This is the first cruise we had to fly to. We originally did Alaska has a money saver to avoid airfare. But when I look back now, the bargains that can be found to cruise the Caribbean can make up for the airfare. I think all in all both vacations were comparable in total cost even though the Caribbean cruise was four days longer.
Since we have family in Florida we flew in a few days early and rented a car to do some family visits. But even if we had not had family in the area I would definitely fly in a day early. There are a couple of reasons I say this. One is that I am an extremely paranoid traveler. I'd be sick to my stomache with worry if I had to worry about connecting flights, snow storms, or other. One couple we met on-line pre-cruise had such problems and just barely made the cruise ship in Miami. That couple was one bundle of nerves and I can't even imagine the stress they faced with two separate delays trying to fly in the day of. Another reason is that I like showing up at the pier at 10:00a. Yes, I have to wait to get on board, but its so much more relaxing than the cattle call of my first cruise where we showed up at 2:00p. Lunch at the Windjammer at noon the first day cannot be beat. I would have a hear time finding flights that would get me to the pier in time for that early boarding.