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Karen 69er 05-01-2012 08:34 AM

Carnival Dream/port canaveral
We are very excited to be going on the Carnival dream next Feb 2, 2013. We are flying into Orlando on Feb 1. I am not sure were to stay the night before and how to get to the port, the next day. I thought about renting a car, but it has to be returned to the airport which is one hour away from the port and then how do I get to the port for the cruise. Any suggestions would be great. There is four of us.

susanmaz 05-01-2012 12:17 PM

Search for hotels that offer shuttles to the port. If there aren't any, look for hotels that offer shuttles to the airport then arrange transportation from the airport to the port... either via the cruise lines or another shuttle service. I've never been through Port Canaveral, so I can't be any more specific. You might check the port's website which may have links to hotels. Good luck and happy sailing.

Karen 69er 05-01-2012 04:56 PM

Thank you for the info. I have looked around and there is a couple of rental car company where I can pick up the car at the airport and drop it off near the port. There is also hotel that offers a shuttle from the airport to the port.

PC GUY 05-01-2012 05:47 PM


Originally Posted by Karen 69er (Post 293476)
Thank you for the info. I have looked around and there is a couple of rental car company where I can pick up the car at the airport and drop it off near the port. There is also hotel that offers a shuttle from the airport to the port.

Hi Karen I did that last year. I flew into MCO with a party of 6 the evening before the cruise. I rented a Mini Van at the airport. We stayed at a Days Inn that was actually a few miles in the opposite direction from the port. It was close to the airport, and we had a late evening arrival and I didn't want to drive too far after a long day. Plus the room was booked using my father-in-law's Wyndham reward points.

The next morning, we left the hotel around 11:00 am and drove to the port. It is a toll road, and I forgot the exact amount I had to pay- there were 3 stops in total, so it was around $3.00. We went to the cruise terminal first and dropped our luggage, then returned the rental car, and took the rental shuttle back to the ship. You may have to pay a drop charge if you drop the vehicle at a different location. But in our case the total cost was less than 5 transfers ( 4 adults, one child, one infant) – so that is another thing to consider.

I went back to Orlando a month ago to go to Disney World, so the toll roads still have cash lanes. Apparently, Florida will eventually make the switch to electronic tolls only - like the Miami area already has. Make sure you have lots of quarters. There is a manned teller booth and an automated "exact fare lane" in addition to the transponder lanes. Note to self, I wish the automated lane would take $1.00 coins - if I have to pay $1.00, throwing Susan B, Sacagawea or a President is a lot easier than 4 quarters one by one.

This was my first platinum cruise so we were able to use the VIP check in. The funny thing was one of my wife's friends and her family were there in the terminal but didn't see us. They had originally booked on the Carnival Splendor but had to find another cruise when it was out of service after the fire.

Jim C. 05-04-2012 02:08 AM


The rental does NOT need to be returned to the airport. You can drop it off in Cocoa Beach (near the port) . Most of the major rental companies (Hurtz, National, Avis etc.. have offices there.

We rented an AVIS car for one day at MCO (airport) and returned it that day in the office in Cocoa Beach. They have a shuttle bus that can take you directly to the port. I don't know if you they will drop you off at a hotel or not but you could call the office and find out.

There are several hotels near the port (We stay at the Raddison Inn at the Port) the night before. This hotel offers a port shuttle.

So you have a couple of choices-
1) fly in the same morning, rent a car at the airport, drive to Cocoa Beach, drop off the car and take their shuttle to the port. With the opposite for the return trip.
2) Fly in the night before and stay at a hotel near the airport and then #1 in the morning of the cruise
3) Fly in the night/day before, rent a car and drive it to the hotel and either keep it over night and use the rental company shuttle to the port (probably the easiest way) or drop your stuff at the hotel, go and drop off the rental and then figure out a way to get back to the hotel.

We did the last option and tried dropping the car off after stopping at the hotel and then going to see a movie. We ended up walking back to the hotel since the rental company had closed for the day so we could not use their shuttle. Not a big deal because we are walkers anyway but it was about 2 miles... So if you want to drop it off the same day, be sure to be able to get it back to the rental company before 6PM or arranged a ride back from the rental office. With the made rush of people wanting to use the hotel shuttle we realized it would have been worth the extra days rental cost to keep the car overnight and use the rental car's port shuttle. But that is up to you.

Hope that helps.

Cruise Fanatic 05-04-2012 04:48 AM

Sunward Tours offers a package where you can get Travel Lynx transportation from Orlando airport to a Port Canaveral hotel, spend the night at the hotel, hotel takes you to ship, then Travel Lynx picks you up at ship and takes you back to Orlando airport. The package using the Comfort Inn for 1-nt with the roundtrip Travel Lynx transfers for two people runs somewhere around $214 plus tax. Varies time of year. The Comfort Inn also gives a welcome drink and breakfast. Other hotels can be used for the package at a different cost.

mizzgee65 05-04-2012 11:22 PM

Radisson at the port
We have gone out of Port Canaveral multiply times and always stay at the Radisson at the Port. Price of the room includes free parking for your auto for a week, breakfast and shuttle to and from the hotel to the cruise port. I know you are flying in to Orlando but you might find it just a cheap to rent a car for the week and leave the car at the hotel! Just a suggestion.

Midwest Cruiser 05-05-2012 08:41 AM

We fly into Orlando and do a one way rental to Cocoa Beach and then a one way rental back to the airport after the cruise. The rental car companies have shuttles that will take you to the port or you can take a taxi for under $20. We usually opt for a taxi after the cruise so that we can avoid the rental car shuttle lines. Iíve been getting midsized cars for $30-40 from MCO to Cocoa but the price is about $60-70 for the return rental.

Bill McGarr 06-20-2012 05:34 PM

Just did this cruise in April, easy to get rental car from Orlando and drop it off in Cocoa Beach. Lots of the hotels will shuttle you to the pier. We stayed at the Courtyard Marriott and it was ten dollars round trip to the pier or six dollars one way.

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