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SanDee 11-17-2011 08:30 AM

Cruise out of Miami in 2 weeks and plans not finalized
We are flying into FLL and cruising out of Miami. Our original plan was to take a shuttle to our hotel (not booked yet) and spend 2 days down in the Bayside Marketplace area but all the hotels in our budget are booked. I have looked into rental cars and many are now charging a drop off fee. Thrifty which we use all the time wants $175.00 to drop off at the port of Miami plus the rental fees. Thought of driving to Key West and staying there but not paying $175.00 drop off fee. I am running out of time and options. We used a shuttle company a few years ago from FLL to Miami and everything went smooth for our party of 13 but cannot remember the company name. One of the moderators recommended the company. Also thought of staying by the Miami airport and taking a taxi to the port but not much to do within walking distance. Also thinking of trying the rail system to Miami. Any suggestions would be appreciated. This is a last minute cruise decision. I do not usually wait this long to finalize plans.

Dave 11-17-2011 09:15 AM

Perhaps you are thinking of Top Shuttle?

SanDee 11-17-2011 10:41 AM

Might be Dave. You are the one that recommended it. Thanks!

Sonny V 11-17-2011 07:22 PM

Did you consider renting a car for the two days - bringing it back to Ft. Lauderdale and taking a shuttle back to Miami? The reason I ask is because I just called Thrifty Wednesday morning a rented a car for next Friday. They wanted $77 per day and I asked if there was any special deals. After a couple of minutes on hold the person came back and I could get a premium car for $46 (tax included). We're going on a cruise the next day and they have free shuttle service to the port. They also have free shuttle service to the airport where it's easy to get shuttle service to the Port of Miami. It's only a 45 minute drive from Ft. Lauderdale to Miami. If you could get a premium car for that price it might be worth it. There's room for 5 pcs of luggage in the bigger cars. The agent didn't know about any special deals so you have to ask.
Another thing about getting a car is that you can get a hotel anywhere and still go to the Bayside Market Place.

SanDee 11-17-2011 11:19 PM

Sonny, do you mean you rented a car at FLL and will return it there and they offer you a FREE shuttle to the Port of Miami?? That is a good deal. I have rented a car with Budget as they are one of only two car rental companies that do not charge a drop off fee. Still have not booked a hotel but planned to return the car to Miami Airport and take a taxi to the port. If we decide to stay in FLL it might be a better deal to rent through Thrifty since I have a have a Blue Chip membership.

Sonny V 11-18-2011 08:44 AM

I'm sailing out of fort lauderdale. As long as you don't have to pay the drop off charge, you are better off what you have with budget. What is your sailing date?

poormom 11-18-2011 04:15 PM

just be careful when you book your hotel. A lot of the nicer ones charge for parking.

SanDee 11-22-2011 12:15 AM

Sonny we are sailing Dec 4. Our plans now are to stay in Coconut Grove at Residence Inn by Marriott and take a taxi to the port. Still not sure how we are getting to Miami. I still have the rental car booked but the hotel charges $12.00 a day parking and I understand there is plenty to do within walking distance so I may cancel the rental car but still need to make reservations for transportation to Miami. I booked our return from the port to FLL with Top shuttle but they still have not contacted me to finalize the arrangements as they said they would.

Cruise Fanatic 11-23-2011 05:47 AM

Just so your not surprised the Residence Inn website says parking is $15 a day.

SanDee 11-25-2011 10:05 AM

Cruise Fanatic I know they have parking fees. Most reviews said they were $12.00. They must have had a price increase. We most likely will not have a rental car. Sure we can find enough to do without it.

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