Arrival Time at Cape Liberty Bayonne, NJ?

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#1
14 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
What is the optimal time to arrive at the port prior to the cruise? All the doumentation says 2:00 PM.

Sounds to me it could be zoo like! Any suggestions?

We are traveling with a small child and are trying to make this as easy as possible. The first day is always stressful and I'm trying to limit that as much as possible!
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Nick Capp

#2
Staten Island, NY
2,283 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
We've always gotten there around 11AM
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#3
Boston area
17,692 Posts
Joined Jan 2007
How small a child? We like to arrive around 10:30. My mother boards in a transport chair and I find it less stressful and confusing to be there early. By the time we park the car, get through security, and check in, it is almost time to board. The waiting area is large and they serve coffee, tea, water and cookies. Similar to an airport gate lounge, but much bigger. With a small child you could stand by the window and watch what is going on outside. Once you have your seapass cards, I think you could even go outside again - just ask how you would do that - to the left is the handicapped parking area and you would get a good view of the ship and the port activity from along that fence.

If you are among the first to board, you can get to the Windjammer before it becomes chaotic - perhaps a window table to see what's going on. By the time you are finished lunch your cabin may be ready. If not, you can explore the ship.
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Carol


#4
Northeast
12,931 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
We got there around 10:45am and the lines to check in were short. They had a big sign that said boarding would start at 12:15pm. By the time we dropped off our luggage, parked and checked in it was about 11:15am. We sat in the waiting area where they had cookies and juice available. The first bus started boarding to take us to the ship at noon.
#5
14 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
Thanks! Our little guy is 8 Months. He's very much occupied by everything that is going on so I love your idea of getting up to windjammer early for a seat with a view.

This is our first RCCL cruise and we are very much looking foward to it.

Thanks you again. We will aim to get there before noon.
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Nick Capp

#6
Boston area
17,692 Posts
Joined Jan 2007
Don't "aim to get there before noon" - just do it. There can be a huge difference in the traffic line and the check in congestion - before 11 am is generally OK but after 11 can be really bad.
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Carol


#7
Northern NJ
4,451 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
The 9-day can get in late and then it is indeed a zoo! The traffic getting to the ship can be hellish! One way in and one way out. If you're going on the 9-day, meaning the one before is the 5-day, you don't have much to worry about because that one always gets in early in the morning. You'll only have to worry about getting off the ship and getting picked up or driving away.
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#8
Pittsburgh, PA
3,019 Posts
Joined Jul 2008
Talk about nuts! We sailed in May and were on the ship that was delayed by a crew member going overboard while they were heading back to Bayonne. When we got to the dock area the traffic was backed to the highway. But even with the situation they handled it with great efficency and professionalism. Once I got the car parked I met DW and DS in the terminal and headed to priority check-in to find the computer system crashed so the Set-Sail pass was basically useless. Oh well we got on the ship with very little hassle albeit 8 hours late. Muster drill was moved to Sunday and the time shift to noon Sunday, instead of 2am. As I have heard, RCI are experts at moving folks in an efficent and non-"hearding" manner. They are.

So get there about 11 and enjoy the view of the city and the Lady. Don't forget to pause a second when you see the Teardrop" 911 memorial. It is a gift from Russia to commerate the great loss suffered on 9/11/01
#9
Northeast
12,931 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
Originally posted by 138east
Don't "aim to get there before noon" - just do it. There can be a huge difference in the traffic line and the check in congestion - before 11 am is generally OK but after 11 can be really bad.
I agree. I also want to add that it did not get less congested as it got later: we looked outside about 2pm and there was a huge line crawling into the dropoff area.
#10
Northern NJ
4,451 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
Originally posted by MedicKen
So get there about 11 and enjoy the view of the city and the Lady. Don't forget to pause a second when you see the Teardrop" 911 memorial. It is a gift from Russia to commerate the great loss suffered on 9/11/01

Pic of the teardrop from the pool deck from our 2009 cruise.
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#11
Kutztown, PA, USA
531 Posts
Joined Sep 2001
The first bus started boarding to take us to the ship at noon.
OK I need some help now. This bus thing, how does that work when you return? What I mean is my son is dropping us off and picking us up. Will that occur at the same location? Thanks in advance.
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KENLORJUS

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#12
Northeast
12,931 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
Originally posted by KENLORJUS
OK I need some help now. This bus thing, how does that work when you return? What I mean is my son is dropping us off and picking us up. Will that occur at the same location? Thanks in advance.
Yes. The bus brings you from and to the parking/dropoff area to the ship's waiting area. He picks you up at the parking/dropoff area. It's a very short trip.

On the way home, you get off the ship, pick up your luggage, go through customs, and then board a bus which brings you back to the area you were in when you arrived.
#13
14 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
Wow. I'm glad I came here to ask.

Typically what time does the ship get in after the 9 day if its running late? When can I expect to get off the ship?
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Nick Capp

#14
Boston area
17,692 Posts
Joined Jan 2007
Just a note to everyone about the ship arriving late. Plan to monitor CC the day before you sail. I don't know about the ship arriving a little late, but if something happens that will significantly delay the Explorer's arrival (i.e. medical emergency, man overboard, etc), it is likely that that info will be available on these forums.

The bus is just a quick ride across the "tarmac". If you've ever flown in Europe and ridden a bus out to the plane, this is what it is like. Not a big deal, but an extra step in the boarding process.
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Carol


#15
Philadelphia area
6,726 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
Originally posted by nickcapp

Typically what time does the ship get in after the 9 day if its running late? ?
That all depends on how late it is running.
#16
Long Island
566 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
We are traveling to Bayonne from Long Island, can anyone suggest the best route ? I see several ways to go ?
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#17
Astoria, NY
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Joined Dec 2004
Originally posted by lbtnewcruiser
We are traveling to Bayonne from Long Island, can anyone suggest the best route ? I see several ways to go ?
From Queens, we take the Queensboro Bridge into Manhattan, the Lincoln Tunnel to NJ and the Turnpike South.

Coming back, the Verrazano is free, so you might want to consider Staten Island to the Verrazano to the BQE to the LIE or GCP.

In any case, it's not an easy ride.