I am driving to Miami and leaving mt car at the port during my cruise. Couple of questions:
1) Is there a designated baggage drop off area that I can just drive up to and turn my bags over? If not can I just leave them some place close w/my wife while I go and park, or do I have to haul them from the parking lot.
2) How far is the parking lot to the terminal?
3) How much is it to park/are there weekly rates?
4) Where do I go after I get to the terminal w/my bags?
Here are you answeers.
1. Yes, there is a designated dropoff area for baggage, different for each ship.
2. There is also a designated parking area for each ship
3. The parking area is right across from each ship. Depanding on when you get there, you might have about a block walk maximum.
4. The weekly rate is $70.00, payable in advance.
5. Your checked in luggage will be in the dropoff area oro on the ship by the time you pay, park and return to the terminal. At that point, if check-in is open you will go back to your terminal, check in and board the ship, carrying only your carry on luggage.
You will see a lot of similiarity between the check in/out procedure in a ship's terminal and an airport. Follow the signs and do what you are told, they've done it before. The drop bags and wife, go park and return to find your wife has wandered off is the same. Major difference is that there is only one ship for your bags to go onto, rather than the hundred or so airplanes waiting at an airport to swallow them up. With heightened security, be sure to take your ticket and passport with you to get back into the terminal property. When dealing with a company that makes weekly or twice weekly cruises, put your brain in neutral. Original thinking will just screw things up.
We did this a few weeks ago and it was a breeze. The drive to the Port of Miami is simple. Everything was clearly marked and there was no problem finding the drop off point for the baggage. A porter will be waiting to help you unload the car. We tipped a dollar per bag, plus a couple extra because he was so prompt and helpful.
I waited with our carry-ons outside the terminal while my husband went to park the car. It wasn't far at all from the terminal. He was back within 10-15 minutes. It was $10.00 per day- ours was an 8 day cruise.
The whole thing was so simple I was amazed. On our return we found our luggage quickly, and again a porter was right there to load it up on his dolly. He waited while we got checked at customs, walked us to our car and even loaded the bags for us.
We tipped him generously too because he was so helpful and pleasant.
Have your cruise documents handy to show to personel on the way into the terminal and on your way to the check in counters.
I never expected this process to be so easy! I would do it this way again anytime I could.