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handbellplayer

Confused About S & S Cards and FTTF

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16 minutes ago, Organized Chaos said:

If you've gotten your luggage early after tipping the porter more, it was by sheer coincidence. The porters are employed by the port, not Carnival. They load your luggage onto their cart, then wait to fill the cart with more luggage. That's where yours begins to get lost in the mix. They're not watching yours to make sure it goes first. Then all they do is take the luggage to a staging area where they're stacked into the large bins that are then loaded onto the ship. By that time, all those bags get shuffled around. Once on the ship, they get shuffled around some more to find the bags with priority delivery and arrange them according to decks. The porter you gave more money to never gave it any thought. They don't see any one bag through from pick-up to cabin...they can't. They aren't holding bags aside to be delivered by a certain time according to their tips. So sorry to say, you're not buying your way ahead of anyone. The porters you're tipping more than you need to are the ones laughing.

 

The porters have control over which cart your luggage goes into. Do you really think they treat luggage from someone who stiffs them the same as the guy that hands them a $20?

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4 minutes ago, wms99 said:

The porters have control over which cart your luggage goes into. Do you really think they treat luggage from someone who stiffs them the same as the guy that hands them a $20?

 

With as many passengers they pick up from, as many pieces of luggage they handle, I seriously doubt they're going to be so vindictive that they set someone's luggage aside till later because of a lack of tip. Sure, they probably don't appreciate not getting a tip, but there's a lot more where that came from. And I'm willing to bet Carnival would never stand for it. They have a lot of work to do to load that ship and stay on schedule. They wouldn't tolerate porters playing luggage gods. Do you really think he's keeping a close eye on your bag, among all those other bags with it that he transports back to the staging area, just to make sure you get special treatment? And when it's all said and done, priority luggage (designated by priority tags) gets delivered first. Those are handled by Carnival crew, not porters.

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19 hours ago, handbellplayer said:

I thought one of the benefits of FTTF was getting your luggage early. 

 

Thanks for the info.  It just seems like a strange way to do things - probably because I'm used to a different procedure.

I've had FTTF every cruise except our last one. We've had are bags within an hour of being on ship so around noon but they've never been at the room waiting by the time we got there. That would be some serious moving.

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18 hours ago, handbellplayer said:

Although this would be really nice, it's not why I booked FTTF - I wanted the immediate cabin access and the priority tendering.  The dedicated GS line is nice, too.

Agreed. Same here. 

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Posted (edited)
22 hours ago, handbellplayer said:

Although this would be really nice, it's not why I booked FTTF - I wanted the immediate cabin access and the priority tendering.  The dedicated GS line is nice, too.

It's why we booked it too.  We're on Pride in 9 days and booked it late (like July 1).  We got a 230-3 check in which didn't thrill me.  Were used to RCI where we can check in when we want.  Anyway,  FTTF was sold out, but I kept checking.  Last Saturday, while we were out at dinner, I just happened to check and it was available so I grabbed it.  There must have been several because it remained available for an hour or so after I got mine.  We plan to be at the port in Baltimore by 1145 so being able to get into our cabin that normally wouldn't open til 2 or so will be nice.  We're also going to HMC, so priority tendering is a plus.

 

We normally cruise RCI but don't need the Key (which apparently isn't that great) because we're Diamond+ which gets us a few things including priority lines at the port. We're just so used to it. 

Edited by BND

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17 hours ago, Organized Chaos said:

 

If you're not priority of any kind, whether that be FTTF or P/D, then you shouldn't be going through the doors and into the cabin hallways. The housekeeping teams are very busy and they don't need more people than Carnival already allows wandering the hallways, getting their S&S cards early, and (some) putting their luggage in their room when they shouldn't be.

 

 

 

 

Im in and out quick. not all of us go. just grab the cards and leave. never put my stuff down there. but hey that's just me 

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30 minutes ago, EngineCo52 said:

 

Im in and out quick. not all of us go. just grab the cards and leave. never put my stuff down there. but hey that's just me 

Because the rules don't apply to you🙄

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17 minutes ago, DallasGuy75219 said:

Because the rules don't apply to you🙄

 

pretty much 😘

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Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, BND said:

It's why we booked it too.  We're on Pride in 9 days and booked it late (like July 1).  We got a 230-3 check in which didn't thrill me.  Were used to RCI where we can check in when we want. 

 

One of the reasons CCL went to the check-in times was make things go smoother. I saw a big difference from no check-in times to having check-in times once it was implemented. Before there were long lines and a packed waiting area (this was in Galveston, so it may be different for other ports). It hasn't been that way since they started having cruisers pick check-in times. Leaving the cards in the mailboxes has streamlined it even further. I still buy FTTF,  but now it's only for the GS line and early debark. Unless someone has a  physical need to be in their cabin early (small kids, health issues, etc), it's almost not worth buying it at the current prices just for that or simply to add a couple of hours to a vacation by boarding early. 

Edited by Rudyard

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3 minutes ago, Rudyard said:

 

One of the reasons CCL went to the check-in times was make things go smoother. I saw a big difference from no check-in times to having check-in times once it was implemented. Before there were long lines and a packed waiting area (this was in Galveston, so it may be different for other ports). It hasn't been that way since they started having cruisers pick check-in times. Leaving the cards in the mailboxes has streamlined it even further. I still buy FTTF,  but now it's only for the GS line and early debark. Unless someone has a  physical need to be in their cabin early (small kids, health issues, etc), it's almost not worth buying it at the current prices just for that or simply to add a couple of hours to a vacation by boarding early. 

Royal doesn't use them and the only issues I've ever seen are at poorly laid out ports like Cape liberty where traffic gets a bit snarled with drop off and pickup in the same place.  Having cruised Carnival before, we have always preferred the way Royal handles embarkation and debarkation.   A few of Royal's ships have the cards at the room also.  But, you have to wait til the cabins open, regardless of status.  They've never had an issue that I have heard about with cards being stolen.  As for going early, living in the DC area and having driven my whole life on I-95 and I-495, I much prefer to go as early as possible to avoid backups around DC and Baltimore.  We also love to get on early, unpack and relax.  Especially in the summer, arriving to check in at 230-3 means you could easily be arriving during a t-storm.  If you've ever cruised out of Baltimore, there is no parking garage and you have to walk across open areas to get to the terminal, even if you are being dropped off.  $90 is a cheap way to  arrive when we want to.  And, we've cruised out of Baltimore 7 times on Royal and have never had anything but a great experience.  The ship almost always boards by 11 and it flows great.  I don't think I've ever seen the waiting areas more than 1/2 full there.

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9 hours ago, EngineCo52 said:

 

Im in and out quick. not all of us go. just grab the cards and leave. never put my stuff down there. but hey that's just me 

I’m sure you’re not the only one that does this. Down the road, they will lock the doors and nobody will be able to go to their cabin. 

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27 minutes ago, crzndeb said:

I’m sure you’re not the only one that does this. Down the road, they will lock the doors and nobody will be able to go to their cabin. 

 

The person who posted about going to their cabin to get their S&S cards had to have some kind of priority status. They don’t put out the S&S cards for passengers without priority until 1:30 PM. 

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9 hours ago, DallasGuy75219 said:

Because the rules don't apply to you🙄

 

You are allowed to go to your cabin early if you have priority status. The poster obviously had some kind of priority status, otherwise the S&S cards wouldn’t be available until 1:30 PM. 

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24 minutes ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

 

You are allowed to go to your cabin early if you have priority status. The poster obviously had some kind of priority status, otherwise the S&S cards wouldn’t be available until 1:30 PM. 

 

I'm Diamond and don't need the rules explained to me. Some stewards put out all their S&S cards early.  When I go to my cabin before 1:30 there are entire blocks of cabins (i.e., a steward's entire section) with S&S cards out. 

 

If the poster actually had priority status, he/she wouldn't feel the need to give four reasons to justify his/her actions.

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18 minutes ago, DallasGuy75219 said:

 

I'm Diamond and don't need the rules explained to me. Some stewards put out all their S&S cards early.  When I go to my cabin before 1:30 there are entire blocks of cabins (i.e., a steward's entire section) with S&S cards out.

 

I am good friends with several cabin stewards and they are under strict guidance not to put out S&S cards for non-priority guests prior to 1:30 PM. I don’t discount your experience, but it is possible everyone around you had some kind of priority status. You see this frequently on newer ships, journey cruises and premier cruises where half the ship or more has some kind of priority status. 

 

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@handbellplayer FYI- we get FTTF for almost every cruise (skipped once, big mistake!)… we usually get our luggage pretty early (before muster). Our last cruise we got to our cabins at noon (they started embarkation a bit late- 11:45) and our keys were in the mail slot and our luggage was waiting for us.

 

One thing a lot of people fail to do is get the orange priority sticker added to their luggage when they give their suitcases to the porters when they get to the port. Without that orange sticker it doesn't matter if the regular luggage tags you assigned say Priority or not. If the porter happens to notice it, he 'might' put the orange sticker on... but then again he might not! I always ask them to attach the orange sticker in my presence, with the tip he's going to get held conspicuously in my hand! The only times I failed to get my luggage quite early with FTTF were the times I didn't get the stickers added when I dropped my suitcases off.

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1 hour ago, Shaded Lady said:

@handbellplayer FYI- we get FTTF for almost every cruise (skipped once, big mistake!)… we usually get our luggage pretty early (before muster). Our last cruise we got to our cabins at noon (they started embarkation a bit late- 11:45) and our keys were in the mail slot and our luggage was waiting for us.

 

One thing a lot of people fail to do is get the orange priority sticker added to their luggage when they give their suitcases to the porters when they get to the port. Without that orange sticker it doesn't matter if the regular luggage tags you assigned say Priority or not. If the porter happens to notice it, he 'might' put the orange sticker on... but then again he might not! I always ask them to attach the orange sticker in my presence, with the tip he's going to get held conspicuously in my hand! The only times I failed to get my luggage quite early with FTTF were the times I didn't get the stickers added when I dropped my suitcases off.

Good information!  

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1 hour ago, handbellplayer said:

Good information!  

OK - so let's see if I understand.  In addition to paying for FTTF, I have to dog the porters (who  couldn't care less, in my experience) to put special stickers on our luggage?  I thought paying for FTTF ensured that our luggage would get priority. Wow.

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Posted (edited)

I used to think this wasn't a problem until last month.  Royal Caribbean does this procedure on the newer ships.  We just returned from Anthem of the Seas in June.  When the cabins were ready, we went to our's.  Our cards were not there.  I went down to Guest Services, stood in line and had new cards printed.  When I opened the door, there were bags in our cabin that weren't our's and the envelope that had our cards in it was on the desk and the cards were gone.  I checked the tags and the people who came into our cabin weren't even close to their own.  They just showed up at a random door, entered, took the cards and went off about the ship.  We spent an hour on embarkation day with Security and Guest Services at our cabin until the offending party could be located to retrieve their stuff and questioned as to what happened. To say I was pissed off was an understatement.  I asked to have the cabin fully cleaned again and made sure nothing had been charged on our cards.

 

So for those saying "It can't happen."  I have news for you.  It can and it does!

Edited by EMBFlyer

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23 minutes ago, handbellplayer said:

I have to dog the porters

 

 

I never heard this expression, unless you mean following them around. 

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27 minutes ago, handbellplayer said:

OK - so let's see if I understand.  In addition to paying for FTTF, I have to dog the porters (who  couldn't care less, in my experience) to put special stickers on our luggage?  I thought paying for FTTF ensured that our luggage would get priority. Wow.

I'm afraid so... the bright orange sticker is what makes sure that the luggage gets placed in the Priority bins for early delivery... without the sticker it may or may not happen. That's an issue of the port staff, not Carnival...

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1 minute ago, coevan said:

 

 

I never heard this expression, unless you mean following them around. 

Sorry - is that a southern expression?  Just to clarify - it means bug/bother/insist.  My point was that the passenger (who has paid for FTTF) has to make sure that the porters do what one would assume would be automatic.

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14 minutes ago, EMBFlyer said:

I used to think this wasn't a problem until last month.  Royal Caribbean does this procedure on the newer ships.  We just returned from Anthem of the Seas in June.  When the cabins were ready, we went to our's.  Our cards were not there.  I went down to Guest Services, stood in line and had new cards printed.  When I opened the door, there were bags in our cabin that weren't our's and the envelope that had our cards in it was on the desk and the cards were gone.  I checked the tags and the people who came into our cabin weren't even close to their own.  They just showed up at a random door, entered, took the cards and went off about the ship.  We spent an hour on embarkation day with Security and Guest Services at our cabin until the offending party could be located to retrieve their stuff and questioned as to what happened. To say I was pissed off was an understatement.  I asked to have the cabin fully cleaned again and made sure nothing had been charged on our cards.

 

So for those saying "It can't happen."  I have news for you.  It can and it does!

This is what I am afraid will happen.

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sorry, We never had to bug, bother , or insist, usually the porters are running over to our Taxi or Uber as we approach the port. 

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1 minute ago, handbellplayer said:

This is what I am afraid will happen.

I had started to calm down until the Security Officer decided to bring Mr. Jersey Shore (we sailed out of Bayonne) over to "apologize".  His apology included the words, "Don't know what you're so upset about, bro.  It's no big deal."  Let's just say, I had to walk down the hall to avoid being in violation of the Guest Conduct Policy.

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