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I was on a Carnival excursion once, we were 45 minutes late getting back to the ship. Yes, they did wait for us. 
I wasn’t too concerned since the captain’s 13 year old daughter was with us 🙂 
 

that’s about the closest I have come. 

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Being from Boston we normally leave a day or two before, well this one time I decide "let;s try day of".

We always had to go Feb school vacation.....ppl from Boston know Logan is a mess Feb vaca.

We had the first flight, weather was good, but layover in SC. In my head I'm thinking no problem

of a weather delay at SC.....well ,thought I thought of everything from where we would change planes,

(could not find a direct flight) even with stop we would have gotten into FLL by 11am, plenty of time to

get to the ship. Had private driver waiting....I am on it!!!  Yup....NASA had a launch.....didn't think of that.

Got delayed.  WE MADE IT....Never ever again would I do that. But trust me If for some crazy reason I would,

I will now check NASA launches!!!!!! 🤣🤣  Can't make this stuff up!

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We have never missed the ship. We like most other experienced cruisers show up a day early when we fly. I know that not everyone agrees with excursions from the ship. We have been late, past all aboard on an excursion. The ship called our guide when we were stuck in traffic. That day it was money well spent. 

We also learned a valuable lesson about drinking in port, time flies by. We pulled up to the ship and there was one worker, everything outside had been cleaned up. He had a clip board and asked our names, crossed them off when we told him. He did mention there was one more group behind us.

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Not us but my in-laws very nearly didn't make it onto the ship.  If they hadn't had DCL book their transportation, they would have been SOL.  As it was, they were the last people onto the ship which  left Port Canaveral 45 minutes late  because of them.  

 What happened was this. Not only did my FIL not take our advice about flying in the day before, but my FIL, who hadn't flown in decades, didn't heed our advice about getting to the airport extra early the morning of their flight to Florida.  Instead, an hour before their flight time, he was still motoring through the airport parking lot looking for the best spot.  My BIL, who was with them in the truck, was pretty fed up and asked to be let out.  They let him out, and he booked it to the check-in desk and made it onto the flight with only seconds to spare.  MIL and FIL didn't make the flight, but DCL arranged for the airline to put them on the next flight and had a shuttle bus waiting for them when they landed.  

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5 minutes ago, Silent Penguin said:

Not us but my in-laws very nearly didn't make it onto the ship.  If they hadn't had DCL book their transportation, they would have been SOL.  As it was, they were the last people onto the ship which  left Port Canaveral 45 minutes late  because of them.  

 What happened was this. Not only did my FIL not take our advice about flying in the day before, but my FIL, who hadn't flown in decades, didn't heed our advice about getting to the airport extra early the morning of their flight to Florida.  Instead, an hour before their flight time, he was still motoring through the airport parking lot looking for the best spot.  My BIL, who was with them in the truck, was pretty fed up and asked to be let out.  They let him out, and he booked it to the check-in desk and made it onto the flight with only seconds to spare.  MIL and FIL didn't make the flight, but DCL arranged for the airline to put them on the next flight and had a shuttle bus waiting for them when they landed.  

^^^^^This!

No matter how  diligent you have researched the pre-boarding requirements, you can never be so careful to schedule a flight, as to assume all will be scheduled as planned. Delays do happen. Fly in the night before! Leave yourself enough time to make it into the port!

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We always drive to the port the night before and spend the night in a hotel.  What if the car breaks down? At least we could get an Uber to the port and worry about the car when we get back from our cruise. Too stressful to drive in the day of the cruise😲

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15 hours ago, Silent Penguin said:

Not us but my in-laws very nearly didn't make it onto the ship.  If they hadn't had DCL book their transportation, they would have been SOL.  As it was, they were the last people onto the ship which  left Port Canaveral 45 minutes late  because of them.  

 What happened was this. Not only did my FIL not take our advice about flying in the day before, but my FIL, who hadn't flown in decades, didn't heed our advice about getting to the airport extra early the morning of their flight to Florida.  Instead, an hour before their flight time, he was still motoring through the airport parking lot looking for the best spot.  My BIL, who was with them in the truck, was pretty fed up and asked to be let out.  They let him out, and he booked it to the check-in desk and made it onto the flight with only seconds to spare.  MIL and FIL didn't make the flight, but DCL arranged for the airline to put them on the next flight and had a shuttle bus waiting for them when they landed.  

 

Wow, I've heard of cruise lines being very accommodating when you book flights and something goes wrong. But I wouldn't have expected it for you missing the flight. I would think they would tell you that that's on you.

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15 minutes ago, sanger727 said:

 

Wow, I've heard of cruise lines being very accommodating when you book flights and something goes wrong. But I wouldn't have expected it for you missing the flight. I would think they would tell you that that's on you.

I apologize if I'm telling you something you already know, but DCL is in a class by itself when it comes to what they will do for their guests. They're customer service is "insane".  Here's a thumbnail sketch of our personal "Wow" stories with DCL.

  • 1st DCL cruise - Three days before the cruise, I printed our documents and tags. Two adjacent, oceanview rooms. At check in, we learn that the 2 adjacent, ocean-view rooms were upgrade to connecting balcony rooms. No charge. 
  • 2nd DCL cruise -Our kids (5, 8 and 10) were too tired after a long day in port to go to dinner.  Dh and I allowed them to stay in the room with a room service meal.  Dh and I left for dinner right after their hot dogs and french fries arrived.  When I came back an hour later to check on them, the dinner dishes were gone and they were eating big chocolate chip cookies and Mickey bars. Thinking they had called room service again -something I told them not to do-I scolded them. All three kids immediately and adamantly denied it, saying room service called them to ask them if they wanted dessert.  I knew it was the truth.
  • Last DCL cruise - We sailed with friends. Our kids (5 teens) attend a Teen Club meet-greet with the ship's officers. The hotel Director asked the group what would make their cruise "magical".  My goof-ball son shouts, "Cheese fries!"  His friends all agree.  The Hotel Director had no idea what he's talking about so he asks my son and his friends about them.  They tell the HD they have them back home (Philadelphia/South Jersey).  The HD promises them cheese fries at dinner.  No cheese fries that night or the next.  The next night after that is the last night of the cruise. Dinner is a fixed menu, so we figured it wasn't going to happen.  But it does.  During the appetizer course, THREE waiters and the Hotel Director deliver trays with baskets of genuine Philadelphia-style cheese fries to our table.  The HD apologized for not fulfilling our son's wish sooner but he had to research how to come up with the something like Cheez-Whiz, the essential ingredient for Philadelphia style cheese fries. As it was a Disney ship, I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't have Cheez Whiz airlifted to the ship in the dead of night. 
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1 hour ago, Silent Penguin said:

As it was a Disney ship, I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't have Cheez Whiz airlifted to the ship in the dead of night. 

When you wish upon a star, doesn't matter where you are. You really wouldn't be surprised? Got to be kidding. 

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We came close once.  10 of cruising.  1 out of Nashville, 1 out of Atlanta, 6 out of Manchester and 2 out of Boston.   All flying the day before the cruise.  The only two I was concerned about was the 2 out of Boston because it was the last flight of the day (me and DS - DS had to work that day).  The Nashville and Atlanta flights were fine.  There was weather on the east coast and the Manchester flight was canceled.  SW was able to rebook 4 of the 6 on another flight.  I rebooked the other 2 on an American flight out of Boston.  Then that flight gets canceled.  American rebooks them on a later flight.   In the meantime the 4 out of Manchester get to BWI and are delayed due to weather.  Then the 2 on the American flight are on the runway when their flight is canceled.   At that point I'm able to get them on my flight (to the tune of $651/pp one way)!  Delayed flight in BWI finally takes off.  Our flight ended up going, albeit 3 hours late.   We finally arrived in FLL in the wee hours of the morning and made to the cruise, only to discover then that the western itinerary was changed to eastern due to Hurricane Charlie.  All our careful plans went out the window.   We ended up have a great time!   We found out once on -board that a lot of people missed the ship.   Quite a few caught up with us in St. Maarten (1st port), although we heard that one person thinking we were still on the western itinerary had flown into Roatan to catch the ship!

 

Only other time there was a possibility was when DH and I wanted to check out Caye Caulker in Belize.  We were thinking of doing a land based trip.  We knew there was a possibility that we wouldn't be able to get out there and back in time so we went in prepared.  We had passports, credit cards, cash and the information for a puddle jumper to Roatan (next port).  Everything ended up going fine and we made it to Caye Caulker and back to the ship with plenty of time to spare.  We were glad we did the trip as we loved it and ended up going back for a land based trip.

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I once was on a flight from (I can't remember where) after attending a seminar for work and had a connecting flight in Atlanta, the worst airport ever. I had my ticket and put it in my pocket. The connecting flight was at the other end of the airport...Suddenly I couldn't find my ticket. Went to the desk and told my story--he didn't care at all.  After about 10 minutes trying to persuade the guy to let me on I pulled the one thing I've never done before--I pretended to cry.  Got on right away. What's with that?

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I got some trinket in Cozumel and they kept trying to say the owner of the shop made it and painted it. I asked what kind of paint he used and they had no idea what I was talking about. Why do they assume we're so naive?

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few years back my USCG Cutter was docked in Cozumel for a two day R&R. It was evening time and I wandered up to the bridge to watch the cruise ship across from us leave. It had just begun backing away from the pier when a lady came running down the pier with a shopping bag in each hand. She got to about to my place on the pier when she realized the cruise ship was pulling away. She stopped, dropped the bags and a look of panic set in . . . I called down, "is there a problem?"

"My husband and kids are on that boat . . . ." .... "wait their" I hollered down ... and called the gangway watch to send some one to fetch her and 'be nice' ... she's left behind.

Then I grabbed the bridge to bridge radio and hailed the cruise ship. "Hi Captain, this is the US Coast Guard Cutter & I've got one of your passengers!" I proposed that as they dropped the pilot if they'd wait just a couple of minutes I'd run her out to them.

I used it as a rapid rescue drill for the in port watch and we had our fast boat in the water and ready to go in under 10 minutes. Loaded the wayward mom and got her in a life jacket and ran her out to the cruise ship ...... guess how many people were watching as she climbed up the pilot ladder!!!!!

broke up a routine duty day for the crew!


She had a story to tell .... but sadly we never got a thank you note . . .
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We came with minutes--maybe seconds of missing the ship in St. Kitts two years ago.  They were literally pulling up the gangway behind us.  

 

We seldom do ship excursions and this was definitely on our tour guide, who was so intent on being sure he circled the island for us (which he apparently thought he had promised; but we did not remember that) that he just kept on going.  

 

If we had known how much farther we had to go after we left the fort, we would have just had him take us back to the ship.  He kept telling us, " oh, they will wait for you" as he drove like a crazy man the last few miles.  

 

He dropped us off at a back entrance, a ship employee was gesturing to us frantically, they had to reopen the gate, etc.

 

We actually got back only 3 or 4 minutes after the time they had stated to be on board--not the sailing time--so I was surprised that they actually pulled the gangplanks so quickly.  Sail time was 30 minutes later.

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On 4/11/2020 at 4:27 PM, crusinpsychRN said:

Have you ever been the one cruisers are waving to as the ship pulls away from the dock? Not I.

Yes,in Bermuda on our very first cruise .The ropes were being removed from the pier but they came back for us.

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We've never missed the ship, and the most amazing pier runner we ever saw didn't miss it either. This was in Skagway, small place but long walk down a boardwalk and then pier to where the ship was docked. We were watching the late arrivals and saw a young guy show up nearly last, moving fast. He spoke to the Princess staff and then ran back down the pier and boardwalk and disappeared out of sight. What the heck? We stood there watching to see what would happen, while the Princess staff started shutting things down in prep for leaving. Then there he was! In the distance, running like crazy. He was way down there when we saw him, and we weren't sure he was going to make it. But he did. We still wonder what the deal was. Maybe he left his wallet or jacket with cruise card in a bar or something? We'll never know.

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We arrived at the Port of Miami and our ship wasn't there.  We were a day early, LOL.  Much better than being a day late, I guess.

 

We were booked on a cruise out of Barbados.  We decided to go down a few days early and stay at a hotel.  Then we got a notice from Delta that they weren't flying to Barbados on the day we had booked and the only flight that was available was on the day of the cruise.  We got delayed in Washington, D. C. and arrived in Barbados with only about an hour to spare.  Pick up luggage, go through immigration.  When we got outside we found a Princess Rep who put us in a taxi to get to the pier.  I can't remember but we probably had booked transportation with them.  The ride to the pier was scary.  We were the last ones to board.  But we didn't miss the ship.

 

We've been in the last group to board after ship sponsored excursions.  Once after a fishing trip in Alaska, once after an offshore island resort tour in Fiji, maybe.  The one in Fiji we were over 1.5 hours late getting back.

 

I remember sitting on our balcony in Alaska frantically watching for our granddaughter and her parents to get back from walking into town.  It was close to sail away and here they come, moseying up to the ship.  I could have killed them.

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Posted (edited)

I almost missed the ship twice on ship sponsored tours- both on the same cruise! Once when our boat touring Phang Nga Bay scraped into the pier and gashed a hole in the side of the boat at our shopping stop. It was 30-45 minutes while they radioed for a new boat to come and pick us up. That delayed our dinner, which meant we hit traffic going back to Phuket. They rushed us down the pier to the tender and we were the last tender to return to the ship.  

 

The second time was coming back to the port from Kuala Lumpur. There was some type of festival happening which snarled traffic horribly and our guide kept trying to insist on making all the stops so he wouldn't get in trouble with his company. All of us on the tour had to write a letter and sign it with our names & cabin numbers that we had agreed to have him cut the tour short. It had been hours since we had a bathroom stop and I begged someone from X that I saw in the terminal to be allowed to stop for a bathroom break because I wasn't going to be able to make the long walk out to the ship. They were very kind and said that I could take my time. Turns out there were a couple other ships tours stuck in the same traffic so we weren't the last ones to arrive, but I still jogged my way out to the ship in case anyone was watching.

 

On a different cruise, in Kona, Hawaii, no one came close to missing the ship, but I ended up on the last tender which turned into the crew tender. The last passenger tender was supposed to be 3:30 pm, and I arrived at 3:08 to discover I was one of about 10 people who hadn't come back to the ship yet. They were checking off everyone's cabin numbers and radioing back and forth to security onboard to confirm the list of the "missing" and who had arrived at the tender. Once the last person arrived about 3:20, they loaded the 10 of us on the tender, then loaded all the crew & materials and we all came back together. 

Edited by vms
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Posted (edited)

We stayed in Manhattan the night before our ship sailed from New Jersey. Had a big, comfy limo booked to take us from the hotel to the terminal.

 

Limo was late - after several frantic phone calls, I was about to give up on them (despite having prepaid) and just get the hotel to hail us a cab, when it arrived.

 

"Don't worry, plenty of time" the driver kept saying. Got through to NJ quite quickly, and were pleased to see the ship at its moorings..... less happy as the limo swept past it at some speed.

 

"Oh, okay, maybe there's some weird one-way traffic flow that he had to follow" we're thinking.

 

Nope, he pulls up at *a* cruise terminal, alongside THE WRONG SHIP.

 

"Oh, is this not the one?"

 

Frantic return to (eventually) get us to a deserted terminal, where the check-in staff are busy packing up.

 

Did make it on board, though!!

Edited by Sancho_proudfoot
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Our waiter missed the ship once.  We were in Tauranga, NZ, the first cruise ship to visit there after 9/11.  It seems like the entire population of the area came to the pier to wave goodbye and thank us for coming.  That, of course, caused a horrible traffic jam.  Our waiter got stuck in it.  Fortunately our next stop was also in NZ so he made it by land.  He said he didn't get in trouble.

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No... For this very reason I always go on excursions through the cruise ship (unless docked overnight), and arrive a couple days early for embarkation (unless the port is local). I WOULD have missed the ship once if I hadn’t been on the cruise line’s excursion - the tour operator’s bus broke down and we got back an hour late. Fortunately the ship was forced to wait for us.

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