We are cruising for the first time with our 11 & 15 year old boys. We are flying in 'red-eye' from the westcoast, arriving at the Miami at 7am on Saturday. We are sailing out of Port Everglades on Princess that afternoon. We return to Fort Lauderdale on the following Saturday, but don't fly home until Sunday at 8am. So, here's our problem...
What is the best way to get to the port from the airport that early in the morning? What should we do with our luggage? What can we do while we are waiting to get on board?
Also, any suggestions or recommendations for the post cruise accomodations? We are considering the King Tut exhibit in Fort Lauderdale. Other than that, we just want a nice, clean room with a good pool (although the beach might be nice also). We are spinning our wheels trying to decide where to stay (FLL, MIA beach or MIA airport area). Also, any suggestions on transporation from the port - to the hotel - to the airport?
We are leaving in 6 weeks, so we need to make a decision soon! We really enjoy everyone's posting on this site and appreciate any suggestions.
first question why are you flying into Miami as opposed to flying into Ft. Lauderdale? Its usually cheaper to fly into Ft. Lauderdale.
The best way for you to get from the airport(Miami) to the cruise pier would be a one-way car rental. You won't have a lot of down time on your outbound trip by the time you get your luggage, get your car - make the trip to Ft. Lauderdale about 45 minutes, drop off car rental, get shuttle to cruise pier etc, etc. You can usually start to board around noontime. There is a Publix supermarket on 17th Street in Ft. Lauderdale, very close to the cruise ship terminal, to pick up any last minute items. You could stop somewhere and have breakfast.
Hotel rooms are going fast and furious in Ft. Lauderdale due to the King Tut exhibit, prices have jumped. You might do better in a surrounding town for hotel accomodations.
Are you flying home from Miami also?
I don't know what you paid for the cruise and air, but for $60 I would take the Princess bus and forget about it. I would think that is a small percentage of your total costs so far.
SS Norway (12 times) '85 - '97; Radiance OS 06/01; Island Princess 11/04, Grand Princess 11/04/05, Golden Princess 7/21/06, Golden Princess 2/24/07, Explorer of the Seas 12/23/07, Island Princess 11/15/08
If you don't care to rent a car -- we have used a limo service, and it's worked out great. I would not use cruise transfers, as they tend to wait to fill up -- and I can't imagine too many passengers arriving that early.
Be sure to pack a carry on bag for the ship -- so you and the kids could put your swim suits on -- and relax by the pool, rather than wait around for your luggage to show up. Take anything you might need before 5pm, when things should be delivered to your staterooms.
I always use priceline -- if you haven't done this before, make sure to read biddingfortravel.com -- there is an art to getting the hotel you want at a great price.
Post cruise my kids were always exhausted -- they stayed up late that last night, and had to get up so early -- At that age, I think a hotel with a pool, beach would have all they would have been interested in . There are some really nice mom and pop motels a block or two from the beach in fort lauderdale -- or there were 8 years ago -- easy walking distance to the beach,