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CruisingJade

Struggling to find ground transportation with small children

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Hello, I am a new poster to these boards, and this is the first thread I've started, so please forgive me if this is an old question. I have been researching answers for days!

 

We have twin toddlers who will be turning 3 just before our cruise next month. We do not fly with car seats and typically will rent cars with car seats or book private cars that provide car seats at our destinations. Unfortunately, I am struggling to find a service for this in Fort Lauderdale. So far, I've contacted:

  • The private service RCI recommends through website - $140 ONE WAY quote (absurd upcharges for the car seats)
  • Execucar private service - does not appear to accommodate small children but waiting on a follow up
  • JiffyJeff shuttles - Can provide a car seat and a booster but not two car seats. 😞
  • South Florida Shuttles - still waiting to hear back on this one

 

All we need is round trip FLL-Port Everglades. We do not have a hotel, as we are arriving on a red eye very early the morning of our cruise. If there is a service that will pick us up from the airport later, so we can have breakfast at the airport and not get to the port so darn early, that would be icing on the cake. But at the point, I would settle for any transportation that either provides two car seats or gets us on a big shuttle where they are not necessary without charging us the cost of an airline ticket!

 

Thanks in advance for any recommendations!

 

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If you are arriving early, another option is to rent a car for a few hours.   We have done this several times and it works pretty well.

 

Dollar has a car rental location right at the entrance to the port .  When you return the car there,  they have a free shuttle to the ships.  I have only used Dollar,  but I  think most of the major car rental companies also have Port Lauderdale locations.

 

That also gives you some freedom to do a few things in Fort Lauderdale before going to the ship.

 

 

 

 

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Exactly. Rent a car. Drop off kids and spouse at terminal and return the car. Do the opposite on the way back or pay for coach transfer. 

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22 hours ago, OzCanuck said:

Exactly. Rent a car. Drop off kids and spouse at terminal and return the car. Do the opposite on the way back or pay for coach transfer. 

they will still need car seats in the rental. It's highly recommended NOT TO RENT CAR SEATS because you don't know their history, and you don't  want your children to be crash test dummies.

 

I'd travel with 2 Evenflo Maestros - you can use them on the plane, your kids will be safe in them, and they are very easy to use and install in taxis/rentals.

 

And since your kids are only 3, OP, you will be able to use Maestros as travel seats for another 2-3 years. stack them on a magna cart, use a bungee cord to tie them to the cart like pics below and off you go. Kids are safer that way.

 

 

Go-GoBabyz-Travelmate-Review-Installed-with-Cosco-Scenera.jpg

IMG_1789-225x300.jpg

q3UGeL2XEZ9bk2kJjpsJSMkbX68L2slg_lg.jpg

QU9BvrScgH0wumC9HYBTU9MHVxQ6oS9c_lg.jpg

zYGmNfvcZCL2SsltDHPW0Gx07Emghe1y_lg.jpg

Edited by Itchy&Scratchy

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Thank you for the insights, everyone. We have tried traveling both with and without car seats and definitely fall into the camp of without, but i always appreciate seeing how others do it! 

 

I am struggling with the idea of renting a car (and car seats) for such a short drive each way. Seems crazy to me that there isn’t a reasonably priced car service with seat rentals. 

 

I think we we are going to look into the official transport shuttles next.

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Well here is another option. Uber will provide an Uber Car Seat service.  Just split duties with your husband and each take one kid to the port using two Uber’s. Not ideal but will work out. 

 

I am totally in the camp of traveling without a car seat. Our son is now in a booster only so we use the mifold from time to time but prior to this age we never took one and just made do. 

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I researched this a little myself and didn't come up with anything. We ultimately decided to drive (16 hours!) to Jacksonville in 2 weeks for our cruise. Partly to save money on flights, and partly because of the car seat Hassel. 

My kids are 11 months and 3.5. Honestly in your shoes I would just bring the car seats. With 3 year olds, if I had to pick between lugging car seats and lugging strollers, I would choose the car seats and not do excursions that require excessive walking.

It sounds like you travel a lot, so the ride safer travel vests might be a smart investment.

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I just wanted to com back and update this thread, since we found a ride! It took a lot of calling around and emailing, but we did find a shuttle company that provides car seats (as many as needed) and airport-port round trip service for a reasonable rate (a third of the price of the private car service I almost booked!) -- South Florida Shuttles.

 

The reviews are as mixed as any other shuttle service we looked into, but this was the only one that provided multiple infant/toddler car seats (not just boosters). Anyway, just wanted to share that for anyone in my same situation who stumbles upon this thread!

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We cruise with our kids (now 6 & 3) at least once a year since they have been in utero.  We started out with the car seats and have used car service with car seats for the last 5 years.

We now use ISA Transportation when in FLL (airport to pre-cruise hotel to Port Everglades back to FLL) and they provided car seats in the past. Our experience has been professional, reliable, quality service, reasonable pricing each time and I would recommend them over the shuttle services (which we have used also  - with one not showing up) hands down any day !

 

Carlos Arredondo 

Isa transportation 

954479782 - 9547098350

Edited by Maverick!

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On 2/16/2019 at 9:40 AM, CruisingJade said:

I just wanted to com back and update this thread, since we found a ride! It took a lot of calling around and emailing, but we did find a shuttle company that provides car seats (as many as needed) and airport-port round trip service for a reasonable rate (a third of the price of the private car service I almost booked!) -- South Florida Shuttles.

 

The reviews are as mixed as any other shuttle service we looked into, but this was the only one that provided multiple infant/toddler car seats (not just boosters). Anyway, just wanted to share that for anyone in my same situation who stumbles upon this thread!

What was the name of the company?

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South Florida Shuttles...end of the 1st paragraph.

 

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isatransportation@yahoo.com (Carlos)

We use them every year back and forth between airport to hotel, hotel to port and port to airport and they have been reliable to a T. 

Just request installed car seats when scheduling a ride. 

Very good pricing vs other competitors.

We had bad experience with those other pre-mentioned shuttle services (no-shows etc).

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1 hour ago, CruiseDigits said:

Chiming in for future readers.  With the caveat that you should always confirm with your airline, but I *think* you are able to check car seats for free on most, if not all, domestic airlines.

 

This article, though a few years old now, is incredibly thorough: https://tripswithtykes.com/car-seats-on-airplanes-part-1/

the best way to insure that your seat is not damaged in transit is to actually use it on the plane.

There is no other way to guarantee its safety. And once the seat's safety is compromised, you cannot use them.

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We always brought the car seats to use them on the plane.  From the FAA Flying with Children web page (bold emphasis added by me):

 

 "Make sure your CRS is government approved and has "This restraint is certified for use in motor vehicles and aircraft" printed on it. Otherwise, you may be asked to check the CRS as baggage."

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On 2/16/2019 at 10:40 AM, CruisingJade said:

I just wanted to com back and update this thread, since we found a ride! It took a lot of calling around and emailing, but we did find a shuttle company that provides car seats (as many as needed) and airport-port round trip service for a reasonable rate (a third of the price of the private car service I almost booked!) -- South Florida Shuttles.

 

The reviews are as mixed as any other shuttle service we looked into, but this was the only one that provided multiple infant/toddler car seats (not just boosters). Anyway, just wanted to share that for anyone in my same situation who stumbles upon this thread!

Have you gone on your cruise? How was this shuttle service? We will have 6 Adults and a 16 month old and are looking at transportation from MCO to Port. 

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On 7/8/2019 at 10:32 AM, Kaitebeck said:

Have you gone on your cruise? How was this shuttle service? We will have 6 Adults and a 16 month old and are looking at transportation from MCO to Port. 

We have used South Florida Shuttles and found them to have great service and the car seat they provided and we installed quickly and easily (due to liabilities you need to do the install yourself which we thought was a great idea and then we would know it was installed correctly). We would definitely use them again when necessary for cruises out of Fort Lauderdale or Miami.

 

As far as MCO to I assume Port Canaveral ...check out either Ace or Cruise Control...we will be using one of them for our cruise in May 2020. Have gotten lot's of good recommendations for both of these companies that will provide carseats and booster seats....I'm leaning towards Cruise Control.....Google for their website info.

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On 7/16/2019 at 2:06 AM, Ashland said:

We have used South Florida Shuttles and found them to have great service and the car seat they provided and we installed quickly and easily (due to liabilities you need to do the install yourself which we thought was a great idea and then we would know it was installed correctly). We would definitely use them again when necessary for cruises out of Fort Lauderdale or Miami.

 

As far as MCO to I assume Port Canaveral ...check out either Ace or Cruise Control...we will be using one of them for our cruise in May 2020. Have gotten lot's of good recommendations for both of these companies that will provide carseats and booster seats....I'm leaning towards Cruise Control.....Google for their website info.

Just booked private shuttle through cruise control for our January 2020 cruise. $200 RT form3 adults a toddler and infant. It’s a bit more than shared shuttle, but at least we don’t have to go to other hotels to pack a van with a 4 and 1 year old

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On 7/8/2019 at 1:32 PM, Kaitebeck said:

Have you gone on your cruise? How was this shuttle service? We will have 6 Adults and a 16 month old and are looking at transportation from MCO to Port. 

We used constrain, or similar from mco, it’s a van, no idea about car seats, but it’s a reasonable transport.  The hotels we stopped at were near ours, as we came in early from the north!  

 

We used GoShuttle in Ft Lauderdale, to Mia.  I was disappointed in their rt as they were late because they didn’t get fuel before!  Again it was a van from the airport and a large car, minivan returning.  Long time to airport too.  

 

 

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