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Port of Tampa recommendations

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We are sailing on the Carnival Paradise in Sept, at Tampa. 

We have cruised 6 times before, but never out of this port.

We usually just pick a hotel that has a park and cruise package, and stay there the night before and leave our vehicle at the hotel for the duration of the cruise. 


What does everyone recommend for this port? 

Thought about just doing one parking lots (like parkway parking) and just leaving our vehicle there for the duration. 


If hotels are the best bet, I'm looking for the cheapest.



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I live about a block away from the port. The port is in the channel district which is part of downtown Tampa. There's an official port garage and several unofficial but still close lots. Most of them would be fine, but I personally probably wouldn't leave my car at the one that's closer to Ybor (forget the name) because it's right next to some housing projects and looks pretty unattended most of the time. Since the port is downtown the cheapest hotels are not going to be nearby, but there's several in south Tampa like the Tahitian Inn and the quality inn on Dale Mabry that do cruise shuttles

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I read this on Cruise Critic:


We park in the Channelside garage through Park Connect, at half the price.  There are several reviews on the embarkation ports forum, but in summary, you pay in advance and are then assigned a parking garage, and it is always Channelside.  You show your paid receipt when you arrive, are told which level to park on, then just drive off when you leave.


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I second for Park connect, seems to good to be true, but we used it

last Jan.  works like a charm.  We paid $28 for 5 day cruise. When we did

it, it was automatic for Channelside garage, and they just said welcome. We could park

anywhere.  Maybe because we were the only ship at port.  I read everything

I could find before we tried it, so glad we did.  I wish it would expand to other ports!


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Several hotels in the Rocky Point area offer cruise parking with shuttles.  Chase Suites, Hilton, etc.

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