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Old 09-30-2009, 01:41 PM   #121
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Hi! I don't mind sharing the cost of our airfare at all. We are a family of four, and our kids will be 16 and 13 when we cruise. DCL's air would cost us $2590 and that includes the transfers. I went on to travelocity and priced air for the same time frame next July, and the cheapest flights I could find were about $523 per person before taxes. That's why we went ahead and booked the air. However, flying to Seattle for the same time next summer would only cost us $828. Lots of decisions to make. Thank goodness we have a lot of time to decide. I didn't think DCL's air was too bad if one was planning to fly in to Vancouver.

Susan
Same here....the flight prices are and I live in SanDiego.....for each of us to fly it is $550 and look how close we are. Not just that but it will take us 6 hrs to get there. When on a one way that is like way so much more 2.5 hrs.

It is cheaper fro us to fly to Florida or N.J not to mention cheaper....$350 with a flight time of 6hr 40 minutes to fly to Florida....go figure

Heres to hoping for a price war
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Old 09-30-2009, 01:44 PM   #122
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With the price difference and the fact that DCL will depart on Tuesdays, we'll probably spend a couple days in Seattle first then Amtrak up.
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Old 09-30-2009, 01:59 PM   #123
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Same here....the flight prices are and I live in SanDiego.....for each of us to fly it is $550 and look how close we are. Not just that but it will take us 6 hrs to get there. When on a one way that is like way so much more 2.5 hrs.

It is cheaper fro us to fly to Florida or N.J not to mention cheaper....$350 with a flight time of 6hr 40 minutes to fly to Florida....go figure

Heres to hoping for a price war
You'll routinely see flights from SEA to LA for $79 one way (Jet Blue, Southwest, Alaska) plus taxes. The flight time is about 2.75 hours. Flying into Vancouver is a pain in the butt for us for connecting to the island - that's why we fly from Seattle. Just keep plugging dates and flight options into Orbitz to get an idea where the deals are. I usually use that as a guideline and then book directly with the Airline (usually Alaska Air). The taxes & fees are also higher to fly into Vancouver than Seattle.
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Old 09-30-2009, 02:03 PM   #124
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With the price difference and the fact that DCL will depart on Tuesdays, we'll probably spend a couple days in Seattle first then Amtrak up.
For us the price is the same whether we fly into Seattle or into Vancouver. So for us we will just fly into Vancouver. We are planning on staying in Vancouver at least 6 days prior the cruise. We want to head up to Whistler for a couple days(90 minute drive) and go White water rafting among some other things like hiking and such. WE will make some stops along the way up the the suspension bridge and the Gondola.

I am busy planning as we speak
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Old 09-30-2009, 02:09 PM   #125
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For those on the west coast, another airline to check is Allegiant Air. They are a discount airline and use the Bellingham, WA airport.
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Old 09-30-2009, 02:15 PM   #126
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For us the price is the same whether we fly into Seattle or into Vancouver.
May I ask which airline? Vancouver is about double for us no matter where we price from.
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Old 09-30-2009, 02:30 PM   #127
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May I ask which airline? Vancouver is about double for us no matter where we price from.
I checked on Price line and Expedia and all the discount online site. I am assuming it is not double for us since it is fairly close to us. Seems that traveling to Seattle will be a popular thing to do for many on this cruise. When are you sailing? If you are not the first than you can get input from others that have done it. I have been Googling so much on my computer since this started that I'm surprised my Google isn't broken

Have you googled asking....Best way to get from Seattle airport to Vancouver port....if you play with it I am sure you will come up with cruisers that have done this. Not to mention

We could drive into Vancouver and get there in about 24 hrs. But heck....the kids would all drive me crazy. We would stop for the night but still.

when we drive to DL from here which is 1 hr 20 minutes they give me a headachecould you imagine 24 hrs
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Old 09-30-2009, 03:08 PM   #128
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I checked on Price line and Expedia and all the discount online site.
Thanks, did that from 3 different airports and it was almost double every time. I thought I had found some better fares but when I clicked on the flight details, they were actually showing into Bellingham and not Vancouver so be careful if you chose Select Nearby Airports.
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Old 09-30-2009, 03:35 PM   #129
"Got Disney"
They’re like Lays chips...just cant get enough
Little Angels come and take them away
We need to smack them all in the heads and say "WAKE UP YAHOOS"
 
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Thanks, did that from 3 different airports and it was almost double every time. I thought I had found some better fares but when I clicked on the flight details, they were actually showing into Bellingham and not Vancouver so be careful if you chose Select Nearby Airports.
Thanks I have been. My wittle head is just spinning from all the checkingfound some more little tid bits so thought I would post them along with the Seattle vs Vancouver in the first paragraph...

For an Alaskan cruise, would it be better to leave from Seattle or Vancouver? Why?

Both ports have their advantages (and disadvantages). Vancouver has perhaps the most spectacular setting of any city in North America (arguably even more beautiful than San Francisco’s location). Seattle is also a beautiful city set against the backdrop of snow-capped Mt. Rainier, but for people flying from American cities, Seattle’s chief advantage is that you can avoid going through customs at the airport. While Vancouver’s airport is beautiful and state-of –the-art, the lines at customs can be somewhat long. For anyone flying in from Canada, however, it would probably make more sense to fly in or out of Vancouver for the same reason – to avoid American customs at Seattle. Of course, a fairly large number of Alaska cruises travel using one-way north or southbound itineraries, so your trip will most likely include a flight in or out of Anchorage too.

here is some more info that might be helpful...

What are good side trips/land excursions for various ports?

Alaskan cruises usually offer a large variety of side trips/ land excursions. For example, in Ketchikan, a great shore excursion is the float plane trip to Misty Fjords National Monument, which is simply breathtaking. In Juneau, an excellent choice is the helicopter dog sled tour, which gives you an amazing aerial tour of glaciers, followed by a real Alaskan dog sled ride atop one of the glaciers. In Sitka, a really interesting underwater tour on Alaska’s only semi-submersible ship is offered by Sealife Discovery Tours. Finally, in Skagway, a trip on the White Pass Railroad into Canada’s Yukon Territory is a no-miss, with truly beautiful scenery along a track that dates back to the Klondike Gold Rush of 1898. Of course, these are just some of the available options and a wonderful array of excursions is available in every Alaskan port.


What is the best pre or post cruise tour out of Vancouver?

One of the most popular inland tours from Vancouver is the Canadian Rockies tour, including stops at the amazing Lake Louise and Banff National Park. If any landscape in North America rivals that of Alaska, it is the landscape of the Canadian Rockies. The beautiful color of the lakes there defies description, and the peaks are about the most picturesque of anywhere outside of the Alps.

Where is the best place to view bald eagles in Alaska?

One of the things that you may be surprised is how many bald eagles you’ll see throughout the entire cruise route. You can literally spot them in most any port. But the very best place to spot large numbers of bald eagles is out of Skagway, on the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve rafting trip. Here you can see the eagles in their pristine natural environment, feeding in the clear river waters, perched in trees, or soaring high above. They are a truly majestic sight you will never forget.

Where is the best place to view bears on other wildlife in Alaska?

Again, bears and other wildlife are amazingly abundant along the Alaska cruise route. You are bound to see a black or brown (grizzly) bear feeding of salmon or other fish in a stream on any of a number of port excursions. The best place to spot Dall sheep is actually along the route between the airport in Anchorage and the port of Seward (or Whittier). Watch for them on the slopes that rise up on the opposite side of the road from the Turnagain Arm inlet. The long, narrow Turnagain Arm is also a great place to spot beluga whales, so look for them as your bus or train heads along the side of this inlet.


I don’t have much extra in my budget for shore excursions (and some run over $300 per person!) What are some fun yet inexpensive things to do while in port?

You don’t have to spend much at all to have a great time in each port. In Ketchikan, you can visit the stores along Creek Street for free, and you can stop by the Totem Heritage Center, which is about 15 minute walk from the docks. Admission is only $1 as of this writing. In Juneau, for about $10, you can catch a round trip bus trip to the visitor center at the base of the Mendenhall Glacier, where you can hike, view bears, and see the massive glacier up close. Then, in Skagway, stop by any of the many wonderful historical buildings in town, all just minutes from the dock. The Klondike Gold Rush history in this town is fascinating, and there is plenty to see and do on foot in the small but quaint town.


Is it true that not all cruise ships stop in Glacier Bay National Park? I heard that this was one of the most beautiful spots in Alaska and want to see it.

Yes, it is true that the U.S. Park Service has limited large cruise ship traffic in the park’s waters to two a day. This has led many cruise lines to seek alternate locations for glacier viewing along the Inside Passage, including Tracy Arm and Misty Fjords National Monument. Princess and Norwegian currently have the most ships allowed to enter the park, so if you really want to see Glacier Bay, then check out the itineraries for these two cruise lines.

My favorite cruise line does not stop in glacier Bay. What is a good alternative destination?

The two most popular alternatives to Glacier Bay National Park are Tracy Arm and Misty Fjords. Both of them are amazingly beautiful and you will not be disappointed if your ship stops in either of those places.

What about icebergs? Aren’t they dangerous? Will we see any?

Indeed, you will see many, many icebergs in the narrow fjords, as huge chunks of ice break off or “calve” from the glaciers. However, thanks to modern sonar and excellent piloting skills, the ships navigate safely through these icy waters. The ships go very slowly through the icy sections of the fjords, and it is actually quite safe.
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Old 09-30-2009, 04:10 PM   #130
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Check out cruisecritic, they not only have a board about Alaska, but also West Coast departures. At a quick glance it looked like some discussions from folks flying into Seattle for Vancouver cruises.
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Old 09-30-2009, 04:17 PM   #131
"Got Disney"
They’re like Lays chips...just cant get enough
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We need to smack them all in the heads and say "WAKE UP YAHOOS"
 
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Check out cruisecritic, they not only have a board about Alaska, but also West Coast departures. At a quick glance it looked like some discussions from folks flying into Seattle for Vancouver cruises.
Thanks I will look over there for that...I was looking over there to see about NCL cruises to Alaska but than booked DCL. But did not look for transpertation...
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Old 09-30-2009, 06:41 PM   #132
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Things to do in Vancouver:

Grouse Mountain will be offering an even more spectacular viewing platform. They are in the process of installing an elevated observation area on a wind turbine on top of the mountain.

Athleticly minded visitors may challenge themselves with the Grouse Grind, a steep 2-mile hike including +2800 stairs. This is a popular trail, used by locals and athletes for training. Typical hikers make the trek in less than 2 hours, but the record time is 25 minutes 15 seconds. Hikers avoid paying the Grouse Mountain admission fee (nearly $40), but must pay $5 to take the gondola down. The trail is too steep to descend safely.

For those of us who yearn for riding a Disney Monorail, Vancouver's Skytrain system comes close. It is a fully automated light rail system. Guests can sit in the very front and look out the windshield (and pretend to drive) as the trains cross the city. The Canada Line offers a limited view from the airport, but is mostly underground. The Expo and Millenium lines are primarily above-ground and offer unique views of the city, mountains, and Fraser river. The trains pass some of Vancouvers numerous movie and TV production facilities, as well as several shopping malls.
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Old 09-30-2009, 07:48 PM   #133
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Shopping in Vancouver

Downtown (adjacent to Canada Place cruise ship terminal), Gastown, and Granville Mall are typical downtown shopping cores, and includes Pacific Center Mall. Shopping in these areas is equally targettted to tourists and downtown workers. You can't walk more than 2 blocks without passing a sushi restaurant.

Robson Street has many high-end shops between Granville Street and Burrard Street. As you move further west, you find more restaurants, including some of the trendiest in Vancouver.

Denman Street could be renamed restaurant row. You can find just about any kind of cuisine along this strip, including my favorite fish-and-chips place: Mr. Pickwick's. There are also numerous dessert shops and coffee shops. Locals love this neighbourhood.

Vancouver has a significant gay and lesbian population. While most prefer to mix with everyone else in the city, Davie street is where you will find the highest concentration of rainbow-flag-waving shops and restaurants. My favorite breakfast place is in this neighbourhood.

Granville Island is a former industrial / warehouse site that was transformed into an artist village, theatres, a farmers market, kids play area and restaurants. There is a building dedicated to childrens books and toys. While it is a tourist destination, many locals do their shopping here, especially at the farmers market. It's also the destination for locals looking for art or live theater. (Trivia: Disney's Pleasure Island was originally modelled on Granville Island.)

Yaletown is an old warehouse district that has been converted into trendy restaurants and condos. It's a really neat neighbourhood, but requires climbing stairs and hills -- not very convenient for strollers or wheelchairs. My favorite Vancouver restaurant, Yaletown Brewing Company, serves moderately priced food that is comparable in quality to what's served at California Grill. The fresh-brewed beers are just a bonus!

The largest shopping mall in the region (450 stores) is called the Metropolis at Metrotown. It's accessible by Skytrain (Metrotown station). In addition to department stores, restaurants, a movie theater and typical mall shops, it also hosts two large grocery stores. Superstore is a no-frills grocery store, stocked with everything, but staffed by mindless drones. T&T Supermarket is a chain of asian grocery stores. In addition to both western and asian grocery items, it has an excellent selection of inexpensive take-out food including dim sum (chinese dumplings), sushi, BBQ (duck, pork, sausage), vietnamese sandwiches, bento boxes... Locals including myself shop here when we don't want to cook.

If you really need a Walmart, there are three accessible by cab or skytrain. The closest is in North Vancouver at 925 Marine Drive. The easiest way to get there is by cab. Taking public transit from the cruise ship terminal will require taking the seabus, then transferring to a city bus. Alternatively, there is a Walmart in Lougheed Mall (Lougheed Skytrain station) and a Walmart SuperCentre (includes grocery items) at 3585 Grandview Highway (one block south and three blocks east from Rupert Skytrain Station).

Outlet shopping:
Vancouver has virtually no outlet shopping. There are a couple local companies that sell factory seconds (goods that didn't meet corporate quality controls) like Lululemon and Danier Leather. (If you're interested, you can find these store locations online.) However, there are at least two outlet malls along I-5 between Vancouver and Seattle: Seattle Premium Outlets (Tullilip, WA) and Burlington Outlets (Burlington, WA). If you're travelling through Seattle to save on airfare, you may consider incorporating a shopping trip with your cruise.

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Old 09-30-2009, 08:04 PM   #134
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For us the price is the same whether we fly into Seattle or into Vancouver. So for us we will just fly into Vancouver. We are planning on staying in Vancouver at least 6 days prior the cruise. We want to head up to Whistler for a couple days(90 minute drive) and go White water rafting among some other things like hiking and such. WE will make some stops along the way up the the suspension bridge and the Gondola.

I am busy planning as we speak
We are thinking alike. We plan to fly into Seattle but are also planning to spend 5-6 days in and around Vancouver. Whistler sounds wonderful - I may copy your itinerary. Please post it when you're done planning. I can't think about really beginning to plan until a year out when I'll know my budget a bit better.

Jodie
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Old 09-30-2009, 08:21 PM   #135
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If flying into Bellingham isn't that much different from Seattle, I would do that. Only $13 each way on Amtrak from Bellingham, well, atleast for tomorrow! Tuesday won't be that bad, weekends on Amtrak tend to go up in price just a bit.
with our dates booked with DCL now we are planning on leaving on late wednesday or thursday and depending on prices trying to go into bellingham first. is that per person for $13? i think when i was doing price checks it was going to be $40 for the 3 of us to do amtrak from bellingham to vancouver.
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