We are on the Jan 14th Explorer. Our air is booked thru RCCL. Our flight originates in Raleigh and goes thru Charlotte, change planes and then on to Ft Lauderdale..anyone know why they do this instead of just sending us directly to Miami? I am concerned about our luggage and late flights etc. Thanks!
Answer, it is the airplane seats they have already reserved from the airlines that determine the routing. The airlines sell the less popular route seats cheaper than the direct or popular flights. It is all about the airlines getting the most money for each seat they have to sell.
Next time you may want to consider doing a flight deviation. Its relatively a small charge $35.00 - $50.00 per person. It gives you the option of picking the airline and flights that are best for you. We always do them when using the cruiseline air. It saves major hassles and I already know my flights, seats, etc. for an April cruise, of course we always pick the non-stop ones. When flying in and out of San Juan its also best to go down the day prior, so that will also be a flight deviation and have been able to even to get non-stops there too. All in all its a good investment, one you won't be sorry you did.
As for your flights, just make sure you have the cruise tags filled out properly and you shouldn't have a problem with lost luggage. Even if there is some mix-up if you have travel insurance, that should cover any losses with the luggage.
Here is an article written by Tim Rubacky just about booking air with your cruise, you should fine this most helpfull:
If you check, you may find that there are only a limited amount of direct flights between Raleigh and Ft. Lauderdale that would get you there in time to catch your ship. In such cases, there may not be seats available on those flights or, as others have indicated, connecting flights through a hub city may be cheaper. Air deviation can be of some value in such instances, but you need to know your options before deciding whether to pay the fee and request specific flights or to leave your fate with the cruiseline.
Suzy: I think your question was more why your flight was to Ft. Lauderdale instead of to Miami. It's about 30 miles between the cities, so I wouldn't worry if I were you about not making it to the dock on time as long as your flight is scheduled to be there early afternoon.
By the way, our travel agent now recommends arranging our own airfare when we're cruising out of Miami since the prices the cruise lines charge is so much greater than she can get for us from Raleigh-Durham. Of course then you have to pick up your own luggage at the airport and pay for the shuttle to the dock.
We've been on four cruises out of Miami and have had connections to make on all but one of those--either in Charlotte or Atlanta. On one trip, we had to come back through Washington, D.C.--and that trip was booked with airfare through Royal Caribbean.
Whenever possible I recommend doing a cruise only package if the cruise leaves out of the continental US or Vancouver. We have driven to Miami from Northern Virginia or taken the Auto Train down several times and make an extended vacation out of it. Two trips ago, driving really saved us as the Coast Guard did a fire drill on board our ship, Destiny, after we were in port. Instead of leaving the ship at 9:00 we finally got off at 11:30 and we were about the middle of the pack for people to leave. I can imagine the thoughts of those people who had planes to catch and were 2 and a half hours late getting off. Once our group was called we were out of the port and heading home in 30 minutes. A stay overnight to extend our vacation and we were home by lunch the next day.
We went to Alaska this past summer out of Vancouver. We flew into Seattle and toured for a day and a half. Drove to Vancouver, cruised and then stayed in Vancouver for the day we arrived back in port, toured and the next morning headed to the Seattle airport and had a great vacation. No hassles, got direct flights, paid the fares we wanted to pay and got a little extended vacation out of the deal. Parking at the ports is easy, close walking distance with luggage, and relatively inexpensive. We also try and use our frequent flier miles whenever possible. That is what we recommend!
Save the airfare - do cruise only and use that money for something extra.