Posted July 19th, 2013, 12:33 PM
Since your cruise is from Sunday to Sunday, I would suggest taking the Red Eye Friday night and staying at a hotel on Saturday. This way if your luggage should happen to go missing, you have about a day and a half for them to find it and get it to you. I would also suggest looking into flying back really late the Sunday you disembark or Monday. Not sure, but maybe flying in and out that way would save a little bit? With the holiday, even if you fly home on Monday, you would still only use 5 days of vacation (unless Black Friday is a holiday too where you work - then only 4 days of vacation).
An hour layover in Atlanta is doable, but if you can, I'd go longer. Odds are good that you could have snow or some other freaky winter weather in Mpls and the plane will have to "de-ice" which could delay take off and arrival at ATL. Hartsfield is so big and so busy and you never know when you may have to go from Concourse A to Concourse D to change planes and just how many other people will get in your way who are not in a hurry to get anywhere! It could be like our one hour layover this summer in Minneapolis - we went from C Concourse to F Concourse and had maybe 10 minutes to spare before they started boarding the plane. Saving grace was that my youngest was on crutches, so he and I got to ride in a cart while DH and my oldest (with their long legs) used the moving walkways and got to the gate about 2 minutes after DS2 and I! We made it and so did our bags, but I would have liked a little more relaxed time - my fault in scheduling though.
Plus really - you're going on a cruise over Thanksgiving to get away from the bitter cold of Minnesota right? Why not fly in early and start taking advantage of the warm weather? Even if it's only 60 degrees in Miami, that could be at least a 30 degree swing from Minnesota!
And you can start rubbing it in to all the relatives back home!
Carnival Elation 2/16 (35th Class Reunion-bust)
Celebrity Millennium 06/13 (50th Birthday and first back to back two week vacation ever in Alaska)</left>
Adventure of the Seas 04/10 (25th Anniversary and first one for the kids Southern Caribbean)
Celebrity Constellation 03/05 (20th Wedding Anniversary Cruise Southern Caribbean)
Crown Jewel 09/93 (get away from the boss part 2 Western Caribbean)
Crown Princess 11/91 (get away from the boss cruise Eastern Caribbean)