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PCA 05-22-2012 10:59 AM

Last minute walk up cruising?
How successful is it to just walk up to the registration desk at the departure port on cruise day and get a deal? Meaning, you have no reservations whatsoever but are willing to jump on the ship right then for a great deal.

Are cruiselines willing to cut a great deal on the spot to get you onboard or not?


LisaP 05-22-2012 11:44 AM

Welcome to the forums!

What you describe is not possible. This is due to Department of Homeland security regulations, not the cruise lines. Among other regulations, the cruise lines must submit the passenger manifests to DHS three days (I believe) prior to the cruise departure. So -- advance reservations are required.

Dave 05-22-2012 11:52 AM

This doesn't happen. While it may have at one time, it isn't so anymore. Security reasons being a chief reason.

Cruise lines do have special offers for unsold space but you have to book them beforehand and not at the pier. For example, Carnival has what they call 'Pack-and-Go' rates. But even with those there is at least a few days between the booking and the cruise. The the most recent sale had to be booked by May 18 and the earliest cruise that could be booked was for June 2.

Cruise Fanatic 05-22-2012 12:30 PM

The Pack & Go with Carnival come out every Wednesday and must be booked during Wednesday-Friday of that week.

lynch2012 11-08-2012 11:08 AM

Yes you can!
I found this on Carnivals site so it may depend on what ship you're using

Frequently Asked Questions, Information | FAQs | Carnival Cruise Lines

Government regulations for U.S. departure ports require that a final departure manifest is submitted 60 minutes prior to departure. Guests must provide us with the required information prior to embarkation. The easiest and most convenient way is to complete our FunPass on line registration process (Embarkation Information | Carnival Cruise Lines) at least (3) three days prior to departure. Guests that do not complete the registration process prior to embarkation are required to check-in at least 90 minutes prior to the published sailing time.
In addition, U.S. Customs and Border Protection will no longer be accepting oral declarations to satisfy the requirements for identity and citizenship documentation. Guests must present the proper travel documentation at embarkation. U.S. citizens traveling on other cruises (cruises that begin and end in different U.S. ports or begin and end in a foreign port) will require a valid passport or other recognized WHTI-compliant document. For complete information on the required travel documentation, please visit the U.S. Government website (Welcome to Travel.State.Gov).

Dave 11-08-2012 12:06 PM

No, you can't!
The manifest referenced is for passengers who were already booked on the cruise prior to embarkation day. What the Carnival FAQ means is booked guests must be checked-in no later than 60 minutes before scheduled departure time if they did the online Fun Pass. If they didn't do that then they have to be checked in 90 minutes before scheduled departure time. So to summarize, Carnival has a list of booked guests. They don't add names to it, just take names off for those who didn't check-in in time.

You cannot show up at the pier and get a cabin.

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