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Old 11-17-2013, 08:39 PM   #181
redmomof4
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MJ, thank you. I had actually already read that post and just forgot so I'll plan on arriving at 1030 or so and hope to be boarding before 1200!! Yippee, 12 more days!!
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:20 PM   #182
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This was super useful. We are planning on renting a car for a couple days and bumming around Miami before our cruise in March. I was wondering which rental agency to use, so your experience is super helpful. Thanks! Love the pics too. Gives a good feel for the port.
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Old 01-14-2014, 04:20 PM   #183
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This is a long shot of a question, but does anyone know how much the total is for tolls starting at the beginning of the turnpike in Wildwood to the Miami port? TIA!
Which TPK? Which Wildwood?

I'm from NJ so that's why I ask... If from NJ, then a lot!
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Old 01-16-2014, 10:41 PM   #184
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Does anyone have suggestions for port transfers with a bazillion toddlers? We will be four adults and three three-year-olds, so our issue is car seats. We would love to travel without them. Is our only option going to be DCL transfers? What if we come in the night before and stay at the airport hotel? Any issue taking a DCL bus the next day?

I don't suppose there are any van services that provide car seats?
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:22 PM   #185
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Originally Posted by MommytoaPrince View Post
This is a long shot of a question, but does anyone know how much the total is for tolls starting at the beginning of the turnpike in Wildwood to the Miami port? TIA!
Link to official Florida's Turnpike site: http://www.floridasturnpike.com/

Tolls will depend on where you switch over to I-95. I-95 runs beside the Turnpike from Fort Pierce to Miami. I-95 has a lot more traffic the from West Palm to Miami though. You can take the turnpike all the way to Miami and only have about a 7 mile trek on I-95 Express which is also a toll road and avoid much of the traffic. The Miami-Dade area the toll roads only take electronic tolls, no cash. There are a couple of ways to do this either purchase a SunPass or register for TOLL‑BY‑PLATE. There is more info on the turnpike site. A SunPass mini sticker transponder is only like $4.99, perfect for visitors, tolls are discounted slightly (probably more than enough to cover the cost round trip) and saves a lot of time and trouble. It's about $21 cash or $17 SunPass for the turnpike to where you pick up I-95 Express, toll rates vary on I-95 Express. You can get a SunPass mailed to you to set it up ahead of time.
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Old 02-08-2014, 07:46 PM   #186
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We will be sailing in December from port Miami on the Wonder. We have family that lives close enough to stay with them the night before - but I am wondering if anyone has experience with driving into port and leaving the car there while sailing? Is it very safe/expensive/etc?
Any insight would be appreciated.
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Old 02-09-2014, 08:33 AM   #187
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Originally Posted by pouncingpluto View Post
Does anyone have suggestions for port transfers with a bazillion toddlers? We will be four adults and three three-year-olds, so our issue is car seats. We would love to travel without them. Is our only option going to be DCL transfers? What if we come in the night before and stay at the airport hotel? Any issue taking a DCL bus the next day?

I don't suppose there are any van services that provide car seats?
If you travel enough to justify the cost, even just having to move car seats between cars often enough, I would suggest buying the RideSafer vests. We have had one for 5 years since DD10 was younger but not big enough for a booster. They don't expire like car seats & pack so small. We bought ours before the prices went up. But it was a very good investment since we use it so often. We never have to lug car seats or worry about renting larger vehicles go fit 3 across the backseat.

Our cruise is a 14 months out but we're wondering how to get 8 (5 adults & 3 kids) from airport to hotel to port too. I might start looking at limo companies. We are spoiled by the limo transfers at WDW.
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Old 02-09-2014, 12:42 PM   #188
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squaggles View Post
We will be sailing in December from port Miami on the Wonder. We have family that lives close enough to stay with them the night before - but I am wondering if anyone has experience with driving into port and leaving the car there while sailing? Is it very safe/expensive/etc? Any insight would be appreciated.
We just got off the Wonder Sunday and had family take us to the port. The Miami marathon was going on when we arrived so we were stuck in traffic for an hour on a Sunday. On the way out ( Friday)my Dad was stuck in traffic for at least an hour maybe longer? He said this was the norm for Miami, so I would leave early.
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Old 02-09-2014, 03:36 PM   #189
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For anyone who has been there, is there an area for guests to wait with luggage, early, before entering the terminal?

We have 8 people, 2 rental cars, and a ton of luggage. I hate for all of us to go to drop off the cars and then have to shuttle back with all our bags. It would be easier for 6 of us and most of the luggage to be dropped off at the port and wait, while the 2 drivers return the cars and take the shuttle back. The issue is our cars are scheduled to be back at 10:00am so we would need to be dropped off at the port around 9:30-9:45. Does this sound possible or should we all go to drop off the cars?
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Old 02-09-2014, 06:54 PM   #190
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Thanks to all who have kept this thread going. We're sailing in 2 weeks, so I will post a short update of our experience with POM within this thread for everyone when I get back.

Our plans - we fly into MIA the night before our cruise. I have a room booked at the La Quinta Miami Airport (Le Jeune Road) location. They advertised free airport and cruise shuttles, as well as free breakfast. I called the hotel directly to verify. For airport pickup you call the hotel when you get to baggage claim. The shuttle will pick you up there.

When you check into the hotel, you tell them at the front desk that you need shuttle the next AM to the port. To the port after a night stay is free for up to 4 guests per room, extras are a charge. To the hotel after a cruise, is a small charge. They said they spend the early AM transporting those FROM the ships, and then around 10:30-11 AM switch to shuttling folks TO the port.

Our port arrival time is 11 AM, which is the first group. Boarding group #'s get handed out at the port according to my TA.

Our plan after - we are renting a car from Hertz, at the port location, and staying 3 days in the Mia, FTL area. I am going to call Hertz at the local stand tomorrow AM, and will update on this as well.

If anyone has any suggestions, or sees any flaws in my plans, input is appreciated! TIA!
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Old 04-07-2014, 07:46 AM   #191
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For anyone interested, we used Premier Parking of Miami last week when we sailed on the Wonder. It was a nightmare. I would HIGHLY encourage anyone asking to NOT book with them. They have a great website with a video. They seem really legit. But what we found when we arrived was a different location, a valet crew that was rude and spoke little English, and a very long wait for shuttles. Thank goodness we had already dropped our luggage at the port. As we saw in the video, we were expecting to arrive at the lot, park our car and lock it, and get on a shuttle. Instead, we had to wait on a side street for 25 minutes while they tried to cram more cars in the lot. Then a very rude man demanded that we "get out now" and took our keys. When I tried to ask him about a shuttle he looked at me and said "goodbye" then walked away. There was absolutely no one in charge on site. I stumbled across a really long line while heading to the bathroom and realized that it was the line for the shuttle. My hubby and I quickly got in line and proceeded to wait for TWO HOURS. We had arrived at the parking lot before 11am. I thought we were golden because our PAT wasn't until 12:30pm. Not was I wrong. We didn't physically step onto a shuttle until around 1:15pm. During our lovely wait in the Miami heat, we watched vehicle after vehicle be parked in the lot. That gave me a little reassurance. Then we watched our vehicle take a right turn and head down the street with some guy behind the wheel. In all the hours we stood there, it never returned. We knew someone had taken our vehicle for a joyride, but were helpless to do anything about it. When we finally arrived at the port we had to wait for them to go every other ship first, unloading luggage at each stop. Eventually when we noticed our ship about three terminals down, we just got off the shuttle and walked down the street. We eventually arrived at the terminal sunburned and frustrated around 2pm. Even with walking, we were still already onboard when we saw the shuttle finally get to our terminal. It was smooth sailing from there. We literally we walked straight through security, and check in was a breeze. And one plus, our room was ready and waiting for us. We were just happy to finally be onboard.

Fast forward to embarkation day. We looked and looked for their shuttle but never found it. We finally just paid a taxi to take us back to the parking garage. ($22.50, if you are wondering.) When we arrived "goodbye" man met us in the lot and asked for our valet ticket. He took it and walked away without a word. Around 15 minutes later he came back and told us that our vehicle wasn't on the lot and that it would be back shortly. That was what I had dreaded hearing during the whole cruise. Around 30 minutes later some guy drove up with it and got out. The valet took the keys from him and gave them to my husband. Relieved to finally have our vehicle, we immediately started checking for belongings that we had left in the vehicle, mostly our concealed carry weapons. Because my dh is an officer and we had a long drive, he wanted us both to carry. (Don't worry, we are both trained and licensed.) Knowing that we couldn't carry at the port or onboard, we had no choice but to leave our weapons locked in our vehicle. That wouldn't have been an issue had we kept the keys. However leaving them made me really nervous. My heart stopped for a minute when my husband said "Honey, your gun is gone. It was stolen. Call the police." I didn't worry so much about the lost property but more what could it could have been used for in the wrong hands. After frantically searching the vehicle we finally found it somewhere different than where it was left, proving that someone had gone through our things. We had carefully hidden them. Talk about a relief. It was a little unnerving but we were just thankful to have our vehicle and belongings, so we just left without making a big deal of it. Long story short, if you value your belongings or your time, please don't book your parking with this company. I so wish that we had just paid extra to park at the port. I felt so sorry for an older gentleman in line with us. He had dropped his wife off at the port before parking because she was in a wheel chair. She kept calling him upset for the whole two hours. We tried in vain to get a taxi, thinking that the three of us would just share it back to the port. Also several people working at the port told us horror stories about the company. Apparently we were some of the lucky ones. Lesson learned. Never again.
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:14 AM   #192
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Thanks so much for the information!! Going on the Wonder in a week and was starting to check on parking options. We will definitely stay away from these people and park at the port.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrslaney View Post
For anyone interested, we used Premier Parking of Miami last week when we sailed on the Wonder. It was a nightmare. I would HIGHLY encourage anyone asking to NOT book with them. They have a great website with a video. They seem really legit. But what we found when we arrived was a different location, a valet crew that was rude and spoke little English, and a very long wait for shuttles. Thank goodness we had already dropped our luggage at the port. As we saw in the video, we were expecting to arrive at the lot, park our car and lock it, and get on a shuttle. Instead, we had to wait on a side street for 25 minutes while they tried to cram more cars in the lot. Then a very rude man demanded that we "get out now" and took our keys. When I tried to ask him about a shuttle he looked at me and said "goodbye" then walked away. There was absolutely no one in charge on site. I stumbled across a really long line while heading to the bathroom and realized that it was the line for the shuttle. My hubby and I quickly got in line and proceeded to wait for TWO HOURS. We had arrived at the parking lot before 11am. I thought we were golden because our PAT wasn't until 12:30pm. Not was I wrong. We didn't physically step onto a shuttle until around 1:15pm. During our lovely wait in the Miami heat, we watched vehicle after vehicle be parked in the lot. That gave me a little reassurance. Then we watched our vehicle take a right turn and head down the street with some guy behind the wheel. In all the hours we stood there, it never returned. We knew someone had taken our vehicle for a joyride, but were helpless to do anything about it. When we finally arrived at the port we had to wait for them to go every other ship first, unloading luggage at each stop. Eventually when we noticed our ship about three terminals down, we just got off the shuttle and walked down the street. We eventually arrived at the terminal sunburned and frustrated around 2pm. Even with walking, we were still already onboard when we saw the shuttle finally get to our terminal. It was smooth sailing from there. We literally we walked straight through security, and check in was a breeze. And one plus, our room was ready and waiting for us. We were just happy to finally be onboard.

Fast forward to embarkation day. We looked and looked for their shuttle but never found it. We finally just paid a taxi to take us back to the parking garage. ($22.50, if you are wondering.) When we arrived "goodbye" man met us in the lot and asked for our valet ticket. He took it and walked away without a word. Around 15 minutes later he came back and told us that our vehicle wasn't on the lot and that it would be back shortly. That was what I had dreaded hearing during the whole cruise. Around 30 minutes later some guy drove up with it and got out. The valet took the keys from him and gave them to my husband. Relieved to finally have our vehicle, we immediately started checking for belongings that we had left in the vehicle, mostly our concealed carry weapons. Because my dh is an officer and we had a long drive, he wanted us both to carry. (Don't worry, we are both trained and licensed.) Knowing that we couldn't carry at the port or onboard, we had no choice but to leave our weapons locked in our vehicle. That wouldn't have been an issue had we kept the keys. However leaving them made me really nervous. My heart stopped for a minute when my husband said "Honey, your gun is gone. It was stolen. Call the police." I didn't worry so much about the lost property but more what could it could have been used for in the wrong hands. After frantically searching the vehicle we finally found it somewhere different than where it was left, proving that someone had gone through our things. We had carefully hidden them. Talk about a relief. It was a little unnerving but we were just thankful to have our vehicle and belongings, so we just left without making a big deal of it. Long story short, if you value your belongings or your time, please don't book your parking with this company. I so wish that we had just paid extra to park at the port. I felt so sorry for an older gentleman in line with us. He had dropped his wife off at the port before parking because she was in a wheel chair. She kept calling him upset for the whole two hours. We tried in vain to get a taxi, thinking that the three of us would just share it back to the port. Also several people working at the port told us horror stories about the company. Apparently we were some of the lucky ones. Lesson learned. Never again.
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Old 04-09-2014, 07:29 PM   #193
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Update on our trip.

We stayed the night before at the La Quinta Airport (Le Jeune Road). It took a bit for the shuttle to pick us up, they run every 1/2 hour and we had just missed one. However when we finally got on the driver was extremely friendly and honest. DF left his wallet on the shuttle and we didn't notice. The driver found it before his next round, and when he saw us in the parking lot walking to the local restaurant, stopped us and returned it, everything intact. We dropped off a nice little reward to him for that!

This hotel was not fancy, and VERY close to the airport. Bring earplugs if you're sensitive to the voice. However the free breakfast was plentiful, the rooms were clean, and all the employees were very friendly. Their shuttle to the port was also well organized. If you don't need 5 stars, definitely a decent place for the night before.

We rented a car from Hertz for our 3 days after the cruise. They were a nightmare!

First off - if you're catching any kind of shuttle after your cruise, this area is a ZOO! There is no organization like at other places. All the various shuttle and rental car companies cram into the one end, block each other in, and almost all are white vans that makes it very difficult for anyone to distinguish their company from.

Hertz took about an hour to get a van to the port, despite tons of people calling. Then, it was a jam for the van. There was probably 30+ people waiting for the shuttle, but only about 10 plus luggage would fit. Folks were rude and all impatient with each other.

We had 5 in our group, and the car was in my name, so our group decided that only I would take the shuttle, rent the car, and come back to pick everyone else up. This was the right way to go.

The shuttle took us to the downtown Hertz location - lots of traffic due to construction so it took a while. The location is attached to a downtown parking garage. Get into the office, and there's only 2 folks working. Seriously? WTF No wonder nobody answers the phones there. They took forever on each person. Once you finally get your keys, you have to take an elevator to the 5th floor to pick up your car.

Getting back to the port was actually easy, and i think i beat the shuttle back. Lots of folks still waiting.
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Old 05-24-2014, 11:22 AM   #194
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Bumping for more info!
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Old 05-24-2014, 04:37 PM   #195
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I would like to post a warning for DCL cruisers concerning the Port of Miami. We were referred to Miami Executive Shuttle by Triple A because we were flying into Ft. Lauderdale and DCL doesn't pick up there. We called in Nov. and made reservations to be picked up at the airport on 2/7 then brought back on 2/12. We paid 120.00 to reserve our transfer. We received an email the night before the cruise asking us to call when we got to baggage claim and then when we were at the curb. We were told that we would be picked up at 10:30, plenty of time to make our 12:00 scheduled arrival/ checkin with DCL. Well when we reached baggage claim, I called and was sent straight to voicemail so I left a message. I called repeatedly over the next hour constantly being sent to voicemail. No one ever returned our call. We waited at 10:30 for our shuttle but it never came (and never picked us up at the Port after the cruise). We were first time cruisers in a new city and didn't know what to do. My husband flagged down a private transfer and they fortunately had enough room for us but we had to spend 120.00 more dollars just to get to the Port. Then coming back we had to pay 80.00 to take a taxi back to the airport. Since that time I have spent 4 months trying to contact them and not one of my calls has been returned. I contacted the head of Triple A's travel agency and she was absolutely horrified that Triple A had recommended this company. She even tried to contact the company to get our money back and her calls weren't returned. So my advice to fellow cruisers, don't use this company. I don't want anyone else to go through what we experienced!
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