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havanadaydreaming

what's your favorite Carnival port for departure?

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16 hours ago, Hunter69 said:

The World's most beautiful Harbour. My Home Town. SYDNEY. Australia.. Harbour Bridge, Opera House & a Australian Sunset... Sorry but there's nothing finer..

One Day I Hope!!

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So far we've cruised out of Galveston, Port Canaveral and New Orleans all were good but I think New Orleans was my favorite.

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my wife and I will do a cruise out of NOLA in the near future, i'll have to be mindful to book at a time of year where I can enjoy the ride down river to the Gulf during daylight. 

 

I love going out of FLL and MIA passing the residences on way to open waters.  I would LOVE to have an apartment on the high rise by Port Everglades so I could decorate the deck and honk an air horn when ships depart.  my neighbors would get me evicted soon after, I'm sure. 

 

 

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I've sailed from San Juan, Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa, and Galveston.  My favorite departure port, by a small margin, would be San Juan.  Yes, it's expensive to get to; and yes, the plane ride(s) is/are long (I have to fly to get to any departure port).  But they generally depart at night, which gives a nice view of the city, a (somewhat) cooler safety drill, more chances to get to the ship the day of, and more time to explore the ship before departure.  

 

My next departures are from Galveston (not a favorite; maybe this one will make me change my mind?) and Port Canaveral (first time).

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We have sailed from Miami, Ft. Lauderdale,  and just got back from sailing out of Canaveral.

 

For us, just logistically, Canaveral wins by a landslide. By far the easiest and quickest embarkation. Easy port parking as well.  They were right on time with checking in and we were on the ship about an hour earlier than expected (different cruise line so I'm not sure if that makes a difference) . Upon return, we did have to wait due to customs stopping disembarkation (they only had one agent working at the time) but it wasnt bad.  We chose to have a porter help us and he escorted us to the front of the line.  He was so helpful and so polite.  We couldn't find our cash for the tip (even emptied out our bags on the sidewalk) and he seemed genuinely pleased just to help us and told us it wasnt a big deal. (We did eventually find it and chased him down to give it to him)

 

Miami was a cluster. No organization. People pushing and shoving. 

 

Ft Lauderdale we had heard horror stories about but it was pretty easy as well. And the agents inside made the wait fun... very friendly and full of personality. 

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I've sailed out of San Diego, Long Beach, New Orleans, Port Canaveral and Miami.  For the beauty I would choose San Diego.  For ease Port Canaveral as we live 45 minutes away.  I love New Orleans because you just can't beat sailing down the river.  I haven't sailed out of Long Beach lately but found it painful.  Now that the dome is used I'm sure it's quite a bit nicer.  I sailed out of Miami once a few months ago.  I admit I was a bit paranoid about traffic (so many ships) but excellent signage kept everyone moving fairly quickly.

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23 hours ago, crooooze said:

NYC - It sucks to drive to and parking is ridiculous expensive.

 

But, I'll never get tired of that Manhattan skyline view from the Lido, passing by Lady Liberty, then beneath the Verrazzano bridge.

 

Wish Carnival would sail from NY year round...

 

I have only gone out of Port Canaveral & NYC, and they were both awesome. In NYC we hit the Intrepid before boarding, so that was cool, and of course the skyline and the Statue of Liberty are just heartstopping.

When we went out of Port Canaveral, there was a launch, so that was also a pretty cool departure!

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Live 3 hours from Mobile, 5-6 hours from New Orleans, Port Canaveral, and Tampa, and approximately 9-10 to FLL and MIA.  I normally sail based on the ship and itinerary, and have gone from all 6 of them, normally driving, but sometimes flying.

 

That being said, New Orleans is most convenient for getting on/off the ship and loading/unloading luggage to/from the car.

Port Canaveral offers the best value as far as pre-cruise hotel cost and parking is concerned.

Miami offers the most scenic view leaving port.

 

 

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Love Miami, would never sail out of a cold weather port. we heard last year out of Baltimore, 6" of snow on the Lido deck, no thanks. 

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4 hours ago, coevan said:

 

 

Did you just make this up, there is no charge for luggage. We have sailed out of Miami many times, never have been asked for money. However, we do tip. 

 

 

NO Not Made up. Get off the Carnival bus from the airport and wait for bus driver to unload luggage. Exit the bus and tip driver.  Miami porter said collect your bags and bring them over to a location in front of the bins and fee is 3 Buck's a Bag or THEY DON"T GET ON THE SHIP. Me i want to tell him were to go or carry on my own bags but had 3 suit cases. I am on vacation why do i have to put up with this. Only ever had this happen at Miami.

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10 minutes ago, phoneman69 said:

NO Not Made up. Get off the Carnival bus from the airport and wait for bus driver to unload luggage. Exit the bus and tip driver.  Miami porter said collect your bags and bring them over to a location in front of the bins and fee is 3 Buck's a Bag or THEY DON"T GET ON THE SHIP. Me i want to tell him were to go or carry on my own bags but had 3 suit cases. I am on vacation why do i have to put up with this. Only ever had this happen at Miami.

 

I am not saying it has never happened, but I find it hard to believe your luggage wouldn’t make it on the ship if you didn’t tip a porter. The porters are paid fairly well without tips. Most of them likely wouldn’t risk their job over not being tipped. 

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I don't put much into the whole "this port is so disorganized". I've been to some ports multiple times, and it was different each time. I don't care for cold weather ports either. I've been to Miami, Canaveral, New Orleans, and San Juan

 

Miami - Probably the most well-rounded. Plenty to do around the port. Easy to get to.

 

Canaveral - Probably my least favorite. It is a huge hassle to get to and from Orlando from. The only port where you HAVE to have transportation figured out before you debark. While elsewhere, you can rely on Uber

 

San Juan - Great port area. With the 9 PM sail time, you have plenty of time to explore the port. For us, the ports are ALWAYS part of the vacation! Flights are costly though. This one won't be a common one for that.

 

New Orleans - Another well-rounded port. Very easy to get around. Lots of fun nearby

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12 hours ago, Amadawn1 said:

Yes, the Cheers package does not kick in until day 2 out of Galveston.  You are also not paying for it until day 2.  So the Cheers pkg on a 7 day cruise is only charged at 6 days.  However, you can order any type of alcoholic drink on day 1.  It is just charged to your S&S card, along with sales tax.

 

True, you only pay for 6 days of CHEERS, not 7.   But like on Royal (or any other cruiseline for that matter) you only have a limited selection of alcohols available.   This has nothing to do with the lines, it has to do with the idiotic Tax Laws of Texas.  I believe the only alcohol that can be sold while in Texas waters, is alcohol obtained from a Texas Distributor!!  

 

Now for the interesting difference.  Texas law also forbids any practice which encourages the overconsumption of alcohol!!  For whatever reason Carnival has determined that their drink package falls into that category., while Royal has determined that theirs does not!!  :classic_wacko:

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On 5/27/2019 at 2:26 PM, Shaded Lady said:

I've always wanted to cruise out of New Orleans, maybe couple it with a few days in town before or after the cruise... it sounds like a wonderful sailaway down the river!!!

Then you would also like the cruises from Seattle. While its not a river the view is amazing. On out last cruise in 2015 it wasn't until after dinner that night that we actually cleared the straits of Juan de Fuca. The one negative is since you were in US territorial waters the entire time you were charged sales tax on everything you bought on the ship.  Even with the bubbles package I was still charged .25 for every fill.     

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I have been our of Galveston 4 1/2 times. Seattle 1 time, Charleston 2 times  and Port Canaveral 1/2 of a time.

 

Q: How did I go out of a port 1/2 time. A: It was a 14 day requisitioning cruise(The best cruise by far) on the Carnival Breeze form Galveston to Port Canaveral. I really can't rate Port Canaveral become I have only seen it from the debarking prospective, but I will say I didn't like long trip from the Terminal to Orlando airport though. 

 

Galveston is probably my choice because we live in DFW and the rates are good.

 

 

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I have no real memory of the boarding experience, so I assume it went smoothly, in both NYC and Port Canaveral.

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On 5/27/2019 at 3:26 PM, Shaded Lady said:

I've always wanted to cruise out of New Orleans, maybe couple it with a few days in town before or after the cruise... it sounds like a wonderful sailaway down the river!!!

Must agree. We have sailed out of New Orleans three times. Twice on the Dream and once on Elation. It is our favorite city to visit, as well as sail from. We have been there many times, for conferences mostly, and always enjoyed the city. We generally stay at the Chateau LeMoyne on Dauphine Steet in the French Quarter, just around the corner from our favorite restaurant, Arnauds's on Bienville St. Always have dinner there at least once every visit to the city. We enjoy leaving the city and the cruise down the river to the gulf. An added pleasure is that we have always had a positive experience at the port.

 

Worst experience we ever had was years ago in Philadelphia, when Celebrity was doing Bermuda cruises from there on the old Horizon. It was difficult to get to the port. Very poor infrastructure to use from the old Naval shipyard. Everything was delayed and terrible longshore service, with attitude. Refueling of the ship was several hours late completing, and they delayed embarkation as a result. No wonder the cruise industry pulled out.

 

However our most used port is Baltimore (five so far with two more booked) due to being able to drive. We have always enjoyed the Pride. Love that class of ship.

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On 5/27/2019 at 1:03 PM, havanadaydreaming said:

I've only departed from FLL, MIA and San Juan...of those three I'd pick Miami, i guess. but all 3 were fine. 

 

We did Canaveral on another cruise line and it would easily rank last by a wide margin.  

 

thoughts? 

It's a cruise!  They're all good.  I honestly have not had any problems at any port I have left from.  Galveston is always the most crowded so I will make note to myself to buy FTTF, if available.  I guess this is always the worst port for embarking since everyone arrives at once and doesn't use their check in time.  But it's a cruise!  I try to stay calm and go with the flow. 

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Embarked from Miami, Jacksonville, Galveston and NOLA.

 

Jacksonville was best for embarking but may have been because we were a suite.  It was a disaster disembarking.  Horrible experience!!!

 

Galveston was super easy to disembark. 

 

And you can drink once on board in Galveston.  

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