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No.  The ship is docked but it will depend on how many ships there are to disembark. It's about 45 minutes to the airport from Canada Place. We've left the port at 11:45 am on another line....it was pandemonium. Not enough customs/immigration people at the port. 

 

Also, at Vancouver airport, we had global entry and our friends did not.  We got through 15 minutes.  They were 90 minutes.

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Thanks.  We do have Global entry, but if we can't get off the ship right away, that will not help us.  Trying to figure return flights, and it seems like the choices may be a red eye or another night in Vancouver. post cruise.

 

 

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The earliest flight out of Vancouver I recommend is noon but I prefer 1pm or later.

 

Although the ship might dock at 7am, it’s possible you will not be able to disembark for an hour or more.  

 

Nancy

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As I have said numerous times, why do you want to ruin your last day on the ship worrying about making your WAY too early flight?? It is a 45 minute (give or take) drive to the airport and who knows when you will actually get off the ship, fight you way through the thundering herds and actually be on your way! We are taking the family on an Alaska cruise in July (on RCI, but that's another story) and I told them no one leaves until the day after! Vancouver is a beautiful city and there are lots of great hotels within five blocks of Canada Place, so take the extra day and enjoy your last day on the ship!

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We live a few miles from you, and have faced the challenge of flying home to the DC area after disembarking Vancouver a couple of times. We have been fortunate to find flight connections home between noon and 2 p.m. that work. Since you must go through U.S. immigration and customs at the Vancouver airport (assuming your flight goes to a U.S. hub for connecting to DC), you must allow time for that. However, as others have mentioned, if the Vancouver cruise terminal is busy, which it usually is, there can be confusion and a hassle just catching airport transportation when you leave the ship. Suggest you do NOT do what we did last time. Do not take the Crystal (or any cruise line, for that matter,) bus transportation to the airport. We were caught in traffic for about 30 minutes just leaving the port and once we got to the airport, the bus was forced to go to a holding area while we had to listen to a lecture on safety while our bus waited for traffic to clear before it could enter the airport grounds...I kid you not! It was awful. If we had to do this again, we would hire a car service, as we also understand taxi lines can be a hassle and, as of now, there is no Uber or Lyft in Vancouver. Even private limos have to wait outside the terminal til you go to a desk and have them dispatched in to pick you up, as I understand it. Perhaps Keith1010 can chime in here, as I know he took the Crystal booked private car service a couple of years ago. Also, agree with Roland4 that Vancouver is beautiful place to spend a day after your cruise and flying home the next day should avoid lots of stress.

 

Ed

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Grab a cab.  Easiest method.

 

Also, if you want to utilize Global Entry at YVR, be sure to take your actual GE card.  That's the only way that you will get into the priority security screening line that funnels into the GE kiosks.

 

 

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Is it typical for international flights to require US customs at the foreign airport?  We will be flying home from Rome in a few months, and this discussion makes me wonder if that is yet another thing I will have to do there.  Or is it specific to Vancouver?

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1 hour ago, SusieQft said:

Is it typical for international flights to require US customs at the foreign airport?  We will be flying home from Rome in a few months, and this discussion makes me wonder if that is yet another thing I will have to do there.  Or is it specific to Vancouver?

 

It's all of the major airports in Canada. You clear there and the flight is then treated like a domestic flight.

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As others said Noon or later.

 

As to the cab, if you go with a taxi check how many ships are in port. If three a better option is to get the taxi by walking over to the Pan Pacific Hotel or across the street to one of the Fairmont Hotels  as the back up for taxis at the port can be unreal.  If one ship a different story.

 

Consider the night in Vancouver  as there is lots to see  and do and I never recommend the pressure of making an early flight as you will spend half the cruise worrying about making the  flight.  Better to just enjoy the extra time and be one of the last off the ship.

 

Keith

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3 hours ago, Texas Tillie said:

 

It's all of the major airports in Canada. You clear there and the flight is then treated like a domestic flight.

You clear customs and immigration only for day (up to 7 or 8 PM) flights.  After that time, you clear at the arrival AP.

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5 hours ago, SusieQft said:

Is it typical for international flights to require US customs at the foreign airport?  We will be flying home from Rome in a few months, and this discussion makes me wonder if that is yet another thing I will have to do there.  Or is it specific to Vancouver?


No it isn’t typical, other than those in Canada and a couple in the Caribbean the only other international airports with US Customs pre-clearance are Dublin and Shannon in Ireland and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates...

 

Anne..

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We don't live to far down the road from you and we had a hard time finding a flight back into the DC area.  Unfortunately, we did not have the flexibility to stay the night. We did find this flight through Delta for an upcoming cruise. Not sure if it would work for you.

 

Delta 4494 operated by SUBSIDIARY/FRANCHISE
Vancouver (YVR)
1:15pm
Terminal: M
flight to
Salt Lake City (SLC)
4:34pm

Terminal: 2

 
 

mail?url=http%3A%2F%2Fmedia.expedia.com%2Fmedia%2Fcontent%2Fexpus%2Fgraphics%2Fstatic_content%2Ffusion%2Fv0.1b%2Fimages%2Fairlines%2Falt%2Fuitk-icon-time%402x.png&t=1578073854&ymreqid=1c014275-0b4e-c403-1c06-4e0013010400&sig=bMdmRb.Rf0tUaZReBg13cw--~C 56m stop Salt Lake City (SLC)

Delta 2249
Salt Lake City (SLC)
5:30pm
Terminal: 2
flight to
Washington (IAD)
11:25pm
 
3h 55m duration
Edited by parallax
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Two things work against a simple return from YVR to the East Coast:

 

1) At least 6 hours of actual flight time

2) Three hours of time change.

 

From most west coast airports, your eastbound flight leave in the morning through noonish, then pick up again as red-eyes.  You may find flights to a mid-con hub, but then there will likely be nothing going east til the next day.

 

 

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2 hours ago, FlyerTalker said:

Two things work against a simple return from YVR to the East Coast:

 

1) At least 6 hours of actual flight time

2) Three hours of time change.

 

From most west coast airports, your eastbound flight leave in the morning through noonish, then pick up again as red-eyes.  You may find flights to a mid-con hub, but then there will likely be nothing going east til the next day.

 

 

I would say 3.  Those 2 plus the need for Canadian immigration at the port and US immigration at YVR.  The last time I flew home from YVR (this was booked as a HAL tour but I think it was available independently) there was a package with an agency at the port (i) store bags at the port or transfer them to the airport, (ii) provide a day pass for the hop on hop off bus, and (iii) a metro ticket to the airport.  I booked the Fairmont YVR and spent the day in town and going out to the airport after dinner.  When I got to the hotel the bags were waiting in my room.  Easy-peasy.

 

Roy

Edited by rafinmd
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5 minutes ago, rafinmd said:

I would say 3.  Those 2 plus the need for Canadian immigration at the port and US immigration at YVR.  The last time I flew home from YVR (this was booked as a HAL tour but I think it was available independently) there was a package with an agency at the port (i) store bags at the port or transfer them to the airport, (ii) provide a day pass for the hop on hop off bus, and (iii) a metro ticket to the airport.  I booked the Fairmont YVR and spent the day in town and going out to the airport after dinner.  When I got to the hotel the bags were waiting in my room.  Easy-peasy.

Roy, this sounds like an interesting option.  But I am confused about the bags.  Was the hotel included in your package?  Did they deliver all the airport bound bags to the Fairmont, or only for those who booked a room there?

Karen

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3 hours ago, parallax said:

We don't live to far down the road from you and we had a hard time finding a flight back into the DC area.  Unfortunately, we did not have the flexibility to stay the night. We did find this flight through Delta for an upcoming cruise. Not sure if it would work for you.

 

Delta 4494 operated by SUBSIDIARY/FRANCHISE
Vancouver (YVR)
1:15pm
Terminal: M
flight to
Salt Lake City (SLC)
4:34pm

Terminal: 2

 
 

mail?url=http%3A%2F%2Fmedia.expedia.com%2Fmedia%2Fcontent%2Fexpus%2Fgraphics%2Fstatic_content%2Ffusion%2Fv0.1b%2Fimages%2Fairlines%2Falt%2Fuitk-icon-time%402x.png&t=1578073854&ymreqid=1c014275-0b4e-c403-1c06-4e0013010400&sig=bMdmRb.Rf0tUaZReBg13cw--~C 56m stop Salt Lake City (SLC)

Delta 2249
Salt Lake City (SLC)
5:30pm
Terminal: 2
flight to
Washington (IAD)
11:25pm
 
3h 55m duration

We did a similarly timed connection through ORD on United to BWI.

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45 minutes ago, SusieQft said:

Roy, this sounds like an interesting option.  But I am confused about the bags.  Was the hotel included in your package?  Did they deliver all the airport bound bags to the Fairmont, or only for those who booked a room there?

Karen

I booked the hotel separately.  I think one of the options was actually delivery to hotels, and a specific group of hotels was mentioned.

 

This was the vendor affiliated with my tour:

 

http://www.cdsbaggage.ca/

 

 

 

Roy

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We disembarked in Vancouver from Symphony in August. There were 3 other ships in port. We walked off with luggage at 8AM and were in the airport at our gate at 9:15. We had been in Victoria the previous day and cleared Canadian customs there.We do not have the line skipping global entry tool but there were many automated machines that worked very well.  I was a little nervous but the alternative to the 11:50 flight were terrible.

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2 hours ago, latsyrc said:

We disembarked in Vancouver from Symphony in August. There were 3 other ships in port. We walked off with luggage at 8AM and were in the airport at our gate at 9:15. We had been in Victoria the previous day and cleared Canadian customs there.We do not have the line skipping global entry tool but there were many automated machines that worked very well.  I was a little nervous but the alternative to the 11:50 flight were terrible.

When things go well they go well.

 

When they don't it's not good.

 

I have made it to the Miami airport and LAX by 8:30 AM respectively when things go right.

 

When they go wrong I've made it much later.

 

Sort of like flying in the day of the cruise.    Many times it works  When it doesn't it can be a disaster.  Would I do it?  Never, never.

 

You just never know.

 

I do think a flight at Noon or later is the way to go in Vancouver.

 

Keith

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3 hours ago, SusieQft said:

Roy, this sounds like an interesting option.  But I am confused about the bags.  Was the hotel included in your package?  Did they deliver all the airport bound bags to the Fairmont, or only for those who booked a room there?

Karen

 

2 hours ago, rafinmd said:

I booked the hotel separately.  I think one of the options was actually delivery to hotels, and a specific group of hotels was mentioned.

This was the vendor affiliated with my tour:

http://www.cdsbaggage.ca/

Roy

Unfortunately CDS no longer operate at the pier (they do at the airport, but that doesn't help at all with cruises). The only way to get your bags moved for you now is with PorterGenie - which works out to about $40 for the first bag to be collected, stored, and delivered to YVR or a Richmond-area hotel (i.e. about the same as the old CDS service charged for 4 bags), but the pickup/delivery fees are fixed so if you have a lot of bags the price per bag drops.

 

Assuming that you're considering an overnight then a morning flight next day, some specific-to-Vancouver info that might be very useful to you:

  • First, given that any airport hotel other than the Fairmont involves a shuttle, which can mean anything from 10 to 50 minutes to transfer, frankly you may as well just book a downtown hotel in terms of getting an early flight next morning.
  • Second - CBP don't open until 4:30am, and then have a meeting to discuss the shift, so realistically it's 4:45am before anyone gets prescreened. Factor in all the sensibly-conservative (arrive 3 hours preflight) travelers who lack this information, and I'm sure you can imagine that the queue at 4:30am for prescreening is simply ridiculous - every single flight heading to the US that leaves  before about 8:30am has at least some of the pax lining up because they don't know that CBP are not open! As long as you meet the required deadline (1 hour preflight for bag drop) YVR staff will hustle you to the head of the line even if you don't have GE - nobody wants you to miss your flight, and there are many each morning between 6am and 8am where it's simply impossible to comply with 'recommended' timelines because of CBP prescreenings limited hours.
  • In short, even if you are a very conservative traveler and book a 7am flight don't head to YVR before 5am - arrive at or a little after 5 and you should swan through security and CBP in 30 minutes or less and be sitting at your gate with one last Timmies before 6am.

If instead you stay downtown, you immediately save all that baggage transfer cash to put toward your hotel room - just walk there if you can roll your own bags, there are probably at least two dozen hotels within easy walk with a suitcase for most folks (and worst case, the Pan Pacific already mentioned is in the same building and the Fairmonts Waterfront and Pacific Rim are the other side of the street so the bellstaff will help you with bags if you call them). Book a cab through your hotel concierge for next morning - at 4:30am if you have an early flight, you will arrive at YVR from most downtown hotels within 35mins or less as there won't be any traffic to worry about. If you're in one of our 'too far to walk to' hotels downtown you're still only looking at a cab fare on the order of CAD$15 at most - we have very conveniently placed the pier as well as at least 95% of our hotels and tourist attractions in the downtown core for you (we're nice that way in Vancouver!)

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