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metgame24

Embarkation in Tampa/Dawn

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Leaving from Tampa on the Dawn in March for a relocation cruise. All the cruises we have taken, have never sailed from Tampa or anywhere in Florida for that matter. How is the embarkation process? Fairly smooth? We just reached platinum status prior to our last trip out of New York. Priority embarkation was seamless. Can we expect the same?

Also, traveling on the Dawn for the 1st time since she was refurbished a few years back. I understand there is no Spinnaker...so where is the best interior place to hang out with a view of the outside?

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Tampa is super easy.  As are most Florida ports.

 

When Tampa is busy and you get there a bit late it still only takes about 30 - 45 minutes to get on the ship.

 

I get there early, and this is my record time:

I parked, walked across the street, went through security, checked in, got my room key, and was on the ship.

Time from Truck to Ship... 10 minutes! :classic_cool:

 

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I have not sailed yet, (I am on the Dawn this Christmas) but I have discovered that for $20 extra, total $125 for the week, you can Valet Park! Why wouldn't you???

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We’ve cruised a lot and NEVER had a negative experience with embarkation until sailing from Tampa. Took 3 hours to get through security (with no air conditioning since line was outside and in un-air conditioned warehouse like environment) before we could get into non-existent Platinum Plus Priority line which took another hour. Will never ever again sail from Tampa.

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Traffic was a nightmare for us getting to Tampa (on a Sunday morning)...so many cars, and the ship (Pearl) was at a different dock than what was on our documents, so we had to circle back around and go through all the traffic again.  A relative dropped us off, so I can't speak to parking, but the porters were very efficient taking our bags!  We then had to wait in a line that wrapped several blocks around the outside of the building, but that moved relatively quickly (probably 45 min or so, when I thought sure we were going to be there a couple hours by the looks of it!).  Things moved faster (relative term...still not exactly fast) once inside, thankfully.  I think it was about 2 hours from when we were dropped off to when we got on the boat...about half that time was spent waiting in lines inside and half was spent waiting in lines outside.  We were ready to make use of the beverage package once we got on board, that's for sure!

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Never had a problem sailing out of Tampa.  There are many hotels close to the port.  Get there early and you will be fine.

 

 

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Had a horrible experience at Tampa one that leads me to avoid sailing from the port. Port of Miami has been just fine in Florida.

 

There's also a bridge that has to be cleared, if its a foggy day your ship may be delayed, coming or going.

 

I've sailed on the Dawn twice and enjoyed my time, I hope you do as well!

Edited by Nola26

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The answer to this varies dramatically depending on which terminal you sail from, and that info is not accurately available until they dock in Tampa the morning you board. If you get terminal 3, it's super smooth and easy. If you get terminal 2, you will wait outside in a line that wraps around the building, then be stuck in a queue that loops for what seems like forever on the first floor, then loops for about the same length of time on the second floor. Terminal 2 is simply not big enough to handle the number of passengers they need to process, so it's just a total fiasco. I got stuck with terminal 2 back in March (despite it saying terminal 3 on my paperwork), and it took a solid hour and twenty minutes just to get through the line to the checkin desk. Luckily it was not super hot that day, but it was still really unpleasant.

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