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Ft. Lauderdale Q&A/FAQ Part 2

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I am taking a Panama Canal cruise out of FLL in April 2015. We are coming from Australia.

 

I have noticed that hotels in Fort Lauderdale for the time we need 9-11 April 2015 are quite expensive at the moment. Is it likely that they will get cheaper as time goes on, or should we look to book relatively soon?

 

I am guessing, it's quite a busy time in FLL so wasn't sure what would be best.

 

We probably don't want to pay more than $250 per night, want a hotel with a shuttle from airport and to cruise port.

 

We also plan on going on an air boat ride and to an NBA game in Miami. We're not sure how yet we're going to get to either of those places. Any advice would be great?

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I am taking a Panama Canal cruise out of FLL in April 2015. We are coming from Australia.

 

I have noticed that hotels in Fort Lauderdale for the time we need 9-11 April 2015 are quite expensive at the moment. Is it likely that they will get cheaper as time goes on, or should we look to book relatively soon?

 

I am guessing, it's quite a busy time in FLL so wasn't sure what would be best.

 

We probably don't want to pay more than $250 per night, want a hotel with a shuttle from airport and to cruise port.

 

We also plan on going on an air boat ride and to an NBA game in Miami. We're not sure how yet we're going to get to either of those places. Any advice would be great?

 

You should rent a car, as you want to go to places that are far from each other and cabs will cost you about $300 total for those 2 round trips. April rates will be high. You should try booking Hyatt Place through ValueTrips once they post rates for 2015. This April it was only $99/night. They have free airport shuttle and low cost port shuttle.

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I am taking a Panama Canal cruise out of FLL in April 2015. We are coming from Australia.

 

I have noticed that hotels in Fort Lauderdale for the time we need 9-11 April 2015 are quite expensive at the moment. Is it likely that they will get cheaper as time goes on, or should we look to book relatively soon?

 

I am guessing, it's quite a busy time in FLL so wasn't sure what would be best.

 

We probably don't want to pay more than $250 per night, want a hotel with a shuttle from airport and to cruise port.

 

We also plan on going on an air boat ride and to an NBA game in Miami. We're not sure how yet we're going to get to either of those places. Any advice would be great?

 

Hi, the Arena for the Heat game is in downtown Miami......if you are

going to rent a car? It is about another 30 minutes south of Ft.

Lauderdale.

If it is within your budget? I would rent a limo.....let them drive

you to and from that area.:)....you are traveling a long ways.....

I would let someone else take care of that part of the trip.

(just my opinion).

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Hi, the Arena for the Heat game is in downtown Miami......if you are

going to rent a car? It is about another 30 minutes south of Ft.

Lauderdale.

If it is within your budget? I would rent a limo.....let them drive

you to and from that area.:)....you are traveling a long ways.....

I would let someone else take care of that part of the trip.

(just my opinion).

 

We could rent a car, but really like you said we would probably prefer to just kick back and relax and have someone else take us. It's ok driving in the US when it's not too busy but I can imagine getting to a heat game could be busy.

 

Do you know of any limo companies we could check out that would do that kind of trip? Would it be easy to find the limo after the game?

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I am staying at the Crowne Plaza on State street and was going to walk to Total wine at Harbor Shops for my group. It looks to be about a mile or so which is fine, but walking back with our groups 10 bottles of wine may be too heavy to carry. I noticed that there is a bus as well. Would you recommend the bus and if so how much would it be?

 

 

Or is there a closer place to buy wine?

Edited by irishgal432

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We could rent a car, but really like you said we would probably prefer to just kick back and relax and have someone else take us. It's ok driving in the US when it's not too busy but I can imagine getting to a heat game could be busy.

 

Do you know of any limo companies we could check out that would do that kind of trip? Would it be easy to find the limo after the game?

 

Try QLS.......google them. They have always gotten good reviews

on here. And since you are paying them? They will agree on where

you are to meet them after the game;)

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I am staying at the Crowne Plaza on State street and was going to walk to Total wine at Harbor Shops for my group. It looks to be about a mile or so which is fine, but walking back with our groups 10 bottles of wine may be too heavy to carry. I noticed that there is a bus as well. Would you recommend the bus and if so how much would it be?

 

 

Or is there a closer place to buy wine?

 

It costs $1.75 by bus (bus route 1) and you'll be halfway back before getting to the bus stop. I would suggest walking there and taking a taxi back (about $5). There are no liquor stores closer but the CVS on the corner of US1 and SE 17th St sells wine...it's only a few blocks closer and the selection is minimal.

Edited by royalcruz

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It costs $1.75 by bus (bus route 1) and you'll be halfway back before getting to the bus stop. I would suggest walking there and taking a taxi back (about $5). There are no liquor stores closer but the CVS on the corner of US1 and SE 17th St sells wine...it's only a few blocks closer and the selection is minimal.

 

Thank you. Total Wine it is then.

 

Are there taxis around the HArbor Shops or do I have to call one? We normally drive and have a car so we have never had to take taxis

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I'm a complete stranger to Fort Lauderdale or indeed the Florida coast - I'm a UK resident - and I do have a couple of what may be very basic questions. I'm in the early pre-planning stages of a trip to Florida for a stay + cruise, perhaps in Feb/Mar 2015, or perhaps not until the year after.

 

First, what's the determinant of price in the hotels? Is it proximity to the ocean? If so, how much cheaper would hotels away from the ocean be? And would they be comparable, other than not being on the ocean?

 

Secondly, a question about something that I'm not familiar with at all - kitchens, etc, in the suites. Do people use these? As I say this is a new one on me - here in the UK a hotel room is a hotel room and that's that. You'll get a tea/coffee maker but that's all. Are these suites-with-facilities universal in the Fort Lauderdale area?

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Thank you. Total Wine it is then.

 

Are there taxis around the HArbor Shops or do I have to call one? We normally drive and have a car so we have never had to take taxis

 

I'm not sure. Yellow Cab is 954-777-7777. There are always taxis nearby because of the hotels so if you call you'll have a taxi in no time.

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I'm a complete stranger to Fort Lauderdale or indeed the Florida coast - I'm a UK resident - and I do have a couple of what may be very basic questions. I'm in the early pre-planning stages of a trip to Florida for a stay + cruise, perhaps in Feb/Mar 2015, or perhaps not until the year after.

 

First, what's the determinant of price in the hotels? Is it proximity to the ocean? If so, how much cheaper would hotels away from the ocean be? And would they be comparable, other than not being on the ocean?

 

Secondly, a question about something that I'm not familiar with at all - kitchens, etc, in the suites. Do people use these? As I say this is a new one on me - here in the UK a hotel room is a hotel room and that's that. You'll get a tea/coffee maker but that's all. Are these suites-with-facilities universal in the Fort Lauderdale area?

 

Hotel prices depend on things like: proximity to ocean, star level, age of hotel, neighborhood, etc. But there is no absolute formula for this and often you can get a room at Bahia Mar at the beach for the same price as a hotel near the airport. There are nice and not so nice hotels at the ocean and not at the ocean. You really can't generalize.

 

Some people use the kitchens in suites. Most hotel rooms are not suites. Just because it's a suite doesn't mean there is a kitchen; typically it means there is more than one room, and sometimes it just means there is a large sitting area with something separating it from the sleeping area.

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I'm not sure. Yellow Cab is 954-777-7777. There are always taxis nearby because of the hotels so if you call you'll have a taxi in no time.

 

Thank you. I will put that in my phone right now.

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I've booked the cruise and now I'm looking at booking air. I'm on the Caribbean Princess July 12th-19th. There are only 3 direct flights home. The earliest one is 12:10. Do you think that would give us enough time to disembark, go through customs and get a cab to the airport?

Thanks.

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Thank you. Total Wine it is then.

 

Are there taxis around the HArbor Shops or do I have to call one? We normally drive and have a car so we have never had to take taxis

 

I think the taxi is what I would do with 10 bottles of wine, but if you wanted to walk it, could you empty a rolling carryon??

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I have the Embassy Suites on reserve, but had been going back and forth between Embassy and Hilton Marina. I looked on LMT after reading a lot about it on here, and found a good price on the Hilton.

 

I am trying to weigh all costs and features. The Embassy rate I got included airport and cruise transport. But the Hilton's price is low enough that I think even paying taxis I would still make be less. Am I correct in figuring $15 for taxi from airport and $10 to the port?

It doesn't have the managers reception or the free breakfast. I usually don't eat a huge breakfast, so when I started thinking about it I wondered how much of a plus that really was. As for the manager's reception I think it could be fun, but how much of a factor would it be if I ended up out and about when it was happening. I really like the Hilton's location on the marina. Both have a nice pool area.

 

Can you tell I am going I circles? Hey at least I narrowed it down to 2 right?

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I've booked the cruise and now I'm looking at booking air. I'm on the Caribbean Princess July 12th-19th. There are only 3 direct flights home. The earliest one is 12:10. Do you think that would give us enough time to disembark, go through customs and get a cab to the airport?

Thanks.

 

Yes, absolutely if you are flying out of FLL. If you have to check in particularly early for international flights, you might want to self-disembark, but I think you'll be fine either way. Some cruiselines allow you to trade in your disembarkation luggage tags for earlier ones at guest services desk...not sure about Princess.

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I have the Embassy Suites on reserve, but had been going back and forth between Embassy and Hilton Marina. I looked on LMT after reading a lot about it on here, and found a good price on the Hilton.

 

I am trying to weigh all costs and features. The Embassy rate I got included airport and cruise transport. But the Hilton's price is low enough that I think even paying taxis I would still make be less. Am I correct in figuring $15 for taxi from airport and $10 to the port?

It doesn't have the managers reception or the free breakfast. I usually don't eat a huge breakfast, so when I started thinking about it I wondered how much of a plus that really was. As for the manager's reception I think it could be fun, but how much of a factor would it be if I ended up out and about when it was happening. I really like the Hilton's location on the marina. Both have a nice pool area.

 

Can you tell I am going I circles? Hey at least I narrowed it down to 2 right?

 

Yes those are approximate cabfares. It sounds like you would enjoy the Hilton more. Pack some breakfast bars. :)

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Thanks...I did it, booked the hilton, cancelled the embassy. Saved almost $50, which will like most certainly cover the cost of a taxi to the hotel and they offer a $6 port shuttle, so that should leave plenty for a fun drink or two. I can eat as soon as I board the ship, so I really don't need much of a breakfast other than my coffee. I am planning on going over to las Olas the night before, and there is nothing saying I can't pick up a muffin or pastry of piece of fruit for the next morning.

 

Every time I cruise I find so much information on these boards to make my cruise more catered to my personal preferences. Thanks to all!

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Thanks...I did it, booked the hilton, cancelled the embassy. Saved almost $50, which will like most certainly cover the cost of a taxi to the hotel and they offer a $6 port shuttle, so that should leave plenty for a fun drink or two. I can eat as soon as I board the ship, so I really don't need much of a breakfast other than my coffee. I am planning on going over to las Olas the night before, and there is nothing saying I can't pick up a muffin or pastry of piece of fruit for the next morning.

 

Every time I cruise I find so much information on these boards to make my cruise more catered to my personal preferences. Thanks to all!

 

There is a great bakery on Las Olas across from Riverside Hotel that is open in the evening.

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There is a great bakery on Las Olas across from Riverside Hotel that is open in the evening.

Oh my yummy! Thanks for that little gem of information :)

Edited by barefoot cruiser

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You should try booking Hyatt Place through ValueTrips once they post rates for 2015. This April it was only $99/night. They have free airport shuttle and low cost port shuttle.

Any guess when ValueTrips 2015 rates will be posted?

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SAS transportation was suppose to pick us (2 of us plus 2 other couples) up at 11 and when they were not there we called only to be yelled at. They said that the email stated that pick up started at 11 and that they would be there at 11:15. Then one of the other couples got a call from the driver that he would be getting there "sometime after 11:30". There was another company there and one of the other couples asked them about their shuttle. They would be there in less then 10 minutes and charge $3 less pp. The other couples wanted to use them so I called SAS as a courtesy and left a message to inform them that we were going with the other company. Not more then one minute later I got a call from the company owner telling me that my return reservation was cancelled and that I had no right to steal his customers. I tried to explain that they were late and the others wanted to leave then, but he just kept yelling and screaming at me. Never again

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My group of six is sailing on the Allure this Sunday, and we'll be spending Saturday night in Fort Lauderdale at the Holiday Inn Express on State Road 84. Assuming the hotel shuttle will take us to these areas (or we can get a van-type taxi that'll hold six), I'd like to maybe check out the Harbor Shops or Las Olas Blvd. Our flight lands around 3:00, so we'll be able to make it to the hotel and check in and drop off our stuff and then have the evening to explore. We'll want to get dinner at some point (nothing too fancy or expensive, but something different/local/non-chain would be nice), and we'd also like to hit up a Total Wine or grocery store or somewhere to grab wine for the cruise. Could you guys tell me a little more about the Harbor Shops and Las Olas? Are these areas close to each other? Easily walkable? Assuming nice weather, I'd like to be dropped off somewhere where we can stroll around and window shop and then pick a restaurant that looks good on the spur of the moment, instead of having to plan ahead for a specific place. What would you guys recommend?

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My group of six is sailing on the Allure this Sunday, and we'll be spending Saturday night in Fort Lauderdale at the Holiday Inn Express on State Road 84. Assuming the hotel shuttle will take us to these areas (or we can get a van-type taxi that'll hold six), I'd like to maybe check out the Harbor Shops or Las Olas Blvd. Our flight lands around 3:00, so we'll be able to make it to the hotel and check in and drop off our stuff and then have the evening to explore. We'll want to get dinner at some point (nothing too fancy or expensive, but something different/local/non-chain would be nice), and we'd also like to hit up a Total Wine or grocery store or somewhere to grab wine for the cruise. Could you guys tell me a little more about the Harbor Shops and Las Olas? Are these areas close to each other? Easily walkable? Assuming nice weather, I'd like to be dropped off somewhere where we can stroll around and window shop and then pick a restaurant that looks good on the spur of the moment, instead of having to plan ahead for a specific place. What would you guys recommend?

 

These 2 places are not in the same place. Harbor Shops is about 2 miles from your hotel and Las Olas is about 5 miles from your hotel.

 

The Harbor Shops is a suburban shopping center. It has Ace Hardware, Total Wine, Publix, a consignment shop, a boutique, Payless Shoes, a diet ice cream store, Coco Asian Bistro, and a few eateries/restaurants, mostly chains (Duffy's, Firehouse, Moe's Southwest, Five Guys). Lauderdale Grill there has live music some nights, some good blues bands. Most people like Duffy's, an inexpensive sports bar/grill. There are other restaurants and strip centers in this area that you can walk to once you are there, but it is suburbia, no ambiance.

 

Las Olas is a lovely old street downtown where you feel like you are in Europe. It has boutiques, galleries, bars, and cafes. Some classics that are not chains and not expensive/fancy: Noodles Panini, Big City Tavern, Le Bonne Crepe, Cafe Europa. The main area is about a mile long.

Edited by royalcruz

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