Debarkation in Tampa

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Florida Departures

Ft. Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Miami & Port Canaveral & Tampa
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#1
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
59 Posts
Joined Aug 2000
I read somewhere (could be here) that only US citizens are allowed to do self assist debarkation at the Tampa port and that these are port rules. We are Canadian and have used self debarkation for our last few cruises and love it. We are able to get off the ship early and catch an early flight home.
If anyone is aware of this, I would appreciate any help here as it makes a difference as to what flight we book.
#2
26 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
Just got off the Legend 11/13. They annouced several times on debarkation day that only US citizens could self assist debark.
#3
The DMV
1,104 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
How early does self-debarkation get off in Tampa? We booked at 10:45am flight at the end of our cruise and I am starting to get nervous that it is too early.
Thanks!
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#4
Illinois
56 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
Go to the guest services desk when you board, show them your tickets. They will let you off as early as they can.
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#5
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
59 Posts
Joined Aug 2000
Originally posted by lobo55
Just got off the Legend 11/13. They annouced several times on debarkation day that only US citizens could self assist debark.
Thanks for the info. But this whole thing puzzles me beyond belief. What does citizenship have to do with carrying your suitcases off yourself or having them taken for you. Other US ports have no problem with this. Reminds me of the old days when non US citizens were made to surrender their birth certificate or passport and line up like cattle at 6:00 am on debarkation day to get them back. Unbelievable.
#6
phila, pa
51,755 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
Originally posted by DancerOT
How early does self-debarkation get off in Tampa? We booked at 10:45am flight at the end of our cruise and I am starting to get nervous that it is too early.
Thanks!

I'd be nervous too. What a way to end your vacation with that stress.

If the LEgend hits fog-- you will not dock til later.

Your luggage will need to be checked in at the airport before 9:45.

You need to do Self embarkation- carry off all your luggage.
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#7
Riverview, Florida
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Joined Mar 2007
Originally posted by serene56
I'd be nervous too. What a way to end your vacation with that stress.

If the LEgend hits fog-- you will not dock til later.

Your luggage will need to be checked in at the airport before 9:45.

You need to do Self embarkation- carry off all your luggage.
I totally agree about the fog, especially in the winter. We were on the Legend last January. The captain blew the fog horn all night coming back into Tampa.
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#8
Greater Toronto Area, CANADA
2,187 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Originally posted by CarolR
I read somewhere (could be here) that only US citizens are allowed to do self assist debarkation at the Tampa port and that these are port rules. We are Canadian and have used self debarkation for our last few cruises and love it. We are able to get off the ship early and catch an early flight home.
If anyone is aware of this, I would appreciate any help here as it makes a difference as to what flight we book.
write me back on December 5th when I get back and will let you know if we are treated like second class citizens LOL
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#9
The DMV
1,104 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
Thanks for the info. Thankfully, the airport is not too far from the port. We booked our flights at midnight the night we booked the cruise and I don't think either of us was thinking clearly. We figured we would carry our luggage off and just hop in a cab. It isn't a big deal to me to carry my luggage off considering I never understood the whole "put your luggage in the hallway" thing. Truly, we guard our personal belongings all the time and then we just put everything in the hallway for anyone to look through? Who thought that was a good idea?!?! Yet, we all do it....
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#10
Ohio
1,664 Posts
Joined May 2002
Hello DancerOT, JMHO, but WOW! that is way too early. 10:45 sounds just a hair's breath away from impossible. It's certainly way earlier than Carnival recommends. Here's a cut and paste of Carnival's flight time recommendations for Tampa, from their FAQs page:

What are the Flight Guidelines for the Latest Airport Arrivals and Earliest Return Flights:

Latest Flight Arrival:
Arrivals into the Tampa Airport: 2:30pm

Earliest Flight Departures
Earliest departures out of the Tampa Airport:
– For 4 and 5 day cruises: 11:30am
– For 7 day cruises: 12:30pm.
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#11
Canada
7 Posts
Joined Sep 2011
Just got back from the legend on Sunday 20 Nov...Canadian also, flight time was 12:05...we never got off the ship until 9:45 and got tothe airport at 10:15...so for a 10:45 flight you are pushing it....I would speak to Carnival right away about it to see what they can do. Self- assist was not available to non-us...all foreigners had to go to Follies lounge to clear US customs at 7:30 am and then hang around until 9:30 before we could get off.
#12
144 Posts
Joined Jul 2008
We also just got off the Legend on Sunday, 11/20. Disembarkation was awful, the worst we have ever had! Very disorganized, the speakers in the aft area of deck 3 where we had to wait were not working so you couldn't hear any of the announcements. We did self assist also (not Canadian), we had an 11:10 flight, we got to the airport about 9:40 so we were okay but I think you will be pushing it with an earlier flight. Also, the port workers in Tampa were the rudest we have ever encountered, not happy people!
#13
Tampa area
14,119 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
As Platinum I did VIP debarkation in Sept. in Tampa. We were in an overcrowded room for hours. VIP?? All those with self assist had to debark first and they were straggling. Didn't get off until 9:30. When I've done it before VIP's were first off the ship. Several times I've been in my car by 8 am.

If anything delays you getting to port that is an early flight.
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#14
phila, pa
51,755 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
Originally posted by Lizzanna
. We did self assist also (not Canadian), we had an 11:10 flight, we got to the airport about 9:40 so we were okay but I think you will be pushing it with an earlier flight. !
which would give the OP 5 minutes to stand in line and get the bags checked. Bags must be checked 60 minutes before a flight.
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#15
Ontario
1,668 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
All non-US citizens have to meet in the lounge early in the morning of debark to meet with immigration. We had no idea this happened until receiving this notice in our cabin the night before:



Now that we know, we will not cruise out of Tampa or Port Canaveral as both ports do this. Waking up at 6 a.m. on our last day of vacation is not what I call fun! I read another post that said they didn't have to be there until 7:30 which is a little more humane but we had to be there at 6:45.
#16
New York, NY
1,097 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
I read and specifically asked on someone else's Legend cruise review regarding self debarkation that only non US residents couldn't self debark, not necessarily all non US citizens. If this is correct, then green card holders should be able to self debark. Is this not true?
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#17
Wish it were Australia
175 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Originally posted by Rirruto
I read and specifically asked on someone else's Legend cruise review regarding self debarkation that only non US residents couldn't self debark, not necessarily all non US citizens. If this is correct, then green card holders should be able to self debark. Is this not true?
I don't know about self debark but the notice posted above says all non-US citizens, ARC holders and Canadians have to attend the immigration clearing inspection.
#18
Hamilton Ontario
381 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
We had this problem on the Legend on our Oct 23rd cruise out of Tampa.
We too dind't find out until the night before that as non US residents we were not allowed to utilize self disembarkation.
I immedetely went to Guest services , and they advised me that once we had cleared with immigration { in Lounge at 7: 30 am} we could ask them to clear us to leave. The immigration told us we did not require a clearance from them as it was not a homeland security rule. he said as far as he was concerned we could leave once the ship was cleared. We had a zone one card for early departure.
When we showed up at the disembarkation area { once our zone was called } we were rudley told we could not debark with our luggage until all U S residents had left.{ and that this was national security} I Told them that Tanya at guest services had cleared this, they called her she came down and we were allowed to leave.
If We do cruise out of Tampa again I will book flights that leave after noon.
Enjoy your cruise
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#19
16,368 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Originally posted by DancerOT
How early does self-debarkation get off in Tampa? We booked at 10:45am flight at the end of our cruise and I am starting to get nervous that it is too early.
Thanks!

Unless there is fog you can do regular debarkation and make that flight. Almost everyone is off by 9:00 a.m. On three cruises out of Tampa doing regular debarkation the latest airport arrival was about 9:30.
#20
16,368 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Originally posted by Redsfan
write me back on December 5th when I get back and will let you know if we are treated like second class citizens LOL

Well since you are not citizens, but aliens, it would be impossible to be treated as second class citizens.