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Bridgevin 09-21-2010 11:21 AM

Hi! My husband and I are going on our first cruise on RC on Serenade of the Seas on October 2-10. We think we may have cut it too close for the ship departure to the airport.

Our ship arrives back in Puerto Rico at 6am on the 10th. Our flight home is scheduled to leave at 8:46. We just found out it can take up to 1 1/2 hrs to get off the boat and now we are very worried we cut things too close.

Any suggestions from the seasoned cruisers would be so very much appreciated!!!

Thanking you in advance


penny3333 09-21-2010 11:30 AM

Hi Bridgevin, welcome to Cruise-Chat! Even if everything were to go perfectly, I doubt you'd make a 8:46 flight out of San Juan. You might try the self-debarkation, which normally will start around 7-7:30 am. You will have to be able to carry all of your own luggage off the ship and through customs. It's still cutting it too close for comfort. If it were me, I'd change my flight out of San Juan.

Good luck and hope you have a marvelous cruise!

Cruise Fanatic 09-21-2010 11:46 AM

Change your flight.

MCPayne 09-21-2010 02:41 PM


Unfortunately, yes, I think you are cutting it WAY too close. If you can, find an early afternoon flight back home. If you go here you can input the information, and if it works, it will tell you the earliest departure time they recommend.

MCPayne 09-21-2010 02:44 PM

Just tried entering the information, assuming you embark on the 3rd, and not the 2nd. Accordig to RCI, the earliest departure time they recommend is 11:00 am.

Bridgevin 09-21-2010 03:59 PM

Thank you MCPayne! Did not even see that on the website. We should have done our homework instead of listening to our cousin! Live and learn! Called Delta and it will be $450 to change ticket now- or if we wait & miss the flight - we can be put on the next available for $120. Arrgggg!!! Wish us luck - we are still very, very excited for our first cruise!!!

Sonny V 09-21-2010 05:20 PM

Go to the Guest Relations Desk and tell them about your time schedule. They will get you signed up for express departure to get you off the ship as early as possible. You will definitely have to take all of your luggage off with, you so pack light. You might want to make some arrangements for transportation to the airport if possible. The first cruise is always the one you'll never forget. Have a great cruise! Oh yeah...WELCOME TO CRUISE-CHAT!


MCPayne 09-21-2010 06:18 PM


No problem. That's actually tricky to find. You have to go to the customer support menu up top, then go to FAQ's. From there, you have to select "Air travel," which I think is under "Planning," then select the FAQ that says something like "What is the latest time to arrive before the cruise, and what is the earliest time to leave after the cruise?"

Actually, on my last cruise, I had the opposite problem. I booked I think a 1:00 pm flight out of Fort Lauderdale, with a 7:00 am docking in Port Everglades.

I think I was off the ship around 9:00, in a cab at 9:15, and at the airport at 9:30. At the check in kiosk, a prompt asked me "Do you want to get to your destination earlier for $50?" I actually said no, because then it would have cost me that, plus another $75 to get home.

wooddon 09-22-2010 06:39 AM

What we do every cruise is always stay overnight one extra night after leaving the ship. This gives us a great piece of mind and no need to rush.

electech 09-22-2010 09:28 AM

We always stay the night before and the night after a cruise just for the sheer relaxation of it. However, you are definitely way too close on time and I doubt you will make it. However, I would not pay the $450 either, if you miss it, just do the $120 deal. I would definitely tell the airline ahead of time and keep a paper trail of people's names and the info they give you just in case you have to prove what someone said. The good news though, it is the return trip that you might miss and not the other way around. The worst case is you might "have" to extend your vacation!!

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