Crippled Carnival Triumph finally arrived in port late last night four days after an engine room fire left the ship drifting without power in the Gulf of Mexico.
Carnival Cruise Lines warned that disembarkation of the 3,200 passengers could take up to five hours due to the lack of power as 12 more sailings by the ship were cancelled.
Passengers had reported sewage on the floors, poor sanitation and access to toilets, and lengthy queues for food.
Chants of "Let me off, let me off!" could be heard coming from the ship as they waited to disembark, the BBC reported.
The cruise line laid on warm food, drinks, blankets, mobile phones and chargers to passengers as they got off the ship in the port of Mobile in Alabama.
The company provided 100 coaches to transport passengers home.
Carnival has now cancelled a further 12 cruises by Carnival Triumph in addition to two previously announced. This means the ship will be out of action until April 13 at the earliest.
The company said: “On Friday, the plan is to move the ship from the cruise ship terminal to the Mobile shipyard for assessment of the repairs.”