Woman given lifetime ban on cruise ship after bringing forbidden item onboard

A woman, from Texas, claims that Carnival Cruise Line has handed her a lifetime ban because she was caught bringing CBD gummies on board the ship.

The chewy vitamins are filled with cannabidiol (CBD) – a phytocannabinoid chemical found in cannabis, but it cannot get you 'high' as it doesn’t contain THC the compound which causes changes to people’s mental state. Such dummies are legal in many countries including the US and UK.

Unfortunately, for one mum they are not, however, permitted on some cruises as a part of policy. Carnival Cruises it seems has a blanket ban on them onboard its ships. This is apparently because the gummies are not legal in all of the ports they visit.

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Melinda Erin Van Veldhuizen, 42, was left dumbfounded after her holiday was cut short before she could enjoy any of the fun of the ship. She had arrived in Port Miami, Florida, this summer expecting to spend a trip to Aruba, Curaçao and the Dominican Republic, she told Local10.com.

Melinda’s holiday was to celebrate her wedding anniversary and her son’s final year of secondary school, reports state. But, as they were boarding the ship the mum was taken aside by a terminal worker who questioned her over the CBD supplements.

The holidaymaker claims that she was interrogated by cruise security and the police for over two and a half hours, states WPLG. She also alleges that they believed it was an illegal substance.

She explained that the mummies had almost no THC and only CBD which does not make people high. In fact, she uses them to help her sleep – but claims the captain questioned her use of them. Melinda added: "The captain asked me several times if I had a marijuana card or if I had a diagnosis if I needed it. I said, ‘It’s CBD; that doesn’t exist. It’s just not a thing’."

However, some US states require CBD only to be used for medicinal reasons. Plus, it is banned on all of the cruise line’s ships.

The Carnival Cruise Line website states: "While certain CBD products used for medicinal purposes may be legal in the US, they are not legal in all the ports we visit and therefore are also considered prohibited items." Unfortunately, the mum did not read this rule ahead of her trip.

She believed that the gummies would simply be removed from her before she was allowed to board. Sadly for her, Melinda was actually escorted off her cruise, and she claims she's been banned from their ships in the future.

She noted: "I thought it was one of those situations where you’re like, 'Oh shoot, I left a bottle of water in my backpack; you gotta throw it away,' kind of thing like that happens at TSA." But, instead she was left out-of-pocket, couldn’t enjoy her cruise and got a letter later on telling her she was banned from Carnival Cruise Line for life, she alleges.

Melinda lost out on her $5,586 (£4,458) cruise and had to instead spend the time at home. She has now, apparently, hired a lawyer to help her file legal action against the cruise line for her financial loss. Plus, claims she was "falsely imprisoned" while she was interrogated.

A spokesperson for Carnival Cruises said that workers were "following federal law under which CBD is defined as a controlled substance". It continued: "We are not here to ascertain where our guests purchase CBD or what they intend to use it for once on board. Our responsibility is to follow federal guidelines and stop prohibited items from being brought on board our ships."

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