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misssherry

Boarding on the Fascination

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Have not been on a cruise in 10 years. Has anything changed as far as boarding and approximately how early can you get on the ship? We leave San Juan at 9 pm

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We walked on around 130 pm without issue. We dropped our bags, ate and then got off to get wine and sunscreen at the drug store. It was a bit rainy so we reboarded and relaxed before dinner and muster.

 

 

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I was on Fascination in mid April. I boarded at 1:00pm without any lines. There is a wine shop with great prices at the port. It is located just prior to when they scan your bags.

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Unless you have Priority or FTTF, I would wait until around 1PM to board. We boarded at noon with FTTF. No lines for us, but the regular line for boarding outside the terminal was very long. When we boarded I never saw them let anyone from that line into the terminal, nor was there anyone waiting inside to board. This may have changed since last February, we were on the second sailing after dry dock and they did not have everything organized as they should.

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We are cruising on Fascination also in December. FTTF is Faster to the Fun. You can find it to purchase in your shore excursions San Juan.

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On my Fascination cruise in May, I boarded around 11:30 with zero lines. I was literally able to walk in and immediately go to the check-in counter. I didn't have FTTF or any type of priority boarding either.

 

I did a full review of my Fascination cruise if you're interested. You can find it using the search feature probably or via my profile.

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I can't not remember for the life of me since last cruise but I know we can bring wine on board do we have to have that checked before boarding or could we check in and then go grab some wine come back?

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We walked on around 130 pm without issue. We dropped our bags, ate and then got off to get wine and sunscreen at the drug store. It was a bit rainy so we reboarded and relaxed before dinner and muster.

This was our experience as well.

 

We headed out from the airport hotel around 10-ish and went to the port to drop off bags. There were still people exiting the ship but the porters were there to collect bags from those embarking.

 

Since it was too early to check in, we took off on a self-guided walking tour of Old San Juan, and had a blast. We returned around 1:30 and went right on the ship and had lunch. Then I went back off for a bit more supplies from the drug store and a quick beer at a local bar. I think I was back on board about 5 pm. You need to plan for an early meal in the MDR the first night since muster drill is at 8:30.

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Is the duty free liquore store still right before the last turn on the gangway?

There was some over-priced stuff right there, like sodas. I did not even notice about the liquor. There are a couple of liquor stores inside the terminal before you start to run the gauntlet.

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Don't you have assigned boarding times? If so can you disregard them and board early?

I would make a couple of observations here. First, it depends on what you consider "early."

 

They do sell FTTF, which I believe is an absolute waste of money on this cruise. About the ONLY thing that would be of any value on this cruise is to get on the ship early at embarkation. But what does that really get you for $89 or so a person? You can't go to your room yet. BUT, if you want to board at the very beginning and do not have FTTF I think they would not allow that because they would want to preserve what little value there is to FTTF.

 

We had 1:00 as our boarding and our cuise-mates had 2:00 (they did not follow my advice and choose a check in time when we did.) We all arrived at 1:30 and got right on the ship.

 

So, if your boarding time is late, and you show up at 1 pm, you should have no issues getting on early. If you show up at 11 am then be prepared for a long wait.

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