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Miss the ship?


Raine1306

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Flying from Phila to Miami in Feb 09. If I book a flight that arrives at 8:45 and ship does not sail until 4, I will have pleanty of time. Worse case would be if the flight is canceled or delayed due to snow. Did anyone ever have this experience? Is it better to just book a flight the day before? Really don't want the extra expense for a motel room, especially since air travel is so high right now. I do have cruise insurance with NCL, but did not book the flight through them. Any input would be appreciated.

Raine

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IMO I would not want to risk missing the boat by flying in the day of the cruise. There are too many things that could delay the flight or luggage and get you off to a bad start. If you will go to the departure boards and the link for Florida departures you will find the postings for bids from Priceline. We went 2 days early last year in FLL and were able to get a hotel for $100 during spring break on the beach. It was wonderful and a great start to our cruise. Also by not flying on the weekend and on off peak times we saved $800 in airfare for our family of 4! Spend some time on the boards and they will give you the info you need! Good luck planning!

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If your flight is running behind, or worse cancelled, you'll be kicking yourself for not taking on that 'extra expense'.

 

We're cruising in November and STILL flying in the day before. I want a relaxing lead-in to the cruise, so if we are delayed or there are hassles getting down to FL I'll have time to relax and regroup so we can board nice and early on embarkation day.

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It a must to arrive at least the day before. There are too many variables and too many wackos running loose to screw up your arrival. You have weather, airline strikes, delays of all sorts, it only takes one wacko to pull some stupid stunt and they close down the airport .

 

Last year can remember if it was LAX or MIA there was a bomb threat while were there and it was mass confusion cops with rifles etc. We ended up in a holding area for 3 hours before we could get out of airport.

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ALWAYS fly in the day before if you can do that option. You never know what can happen. As expensive as flying is, it's also less reliable than I can remember it being in my "flying history". You can find hotels that are not that expensive - you're spending thousands on your vacation. While having an added expensive stinks, I would rather have that then to have to cancel the trip because I couldn't get down there.

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Plan to arrive the day before, and if things work out (as they usually...but not always!) treat it as an extra day's vacation. Go out in the evening to a really nice restaurant to celebrate the start of a terrific holiday.

 

And if you do get delayed... you'll still be on time for the cruise, which means that you can celebrate your foresight! :cool:

 

It's a win-win situation :D

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I have no idea how you bid on Priceline. How does it work?

 

Check out biddingfortravel dot com. It will give you info on how to use Priceline. The big thing IMO, is that if you need more than one bed in your hotel room Priceline won't give you that choice. They only guarantee that you have a room that sleeps two people. After you win a bid you can call the hotel and request two beds (or whatever), but there's no guarantee that your request will be honored.

 

I agree with everyone else, you really need to start your vacation a day earlier than your cruise. Not only will you have some "cushion" in case of delays, but you'll be rested and ready to enjoy your first cruise day :D !

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... you might consider looking into additional insurance to cover air and what happens if you do miss the ship. I believe the insurance thru the cruiseline covers only that which is purchased from them and not anything having to do with air delays, reroutes, missing the ship, etc.

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Flying from Phila to Miami...I will have pleanty of time

 

A couple of years ago, there was a reality TV show called “Airline” that was on for a couple of seasons. Anyway, about every third show had some family trying to fly out to a same day cruise. Since it would not be good “TV” if they got another flight, they always were shown yelling and crying in some airport because of overbooked flights, missed connections or mechanical problems.

 

We had always traveled the day before for the sake of no stress, but knowing what can happen behind the scenes would make it plain scary.

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Try Hotwire too. We got a great room at the Sheraton Miami Airport West...a beautiful hotel for $60 a night in mid March...prime spring break time through Hotwire.

 

Hotwire won't tell you the name of the hotel that you are booking until you buy it but they guarantee it to be 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 star and give some examples (names) of hotels that are in that class. They also tell you what amenities the hotel has...pool, restaurant, etc. And you can request the number of beds in the room.

 

I've used them many times and have always been pleased. I would suggest a 3 star or higher, just to be sure you are getting a decent quality place.

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Flying from Phila to Miami in Feb 09.

 

If I was I flying that time of the year from that airport I would be backing my bets. Your flight can be delayed / cancelled for any number of reasons. There could be weather in Chicago delaying the airplane into Phila.

 

So .... I would fly at least a day ahead.

 

You could also experience lost luggage. That happened to us in Fort Lauderdale, and because we flew in the day before we could pick it up the next morning before boarding the ship.

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Bite the bullet and arrive the night before.

 

For our first cruise, the plane coming to get us was delayed setting off a chain of events that had us catching the ship the next day. Don't risk it. The small cost of a hotel is nothing compared to missing the entire first night and most of the next day of your cruise.

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Wve flown in the same day during "good weather" months, but in Feb. from Philly???? I wouldn't risk that! I mean, it may work out perfectly, but there's a good chance there will be delays, lost luggage, bad weather.....

I know the Miami hotels are expensive, but it's really worth it, to go the day before. Really gets your vacation off on the right foot!

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We started going a day early on our Southern Carribean cruise from advice I had read on CC. It is so worth it, even if you have a perfect flight-nothing like waking up in the morining, having coffee, going for a stroll (or what have you) then going to the ship all rested and ready to rest some more. :)I for one will always go the day before if at all possible-just consider it extra insurance to justify the cost

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We're sailing out of Ft. Laud in Jan 09 - and tho the ship doesn't leave til 4 or 5 - we're flying in early the day before - mid-atlantic - winter - flying - just too much chance that we'd miss the boat - or our luggage would.

 

Miami is an expensive place to stay (the cruise I originally booked sailed from there). Be wary of hotwire and priceline - read some reviews - sometimes they'll say a 2 star is really a -4 star - including some well known chain hotels. We got a hotel a lot cheaper 10 miles away from Ft. Laud in Hollywood FL, with good reviews on tripadvisor dot com. We'll rent a car (will be 4 of us) when we land - spend night in Hollywood - drop the ladies and luggage off at the port - and the guys return the rental (tho we might be able to drop it at port) and get on the ship.

 

I think it's also cheaper to fly into Ft. Laud than Miami - I got on JetBlue for $104/pp each way before taxes/fees etc - so don't forget to calculate how much you could save flying in elsewhere and staying/renting car - it may turn out to be cheaper than a flight into Miami and hotel.

 

If you can cancel your insurance with the cruise line (even my TA said don't buy from them) - go to insuremytrip.com and get a quote and buy insurance for the entire trip price - flights/hotel night before/cruise. Then if you miss the boat for some reason - everything is covered.

 

 

Flying from Phila to Miami in Feb 09. If I book a flight that arrives at 8:45 and ship does not sail until 4, I will have pleanty of time. Worse case would be if the flight is canceled or delayed due to snow. Did anyone ever have this experience? Is it better to just book a flight the day before? Really don't want the extra expense for a motel room, especially since air travel is so high right now. I do have cruise insurance with NCL, but did not book the flight through them. Any input would be appreciated.

Raine

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BINGO - I'm frugal - but there is a definite value to not being sitting in an airport wondering if you are gonna make it - if your luggage will make it - or rushing around frantic. Our first cruise was out of Port Liberty, we drove, I was frazzled before we even got on the boat.

 

 

We started going a day early on our Southern Carribean cruise from advice I had read on CC. It is so worth it, even if you have a perfect flight-nothing like waking up in the morining, having coffee, going for a stroll (or what have you) then going to the ship all rested and ready to rest some more. :)I for one will always go the day before if at all possible-just consider it extra insurance to justify the cost
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i've taken 15 cruises, and have never missed the ship. i have travelled at all times of the year also. i fly out of cleveland,ohio. flying in a day early would be nice, but my budget doesn't allow that, so i always have flights that arrive at the departure port before noon.

only once did i have a minor problem. i flew into boston for a bermuda cruise and one of my bags did not arrive with me (i had 2). the next flight from cleveland arrived 45 minutes later, and my other bag was on it. this was still very early.

i would always go for the first flight of the day. i also have an issue with work, taking off more than 7 days at a time is a big hassle, so the 8 days for the cruise is my maximum.

good luck whatever you do. kim

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This doesn't involve flying, but here is a lesson my parents learned. On their first cruise, they drove down the morning of. From Vegas to California is this awful pass called El Cajon. They had just gone over the pass when there was a horrific accident behind them. Closed El Cajon for the rest of the day to clean up the mess. If they hadn't gotten lucky, they would have missed their cruise because there really is no other way to California (besides a long and windy way that wouldn't have gotten them there on time). Now, they always drive or fly the day before. It is just safer and worth the money. Also, flying exhausts me and makes me grumpy. I don't want to start my cruise off grumpy!

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I have cruised about 10 times, always fly the the day of the cruise. Never a problem until the last one. Snowstorm closed the airports and we couldn't fly out until 3 days later, missed half the cruise. This time I'm flying a day early.

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We frequently cruise during March and always come in the day before because its just not worth the worry. In 2006, our flight was cancelled by a snowstorm (the snow storm wasn't local, it was in Chicago but that is where our plane was coming from.) Luckily we were able to find another way down.

 

This year, we went down 3 days early to enjoy some time in San Juan before the cruise. The day we left, there was freezing rain and half of the early morning flights out of the airport were cancelled. Our flight left late, which meant we missed our connections and got into San Juan 10 hours later than planned. It was lucky we did go down three days early because we missed the even larger snow storm that followed a day later. I heard 300 people, flying in from Ontario and the US, missed the cruise departure. Don't know if this is the right number but people joined up with the ship for days into the cruise (St. Thomas, St. Marten, and even Antigua).

 

In the winter, there is too much risk...we always go early so we don't have to worry. We just consider it the pre-vacation and have fun.

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we have done 40 cruises and always fly in the day of the cruise((except europe australia and such when we do a pre hotel stay)and have had no problems..THAT being said things are changing..As our cruise budddy said yesterday--the flights are flying as full as they can get them and it looks like that trend will only continue..So if there is a delay your chance of getting on another airline or flight(if there is a problem) will be much more difficult..I I think even frugal me--says bite the bullet and pay for the hotel

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