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Old March 17th, 2006, 08:56 AM
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Default Leaving out of San Juan

Thinking of doing the Southern on the Destiny the end of Feb. Great price for balcony, but concerned about 2 things, one air fare to San Juan. We would leave from either West Palm or Fort Lauderdale or even Miami. In laws live in West Palm, so alwas go early and can stay with them.
Also, is it true they fill the ship up with locals. I have heard yes and no. I don't mind if they do, but I have heard horror stories on how they act.
Thanks for the info.
Are there any cruise lines that do a southern route from Miami or Ft. Lauderdale???
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Old March 17th, 2006, 10:24 AM
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Hi Sun,
I have heard that they sometimes do sell cabins to the locals, it all depends on how full the ship is, I wouldn't worry about that or base doing the cruise because of that. I've only heard a few stories about that, not even sure how true they are.

Yes, the airfare to San Juan is never a bargain, but once there, you can see more islands in less days than either a Western or Eastern cruise out of Florida. They are some Southern that do leave out of Florida, but they are longer than 7 days.
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Old March 17th, 2006, 11:43 AM
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totally agree with Donna.
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Old March 17th, 2006, 01:58 PM
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Default Sailed San Juan Destiny twice

My opinion and advice.
I have heard the same rumors about discounted cabins for locals last minute. I think I also read it is not as easy for cruiselines to do so because of security checks.
We personally had no trouble with "out of control people". The cultural celebration they do for girls quincera (15th Birthday) is a lot like our seweet 16. On formal night it is quiet a sight of all the beautiful white dresses the girls wear.

On our second cruise we found more noticeable groups (church) traveling from the US than San Juan locals.

Regarding the ports, Donna is right -you start so much further south, you see so many more further away ports. One advantage when we sailed--not a single tender port. We loved the ship (little things may have changed as we sailed prior to its drydock Sept/Oct 05.

RE: Airfare, we were fortunate enough to use frequent flier mile tickets. Both times we flew in ahead of time, rented a car and visited El Yunque rainforest. I would definitely fly in a day ahead or longer, and if you can afford it do not go home until day after cruise (Monday?). This may also result in cheaper airfare. The airport is very slow to process people and stressful. Monday morning we had virtually no wait. We in fact booked the Sheraton (Old Wyndham) walkable across street from Carnival terminal. Very handy. Only bad thing was after getting off cruise ship rooms were not ready to check in as those departing were just leavning and lots of people checking in. Perhaps a hotel closer to airport would be a better idea.
The hotel we stayed at was a Marriott on beach (Cornado area?) and actually saw the Destiny sailing past as it arrived Sunday morning.

I have posted some photos in gallery--on front page you will find a link for photo galleries do a search for Destiny (my photos are under Suzy)

Any more questions, just post and I will try to answer.
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Old March 17th, 2006, 02:39 PM
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I was there last month on Destiny. We booked from Detroit so it wasn't cheap but very much worth it. We chose to fly in a day early then leave a day later to see more of San Juan and it was worth it.

Actully, I couldn't tell the difference between locals and non-locals on the cruise. *shrugs* I never notice anyone out of control or anything like that. People were having fun at the games and were expected to be crazy but I don't think thats what you mean.
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Old March 18th, 2006, 08:58 AM
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No, that's isn't what I meant., thanks for understanding. We are very excited as we booked it yesterday. We have frequent flyer miles to use and since we fly out of Ft. Lauderdale maybe get a good deal on Spirit!!
Thanks for the input. Definitely staying precruise a few days in San Juan. Didn't get enough time there on the Liberty and we enjoyed it there very much.
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Old March 18th, 2006, 09:44 AM
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I agree with all the other posters here, you will love your southern caribbean cruise. I have done 3 from San Juan and never ran into the problem that some complain about at all. The ports you can get to from there are great, the sea is calmer, too. I do agree with buffetfan about staying one day later and leaving on a Monday if at all possible. We have done this twice now and it cuts the stress of trying to get off the ship and to the airport on your last day...really made a huge difference in the way we ended a great vacation. Doing that, you can book a morning flight home the next day and get home at a reasonable time. Happy sails.....
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Old March 18th, 2006, 01:45 PM
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Locals?? That sounds insulting, like if we (I am from Puerto Rico) where less than others. I know you probably didn't mean that but sincerely why the question?? If you have problems with people been loud and stuff, well you will find that problem here in San Juan just like you will find it in Miami, or Seattle, or NY or Barcelona, or elsewhere in the world, we are just people like you and others, some people of this world are loud, some are not. We the "locals" have the same right to go on a cruise, than others. I have gone in two cruises one form Ft.Lauderdalle and other form Seattle, and never had problems with LOCALS, because I didn't care if there were locals in our cruise.

And just to let you know, a great number of puertorricans go on cruises that sailed from our beautiful island because that way we can experience a great vacation without paying for an airfare, not because we get better prizes for been locals.

I don’t mean to hurt anyone feelings, and I don’t have any personal issues against the people in this forum. And as I said, I know that probably that wasn’t the meaning for the word local. Just expressing my feelings
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Old March 18th, 2006, 01:58 PM
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ooops I forgot

I have flyed to Miami and Ft. Lauderdell several times and you can get great deals. But you should get here one day ahead from your cruise. For hotels there is a Sheraton just across the street from where carnival docks, and I have heard that they even transfer your luggage to the port, you just have to cross the street, pass trough security and get into the ship. There are other Hotels walking distance from the cruise terminal around the old San Juan area.

If anyone have questions about San Juan or Puerto Rico, just ask or email me.

By the way I have never sailed from San Juan, but have lots of friends that have gone in the different cruise ships that sailed from here. I am planning for next Christmas or Summer 2007 since in May I am sailing the Pride to the mexican riviera.
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Old March 18th, 2006, 08:19 PM
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You have my sincere apology. You are definitely right and just coming back from a cruise that stopped at San Juan, we loved the country and the people. That is why we chose a cruise from there so we could spend more time there. Again, I do sincerely apologize and should have known that you can't always go by what you "read." Everyone is the same and unfortunately in this world there are good and bad everywhere. I am sorry I offended you.
Also, thank you for the tips, you're very kind!!!
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Old March 19th, 2006, 07:40 PM
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I have taken only 1 of my 7 cruises from San Juan. We arrived 1 day early and stayed in Condado(not sure of the spelling). I highly recommend a stay in San Juan as the beaches and old city are wonderful. I did not know what to expect as Puerto Rico sometimes gets a bad reputatuion. I loved San Juan and look forward to going back there again someday.
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