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I wouldn’t buy FTTF again for Pt Canaveral.

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We arrived about 10:15-10:30 on a 4 Nighr spring break cruise  on the Liberty.  There was no wait in line for early/late boarding,  the only difference is they get a zone and we waited in a non-checked priority section which took minutes to process. Agents weren’t even checking your boarding paperwork as they called thru Wedding parties, Platinum, Suite, FTTF categories of boarding.  Secondly once aboard the hallway doors to cabins were locked with signs saying no stateroom entry until 1:30pm and no staff to assist. Luckily at one of the elevator entries I found a regular door giving entry to the stateroom hallway and myself and about 5 others took it. Again no one was around to assist or question us. IMHO it wasn’t organized enough or worth the fee. 

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Posted (edited)

On my last cruise out of of Miami, my hotel check out was 11, and I arrived at the port at 11:25 for my 11:30 appointment.  The next time I stopped walking was when I got my FunShip drink about 20 minutes later.  With the check-in efficiency so good,  and with self assist for debarking, unless getting to your room to drop stuff off is a very high priority, and a person frequently needs the special Guest Services line during the cruise, I would agree that FTTF really doesn't offer much of an advantage.  

Edited by naxer
correction

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We have also had similar experiences without FTTF.  However, your stateroom is not ready and that just means walking around longer with your carry on.   Also, the line at GS was so long.  FTTF is more than getting on the ship faster. It's definitely not for everyone. You need to decide what is important to you.  BTW, our upcoming cruise will be the last time we'll have to get it. I'm finally turning platinum!!😁

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Yes I like all of the other perks that come along with FTTF.  Including getting off the ship faster.  We have a 7 hour drive home and we like to get on the road.  I am so glad that I was able to get it for our upcoming cruise.

 

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Posted (edited)
49 minutes ago, Cruisegoer said:

We arrived about 10:15-10:30 on a 4 Nighr spring break cruise  on the Liberty.  There was no wait in line for early/late boarding,  the only difference is they get a zone and we waited in a non-checked priority section which took minutes to process. Agents weren’t even checking your boarding paperwork as they called thru Wedding parties, Platinum, Suite, FTTF categories of boarding.  Secondly once aboard the hallway doors to cabins were locked with signs saying no stateroom entry until 1:30pm and no staff to assist. Luckily at one of the elevator entries I found a regular door giving entry to the stateroom hallway and myself and about 5 others took it. Again no one was around to assist or question us. IMHO it wasn’t organized enough or worth the fee. 

 

So, what I am reading here is that if you did not have FTTF, you would have:

  • Used the priority waiting area, which you were not entitled to do so.
  • Boarded with priority boarding, which you were not entitled to do so.
  • Accessed your stateroom without being entitled to do so.

You don't really care about the other FTTF benefits (everyone has different benefits that are important to them) and felt that the benefits you did get were not worth the cost.

 

Do I read this correctly?

Edited by Schoifmom

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The sign is always out saying rooms aren't ready until 130. With FTTF you ignore it and open the door and go to your room, which will be ready.

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1 hour ago, JaxsMama said:

The sign is always out saying rooms aren't ready until 130. With FTTF you ignore it and open the door and go to your room, which will be ready.

 

Good to know! The last time we cruised with FTTF was like 4-5 years ago. I don't think they had anything closed off, it was more of you could access the hall but your room wasn't ready. 

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16 minutes ago, xostacylee said:

 

Good to know! The last time we cruised with FTTF was like 4-5 years ago. I don't think they had anything closed off, it was more of you could access the hall but your room wasn't ready. 

I've been cruising for over 10 years and the signs stating the 1:30 times have always been there. 

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We are not FTTF people either.  It's just my DH and myself.  We have rarely had to wait any sort of time to board the ship, we each generally have a small carry-on.  We board, find a seat, slide our carry-ons under our chairs, and then take turns going to grab lunch.  We enjoy the atmosphere until our rooms are ready, then go and drop our two bags off and head back to the party. 

If we end up at a port that is tender and are not taking an excursion, we just relax and wait for the crowds to die down before heading for the tender line.  We started self-disembarking a few cruises back (we have one suitcase each) and will probably continue to do that until we are unable to do so. 

I can definitely see the appeal for a family with lots of kids, carry-ons, sodas, etc. it is most likely a life saver. For just the two of us, the extra fee is just a waste of money.  

  

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As stated, with FTTF you just go through the doors and go to your room. Everyone else must wait until 1:30.  Your room keys are in the mail box outside the room.  I was just on the Liberty in Dec 18, and FTTF was more than worth it.  Not just for the early room access, but also priority tender (I know, Carnival now calls them water shuttles). Also, they do check, and they won't even let you into the priority seating area if you don't have FTTF, Suites, Wedding Party, or Platinum/Diamond.

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12 minutes ago, Qchell said:

If we end up at a port that is tender and are not taking an excursion, we just relax and wait for the crowds to die down before heading for the tender line.

 

This is what we did for Grand Cayman last year, we actually got to enjoy the tender ride because it was uncrowded.

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Yep ignore the signs on the door and go to your cabin. That sign is meant for non-priority guests. You also have your priority tendering, and dedicated line at guest services which is worth the money in itself. 

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Just to reiterate what’s already been said, we were on the Fantasy a month ago. As stated above, all hallway doors were closed with the “cabins will be ready after 1:30pm”. We just opened one of those doors and walked to our cabin which was ready. There was a steward in the hallway though who said “cabins not ready!” as we walked by him, so I asked “Are they ready for Platinum?” and he said “Oh yes, go ahead!”. 

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Posted (edited)

The doors are not locked. They are never locked. If you have FTTF (or are Diamond/Platinum) then you just ignore the sign and gon in. 

Edited by bakersdozen12

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1 hour ago, Joebucks said:

Unless you want to get to your room before 1:30, I don't think it's worth it. No amount of expedited guest service visits will convince me of that.

 

I have never understood the appeal of guest services as a perk. I am a platinum and the infrequent times I have had to go to guest services, I just wait until night when there is rarely anyone there at either line (except on the night gratuities are posted and the cheap people line up to remove them).  

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19 minutes ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

 

I have never understood the appeal of guest services as a perk.

We didn’t see the appeal either until we actually needed guest services and there was a huge line.

 

On our last cruise, we were delayed 9 hours returning to Mobile due to fog. I was traveling as part of a group of 24, some who had flights. We were using the Hub app to communicate with each other, but around 10:00am, the app automatically shut down. We went to Guest Services to get some assistance reestablishing the WiFi connection and with our friend’s flight. Needless to say, with the delay the line was probably 30 people deep.

 

Thankfully our friends were in a suite and we were platinum, so we went to the priority line. Nobody in line ahead of us. They couldn’t do anything about the Hub app since it automatically shuts down at a predetermined time on debarkation day, but they assisted our friends with their flights, connected them to the airline and also provided us with complimentary WiFi access at one of the computer stations so that I could access my work’s intranet. 

 

Under normal circumstances, I agree that I don’t have the need for immediate access to guest services, but that was one time when it was nice to be able to skip the line. 

 

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14 hours ago, JaxsMama said:

The sign is always out saying rooms aren't ready until 130. With FTTF you ignore it and open the door and go to your room, which will be ready.

Doors were locked, knocked, no one came. 

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14 hours ago, JaxsMama said:

The sign is always out saying rooms aren't ready until 130. With FTTF you ignore it and open the door and go to your room, which will be ready.

Except when you can’t get into the hallway because doors are locked

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17 hours ago, JaxsMama said:

The sign is always out saying rooms aren't ready until 130. With FTTF you ignore it and open the door and go to your room, which will be ready.

 

For our second to the last cruise, we had FTTF and our cabin wasn't ready yet when we got there.  On our last cruise, we became Platinum and the cabin wasn't ready again.  It was no big deal, we just dropped off our carry ons and went to get something to eat.  When we returned, it was well before 1:30 and the cabins were ready both times.  It has a lot to do with how many priority/FTTF cabins the poor steward has in their area to get prepped.

 

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I've only got 2 cruises under my belt, but both times we had FTTF, and both times we had no problem getting to our room, and the room was ready. Going on Sunshine next month also with FTTF, hope it's nothing like that experience!!!🤞

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2 hours ago, RWolver672 said:

 

For our second to the last cruise, we had FTTF and our cabin wasn't ready yet when we got there.  On our last cruise, we became Platinum and the cabin wasn't ready again.  It was no big deal, we just dropped off our carry ons and went to get something to eat.  When we returned, it was well before 1:30 and the cabins were ready both times.  It has a lot to do with how many priority/FTTF cabins the poor steward has in their area to get prepped.

 

 

It is becoming more common for cabins not to be immediately ready due to the number of priority passengers on the cruise.  On several cruises, most recently on Sunshine last month, a Carnival employee announced in the priority lounge that all cabins wouldn’t be ready when we boarded the ship, but we were free to drop our luggage off at our cabins when we boarded. 

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6 hours ago, Cruisegoer said:

Doors were locked, knocked, no one came. 

One side is always unlocked. Very heavy doors and need to pull hard. It would not be in the interest of safety to lock both sides. I have never had an instance when I could not go through.

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55 minutes ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

 

It is becoming more common for cabins not to be immediately ready due to the number of priority passengers on the cruise.  On several cruises, most recently on Sunshine last month, a Carnival employee announced in the priority lounge that all cabins wouldn’t be ready when we boarded the ship, but we were free to drop our luggage off at our cabins when we boarded. 

 

Very true.  On our Horizon cruise they announced at the party that there were 561 Platinums and 80 something Diamonds.

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I don't think I will purchase it anymore due to the price increases. We did purchase when cruising out of Miami four years ago. We had it, our friends did not. We arrived about 11 and boarding yet, and was delayed about an hour due to crew safety training we were told. Once boarding started, we were on board within 5 minutes, while our friends were still outside waiting. They joined about 1.5 hours later, after we already had a nice buzz from the DOD! our cabin was not ready like you mentioned, but he told us to come back in 30 minutes and it would be ready. It was nice having a dedicated guest service line. We did self debarkation, along with our friends. We went to the FTTF section, and were off the boat within 5 minutes of when they started allowing people off. Once again, it was over an hour later before our friends got on the road. 

 

I certainly will not purchase it for the Fantasy class ships, because boarding on those have always been quick and a breeze with less people on board.

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3 minutes ago, Gamecock_Cruiser said:

I don't think I will purchase it anymore due to the price increases. We did purchase when cruising out of Miami four years ago. We had it, our friends did not. We arrived about 11 and boarding yet, and was delayed about an hour due to crew safety training we were told. Once boarding started, we were on board within 5 minutes, while our friends were still outside waiting. They joined about 1.5 hours later, after we already had a nice buzz from the DOD! our cabin was not ready like you mentioned, but he told us to come back in 30 minutes and it would be ready. It was nice having a dedicated guest service line. We did self debarkation, along with our friends. We went to the FTTF section, and were off the boat within 5 minutes of when they started allowing people off. Once again, it was over an hour later before our friends got on the road. 

 

I certainly will not purchase it for the Fantasy class ships, because boarding on those have always been quick and a breeze with less people on board.

 

Which ship out of Miami did you have this experience on?

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