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Need Help From Past Guests on Getaway out of New Orleans

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Me, my wife and our two kiddos are booked on the Getaway April 12-19 out of New Orleans. 
 

On disembarkation day the itinerary says we dock at 7am and that disembarkation usually begins around 2 hours after.  However, on past cruises we seem to remember disembarking earlier than 2 hours after docking. We need to schedule a flight that leaves at 10:55 am as that’s the only one that will work for us.  The airport is 20 minutes away so we know we will be cutting it close.

 

The question for you guys who have been on Getaway out of New Orleans recently is (i) when did they start letting your off the ship after docking, (ii) was that earlier than 2 hours after docking, (iii) how quick was getting through customs, and (iv) how bad has the security line been at Armstrong airport?  


We are gold latitudes, will be making sure guest services know we need to get off the ship asap and will be carrying our own luggage.  I think we can make the 1055 flight if all goes according to plan.  What do you guys think?  Any other tips?  Thanks!

 

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We took a cruise out of New Orleans in December 2019. We had a later flight, around 1:00 p.m., and we were off the ship by 9:00 a.m. (self carry  we only had carry on) and were at the airport by 9:30 a.m. We did not hurry at all and still had plenty of time. Hope this helps.

 

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Sounds like the chaotic disembarking in New Orleans has gotten better. We got off the Getaway, Nov 8, 2019, we were in the taxi line for 2 hours, it was a mess with 3800 or so passengers getting off and another 3800 trying to get on.  It was the Getaways arrival for the season in NOLA.  Am sure after that fiasco, they have worked on the congestion problem.  If all goes as it should, might be cutting it close, but earliest off, should hopefully workout.

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This is not a well organized port,   I have sailed out of here multiple times.    Sorry,  but your "priority" thinking isn't going to help.  Only thing that will get you is yellow tags.   You NEED to self disembark and take off ALL your own luggage.   Hundreds of people have "priority",  so I suggest you be up and ready to go,  at least 30 minutes prior to the posted time.   

 

But-  you are taking a big risk,  you are unfamiliar with this port and transfers can be hard to expedite.   How are you getting to the airport?    You  need to know this in advance.   

 

Finally-  the Mississippi can create additional problems.   You can not count on being on time.

 

What are the terms of your ticket?    Flights out of MSY,  are always full on cruise days.   Don't assume you will simply get on the "next" flight-     If you aren't well traveled and can bypass snag areas,   I'd suggest you not consider this early flight.    

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We were on the Thanksgiving cruise, did self-assist debarkation and were keying out at 7:30am.  This ship was also at capacity with over 4800 people on it, mostly families.  Customs took all of 10 minutes, but you absolutely have to do self-asist if you even think about this.  No breakfast, nothing.  Get up and out as soon as you can.  It's possible but only you know your family well enough to amke the decision if they can do it or not.

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On 1/30/2020 at 12:30 AM, NW Pacific said:

Sounds like the chaotic disembarking in New Orleans has gotten better. We got off the Getaway, Nov 8, 2019, we were in the taxi line for 2 hours, it was a mess with 3800 or so passengers getting off and another 3800 trying to get on.  It was the Getaways arrival for the season in NOLA.  Am sure after that fiasco, they have worked on the congestion problem.  If all goes as it should, might be cutting it close, but earliest off, should hopefully workout.

 

We were on that same cruise, but fortunately took an Uber to the airport.  It did take about 15 minutes for the driver to get there (primarily because they had apparently moved the pickup point), but we were still at the airport by 9:00 AM.

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We were just on the Getaway (1/17/20-1/26/20). Disembarkation began just after 7 am. We were off the ship at 7:30.  There was a line of self-assist passengers disembarking right away, but all was quick and smooth.

Edited by midwesterner2002

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We did this in early December. I highly suggest grabbing your bags and walking a block or two to the Hilton or Courtyard and calling an Uber/Lyft. This worked great for us. If it’s like our cruise, we were docked by 5am.

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can't seem to get an answer, are they done with road work around port? read somewhere that it was wrapping up soon. on  getaway 3/1/20

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Related to this... we actually get of the Getaway on the 12th. We have a flight booked at 12 (not as tight as the original poster, but still tight on time) and were wondering if there is any advantage to booking a transfer through NCL? How easy is it to get a taxi after disembarking? We're planning on self-disembarking as we never travel with more than we can carry.

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4 hours ago, Caroian said:

Related to this... we actually get of the Getaway on the 12th. We have a flight booked at 12 (not as tight as the original poster, but still tight on time) and were wondering if there is any advantage to booking a transfer through NCL? How easy is it to get a taxi after disembarking? We're planning on self-disembarking as we never travel with more than we can carry.

Im wondering that as well.  Id like to do self assist with the luggage but take it directly to the ncl transfer bus outside, thus (hopefully) bypassing the luggage hall luggage hunt. I hope that's possible....anyone know if I can do this? self assist directly to NCL transfer bus...….

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9 hours ago, pinklucky61 said:

can't seem to get an answer, are they done with road work around port? read somewhere that it was wrapping up soon. on  getaway 3/1/20

There was still construction going on on 1/26, but it didn’t cause us any problems (I will add that we got to port early on embarkation day, about 9 am, and left early on disembarkation day, about 7:30).

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2 hours ago, Moonglo said:

Im wondering that as well.  Id like to do self assist with the luggage but take it directly to the ncl transfer bus outside, thus (hopefully) bypassing the luggage hall luggage hunt. I hope that's possible....anyone know if I can do this? self assist directly to NCL transfer bus...….

We have traveled out of NOLA multiple times.  With the NCL transfer, you still have to wait for others and for the bus/transportation to fill up.  I’ve always found this was the slowest way to get to where we are going.  I would do like @KarlChilders stated above, do the self assist off and walk a couple of blocks to the Hilton and get a taxi or Uber to where you are going - it will save all of the congestion at the port.  Taxis are always lined up by the Hilton also. 

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We disembarked the Getaway @ New Orlean Sunday Jan 26th.

They began "easy walk off" for those who could carry all their own luggage at 7:15am.

There were lots of taxis early at door #4.

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Just off Getaway.

We left the ship at 9;30ish. Had an 11:50 flight home. Made it with time to spare. As long as you take your own luggage, you are going to be fine.

Walked off the ship, directly to the taxi line and were on our way!!

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nice to hear,. we'll be parking at fulton garage, until i watched a youtube video, i had no idea esy  walk to cruise port rather than wait for shuttle

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4 hours ago, pinklucky61 said:

nice to hear,. we'll be parking at fulton garage, until i watched a youtube video, i had no idea esy  walk to cruise port rather than wait for shuttle

You can pull up to the port, unload your luggage and then follow the signs to cruise ship parking. You will cross the railroad tracks and take the first right which takes you into the “whale” parking lot.  There is a huge whale mural painted on a building on the side of the lot.  It’s not covered, but simple access before and after the cruise to get you on your way.

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For those of you who may have not seen this. It helps for embarkation:

 

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Living in NOLA, I usually do several cruises per year.  Nornally, self-assist debarkation starts at 07:15 +/- a few minutes (but factors outside of NCL's control can delay early morning arrival and thus disembarkcation times) but if you have a tight time line you need to be up and in line by 06:30.  There will be taxies lined up near door 1 of the terminal and are fastest way to leave direct from the terminal. Pay attention to your surroundings while approaching 1st security checkpoint when embarking and you can see where to catch a cab for your departure.  Ride share services take lomger than taxi from the terminal.  I have not tried the walking to Hilton or other location as I find getting a cab at the terminal to be quick.

 

 

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18 hours ago, Luvmypups said:

You can pull up to the port, unload your luggage and then follow the signs to cruise ship parking. You will cross the railroad tracks and take the first right which takes you into the “whale” parking lot.  There is a huge whale mural painted on a building on the side of the lot.  It’s not covered, but simple access before and after the cruise to get you on your way.

yes, but fulton $10 a day cheaper, free shuttle to and from port. other things i would rather spend my money on

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New Orleans is notoriously chaotic.  That being said, with self-assist, you can usually get off and out pretty quickly if you are lined up and ready to clear customs as soon as they open the floodgates.  Keep in mind that the airport is not in NOLA, it is in a suburb called Kenner.  The trip, once you are out of the port area, should take about 20 minutes.  Traffic around the new airport terminal is also chaotic, so you have to figure that in.  You can probably make it, but  you will be cutting it close.  My wife's family lives in Metairie -- one suburb closer to NOLA than Kenner -- and we have arrived at their house as early as 8:30 and as late as noon.

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We did self-assist in December. We did not line up early and headed for the exit some time after 7.  We were in a Lyft by 8:08 and at the airport at 8:40.  Checked our luggage and through TSA pre-check by 9:10.  No stress, no rush and no issues.  There is always a chance of a snafu - but you should be fine. 

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We just got off the Getaway on Friday. We were due in at 8:00 am. Due to high winds and a medical emergency, we didn’t arrive until 10:00 am. We were in the Haven and it was almost 11:30 before we could get off the ship. For some reason, the disembarkation seemed to go very slowly. Luckily we were spending the night in NOLA so it was no big deal to us but there were a lot of people worried about missing their flights. This was the first time we’ve experienced a delay getting into port but it can & does happen. We had no lines going through customs and no wait to get a taxi to our hotel.  Most likely you will be fine but making an 11:00 am flight could be cutting it pretty close. 
Enjoy your cruise!! 

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We also just got off the Getaway on Feb 7th in NOLA. I don't think the ship was docked until 9:30 due to the high winds. It was pretty much a cluster! Lines around the ship and lots of standing. We did self assist I think we finally got off at 11:30. Our flight was at 3:30, later delayed to 4:30.

 

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