delayed by one year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is unchanged.

The massive 180,000-gross ton cruise ship, capable of carrying 5,200 passengers, was meant to spend a cruise season in the Middle East out of Dubai, but was recently switched with her sister ship AIDAnova.

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