Carnival is in hot water with regulators at the moment over its alleged violation of the terms of its probation. A federal judge in Miami just threatened to completely ban Carnival from docking its ships at ports in the United States as a result of the alleged violations. It's looking pretty serious. The cruise line is being accused of falsifying records, prepping ships before audits, discharging gray water at a national park and dumping plastic debris into the ocean.

Carnival was actually assigned a five-year probation period back in April of 2017 as part of a $40 million settlement. The cruise operator was accused of illegally dumping oil into the ocean for eight years before being caught. A third-party auditor was brought in to inspect all ships owned and operated by Carnival as part of the terms of the company's probation agreement.

It is now being alleged that Carnival has been falsifying documents in order to pass mandated inspections. One case involved an engineer on a Holland America ship manipulating records to make it appear as though the ship's equipment had been cleaned and tested when it had not been. It's also being alleged that the same ship involved in that incident was also responsible for the dumping of 6,000 gallons of gray water at Glacier Bay National Park. Another alleged probation violation involved a crew's failure to separate plastic from food before dumping waste overboard.

We won't know the fate of Carnival's ability to dock at ports in the United States until June. That's when a final hearing regarding the matter will be held. There's no word yet on what steps travelers who could be impacted by the case's resolution should be doing to prepare.

Scott Dylan is a contributing writer at and has been to (almost) every country in North, Central and South America with nothing more than a backpack, a laptop and the desire to explore. He speaks Spanish fluently and has logged enough time in planes, trains, rideshares, buses, taxis and rickshaws to know how to rack up rewards and points to get anywhere his heart desires for pennies on the dollar. Email: