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Lizcourt

Question about Fort Lauderdale Airport

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Someone on another thread just posted that at the Fort Lauderdale Airport, you can't go through security until 1-2 hours until before your flight, and that there is no place to sit and wait before that point. Can that possibly be true? We are sailing on Oasis this weekend, and we purposely booked a 1:45 flight home, rather than the 11:15 am flight, so that we could take advantage of the luggage valet program. We figured it would be no big deal to hang out in the airport for a couple of hours and have lunch before we take off. But if we're going to get there around 10 and not be able to sit and wait anywhere until a hour before our flight, that's a real problem. Can anyone give me any insight on this?

 

Thanks in advance.

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The cut off depends on the airline (and possibly how busy the airport is). Last time I was there I was flying Soutwest and they were not permitting people to check in unless their flight was within three hours. There are some seats in the airport if you are there before you can sit in. You just can't go through security and get to your gate - but you can be in the non-secure portion of the airport.

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I think I read somewhere that it is 2hrs before on cruise days probably because of the influx of all the luggage. FLL airport does have seating (chairs) outside of the security area but if memory serves me no place to sit and have a drink or something to eat until you get through security. Have you thought about taking your own luggage off the ship and leave at your leisure or until they kick you off usually by 10am I think. That way you can have a nice breakfast maybe hot tub or swim. That way by the time you get to FLL you won"t have to wait that long

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we flew from FLL on Southwest last October and the cut off to check in was 4 hrs before the flight. If you were there before that, there was another place to ck in. Going through security?

Never heard of any cut off for that. We all went through

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WOW, I really hope this is not true, we sail next week, and our return flight is not until late afternoon, I thought we would also have lunch while waiting.. my mother is also going on this cruise, and she will not be able to stand around for hours.. hopefully someone here has had a recent experience and will post. :confused:

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There is some seating available at FLL, before the Security area, but not a lot of seats. You can always sit in a restaurant if you are eating something.

 

The biggest problem we have experienced at FLL are long lines for checkin. Also, the airport will not accept your checked luggage until 4 hours prior to your flight time.

 

If you are flying Southwest, use the "Bags-To-Go" luggage program. It works very well and eliminates the hassle of checking in for your flight. The cost is $10.00 per checked bag. After you get your luggage at the pier, and go through Immigration and Customs. Ask your porter to take your bags to the "Bags To Go" truck. If you pre-purchased the service via the Internet prior to leaving home (recommended way to arrange service), they will have your boarding passes and your bag tags at their truck. Give them your receipt and your bags, they affix the tags and give you your boarding passes and you are on your way to the airport. The only caveat is that all of your flights must terminate in a US airport and your flight leaves after 12 PM. Once you arrive at airport, you can go directly through Security, and we have never had them detain us due to our flight being much later. You should note that the FLL airport is very busy on ship turnaround days and there is not a lot of seating in the gate areas.

 

If you are flying American, Delta, and a few others, RCCL offers a similar luggage handling program, with some differences. They take care of your bags all the way from the time you set them out in the hall on the last night of the cruise. The cost is the same and similar flight/time restrictions.

 

The ship will provide you with a form letter in your cabin during the cruise to order the service if you are flying on a participating airline.

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Someone on another thread just posted that at the Fort Lauderdale Airport, you can't go through security until 1-2 hours until before your flight, and that there is no place to sit and wait before that point. Can that possibly be true? We are sailing on Oasis this weekend, and we purposely booked a 1:45 flight home, rather than the 11:15 am flight, so that we could take advantage of the luggage valet program. We figured it would be no big deal to hang out in the airport for a couple of hours and have lunch before we take off. But if we're going to get there around 10 and not be able to sit and wait anywhere until a hour before our flight, that's a real problem. Can anyone give me any insight on this?

 

Thanks in advance.

got a link for that thread?

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Yes, that was our whole point of taking the 1:45 flight -- we are using the luggage valet option with RCCL, and will not see our bags from the time we put them outside our door until we land at home in Newark. In order to use that program, you have to have a flight out of FLL of 11:30 or later; accordingly, instead of booking the 11:15 flight to Newark, we opted for the 1:45. We also will have checked in and gotten our boarding passes on board the Oasis through the same program, so I'm not really worried about when we can check in, just when we would be able to get to someplace in the airport that we could sit down and wait, like a restaurant.

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got a link for that thread?

 

Sorry, but don't know how to do a link. However, its post number 6 on a thread on the Royal Caribbean board entitled "OK I'm Booked NOW WHAT? Nervous"

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We just went throught FLL 3 weeks ago. We used the baggage express option, and were able to go right through security when we arrived. The rest of our group, 8 people, did not do luggage express. They had to wait until two hours before the flight before they could check in their luggage. They had to sit outside since everything was so full inside the airport.

I think the rule is that you cannot check your bags before 2 hours before your flight. If you do not have bags you can go in whenever.

Claudia

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Someone on another thread just posted that at the Fort Lauderdale Airport, you can't go through security until 1-2 hours until before your flight, and that there is no place to sit and wait before that point. Can that possibly be true? We are sailing on Oasis this weekend, and we purposely booked a 1:45 flight home, rather than the 11:15 am flight, so that we could take advantage of the luggage valet program. We figured it would be no big deal to hang out in the airport for a couple of hours and have lunch before we take off. But if we're going to get there around 10 and not be able to sit and wait anywhere until a hour before our flight, that's a real problem. Can anyone give me any insight on this?

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Fort Lauderdale is tough to get through so I would not worry about not being able to check in. I'm sure the two hour thing is because the airport is having a hard time handling the crowds.

 

It's never taken me less than 30 minutes to get through security and I fly in and out of FLL all the time. It's a mad house.

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We only fly AA so I cant comment on the other airlines. However when we left FLL in Nov. our flight departed at 1240pm and we were at the airport by 845am and checked out luggage and went through security with no problem. Actually in terminal 3 where AA and Jet Blue depart there is very little inside of security as far as food and drink is concerned. Only a small bar area with packaged sandwiches doughnuts and a few other kiosk type areas with packaged sandwiches,etc. Outside of security is not much either. A Chilis and donut shop and a couple of other small shops. We have flown out of FLL numerous times and the passenger amenities are almost non-existent.

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Gosh, there is some conflicting information in this thread. We were able to check our luggage a full 6 hours prior to our flight. Obviously not every airline allows this but Continental did for us last year.

 

But if we're going to get there around 10 and not be able to sit and wait anywhere until a hour before our flight, that's a real problem. Can anyone give me any insight on this?

 

It's completely untrue - not sure what in the world they were talking about. Can you imagine an airport with "no place to sit down"? Me neither. You're stressing over nothing. I have absolutely no beef with Fort Lauderdale airport. They even have free WiFi if you have your laptop. Go to the newsstand and buy some Key Lime Coconut Patties to take back home. :D

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There were signs up saying that you can not check in your luggage before 2 hours before your flight. Believe me, they did enforce it that day. My friends had to sit outside on their luggage for 3 hours until it was time. I suppose it was because it was a Sunday and there were a lot of ships in port that day. Maybe they do no do that on slow days.

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Fort Lauderdale is tough to get through so I would not worry about not being able to check in. I'm sure the two hour thing is because the airport is having a hard time handling the crowds.

 

It's never taken me less than 30 minutes to get through security and I fly in and out of FLL all the time. It's a mad house.

 

Really? We were on Oasis last October and did self walk off, around 6:30, and it was less than an hour from when we left the ship to when we were standing at the gate, that includes travel time, and going through security.

 

I would imagine the later it gets the longer the lines, but that was our experience last October. Hpefully that's our experience again in a few weeks when we get off Solstice!

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Really? We were on Oasis last October and did self walk off, around 6:30, and it was less than an hour from when we left the ship to when we were standing at the gate, that includes travel time, and going through security.

 

I would imagine the later it gets the longer the lines, but that was our experience last October. Hpefully that's our experience again in a few weeks when we get off Solstice!

 

We never fly out before 10am which is about the time the airport gets really busy.

 

I think with any airport if you are there early, it is a much more pleasant experience.

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We never fly out before 10am which is about the time the airport gets really busy.

 

I think with any airport if you are there early, it is a much more pleasant experience.

 

That's good, I was starting to worry things had changed since we were last there as we have another ealry flight in a couple weeks. Thanks for the clarification. Hopefully we'll be gone before it backs up.

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Yes, that was our whole point of taking the 1:45 flight -- we are using the luggage valet option with RCCL, and will not see our bags from the time we put them outside our door until we land at home in Newark. In order to use that program, you have to have a flight out of FLL of 11:30 or later; accordingly, instead of booking the 11:15 flight to Newark, we opted for the 1:45. We also will have checked in and gotten our boarding passes on board the Oasis through the same program, so I'm not really worried about when we can check in, just when we would be able to get to someplace in the airport that we could sit down and wait, like a restaurant.

 

I was wondering if anyone can tell me if RCCL offers the luggage valet option for an Air Trans flight?

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We were there in January. Checked in, went thru Security and had lunch at Chilis. We were there 3 hours before our flight departure which ended up being delayed 1 1/2 hrs. Plenty of seating in the gate departure area. We did not encounter any problems.

dj127

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I recommend checking with the airport website or tsa website because I recently saw something about a 2 hour rule.

 

Depending on the terminal you are flying out of the "pre-security" seating can be just a little or non-existent since most of the terminals were laid out ages ago before security lines. All terminal buildings but the newest (terminal 1) are pretty ancient and cramped.

 

Terminal 1 is the newest and modern and airy but I don't remember very much outside seating. I lived in Ft Lauderdale for several years and tried to stay away during the cruising days due to the crowds but still I highly preferred this airport over Miami anyday.

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