I have a really dumb question- I see all of the things about tipping the porters and people not getting their luggage, can't you carry your own bags in if you want to? I've never been on a trip before so I guess I don't know these things.
There shouldn't be any problem getting your luggage after you leave it with a porter at the pier. You should remember to tip them, not to insure that you get your luggage, but because it is the right thing to do.
The only dumb question is one that isn't asked for fear it is dumb
The only luggage that can be carried on the ship by the passenger are those bags that fit thru the x-ray machine. It is the same type of x-ray machine they have to check carry-on bags at the airport to help you judge the size.
We have never had a problem getting our luggage. We generally give the porter a $5 for the 3 bags we give to him and then watch as he puts them on the luggage cart to go to the ship. After that happens they will get there.