My husband and I are going on our first cruise the Carnivals Fantasy may 27th I am looking for some opinions on when is the best time to try and board? Right away at 1:30 or should we wait a little to show up? Thanks
I have found that by waiting a couple of hours, the lines have gone down considerably. Last year we arrived at 3:00pm for a 5:00pm departure. It took us about 20 minutes, to sign, get our sign/sail card, go through security and get to our room. The year before, it took us about an hour when we arrived at 1:30. Hope this helps. Enjoy your cruise!!
We arrived at the stated time and found that lots of people were already on board! I guess they start boarding earlier than the brochure documents say. Also, depends if you want lunch on the ship or if you get lunch ahead of time. Some of the party people want on as fast as they can get on! Our embarkation was less than an hour with lots of people going at the same time in Galveston. Good luck, and just have fun!
This question comes up a lot on this board. There are also several opinions of what is the best time.
There is penny's method of waiting and getting on quickly to arriving very early. (And some in between).
Rodney is correct in that the cruise tends to begin boarding early than the stated 1PM. Sometimes they start later but on the cruises we have been on lately they seem to start early. So as you may have guessed, my family likes to get to the terminal early (like 11AM).
Yes, you are going to stand in line waiting to board. But we normally get on the ship by 12:30 or 1PM. That gives us about 3 hours of extra relaxation.
If you choose Penny's method and wait. Where are you going to wait? And if you are going to wait, why not wait in line and get on earlier?
Its up to you, but I would rather know that I am at the ship and will get on, then worry about traffic and tranport delays and arrive with an hour to spare before the departure time. That is more stressfull to me than standing in a line. Besides, that line time allows you to start meeting people and making new cruise friends. (We always seem to meet someone we "hang with" for most of the cruise)
1990 - Honeymoney-
Five years of young/ broke newlyweds
1995, family cruise (10 people and
the first born was almost 2 and wife was 6 months along on 2nd kiddo. Figured that we better go while we could.
1995 -2005 much crying and depression.
Actually, 95 to 2005 was spent doing other vacations, Disney (3 times in 2 years) and other things.. We didn't think we wanted to cruise with young kids and the nearest grandparent was 900 miles away so we never got the chance.
Now the kids are old enough to go along and entertain themselves and they LOVE cruising. So, we are getting to do it more often. We want to do the Disney Cruise and Park combo trip but we keep cringing at the $10,000 pricetag.
How did the time pass? Actually quickly. but I agree it was a dry spell.
I try to be there early so I can get on, have lunch and look around. They normally start the boarding process around Noon for a 4:00 PM departure. I got there about 11:45 last time and there were about 100 people already in line.