Embarkation on Transatlantic

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Windstar Cruises
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1,428 Posts
Joined Oct 2005
It's been many years since we have sailed on Windstar, and are looking forward to another transatlantic crossing. We have received our final cruise documents and, listed on the voyage plan, they state the Wind Star arrival in Lisbon is 4 p.m., and the departure is 5 p.m. Our cruise information states that we are to check-in at 4 p.m. This is different from our past experiences, and is a much later boarding time. I'm hoping someone on this board will be able to answer the following questions:

1) Are we to arrive at the port at 4 p.m., or do we arrive before that time so that Windstar has time to get all of the luggage onboard and we will see it in our cabin when we board the ship?

2) How do they manage to have us board at 4 p.m., and have muster before the ship sails at 5 p.m.? (Do we get to go to our cabin once we board the ship? Is there still time to get a drink?)

3) When do you unpack? Trying to figure out if there is time before dinner or if we should just put the necessary items in our carry-on and unpack the first morning onboard.

4) We have always been on deck for the sail out of Lisbon. Do they still play "1492" when leaving?

5) Is it necessary for us to book the dining on deck when we first board the ship? If so, how do you decide which night to have it on a transatlantic?

Thanks to anyone who can provide some or all of the answers.
14,611 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
I would arrive at the time listed on boarding documents. After you complete your paperwork and get your card, you can go to your cabin. The bar on the aft deck opens early. Muster drill doesn't take too long. You just grab your life jacket and meet in your appointed place. Bags get to your cabin pretty fast. Unpack at a time convenient to you. You can book Candles any time after boarding. I don't know why there would be a difference on a crossing.
Southlake, Texas
1,132 Posts
Joined Sep 2004
I've been into Lisbon 5 or 6 times on the Windsurf. Arrival and departure times are completely dependent on the tides. Windsurf, and probably Windstar, can only clear the bridge at low tide. It is astonishing to stand on deck while going under. The first time, I would have bet my last dollar we weren't going to make it. Is it possible they are trying to end and start another cruise at the same low tide?

They still play the song.
Muster can happen after the ship departs.
You'll have plenty of time to change before dinner if you want to. Remember the dress code is country club casual.
We have only done the TA on the Windsurf, which has an additional dining room. When the ship isn't full they don't open all of the venues every night. If can be a bit windy on deck at sea, although I love the menu at Candles, we usually eat in the dining room or have room service.
1,428 Posts
Joined Oct 2005
Pudgesmom, we have almost 100 nights on Windstar, including 6 transatlantics, but have not sailed with them since 2003. I cannot wait to listen to the music, and sail under the bridge after we leave Lisbon. Some years, we were closer to the bridge than other years, but it was always a magical experience to watch.

I'm sure that the tide will have something to do with the timing of our departure. I am a creature of habit when it comes to cruising. I love to unpack as soon as we get to our cabin, and one hour will not be enough for me. That being said, I will happily adjust to the change as I want to be on deck.

Years ago, groups of passengers managed to arrange the occasional dinner on the deck, and I'm thrilled that this is now a regular option. The only room service I remember was popcorn, but I'm sure there were probably other items on the menu.

I expect there will be many changes since we last sailed with Windstar. The one thing that won't change is the wonderful feeling of being at sea as well as the small ship experience.

Thanks for providing the additional information.
Southlake, Texas
1,132 Posts
Joined Sep 2004
Never fear, they still have awesome popcorn. The eggs Benedict aren't too shabby either. Of course you remember that dinner only starts at 7, no rush at all to arrive.
559 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Those times on the paperwork have been wrong for months. I'm 99.999% sure that the 4pm is the time boarding ends. I'd plan on boarding beginning at the normal time, 1pm.
559 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Originally posted by mariners
Thanks, mile pig! I will try and reach Windstar to confirm the 1 p.m. boarding time.
The Star is arriving from Barcelona, and the arrival time for that is posted on the WS site as "arrival 7:00am" so this is textbook WS. They'll have all the pax off the ship by 9, and will prepare for your group to begin boarding by 1:00. Textbook.