You've heard it before, but it bears repeating -- it can take a long,long time from ship docking to airport clearance due to long lines on cruise turn around days in Fort Lauderdale.
We got back from the Zaandam on Jan. 13, and it took a full 5 hours from the ship docking (0700) until we cleared airport security (1200) and could proceed to our airline gate (and that is without checking any bags, which can add at least 1 more hour -- we travel with just a carry-on apiece).
The security lines on that peak Sunday morning were about three plane-loads (600 people) per screening area, and stretched from the metal detectors all the way across the terminal.
Plan your return flights accordingly, or stay awhile and return home on a non-cruise day.
P.S. The airport taxi drivers like to charge a flat $10 (reasonable since the port to airport ride is about $8 on the meter), but they can then pocket the cash without giving any to their employers. Your choice.....
This Ft Lauderdale taxi thing is getting a bit scary. I have read 4 instances on various boards of people having problems. In one instance the driver demanded $15 from ship to pier. The drivers appear to not be using the meter. This is not a condemnation of all FL taxi drivers. This is merely a suggestion to be observant and aware of what can happen.
We got off the Zaandam on Dec. 12 at 8:50. We always stay over at least 1 night before flying home. Taxi drivers would not pick us up and take us to a hotel. They only wanted the direct fares to the airport so they can return quickly. Finally, we got a policeman to intervene and he ended up throwing a taxi driver out of the HAL terminal. We finally boarded a van which dropped us at out hotel. We sent a letter of complaint to the Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce detailing our treatment listing the cab companies, cab numbers of the cab, and the name of one driver. We never got the courtesy of a response from them. So much for their assistance.