Let’s start at the beginning, planning your cruise.
If you’ve never been on a cruise you might find the choices can be a bit overwhelming. There’s one popular online cruise booking service that currently lists 18,748 sailings to choose from. With nearly 1,000 of those sailings, 997 to be exact, from Port Canaveral.
Tip #1: Use What You Can’t Change To Narrow Your Cruise Choices
If you know you are going to be cruising as a family, a couple, a group, or single, that can be a great first step in finding cruises that would be a great fit. Though most cruise lines have wide appeal, they usually have particular specialties.
If you are going to be vacationing with your family, especially teens, tweens and younger children, Disney Cruise Line should be on on your short list of companies to check out.
Disney has many themed cruises with special events such as, character meet and greets and Disney movie nights on deck under the stars. Parents can get some special time alone while the kids are attend one of the many onboard children’s programs.
If you’re traveling with a group, you might want to check out Carnival. Carnival cruises tend to be more affordable and offer a diverse set of experiences, so that everyone in the group can find something they’ll love. Couples and single travellers might want to consider Royal Caribbean or Norwegian Cruise Lines. Both of these lines offer more formal cruising options.
It’s also great to choose the time of year you want to take your cruse. Knowing that your vacation time is at a certain time of year or only for a certain number of days. There are other destinations such as Alaska or the Mediterranean, that are typically better during the summer. If you only have a short time to get away you can focus on cruises as short as three days, and this brings us to our next tip - don’t rush your cruise.
Tip #2: Don’t Rush Your Cruise
Your vacation is supposed to be a time to take a break and recharge from the daily grind. Too many people get a week off work and try to cram in a 7 day cruise. Flying in the morning your ship departs adds a lot of stress. Arriving the day before the cruise can give you some time to start unwinding and relax a bit.
In Port Canaveral the nearest airports you can fly to are about a 45 minute drive from the cruise port. We strongly recommend scheduling all travel arrangements so you arrive at the cruise port area the day before your cruise departs. Fly in to Orlando anytime during the day and hire a transportation company to take you to a hotel near the port where you can spend the night.
If you realize you’ve forgotten anything, you can still take advantage of normal pricing at a convenience store. One of our services includes a free convenience stop, that’s something you can’t do with a shuttle or bus. The next morning you can take advantage of a complimentary breakfast offered by many hotels and hop on the hotel shuttle for the 5-10 minute ride to the cruise port. On day two of your vacation will be the start of your cruise adventure.
The same idea applies to the day your cruise returns. Most cruises return to port very early in the morning, but who wants to have to rush to get off the boat and then rush to get to the airport? There are thousands of other people with the same plan, and don’t forget, the airport is a 45 minute drive from the cruise port.
If you go with a later flight and a private transportation company, you can take advantage of what we like to consider a double vacation. Take your time getting off the boat and take advantage of one of our recommended excursions before having to get to the airport.
Tip #3: Prearrange Private Cruise Transportation
This is your vacation, so don’t be stuck with someone else's schedule. Using a private company for transportation to your cruise is a no-brainer no matter how you look at it. It’s less stressful, it’s personal, and it’s probably more affordable than you might think.
Professional companies, Ace Luxury, take care of everything for you before your trip so you don’t have to worry. Let’s look at the stress level first since this is supposed to be a fun vacation. Private cruise transportation compared to a cruise shuttle:
- Available on your schedule, when your flight arrives.
- Belongings are kept with you the entire time and not mixed with strangers on the same shuttle.
- If your plans change, call your transportation company and update your reservation. Ace Luxury allows unlimited reservation changes.
Private cruise transportation compared to driving yourself and parking at Port Canaveral:
- Someone to help you load your luggage in the car
- A professional driver who knows exactly where he or she is going
- You can relax on the ride and enjoy time with your companions
- Don’t have to worry about finding a parking space
- Don’t have to worry about something happening to your car while you are on your cruise
Consider the personal aspects of using a private cruise transportation service and a private cruise transportation compared to a cruise shuttle:
- Go directly to where you want to go with only stops you want to make
- Comfortable sedans, vans, or specialty vehicles chosen for your unique needs
Private cruise transportation compared to driving yourself or renting a car and parking at Port Canaveral:
- Okay, maybe using your own car is more personal than having someone drive you, but that also means you have all the personal stress too.
A typical cruise shuttle will be about $70 per person, plus tip. Private transportation will cost about the same or less if you have four or more people in your group, and some companies include the tip in the fee. As your group gets larger you can save even more using a transportation company for your cruise because you pay for the vehicle, and not each person.
If you use your own car or rent a car you have to consider the expense of gas at $2-$3 per gallon, wear and tear or rental fees, and parking. Parking at Port Canaveral for the duration of a cruise can cost more than $100 by, and you are still parking at your own risk.
We hope this has been helpful for new cruisers and seasoned travellers alike. Choosing the right cruise, arriving relaxed, and arranging for private cruise transportation will help ensure your cruising vacation is all you dream it to be.