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  #1  
Old December 19th, 2012, 01:03 PM
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Default Port Everglades Cruise Terminal Upgrades (Where's Celebrity ?)

Hi Everyone,

As there's been an active discussion about embark/disembark concerns at Port Everglades, (for Celebrity ships not utilizing Pier 18), I thought you might be interested to learn that Port Everglades has just completed upgrading 4 terminals. That's the good news. The bad news - none of the terminals are used by Celebrity.

The upgrade for terminals 2, 19, 21 & 26 is the benefit of a long-term agreement with Carnival Corp, and Port Everglades. So, I must ask - where is Celebrity & Royal Caribbean ? Why not be proactive on a similar agreement to upgrade their terminals other than Pier 18, which is state of the art.

As Port Everglades is Celebrity's most active homeport, I hope they are working on long-term solutions for New and/or significant upgrades/expansions to exisiting terminals. With each passing season, I'm finding the Port experience to continually decline - with the exception of Pier 18, where our experiences have been outstanding.

With all due respect to Celebrity, I strongly feel the embark & disembark must run a heck of a lot smoother than what we've experienced on recent sailings. On our Eclipse sailing last month, the embark for those who required assistance was a total mess, and had my Mom in tears. That's completely unacceptable. From my observations, it seems that Management is either unaware of what's going on at the Pier, or, taking the process for granted. IMO, immediate action must be taken by Celebrity.

Along with operational improvements, (and as evidenced by Pier 18), modernized termimals would clearly bring a significantly improved Guest experience. I truly hope an upgrade project similiar to Carnival's, is on Celebrity & RCCL's front burner.

It's now at the point, where I stress big time over the embark and disembark, and that's no way to begin or end your Cruise vacation.

Here's a link to today's article from Cruise Industry News : http://www.cruiseindustrynews.com/cr...terminals.html
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  #2  
Old December 19th, 2012, 02:23 PM
Adammara Adammara is offline
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Andy

I hope Celebrity listen to your views, I respect you views as I have always found them to be very fair. We have found the Celebrity embarkation and disembakation in Southampton to be superb, and most times, if we had to queue, it was only a few minutes.

Sadly, we have found Celebrity no longer seems to have the customer care it used to have. When we first sailed on Celebrity 3 years ago, when we filled in a 'attention to detail' card a we had a reply in minutes, on our cruise in September it was not even acknowledged.

Wishing you and all Americans a happy New Year. (My maternal grandmothers 9 siblings went to the USA in the early 1900's and she was the only one to stay in the UK, so I have lots of unknown relatives in the USA!)

Richard
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  #3  
Old December 19th, 2012, 03:00 PM
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They always say first impressions are important. If the experience is as bad as some say then they will lose a lot of their first timers. I had a bad experience with Carnival. My aunt and uncle needed wheel chairs to disembark. They took forever and took me asking several people to find out where they were. Severe lack of wheel chairs available. We left on a weekday (lots of wheel chairs to board) and returned on a weekend. The bigger ships got most of them. Bad impression. That got me to try another cruise line.

I agree it's time to work on the facilities. These boards are full of experience cruisers so all the lines need to listen to our comments. There are so many good suggestions that would keep us coming back. Some more expensive than others but many worth vetting.
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Old December 19th, 2012, 03:39 PM
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The agreement between RCCL and the port for terminal 18 is a ten year agreement. RCCL agreed to bring 17 million passengers through this port within ten years. To do this RCI has placed four of their largest ships sailing out of FLL with two of those ships placed year round. In addition to help make that number RCCL is making it up with seasonal X ships. So basically Richard Fain sold X and two RCI ships up the creek to give their two largest ships a state of the art terminal. The complaints about the terminal being used for the Independence OTS in FLL are numerous. I don't expect any updates any time soon.
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Old December 19th, 2012, 04:13 PM
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What specifically is wrong with Terminal 25 that is causing the problems?

I have never had any embarking or disembarking problems at Port Everglades. Since my first Celebrity cruise on Eclipse is coming soon, I am getting very concerned. If I have to expect to be standing for long period of times and/or walking long distances, I would like to know that prior to experiencing the embarking and disembarking process.
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Old December 19th, 2012, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by rkacruiser View Post
What specifically is wrong with Terminal 25 that is causing the problems?

I have never had any embarking or disembarking problems at Port Everglades. Since my first Celebrity cruise on Eclipse is coming soon, I am getting very concerned. If I have to expect to be standing for long period of times and/or walking long distances, I would like to know that prior to experiencing the embarking and disembarking process.
Embarkation is really not a problem. Runs very smoothly unless it's the first cruise after a ship has returned from Europe. Then you will more than likely see delays. (That won't be an issue with your upcoming cruise.)

Disembarkation requires a long walk from the ship to the luggage retrieval area. There currently is no getting around this. The luggage area is pretty much a "zoo", but once through there, going through customs is pretty simple with little waiting in line. There also seem to be plenty of cabs waiting outside. At least that has been my experience in FLL.
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Last edited by gimletgal; December 19th, 2012 at 08:38 PM.
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Old December 19th, 2012, 09:11 PM
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Angry /Embaarkation Disembarkation issues at all ports

I have embarked/disembarked at many domestic and foreign ports. Sadly, despite having "priority" boarding/de-boarding, I have found it a mess almost everywhere. It's as though Celebrity doesn't care about the passengers unless there actively sailing on the ship. Until you're on and once you're gettting off, it seems as though they coulde care less.

We have found very long walks both to get on and off the ship at most ports . The only variation is the lines to get on and the process to get your luggage at the end. I recently had to stop several times getting off the Reflection in Miami and finally my husband went to find a wheelchair--took him over 40 minutes!!!

X needs to realize first and last impressions are more important than the impressions of the cruise itself. Thanks Host Andy for raising this.
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Old December 19th, 2012, 09:36 PM
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Celebrity needs to take a look at how HAL handles disembarkation. When we left Eurodam Dec 8th, it was the most amazing process and we were off the ship, through Customs and at the taxi wait in less than 15 minutes. There was no insanity in the terminal, the luggage was nicely set out for easy finding and no lines whatsoever for Customs. They know how to handle things. Celebrity needs to wake up.
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  #9  
Old December 19th, 2012, 09:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rkacruiser View Post
What specifically is wrong with Terminal 25 that is causing the problems?

I have never had any embarking or disembarking problems at Port Everglades. Since my first Celebrity cruise on Eclipse is coming soon, I am getting very concerned. If I have to expect to be standing for long period of times and/or walking long distances, I would like to know that prior to experiencing the embarking and disembarking process.
Hi Rkacruiser,

I wish I knew exactly what the problem is. We had significant embarkation issues on the November 17th sailing, which was not the first Caribbean sailing of the season. While I believe that most folks who did not require any special assistance had a relatively good embarkation... those who required assistance had a very difficult time. I'm unable to pinpoint what caused the problems - the terminal, the pierside folks, the ships officers, or a combination of things... but it's my hope that Celebrity will review the comments from recent Guests, and take appropriate action. There's no doubt the process can (and should) run smoothly (we've had many excellent experiences too !), but it takes organization - which was sorely missing.

There's also a possibility that you might not berth at Pier 25, so it might prove to be a different experience for you. I certainly hope so. Happy Holidays !
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Old December 20th, 2012, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by kitty9 View Post
Celebrity needs to take a look at how HAL handles disembarkation. When we left Eurodam Dec 8th, it was the most amazing process and we were off the ship, through Customs and at the taxi wait in less than 15 minutes. There was no insanity in the terminal, the luggage was nicely set out for easy finding and no lines whatsoever for Customs. They know how to handle things. Celebrity needs to wake up.
Hi Darcie,

That's very interesting. Thanks for sharing with us. Happy Holidays to you & your family.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by kitty9 View Post
Celebrity needs to take a look at how HAL handles disembarkation. When we left Eurodam Dec 8th, it was the most amazing process and we were off the ship, through Customs and at the taxi wait in less than 15 minutes. There was no insanity in the terminal, the luggage was nicely set out for easy finding and no lines whatsoever for Customs. They know how to handle things. Celebrity needs to wake up.
Hi Darcie! So what does HAL do differently than Celebrity to provide such a smooth disembarkation? I seem to recall that you can stay in your room until disembarkation is ready. Perhaps that lessens the cattle approach?
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Old December 20th, 2012, 11:32 AM
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I donīt blame Celebrity for the port facilities. Itīs the same with Airlines. They canīt be responsible for everything. Itīs the Port of Fort Lauderdale who has to take action. Celebrity might pressurize them, however, they donīt own the facilites.

However, onboard boarding and deboarding procedures are always to be monitored by the Cruiseline.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 11:45 AM
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Default Celebrity Wake Up

I'm glad that I searched around until I found this thread because I have been reading about the horrible experiences many have had in disembarkation from the Eclipse that we are sailing on in February. I have wondered what the problems might be and it is apparently a mystery to all why this is so botched up.

We had some poor experiences in embarkation/disembarkation on the Allure this month and on the Explore of the Seas in Bayonne and I am afraid that if we have some more it will become more and more difficult to convince my wife to go on more than one cruise a year (if that).
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Old December 20th, 2012, 04:54 PM
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Hi Darcie! So what does HAL do differently than Celebrity to provide such a smooth disembarkation? I seem to recall that you can stay in your room until disembarkation is ready. Perhaps that lessens the cattle approach?
You know Rich, I really can't pinpoint it. Yes, we stayed in our cabin until our color was called. We went directly to an elevator, which wasn't crowded ( I think we all know how terrible it is to get ANY elevator on an X ship on disembarkation morning), got in and went to the disembarkation deck. There weren't any crowds in that area either, as opposed to how insane it is on Celebrity ships. We were also able to walk the "gangway" right into the terminal, and not along the outside of the ship like you do for Solstice. Why they can't allow us to use the covered gangway to the terminal is beyond me. I mean, you use that ramp to embark, why don't they allow you to use the ramp for disembarking?

After getting into the terminal, the bags are in groups just like on X, but on HAL, I think the difference is that the color groups are much smaller. In our Pink 1 group, I saw five rows of luggage, with no more than 10 bags in a row. I think HAL puts fewer people in their groupings, which means less lines.

We had no problem with getting a porter, as they were all standing around, unlike on X where you practically have to tackle a porter to get one. Again, I think it's because they have less numbers in their groups.

I'm not exaggerating when I say there was not one person waiting in line for Customs. There were only four agents doing the checking, but no one was in line---it was soooooo smooth.

When we asked a HAL person outside the terminal why it was so much easier, he said that it's because HAL realized that keeping the passengers in their cabins, and having smaller numbers in their disembarking groups makes things run much easier. And I totally concur.
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Last edited by kitty9; December 20th, 2012 at 04:56 PM.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 05:02 PM
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I donīt blame Celebrity for the port facilities. Itīs the same with Airlines. They canīt be responsible for everything. Itīs the Port of Fort Lauderdale who has to take action. Celebrity might pressurize them, however, they donīt own the facilites.

However, onboard boarding and deboarding procedures are always to be monitored by the Cruiseline.
I must respectfully disagree with you SoBe. After experiencing the disembarkation on HAL, I know it must be with how the cruise line handles the procedure. I mean, Eurodam was parked right behind one of Celebrity's ships, with terminals right next door to each other, and everyone on the X ship was complaining at the airport on how terrible disembarkation was. I mean, they all employ basically the same people at the port, with the only difference being that they wear a Celebrity nametag. But many of these port employees also work for other lines on different days of the week, so it can't be those people.

I just think Celebrity doesn't fully know how to handle disembarkation. If they had the cojones to go over to the Eurodam and watch and learn how they handle disembarking, they'd learn a lot.

But I really think letting everyone stay in their cabins, and having smaller groups for disembarking, they'd really speed things up and cause less frustration.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 05:41 PM
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Hubby and I were in the group disembarking the Eclipse on Dec 15. We were instructed to meet in Tuscan Grill (departure lounge for Elite). We waited and waited and then were instructed by Gabriella to follow each other to disembark. Those that followed her instruction were led into a massive pile up of people on the stairwells and we were at an absolute standstill. When we sn#ked our way down to Deck 2 the line was stopped completely as staff took supplies and luggage down the cross corrider. Our problem was not Customs as we found the line moved their quickly. The ramp from Deck 2 was an accident about to happen. Just imagine 80 and 90 year holds trying to make their way down the makeshift ramp. Absolutely terrible disembarkation. I blame Celebrity and their staff for the chaos.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 05:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kitty9 View Post
I must respectfully disagree with you SoBe. After experiencing the disembarkation on HAL, I know it must be with how the cruise line handles the procedure. I mean, Eurodam was parked right behind one of Celebrity's ships, with terminals right next door to each other, and everyone on the X ship was complaining at the airport on how terrible disembarkation was. I mean, they all employ basically the same people at the port, with the only difference being that they wear a Celebrity nametag. But many of these port employees also work for other lines on different days of the week, so it can't be those people.

I just think Celebrity doesn't fully know how to handle disembarkation. If they had the cojones to go over to the Eurodam and watch and learn how they handle disembarking, they'd learn a lot.

But I really think letting everyone stay in their cabins, and having smaller groups for disembarking, they'd really speed things up and cause less frustration.
Hi Darcie,

I totally agree with your comments. You can blame the Port authority to a point. However, the Cruise line must accept a fair amount of responsiblity for their overall Guest experience.

With regards to the disembark... I believe you have hit the nail on the head, in that HAL allows their Guests to remain in their cabins longer, making their process smoother. On the last morning of Celebrity sailings, I often feel like there's an attitude of "get the heck off the ship", which results in a HUGE cattle call. It's not how anyone wishes to end their cruise. Besides, I always feel that first & last impressions are huge, and should be of concern to Celebrity. As for us, we're extremely loyal to Celebrity, and will keep coming back - but there's room for major improvement in this area.

While I totally respect that turnaround day is a massive undertaking, it's clear from your experiences with HAL, that it can be done effectively. I truly hope Celebrity will make it a priority to improve the embark & disembark, which would result in a less stressful experience for their Guests.

I hope you will consider sharing your HAL experience with Celebrity. Happy Holidays !
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Last edited by Host Andy; December 20th, 2012 at 05:49 PM.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 05:49 PM
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Default Carry-on

Sorry to those who have problems with embarkation and disembarkation. We've never had a problem, but we carry-on and carry-off our luggage. One bag on, one bag off. Don't know if it really helps, but we've never had to go through the luggage pile mess.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 09:42 PM
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Andy no doubt you shared your concerns with Celebrity, and I for one would be interested in learning of their response. Please share it with us.

Last year after a truly miserable disembarkation I wrote and expressed our dismay, and also while I had pen in hand mentioned our thoughts on the music. (They were not positive thoughts)

Celebrity responded by providing a generous OBC for our next sailing.

While appreciated, I would have much prefered to have had a wonderful experience, and not had to write to them. I don't really expect anything "Extra" just what I paid for, and that includes a comfortable disembarkation.
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Old December 21st, 2012, 12:58 AM
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Seems apparent to me that #25, used by RCCL's brands in week-ends is a big part of the problem. Coincidentally, #21,26 &2/4 were the one '' renovated/upgraded following an agreement (and quite possibly $$$ frim ) with CCL ''.
#18 had a massive expansion/renovation 4 years ago along the same lines: agreement with RCCL ( and most likely a chunk of $$$ as well ). Of course, the arrival of the two Behemoths of The Seas justified that investment,
I suggest RCCL reaches the same type of ''agreement'' for #25 & 29 , the former being used almost 100% of th time for either the Freedom class of RCCL or the ''S'' of Celebrity.....in weekends, that is.

Of course, the method used by each brand (CCL's or RCCL's) to manage its disembarkation process still has a major impact on its satisfactory outcome, as evidenced by some posters as regards HAL's way of conducting the manoeuvre....

IMO
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