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FLL - Port Everglades conection time


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Hello,

 

I'll be arriving at 12:40pm to FLL on Sunday 7, to board Eurodam at Port Everglades, which should leave at 4pm.

She should return at 7am on Sunday 14 and my return flight is scheduled at 10:15am, same day and airport.

I'm flying SouthWest, solo, 1 checked bag, and bought round trip shuttles from HAL.

Will I make it?

If i travel lighter (backpack + 1 carry on), would it make any difference in the process?

 

Thanks in advance

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I would elect to take a backpack and 1 carry on bag, and select the HAL option to disembark carrying your own luggage which would be the first group off the ship. I would not wait for the HAL transfer bus to fill. I would grab a cab to FLL. Since you will not have to check a bag, you could go directly to the security line.

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I'd honestly be more concerned about the arrival time at the beginning of the cruise. It would appear that you've allowed less than 2 hours from scheduled landing to the deadline to be checked in/on board.

 

Where are you flying from? Where is your departure plane originating? What impact might winter weather have on the ability of your flight to be on-time?

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Both are doable, but your travel to and from is going to be stressful.

 

I am glad you booked Southwest, because you can, without charge, hopefully, change the flights (particularly the flight to FLL) to something much less stressful.

 

Sailing at 4pm means you need to be onboard no later than 90 minutes prior to scheduled sailing. 2 hours prior is very commonly required.

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Depending on where you are coming from, and of you have any flight connections en-route, I would be very nervous about an arrival time of 12:40 pm. If you have a checked bag, you probably won't get out of the airport until 1:30 pm. Just because you have a HAL transfer from the FLL airport to the ship, doesn't mean they will wait for you if your flight is delayed. I'm assuming that the Southwest flight booking was done by you and not HAL. If you have a missed connection, weather or ATC delay, you will definitely miss the ship. That time of year, weather delays are very common and the very short time period from plane landing to the all aboard time could cause you to miss the ship, and then you will blow lots of money and days catching up to the ship at Grand Turk. Change your flight, arrive on Saturday the 6th and have a relaxing dinner and a night in a hotel.

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It sounds like you are a first time cruiser, so let me offer some advice accordingly.

 

Most cruisers get to the departure port a day or two prior to the sailing. Plenty of airline issues (weather, power outages, airport shutdowns, etc) can occur anywhere along the airline's system that could delay for flight (think of Atlanta two weeks ago). The cost of missing your cruise (or part of it) could be significant, plus the hassle/stress involved.

 

As to flying home, I would research the cruiseline's website as to their recommendations on how early to book your flight (by port of course). Many things can delay you getting off the ship on time (last week we were delayed an hour in San Diego by a couple of passengers not reporting to the Customs office onboard which also resulted in long taxi lines), plus some airports can get VERY congested with long lines on cruise ship days.

 

Further, if you are in a hurry, do not book the cruiseline airport transfers. While they are convenient, they are generally not the quickest option (having to fill the bus). Do some research here on Cruise Critic to learn by port which is your best option to get to the airport.

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You will be okay, unless your inbound flight is hijacked or delayed significantly.

 

The airport and cruiseport are really really close FLL (5 minutes if you tip well, 10-15 minutes otherwise)

 

1) Cancel your HAL transfer and take a $15 taxi ride to the ship.

2) Sign up on line for TSA Pre-check so you can fly thru Airport Security when homebound

3) Yes, do early walk-off from the ship, you'll be fine unless you are smuggling contraband.

4) Don't run in the airport to the taxi stand (it looks really suspicious)

5) If you win in the Casino, don't carry more than $10,000 cash on you (unless you declare it)

 

Have fun cruising!

Edited by JRG
speling
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Welcome to Cruise Critic.

Since we do not know where you are flying from, I hope you make the ship. Weather could be a factor at this time of the year.

At the end of the cruise, you can not leave the ship until it is cleared by the local authorities. Usually the ship is cleared by 7:15 - 7:30. To make your flight, you need to carry off all your bags yourself. On some cruises there are a lot of people who do this, so the lines o go through immigration may be long.

On the day you arrive back in Ft Lauderdale -- Jan 14 -- there will be 7 ships in. It is going to be a hectic day there.

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Agree with others that a 12:40 arr is very risky, especially during the winter months when air delays are too common. But if your flight is on time (or not too late) you will be fine. Personally we hate using cruise line transfers because that simply means you will wait around the airport until they have enough folks to fill a bus (or large van). We prefer taxis or Uber (cheaper than HAL transfers).

 

Getting back to your embarkation day, you should be at the port by 2:30 which means leaving the airport by around 2 (or a little later). If SW would late you change to an earlier flight it would be a good move.

 

As to disembarkation, you would definitely want to do express walk-off (where you carry all your luggage off the ship) and grab a taxi or uber to the airport. With luck, and assuming no delays caused by the authorities, you should be at the airport by 8 (if you use a taxi or Uber). With HAL transfers it might be a bit later...and heaven only knows where a transfer bus will drop folks. FLL is a pretty large airport and the advantage of a taxi or Uber is they drop you right at the right terminal and door.

 

Hank

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We just recently went through the TSA lines at the Southwest Terminal in FLL. With 7 ships in that day this is going to be a Zoo! There is now just the one TSA area for both Terminal A and B. Also, with SWA they normally start loading the aircraft 30 minutes prior to flight time. With all the potential issues including 7 ships I would not schedule a flight before noon.

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Welcome to Cruise Critic.

 

I want to second CruiserBruce's comments because I agree 100%.

 

I never think it is a good idea to fly the day of the cruise. I know that was not your question but it is risky.

 

You need to board 90 minutes prior to the cruise and you have very little room if something goes wrong.

 

Good thing about Southwest is you could change your flights and apply the funds to a different one. I would highly recommend flying in the day before the cruise.

 

Keith

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Just 6 weeks ago we arrived in FLL at noon on SWA. After waiting for our luggage and a cab, we started towards the port. Due to excessive traffic, it took one hour in the cab. Early afternoon can be a problem. Normally the 4 mile distance takes 10-15 minutes. Try to find out how long HAL transport will wait for you at FLL.

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Thank you all for the kind and quick replies!

 

As some you you correctly guessed, it's my first time cruising and now, also going solo on vacations. To avoid a wall of text, due personal issues, the only option i have is traveling back and forth on the same day and to the same airport - Lambert.

I will follow your advice, change my plane tickets and cancel HAL transfers for a bit more flexibility. Aiming to arrive ~11am and leaving +12pm to/from FLL. Also, will investigate TSA-Pre and the early check-in from SW, this time could be useful.

For the record, originally was STL-ATL-FLL then FLL-STL on the way back. Based on my humble 2017 experience, SW was always on time, that's why i chose it for this tight schedule.

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Yes, your changes will be good...plus do the carryon and backpack...you won't need all that much for your cruise! Simplify! Have a great time (and yes, you will then be in the know about how dreadful FLL is on "cruise ship turnover days"...the worst airport mess imaginable [emoji13]

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

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Based on my humble 2017 experience, SW was always on time, that's why i chose it for this tight schedule.

 

No airline is always on time. I believe SW has one of the better records, at about 85% on time average, but "on time" means within 15 minutes of scheduled time, so even that 15 minute leeway tightens your schedule noticeably.

 

Glad you are making the changes.

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When we first flew with Southwest many years ago, they were usually on time, or even early. However, the last few times we've flown home from FLL, there have been delays, have been switched to another plane/flight, switched to another connecting city, have had to deplane and switch to another flight even though it was supposed to be a one stop/no change flight, have waited for crew to arrive to fly the plane that was substituted, etc. However, (so far, for us) the advantages still outweigh the inconveniences since we can change a flight without penalty, and retain a credit for a canceled flight for up to a year, do not have to pay for checked bags (unless more than 2 checked bags each, which never happens in our case.)

 

Regarding ATL, I've always experienced problems and delays when connecting through Atlanta, and now avoid it whenever possible.

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Hello,

 

I'll be arriving at 12:40pm to FLL on Sunday 7, to board Eurodam at Port Everglades, which should leave at 4pm.

She should return at 7am on Sunday 14 and my return flight is scheduled at 10:15am, same day and airport.

I'm flying SouthWest, solo, 1 checked bag, and bought round trip shuttles from HAL.

Will I make it?

If i travel lighter (backpack + 1 carry on), would it make any difference in the process?

 

Thanks in advance

 

Yes. You will have plenty of time to make it.

Enjoy your cruise.

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No airline is always on time. I believe SW has one of the better records, at about 85% on time average, but "on time" means within 15 minutes of scheduled time, so even that 15 minute leeway tightens your schedule noticeably.

 

It's that other 15% that is problematic! :D

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