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From the Bahamas to Boston: Passengers say they felt 'punked' after holiday beach cruise was rerouted over weather

The MSC Meraviglia was supposed to set sail for the Caribbean before it was rerouted to Boston, Maine and Canada due to “unseasonable and rapidly worsening weather.”
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Passengers aboard a Bahamas-bound cruise trip had their holiday beach vacation dreams turned upside down when they were rerouted to Boston, Maine and Canada instead because of weather concerns. 

The cruise ship, the MSC Meraviglia, was supposed to set sail for sunny, sandy Caribbean beaches over the weekend. Instead, one day before its departure from New York on Saturday, passengers were informed about a last-minute itinerary change due to “unseasonable and rapidly worsening weather.”

The sudden change was a shock to some passengers already in New York for the cruise.

“We thought we were being punked. But it’s just, like, Bahamas, Boston … it’s a huge difference,” passenger Val Montgomery told NBC’s “TODAY” show.

MSC Cruises said the weather would have made it “impossible to safely reach the southern Atlantic Ocean from New York City.”

“The only alternative would have been to take the more extreme step of cancelling the cruise—and thousands of people’s vacations—outright,” MSC Cruises added. Guests were given a choice between sailing to the new stops or canceling for future cruise credit. 

Under the new schedule, the cruise left New York City on Saturday and docked in Boston for three days, and it was scheduled to stop in Portland, Maine, on Wednesday and Canada on Thursday before it returns to New York on Saturday. 

It's unclear how many guests decided to board the rerouted cruise. The ship can accommodate over 5,000 passengers and 1,600 crew members.

The itinerary change left guests scrambling to repack for winter cold instead of tropical heat.

“Imagine me having three kids to pack up. They were all packed with summer clothes. We immediately ran to Walmart, because all our bags are already packed, to repack all of the winter stuff,” Lakeya Allen said in an interview with "TODAY."

Once she was on board, she shared a TikTok video showing kids swimming in an outdoor deck pool on the ship in chilly New York weather.

“It’s cold cold — like wind-blowing cold. Like officially cold,” Allan said in the clip.

She shared other videos enjoying the indoor pool and hot tub, the casino and dining options on board. In the comments section, Allen said it was a “beautiful ship.”