I think you have to book it in advance (at least I would to cover myself). Its the way to go. When you get through the security area there will be people waiting with RCI signs. Just tell them youre sailing with them and theyll tell you what to do (get your luggage and find a rep at baggage). I was much smoother than at Ft Lauderdale (I will never sail out of there again). We did have to wait for a short time while everyone got on board (a large group either lost luggage or was delayed-kind of a pain but oh well). It was about a 10-15 minute run to the port where they unloaded us right in front of the terminal. You might want some change for the driver/luggage handlers. The best part of the transfer is coming back. I dont know if they do this elsewhere, but I love Miami! Instead of dropping you out front of the airport, they have a special area in the back just for us. You get off the bus, collect your luggage and walk right up to the checkin desk. We waited no more than 5 minutes. Its open air, but has a roof and fans going. Then you walk inside right up to security (now there we had to wait 15-20 minutes, but it was right after New Years so lots of travelers).
Did you book air independant of the cruiseline?Transfers will cost you approximately 22.00 per person round trip,,but ,dont quote me on the correct price.Yes,you need to contact the cruiseline with your flight information ahead of time.Or,if I can make a suggestion?Take a cab to the Port of Miami,it is only about a 10 or 15 minute ride,and cabs are plentiful.
I agree with the others. Instead of waiting for the RCCL bus to fill up, there are plenty of cabs waiting and it is so much faster to hop in a cab. The price isn't that much different either. We rarely take cruise transfers.