My daughter will be going on her first cruise this Sunday leaving from Newport News, VA on the Carnival Victory. (1) Our first question is in regard to embarkation. Her cruise documents list embarkation from 3:30 to 6:30 PM. Is she able to check in prior to 3:30, or is that when they start processing passengers for boarding? (2) I've also heard something about getting to the pier early due to the long line of tour buses dropping off passengers. How early should one arrive to avoid that? (3) And last, does anyone have "personal" experience with the Newport News port? It is my understanding that port is only used for cruise ships 2 times a year, and is used for commercial purposes the other 363 days. I'd just like to know what we can expect prior to driving down.