Being a travel agent I can tell you what I do. I check once a week for cruise fares to go down. SOmetimes there are 1 hour specials, state specials and airfare specials. your travel agent shoudl check for you so you dont have too. I would recommend flying in a day before/ It is a long flight and with storms in the winter, flights can be cancelled or delayed. you never know what can happen. If you do get a pre cruise hotel they will take you to the hotel, port and then back to the airport. I have not been on this ship yet i have heard it is beautiful. Have fun!
if you have any other questions that I can help with you can email me or post!