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ajolder February 6th, 2005 12:33 PM

Port Carnaveral Logistics
Just booked Mariner Western Caribbean for July 05 out of Port Carnaveral. Am contemplating whether to use RC air or do myself. Can someone with experience offer comments on logistics of getting from Orlando airport to port? If I do my own air, would probably go down day early - any recommended hotels? I'm concerned about getting my family (and luggage) around. Appreciate your suggestions and help.

DGBunk February 6th, 2005 02:21 PM

Re: Port Carnaveral Logistics
We sailed out of that port last December. We rented a car and drove from Orlando. No problem. We then spent the night at the Radisson, a beautiful hotel , (Free upgrade to a suite!) from which we could see the ships at dock. Smooth and easy!

ajolder February 6th, 2005 03:32 PM

Re: Re: Port Carnaveral Logistics
Thanks for feedback. What happened to your rental car? Where did you turn it in and then how did you get from hotel to port?

jwith2boys February 6th, 2005 10:09 PM

Re: Port Carnaveral Logistics
Have sailed RCCL out of miami only, but went on Disney out of Port Canaveral. There is not much in Port Canaveral, but I agree, the Radisson is the place to stay. We stayed there as well. Avis has an office in the hotel. So we rented from Avis at the Orlando airport and drove to the Radisson (less than an hour.) and then turned the car in right away. We signed up for the hotel shuttle to the port. It is only 5 minutes away. The Radisson is very nice. They have a huge outdoor pool with fountains, etc. It is very nice. My kids got their swimming in there, because personally I don't think the swimming is so good in cruise ships. Our room overlooked the cruise ships as well, but you might want to ask them to get a room on that side of the hotel. It is not a high rise, there are several 2 or 3 story buildings in the hotel complex. On our return, we took the cruise line bus back to Orlando. you might want to call and make sure that Avis still has the office at the radisson.

CA Cruiser February 6th, 2005 10:33 PM

Re: Port Carnaveral Logistics
Last year we flew into Orlando a few days before our cruise out of PC and rented a car from Budget. I grew up on Merritt Island/Cocoa Beach so I wanted the freedom of travel. There is a WalMart and Target on Merritt Island for last minute items like water and soda. We turned the car in the morning of the cruise at their location across the street from the port. They have a free shuttle that took us to the port and we were the first ones there. There was no crowd or wait for vans to load up. We stayed at the Hampton Inn on A1A, 3 miles from the port. They offered free Internet and breakfast for $63. We saw the Avis location around there also. We stayed at the Radisson the year before for about $110, no amenities. Yes it is a very nice hotel but the cruise crowd in the morning was awful, even with specific shuttle times. Lots of pushing and shoving! Now they also shuttle cruisers from the Quality Suites. I believe the Comfort Inn and Suites offers a cruise/car package also but I've only stayed there for high school class reunions. If you have a Sunday cruise and arrive early, be sure to go to Grills Saturday night before 4pm and watch the ships leave. Great crowd and good food.

Post Edited (02-06-05 22:37)

Marsha Buck February 8th, 2005 04:10 PM

Re: Re: Port Carnaveral Logistics

I posted earlier but did not get a reply. I am driving into Port Canaveral on July 1st and currently am booked at the Radisson. I want to take my two teenage sons to NASA on Saturday before the cruise. (I'm a science teacher - I can't pass this up.)

I would prefer to stay at a Hampton Inn. You mentioned one in your post. I will be driving my own car to Port Canaveral and parking there. The Radisson is already sold out of cruise packages and I cannot leave my car there, although I do have reservations for the two nights before the cruise.

I am a member of the Hampton Inn "Club" - Hiltons, I think. I can earn points by staying at a Hampton Inn, but wasn't sure how close it was to the port and if my plan of leaving my car at the port itself is crazy or naive.....

Marsha Buck

CA Cruiser February 8th, 2005 04:41 PM

Re: Port Carnaveral Logistics
The Hampton Inn is only 3 miles down A1A from the port. It is right past Ron Jon's Surf Shop and Resort. I have stayed there many times and they offer a complimentary contentinental breakfast and there are many restaurants close by for dinner. There is also a Walmart and Target down the Causeway on Merritt Island for last minute items. I don't know if the hotel will let you park your car there during your cruise but I do know they don't have a shuttle. Many ppl use private shuttle services like Mears or Art. Parking at the port is just as easy from what we observed. I believe I read it was about $10/day.

We have also stayed at the Radisson and yes it is a beautiful hotel but it gets too crowded on cruise day with everyone pushing and shoving. They do not offer a complimentary continental breakfast and their restaurants are okay but expensive IMHO. Since you'll have a car, go to the port around 4 pm on Saturday and watch the other ships leave then eat dinner at Grill's. We printed a discount coupon off their website last year.

I agree with you about NASA, my sons loved it. I grew up on Merritt Island - Go Mustangs- and my father worked at Cape Canaveral in the 60's. Many good memories of different astronauts and launches, sad ones too.

Have a wonderful cruise.

Post Edited (02-08-05 16:43)

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