Hi everyone I am considering booking back to back south carib departing from Puerto Rico. Both cruises are on the Adventure. Assuming, I get the same room for both cruises, what happens on the day, when the 1st cruise ends, and the 2nd cruise starts? Do we just hang out, and watch the people get off, and the new people get on? Do we have to do any formalities, paperwork, whatever, or do they "check you in" on the first day of the first cruise for both cruises? Looking forward to you r answers and any advice. Thanks. Lil' Lori
I have not done back to back post 9/11 but I can't imagine it has changed much. As long as you have the same cabin for both cruises you simply check in once and check out once. On the day that everyone else is getting off the ship after the first cruise is done you will be allowed to stay put in your cabin and on the ship if you like. If you want to get off the ship for a bit then you just let them know and they will give you an 'in transit card' to get on and off as you please. You will keep your keycard as you will need that and your 'in transit card' to get off the ship and you will also have to use the crew entrance to do so. (The main passenger exits are controlled by immigration and customs so you can't mess with them.)
It is kind of a fun feeling on that last night of the first cruise as everyone is scrambling to get packed, pay the bill, put their suitcases in the hall, etc. you get to relax because you aren't going anywhere!
You do want to remember to tip everyone after the first weeks cruise though. You may not have the same waiter and busboy for the second week. (Probably won't in fact.) You can check with your cabin steward as some ships keep the same cabins from cruise to cruise while others change each time. But also remember that these people live for their tips so even if you have the same room steward it might be nice to go ahead and tip him for the first week after it is done. Often when a ship pulls into their home port they employees get off to deposit money, wire it home, etc.
Keep in mind that after the second cruise when you do disembark you are only allowed the duties and custom-free things for one cruise worth. Just because you were on two cruises does not mean you are allowed to bring back twice as much.
One of my tablemates on a cruise several years ago on another cruise line was doing back-to-back cruises. She had evidently booked a guarantee, as she didn't know until maybe the second-last day of the first cruise if she had the same cabin, so she had to be mentally prepared to check out, disembark, then wait to get back on again. However, as it turned out, she didn't have to do that, and was able to relax on the changeover day.
I would hope the cruise line wouldn't make you check out and recheck in, but you may want to ask to be sure. Post-9/11, they may have some new security rules.
You have to get off the ship at the end of the first cruise. After all other passengers are off someone will take you off and you will get a new seapass. It only takes a few minutes. After that you can go ashore or stay on the ship. You should know what cabin you will be in when you book the back to back cruise. If you do book a different cabin on the second cruise, some one will move your luggage for you. I wouldn't change cabins unless they gave an upgrade.
I wouldn't of changed our holiday for the world but as a warning..
We did a back to back on Explorer departing from Miami last year, and had expected a nice relaxing day on the change over day. Unfortunately it wasn't quite so simple.
Although we were staying in the same cabin we had to leave the cabin by 9am and weren't allowed back until 1pm. I think this was so they could clean the corridors or something like that.
We were told to wait in one of the lounges until collected - which is basically after everyone else has disembarked. In our case this was around 11:45am.
After getting off we had to complete the full immigration / passport control checks, photos, finger prints etc... which probably took about an hour, before we could get back on board.
Not really the relaxing time we had hoped for I'm afraid. I don't think it would of been as bad if we had at least expected it.
To be fair to RCL a lot of the blame must lie with the Miami immigration services. They weren't ready for the ship when it arrived - and then didn't have enough staff to cope! We had similar problems getting on the ship at the start of the cruise.
Whether you would have similar problems in Puerto Rico I don't know, and even so I certainly wouldn't let it put me off doing a back to back but just be prepared....
PS Only 6 weeks left to Legend of the Seas Med Cruise..time to get the new wardrobe in!