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Will you fly to port earlier now when assigned check-in times are enforced?


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34 minutes ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

Does Celebrity ask their customers when they prefer to check in?

 

Yes, but those who check in earliest tend to pick the early boarding times. So -- or at least this the story people are selling -- someone could be left with the latest boarding time and have already booked an early-arriving flight (or have to check out of their hotel by 10:00 am.....)

 

Of course, there are options for these people (ask for a later checkout, go eat lunch somewhere, etc) but most don't want to hear it. They prefer to act as if we have not just had a pandemic and checkout processes have changed.....

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1 hour ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

Yes, but those who check in earliest tend to pick the early boarding times. So -- or at least this the story people are selling -- someone could be left with the latest boarding time and have already booked an early-arriving flight (or have to check out of their hotel by 10:00 am.....)

 

Of course, there are options for these people (ask for a later checkout, go eat lunch somewhere, etc) but most don't want to hear it. They prefer to act as if we have not just had a pandemic and checkout processes have changed.....

 

Are you saying that for a Celebrity cruise the passengers check in online a few days/weeks/months before the cruise and can then pick a time for boarding? If yes, that's a fair way to do it I think and people can then check in as early as possible to have a chance to pick a time they want.

 

I absolutely understand why assigned check in times, or for Celebrity boarding times if I understand you correct, are enforced now. What I don't understand is why some cruiselines don't ask their customers when they prefer to check in.  

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2 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

I hope it's a deterrent to others, but some just seem so eager to get onboard ship for their FREE lunch (🙄) that they continue to arrive early...

 

 

FREE lunch? NO, it's not free it's included in the cruisefare. Those with an early time pay for it and eat it. Those with late times only pay for it.

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1 hour ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

FREE lunch? NO, it's not free it's included in the cruisefare. Those with an early time pay for it and eat it. Those with late times only pay for it.

 

I guess it's all in how you look at it.  I've been cruising since the 1970s.  Back then, and probably through the early 1980s, lunch simply wasn't served on embarkation day. Embarkation started later. Ships were smaller and it didn't take as long to get everyone onboard. 

 

I would guess this changed when they had to start boarding people earlier due to higher numbers of passengers on each ship.  In exchange for getting folks onboard and avoiding a last-minute potential rush, they started to serve lunch.

 

So for me -- I still look at it as something added for nothing. But that said, it does not appeal to me to rush to the ship early, stand in the longest lines of the day (often in hot weather) and carry my carry-on items about with me ONLY to get lunch. That's not a way to start a vacation -- frazzled, hot, lugging stuff around, fighting crowds in the buffet (not all ships serve lunch in their main dining room on embarkation day, and those that do may only be "open" for certain categories of passengers).

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20 hours ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

I agree with you about that but I have been told, on this forum, that it is very common to do it for Americans.


Are you planning on flying from Sweden and arriving the day of sailing???

 

There is no way in the world we would fly in the day of and ours would be a direct 1.5 hour flight from Atlanta!!

 

In my opinion stop listening to people who fly in the day of and plan on coming at least one day early, otherwise you risk missing your cruise entirely!!

 

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

Word from Celebrity's early cruises from Florida suggests that they will. Passengers arriving too early for their entry slot are being asked to line up (according to their ACTUAL times) and have to wait in the hot, Florida sun -- no shade, no water, no benches. Suites do get some priority. 

 

I hope it's a deterrent to others, but some just seem so eager to get onboard ship for their FREE lunch (🙄) that they continue to arrive early...

 

There is some hubbub about it on the Celebrity board. Some think Celebrity should provide better conditions for waiting. I disagree -- they have clearly been told to not show up prior to their boarding time.

 

 

IDK, that is a tough one.  A lot of folks traveling in will find it difficult to show up later.  Dealing with a lot of luggage and hotel checkout times make it more difficult for many to show up later in the day.  And, cruise passengers probably have a high percentage of passengers with mobility issues.    So, I think I probably would agree that having a early arrival waiting area is a good idea. Problem is it takes time to create such a thing, and by then it might no longer be needed.  

 

We like to show up later.  Many times we walk-in right up to the check in counters and then proceed to the ship without any wait.   And then there is much happiness!  

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53 minutes ago, cruisemom42 said:

 But that said, it does not appeal to me to rush to the ship early, stand in the longest lines of the day (often in hot weather) and carry my carry-on items about with me ONLY to get lunch. That's not a way to start a vacation -- frazzled, hot, lugging stuff around, fighting crowds in the buffet (not all ships serve lunch in their main dining room on embarkation day, and those that do may only be "open" for certain categories of passengers).

 

I guess that means that you prefer a later time, right? If you do that it should be perfect for you if they ask when the passengers prefer to check in because then you can get a late time. If they don't ask you might get the earliest time and will be disappointed.

 

I should agree with you if the ONLY reason to board early was to get the first lunch you have paid for, or not, but it isn't.

 

I just love to be on the ship and if you are the first at the port there will be no lines! I should not cruise on a ship which only serve lunch in the buffet the first day, especially not now when they probably don't have a self-serve buffet. First on the ship means that no "fighting crowds" is needed for a long time.

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24 minutes ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

Absolutely not! Especially not since I want to be the first to board!


Whew you scared me there….😜😜

 

I do hope you have a wonderful cruise!!!  

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1 hour ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

I guess that means that you prefer a later time, right? If you do that it should be perfect for you if they ask when the passengers prefer to check in because then you can get a late time. If they don't ask you might get the earliest time and will be disappointed.

 

I should agree with you if the ONLY reason to board early was to get the first lunch you have paid for, or not, but it isn't.

 

I just love to be on the ship and if you are the first at the port there will be no lines! I should not cruise on a ship which only serve lunch in the buffet the first day, especially not now when they probably don't have a self-serve buffet. First on the ship means that no "fighting crowds" is needed for a long time.

 

Which reminds me, and I think it is related.  Are there any cruise ships these days that have cabins ready when you board?  In the old days, I recall we were able to go to our cabin immediately on boarding Princess.  For RCI & Celebrity, we had to wait for a time until they were ready.   I guess that is another "perk" to boarding later in the cycle.  

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28 minutes ago, ldubs said:

 

Which reminds me, and I think it is related.  Are there any cruise ships these days that have cabins ready when you board?  In the old days, I recall we were able to go to our cabin immediately on boarding Princess.  For RCI & Celebrity, we had to wait for a time until they were ready.   I guess that is another "perk" to boarding later in the cycle.  

Celebrity now allows you to go directly to your room, drop off your carry ons, pick up your keys but then ask that you allow them to finish setting up the cabin.

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56 minutes ago, ldubs said:

 

Which reminds me, and I think it is related.  Are there any cruise ships these days that have cabins ready when you board?  In the old days, I recall we were able to go to our cabin immediately on boarding Princess.  For RCI & Celebrity, we had to wait for a time until they were ready.   I guess that is another "perk" to boarding later in the cycle.  

 

It's probably rare that the cabins are ready when the first passengers board. For me that's no problem. Until I have arrived at the port I have all my luggage but once I'm at the port I can leave my suitcase and only have to take care of my carry on. Another "perk" to board early in the cycle! 🙂

 

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30 minutes ago, dkjretired said:

Celebrity now allows you to go directly to your room, drop off your carry ons, pick up your keys but then ask that you allow them to finish setting up the cabin.

 

MSC also have the keys in the cabin and I assume it's okay to leave the carry on there when picking up the keys. We cruise in the Yacht Club and then a butler go to the cabin and pick up the keys while we enjoy our first glass of Champagne in the lounge! The butler can take the carry on to the cabin! 

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In response to the @sverigecruiser's original question, I don't think I would change my travel behavior based on a cruise ship assigned check in time.  I may, however, add more time into my pre cruise buffer due to logistical complexities of travel in general.  I assume we have all heard stories at least in the US of cancelled flights and limited capacity.

 

My own theory regarding early boarding is that the shorter the cruise, the more people want to come early.  Certainly more incentive exists to get on early on a 3 day booze cruise than on a 100 day round the world.

 

My own view is to get on early as from the line's perspective it's Day 1.  Nothing free about the lunch even if I don't care about it personally.  I like to get on early as I simply like to be on the ship and start my vacation.

 

 

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We are in agreement with Selectsys and doing our usual thing (which is to fly in early) on all of our booked cruises.   The issue of assigned check-in times is actually nothing new (some lines have done it for a few years in various ports) and we view those times as the cruise line's issue...not ours.  If we show-up at the port somewhat early...then that is just life.   We have a cruise, next week, out of Greece which has a very late assigned check in time.  We will likely be at the port several hours early and I would assume that the cruise line will deal with the situation.

 

Hank

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3 hours ago, dkjretired said:

Celebrity now allows you to go directly to your room, drop off your carry ons, pick up your keys but then ask that you allow them to finish setting up the cabin.

 

That actually is a very helpful policy.  Thx.  

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54 minutes ago, Hlitner said:

We are in agreement with Selectsys and doing our usual thing (which is to fly in early) on all of our booked cruises.   The issue of assigned check-in times is actually nothing new (some lines have done it for a few years in various ports) and we view those times as the cruise line's issue...not ours.  If we show-up at the port somewhat early...then that is just life.   We have a cruise, next week, out of Greece which has a very late assigned check in time.  We will likely be at the port several hours early and I would assume that the cruise line will deal with the situation.

 

Hank

 

Some years ago we were on a Princess cruise out of Auckland with a boarding time at something like 2 pm.  We were able to drop our bags in the morning.   Because of the terminal being right there in town, we were able to enjoy some leisurely time in Auckland before wandering back for the afternoon boarding.   

 

When assigned boarding times started, we pretty much ignored them because we typically were arriving later and no one cared.  I suspect no one really cared about those who showed up earlier either.   But with new COVID protocols, I don't think I would intentionally show up several hours early expecting the rules don't apply to me.  I hope it works out for you.  

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11 hours ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

Does Celebrity ask their customers when they prefer to check in?

When you fill out you Advanced Check in there is a window with available checkin times.    We just booked a cruise sailing in 6 week and the earliest available was 1:30.   Celebrity told us we could arrive at any time since we are traveling in a Suite and are Zenith and their will be a separate checkin area. 

 

 

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3 hours ago, SelectSys said:

I like to get on early as I simply like to be on the ship and start my vacation.

 

I view my vacation as having already started. Most of the time I'm embarking from a wonderful city (Rome, Athens, Barcelona, Singapore) and my vacation will have started several days earlier. For me there is no "drive" to get to the ship early. I can enjoy more delicious food and more interesting things to see than being onboard a cruise ship. Not that I won't enjoy it for the cruise itself, but that leaves plenty of time.

 

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1 hour ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

I view my vacation as having already started. Most of the time I'm embarking from a wonderful city (Rome, Athens, Barcelona, Singapore) and my vacation will have started several days earlier. For me there is no "drive" to get to the ship early. I can enjoy more delicious food and more interesting things to see than being onboard a cruise ship. Not that I won't enjoy it for the cruise itself, but that leaves plenty of time.

 

This is a reasonable point and is another factor to consider.  Certain cities are definitely more interesting to depart from than others and may skew some people's  decision making.    It also depends on how many people you are travelling with, the distance to the port from where you are staying, familiarity with departure port/city and even the likelihood of future return.  Civitavecchia, assuming you are staying in Rome, requires more time to get to the port than Barcelona.  Family travel requires more time than solo travel.  Is it the "trip of a lifetime" or an annual pilgrimage.   It all matters...

 

Like you, my travels also often start before the cruise.  In my last departure from Civitavecchia,  the whole family had been travelling for quite some time driving around in Italy including spending a few days in Rome.  While we didn't leave for the port super early, but we still got to the port around 1:00pm.   I simply didn't feel the need to "power tour" for a couple of more hours. 

 

Different people in the identical location can reach different decisions based on different preferences.  There simply  isn't a single answer.

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2 hours ago, ldubs said:

We were able to drop our bags in the morning.   Because of the terminal being right there in town, we were able to enjoy some leisurely time in Auckland before wandering back for the afternoon boarding.

This makes sense to me.  I can see people doing this in my hometown port.  The terminal is located in  the heart of the city and easily accessible.  It's super easy for passengers to wander around the harbor and central city without their luggage and simply head back to the port with when you are ready to board.  In Harwich, we once checked in, boarded the ship and then left again to run some errands leaving the kids on the ship.  

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3 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

I view my vacation as having already started. Most of the time I'm embarking from a wonderful city (Rome, Athens, Barcelona, Singapore) and my vacation will have started several days earlier. For me there is no "drive" to get to the ship early. I can enjoy more delicious food and more interesting things to see than being onboard a cruise ship. Not that I won't enjoy it for the cruise itself, but that leaves plenty of time.

 

 

That's exactly why I think that it's important that they ask when people prefer to board. I understand that if you embark in Civitavecchia you prefer to spend the night before the cruise in Rome and will be very disappointed if your assigned time is 10 am.

 

For me the cruise is the most important part of the trip. That's why I want to be the first to embark and the last to disembark.

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Posted (edited)

Flights here in the US have been so hit and miss, I would never trust their schedule at the moment. Overbooked and understaffed has caused a ton of cancelations. Weather and other things have caused more delays and cancelations. I would definitely not plan a "day of" flight in the US at all. For us, if our flight is at risk of cancelation when we are at the airport, we are hopping back in the car and driving through the night.

Edited by BoozinCroozin
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13 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

I view my vacation as having already started. Most of the time I'm embarking from a wonderful city (Rome, Athens, Barcelona, Singapore) and my vacation will have started several days earlier. For me there is no "drive" to get to the ship early. I can enjoy more delicious food and more interesting things to see than being onboard a cruise ship. Not that I won't enjoy it for the cruise itself, but that leaves plenty of time.

 

Agreed - if I am sailing from New York, I enjoy staying at home - and scheduling a non-rush hour drive which will get me to Brooklyn or Manhattan by mid- to late afternoon for a relaxed boarding.  If staying at the port, we leave our bags at the hotel and have one more relaxed meal before the taxi (or what-ever) to the pier.   It is hard to imagine a drearier start than a long wait, then a crowded lunch, probably involving lugging carry-one because the room isn’t ready.

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4 minutes ago, navybankerteacher said:

Agreed - if I am sailing from New York, I enjoy staying at home - and scheduling a non-rush hour drive which will get me to Brooklyn or Manhattan by mid- to late afternoon for a relaxed boarding.  If staying at the port, we leave our bags at the hotel and have one more relaxed meal before the taxi (or what-ever) to the pier.   It is hard to imagine a drearier start than a long wait, then a crowded lunch, probably involving lugging carry-one because the room isn’t ready.

 

So you also prefer if they ask you when you prefer to board so that you can say that you want a late time, at least from some ports.

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