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Boarding in Auckland NZ - any issues?


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Has anyone boarded a Celebrity cruise in Auckland at Princess Wharf?

I’m just trying to find out what the process is and if there were any problems or if anyone has any tips… we will be boarding on 1st April

We’ve only done 1 cruise so far and we boarded and disembarked in Sydney Australia – they have a designated cruise passenger terminal and although we had to queue up like checking in at the airport, the process was smooth and easy

Auckland doesn’t have a designated cruise terminal, to my knowledge so I’m just wondering how the process is for boarding in Auckland (our home town)

Thanks in advance

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Based on my experience December, it's pretty straight forward.


For that sailing, they closed off the area and only cruise-related traffic was allowed to pull into the wharf. Basically it looked like the parking spots for the wharf buildings became makeshift drop-off zones. Staff directed our driver to a location to let us off. Nearby was an area full of porters ready to receive larger luggage for check-in. Next to that, there was a building where they had set up for the usual security checks as well as another area with tables and laptops for getting your SeaPass card. So after a couple short lines and queues, there was just the gangway — and then we were sipping bubbles on the ship. We left our hotel and got there slightly after 11 a.m. and it wasn't too crowded. We were onboard by 11:25 a.m.

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We board in Auckland on Feb 17 and received an email telling us not to arrive before 12 noon. We are staying at the Hilton at the Warf where we embark so will be right there. Also wondering if we need to adhere to that timeline or is it like Ft Lauderdale/Miami Caribbean departures where we show up when we want no matter what our SeaPass says.

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I expect you should be able to at least drop off your luggage in the morning..... when we boarding Sydney we were able to drop our luggage off about 10:30am then get in the queue to board about 11:30am - 12pm

I’m hoping it will be about the same in Auckland..... last time we spent so much time exploring Solstice (was our first cruise) we forgot to get some lunch!

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We've done three cruises from Auckland on Solstice. The first time we tried boarding early but the queue was very long. For the other two cruises we dropped our bags off, went and had some lunch, then boarded without any queues at all. Cabins were ready by then and on the last time our luggage arrived at our cabin before we did so we got our unpacking done right away then could relax around the ship.

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You can drop your bags off from around 9.00 am. The sooner you do so the quicker they are delivered onboard to the ship and hopefully to your cabin. It is unusual to be able to board before 11.00 am as it takes until then to get the ship fully cleared and ready for the next cruise. Ships board either according to status and/or cabin selection , often a combination of both.

The OP indicates that they want to get on board as early as possible hence I would suggest that the arrive between 10 and 10.30. You may have to queue up as many others want similar results but by arriving early one will get on earlier and be able to do damage to the drinks package.

By patient, don't get rattled and chill out with the flow. If you start stressing in the queues to board it will create a bad start to the cruise. Once onboard enjoy a glass of bubbles


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  • 2 weeks later...

Short que. We walked out the Hilton front doors down the ramp and into the cruise doors at 1200. The bigger issue were the pax disembarking and waiting outside cruise terminal and Hilton driveway for lifts.

By the way..... you have a beautiful city!!! Sorry we discovered it so late in life! NZ rocks!

Edited by 3Shelaghs
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