Go Back   CruiseMates Cruise Community and Forums > Cruise Lines (Mainstream) > Carnival Cruise Lines
Register Forgot Password?

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 12:57 PM
fireba11's Avatar
Senior Member
Cruise Maniac
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Tracy City, TN
Posts: 214
Default What is the best time to board a ship?

I was wondering what the best time is to board a ship. Say the cruise ship is leaving port at 4pm. Would a person be better off waiting to get on just before cast off? Every cruise we have been on we were there early and the line was long to board. I was thinking that if we boarded later there wouldn't be any wait, any ideas????
__________________
Caribbean Princess 07
Carnival Valor Feb. 08
Carnival Holiday Dec 08
Carnival Triumph Feb 09
Island Princess coming in Nov. 2009

Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 01:18 PM
Senior Member
Cruise Maniac
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 220
Default

I've been there around 10am. Boarding begins at around 11 or 11:30. Absolutely no lines and we were the 2nd ones to board after VIPs
__________________
[url=http://www.ucruiser.com/ticker/]
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 01:30 PM
Senior Member
Cruise Maniac
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: California
Posts: 178
Default

ASAP statrt your vacation!!!
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 02:11 PM
Senior Member
Captain
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Benicia, CA
Posts: 824
Default

The best time to board is when its still in port. If you wait till she sails it makes getting on a little harder. Just ask Lucy Ricardo.. she had to be helicoptered on..
__________________
1995-Jubilee
1996-Imagination
1998-Destiny
1999-Paradise
1999-Sun Princess
2002-Pride
2004-Pride
2006-Pride
2008-Valor and Glory
2009-Spirit and Splendor
2010-Freedom of the Seas and Mariner of the Seas
2010-Carnival Spirit
2011-Carnival Dream
2012-Allure of the Seas and Navigator of the Seas
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 03:51 PM
Member
Familiar Face
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Surprise, Arizona
Posts: 71
Default

Get on early as you can. Enjoy learning the ship and finding your cabin and getting something to eat. Have a great crusie
Wipala Walt
__________________
Carnival Paradise Oct. 2009 Carnival Valor Sept. 2008 Norweigen Star Oct 2007
Monarach of the Sea Jan 2005
Enchanted Isle Sept 1997
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 05:07 PM
Dave the Wave's Avatar
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: St Petersburg, Florida
Posts: 6,349
Send a message via MSN to Dave the Wave Send a message via Yahoo to Dave the Wave
Default

Get there before 11 and get on ASAP so you can get a beer and be in the pool by noon. Early bird gets the worm.
__________________
Dave the Wave AKA- Diamond Dave


Read and post cruise reviews

Song of America Dec '90
Starship Majestic May '89
Sovereign X 5
Majesty Jul '01
Enchantment X 4
Regal Empress Dec '02
Sensation '04
Mariner May '07 April '08
Grandeur Feb '08
Inspiration Oct '08
Radiance of the Seas Oct '10
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 05:42 PM
Paul Motter's Avatar
Administrator
Admiral
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: in my office!
Posts: 10,910
Send a message via AIM to Paul Motter
Default

Sorry, I TOTALLY DISAGREE - if you get there early there is a very good chance you will get caught up in a big crowd just waiting for the boarding pass processors to open up. Then you wait in line to get processed and then you wait in line to get on the ship then you wait in line to get your picture taken.

Some people MAY get there at 10:00 and be lucky enough to get on if the ticket booths are open, but often they are not open and the big rush happens very soon - at 11:00. Then just getting past the photographers and into the ship can take 90 minutes.

The BEST time is about 3:00, you will walk straight up to check in and directly onto the ship.

Everything on the ship is closed until 1:00 pm (except the buffet) anyway - you can't get in your cabin. You end up having to carry your carryon bags around the ship and fighting crowds in the buffet. Then at 1:00 you get in your room but your luggage isn't there yet.

Go later for assured easy access. BTW: this is ESPECIALLY true for big ships 3000 passengers+
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 07:16 PM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 1,514
Default

On one of my cruises I got they 2 hours before sailing and it was absolutly very crowded, but on another cruise I got there about 5 hours before sailing and it was a lot better and less crowded. So I suggest that you get there ASAP.
__________________
Booked Cruises:
Carnival Dream for Thanksgiving
Eastern Caribbean- 11/20/2010

Past Cruises:
Carnival Ecstasy (4 Day Baja Mexico) 2003
Carnival Pride (7 Day Mexican Riviera) 2007
Carnival Spirit (8 Day Exotic Mexican Riviera) 2007
Carnival Freedom (7 Day Western Caribbean) 2008
Carnival Elation (4 Day Baja Mexico) 2009
Carnival Spirit (7 Day Southbound Alaska) 2009
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 07:17 PM
Dutchman's Avatar
Senior Member
First Mate
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: PA
Posts: 362
Default

When the door opens
__________________
30 Cruises with Carnival,
Reply With Quote
  #10 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 07:35 PM
misguidedangel's Avatar
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Posts: 1,670
Send a message via ICQ to misguidedangel
Default

I was at the port of Galveston at around 10:45 and waiting for boarding by 11am. We were allowed to board at 11:30 (we were VIP) and we were on Lido eating lunch by 11:45.

I've used Carnival transfers before and they generally pick you up and take you over around noon and the check in lines can be long or short--it all depends on how many other buses arrive at the same time!!! It took 30ish minutes to get on board the Liberty four weeks ago......The line was long, but when they split us by deck it went faster!!!!!

I will be in Miami again in January, 85 days, and I will be at the port at around 11am ready and waiting to board the ship!!! I may not get to my cabin until 1, but I can park my butt on Lido and eat lunch.....
__________________




1991 Holiday
2007 Victory & Triumph
2008 Conquest & Liberty
2009 Valor, Freedom, and Splendor
2010 Glory and Liberty
2011 Glory

I gotta go where it's warm.....

Over 40 victim of fate.....
Reply With Quote
  #11 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 08:15 PM
suseg's Avatar
Junior Member
Passenger
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 20
Default

We have always arrived between 10-10:30 AM and are generally amongst the first to board. I have found the lines to be very short at that time, so we bring a book, sit on the floor (if necessary), read and count down the minutes until we can board. I love getting on early, getting some lunch, and just sitting aboard.....I want to get every possible minute possible on the ship. Guess I'm a kid at heart!
Reply With Quote
  #12 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 08:28 PM
Paul Motter's Avatar
Administrator
Admiral
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: in my office!
Posts: 10,910
Send a message via AIM to Paul Motter
Default

Sorry, I am sticking to my guns here. The only time I arrived at a terminal early (about 10:45) it tooks us 90 minutes to get onboard - yet when I get there later in the day I generally get onboard almost right away. Plus there is nothing to do on the ship early on, and you have to carry your bags with you because your cabin isn't ready.

The idea of arriving early may have worked a few years ago - but in the last year it has gotten out of hand and that is when the rush is....

It may depend on the size of the ship and terminal, though.

Try what you want, though.
Reply With Quote
  #13 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 08:32 PM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: new orleans, la
Posts: 7,074
Default

it depends...if you are not really into spa treatments or dining at one of the speciality places, then get there around 2 pm...if you desire the above, get there at 1030 am...or do like my GF does...she send me there at 0930 and I call her to come when I am about close to the front of the check in line
Reply With Quote
  #14 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 11:26 PM
Junior Member
Familiar Face
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 22
Default

Well, the first time we went, we were there about noon in Galveston....a long line with two kids and the luggage..not knowing that the boarding passes and papers needed to be filled out prior.

The second and third time we went, we were there about 1130am in Galveston, a very short line with my mother in wheelchair, oxygen,two girls and all the luggage. Papers filled out this time NO LINES because my mother was handicapped and there were not many people in wheelchairs.

But the fourth, just my husband and I went in Galveston, got there early about 10am and ALL PAPERS WERE ALREADY FILLED OUT, luggage was taken prior, just me and him ready for vacation.....and we waited until 2pm to enter on the ship because the last cruises for Carnival Conquest and another cruise ship could not disembark at 8am because of the weather and we had to wait ... and wait.... and oh yes DONT FORGET THE TRAFFIC that you had to wait and wait just to get to the terminal.....BUT...in reality no regrets.....
I guess there is a gamble at any time that you go
Reply With Quote
  #15 (permalink)  
Old October 10th, 2008, 11:35 PM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: So. California
Posts: 1,449
Default

As soon as they open the doors. We do this all the time. The later you wait the more the crowds.
__________________
Quantum of the Seas 12/2014
Oasis OTS 6/2015
Serenade OTS 12/2015
Reply With Quote
  #16 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 03:55 AM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 971
Default

I am like Dave the Wave. Like to get there early and have an entire day to spend by the pool with a Redstripe in hand. Bob
Reply With Quote
  #17 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 07:35 AM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: new orleans, la
Posts: 7,074
Default

actually Dave The Wave has an arrangement with the pool deck bartender that he boards first to ensure the greatest amount of bar revenue for the cruise ::
Reply With Quote
  #18 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 09:15 AM
Senior Member
First Mate
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 411
Default

Without exception, we arrive between 1:30 and 3:00 like the TA tells us to. What is nice is that you can go directly to your room and check it out. Usually the lines are fairly painless and we prefer shorter lines.
Plus, it's such a happy group of people at that time. Why? Their flights were on time!!!!!!!!
Reply With Quote
  #19 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 09:51 AM
Member
Familiar Face
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Vancouver BC
Posts: 72
Default

I agree with Paul about no line around 3pm, both times that I have cruised, I arrived around that time due to flights and was able to walk right up to the counter and check in, get the picture taken and then right to my cabin. I can only imagine that getting there too early, would be about as bad as trying to disembark the ship with the crowds of people who don't wait to be called down and probably worse.
__________________


Carnival Glory 2007
Carnival Freedom 2008
Carnival Victory 2009
Carnival Victory 2010
Carnival Victory 2011
Carnival Victory 2012
Reply With Quote
  #20 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 10:29 AM
fireba11's Avatar
Senior Member
Cruise Maniac
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Tracy City, TN
Posts: 214
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter
Sorry, I am sticking to my guns here. The only time I arrived at a terminal early (about 10:45) it tooks us 90 minutes to get onboard - yet when I get there later in the day I generally get onboard almost right away. Plus there is nothing to do on the ship early on, and you have to carry your bags with you because your cabin isn't ready.

The idea of arriving early may have worked a few years ago - but in the last year it has gotten out of hand and that is when the rush is....

It may depend on the size of the ship and terminal, though.

Try what you want, though.
The same here, we have sailed out of Ft. Lauderdale and Miami and both times there early and had about a 90 minute wait.
__________________
Caribbean Princess 07
Carnival Valor Feb. 08
Carnival Holiday Dec 08
Carnival Triumph Feb 09
Island Princess coming in Nov. 2009

Reply With Quote
  #21 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 05:40 PM
Dave the Wave's Avatar
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: St Petersburg, Florida
Posts: 6,349
Send a message via MSN to Dave the Wave Send a message via Yahoo to Dave the Wave
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by venice
actually Dave The Wave has an arrangement with the pool deck bartender that he boards first to ensure the greatest amount of bar revenue for the cruise ::
I have been first onboard several times. I have been onboard before noon most every time. I disagree with Paul on this one. Like Bob says, get there early and make a full day of embarkation day. I board in my swimsuit so no need to wait for luggage ect... It always amazes me to see people board in jeans and jackets. In three cruises this year I was onboard before noon each time with little waiting.

Look how funny! Same outfit two years in a row. See time stamp in pictures!



__________________
Dave the Wave AKA- Diamond Dave


Read and post cruise reviews

Song of America Dec '90
Starship Majestic May '89
Sovereign X 5
Majesty Jul '01
Enchantment X 4
Regal Empress Dec '02
Sensation '04
Mariner May '07 April '08
Grandeur Feb '08
Inspiration Oct '08
Radiance of the Seas Oct '10
Reply With Quote
  #22 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 08:22 PM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 1,514
Default

Thats funny the SAME EXACT outfits.
__________________
Booked Cruises:
Carnival Dream for Thanksgiving
Eastern Caribbean- 11/20/2010

Past Cruises:
Carnival Ecstasy (4 Day Baja Mexico) 2003
Carnival Pride (7 Day Mexican Riviera) 2007
Carnival Spirit (8 Day Exotic Mexican Riviera) 2007
Carnival Freedom (7 Day Western Caribbean) 2008
Carnival Elation (4 Day Baja Mexico) 2009
Carnival Spirit (7 Day Southbound Alaska) 2009
Reply With Quote
  #23 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 09:34 PM
mehawk's Avatar
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Houston aka Space City, Texas, USA
Posts: 9,687
Default

That is Dave's boarding outfit

We have tried various times and it appears to be a gamble. The later time is just as good.
__________________
Michael

Cruised more times than I can remember.

Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

Courage and perserverance have a magical talisman; before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into the air.

Pick your company wisely! Hang around people who are going to help you become all God created you to be.
Reply With Quote
  #24 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 09:57 PM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: new orleans, la
Posts: 7,074
Default

Dave The Wave..there are no other people around you in these pictures..where are they / aren't you lonely ?
Reply With Quote
  #25 (permalink)  
Old October 11th, 2008, 10:00 PM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 971
Default

Venice, that is because Dave is the first passenger on the ship. I usually head to the bar first thing also. Bob
Reply With Quote
  #26 (permalink)  
Old October 12th, 2008, 03:38 PM
Junior Member
Familiar Face
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 11
Default

While posters have very helpful information, make sure you check your documents to see what time is the latest you can board. Several people got denied boarding on the Oosterdam recently because they were not within the 90min. window. I am leaving on the Spirit on the 18th and the ship leaves at 9pm....it says latest boarding time is 7pm...make sure to read the info on your documents.
Reply With Quote
  #27 (permalink)  
Old October 12th, 2008, 03:47 PM
Kamloops Cruiser's Avatar
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,130
Default

When we boarded HAL in vancouver BC the wait at the opening(11AM) of boarding was short . Lido was open and not at all crowded.

When we did RCI out of PC the boarding line was busy all day. They were still processing people for boardin when the lifeboat drill was being held .

__________________





Ships Sailed:

SS Ithaca , Volendam , Mariner of the Seas (x2) , Veendam , Coral Princess , Island Princess (x3) , Emerald Princess,Sapphire Sapphire (x3),Diamond Princess
Reply With Quote
  #28 (permalink)  
Old October 12th, 2008, 07:31 PM
Paul Motter's Avatar
Administrator
Admiral
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: in my office!
Posts: 10,910
Send a message via AIM to Paul Motter
Default

Royal Caribbean out of Port Canaveral is where we had our worst experience - and we were there a little before 11:00. The problem was they were only unloading one car or bus at a time, so we were stuck in our bus for 30 minutes before we got out - and then it took 90 minutes to get onboard.

HAL is a smaller ship - you could probably arrive at about any time and get on much faster.
Reply With Quote
  #29 (permalink)  
Old October 12th, 2008, 10:08 PM
Senior Member
Captain
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Benicia, CA
Posts: 824
Default

Dave, time for a new tshirt buddy. At least wear one with some pizzazz saying on it to suit your personality...Dave gets on so early that when he orders his beer the bartender thinks hes the last passenger from the previous trip..
__________________
1995-Jubilee
1996-Imagination
1998-Destiny
1999-Paradise
1999-Sun Princess
2002-Pride
2004-Pride
2006-Pride
2008-Valor and Glory
2009-Spirit and Splendor
2010-Freedom of the Seas and Mariner of the Seas
2010-Carnival Spirit
2011-Carnival Dream
2012-Allure of the Seas and Navigator of the Seas
Reply With Quote
  #30 (permalink)  
Old October 13th, 2008, 07:16 AM
Dave the Wave's Avatar
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: St Petersburg, Florida
Posts: 6,349
Send a message via MSN to Dave the Wave Send a message via Yahoo to Dave the Wave
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter
Royal Caribbean out of Port Canaveral is where we had our worst experience - and we were there a little before 11:00. The problem was they were only unloading one car or bus at a time, so we were stuck in our bus for 30 minutes before we got out - and then it took 90 minutes to get onboard.

HAL is a smaller ship - you could probably arrive at about any time and get on much faster.
Those pics were PC and Mariner of the Seas.
__________________
Dave the Wave AKA- Diamond Dave


Read and post cruise reviews

Song of America Dec '90
Starship Majestic May '89
Sovereign X 5
Majesty Jul '01
Enchantment X 4
Regal Empress Dec '02
Sensation '04
Mariner May '07 April '08
Grandeur Feb '08
Inspiration Oct '08
Radiance of the Seas Oct '10
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
board, carnival, carribian, cruise, diego, elation, hip, miami, orleans, royal, san, ship, spirit, time, valor

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
What time can you board the ship? jacadelic Royal Caribbean International 5 March 23rd, 2006 11:46 AM
What time can we board the ship? nickle First-Time Cruisers 5 November 22nd, 2005 08:32 PM
What time can you board the ship? Kristen25 Norwegian Cruise Lines 2 June 2nd, 2005 08:56 AM
What Time to Board Ship Gayle Norwegian Cruise Lines 1 January 4th, 2005 05:13 PM
What time can you board the ship? Nibber Royal Caribbean International 3 June 2nd, 2004 08:36 AM


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


 

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:42 AM.
design by: Themes by Design

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.1