Cruise Debarkation: Routes with More Customs Scrutiny

I just recently completed my first cruise.  It went very well, and we enjoyed ourselves.


When it came time to get off the ship, Carnival announced that because the cruise had Roatan as one of its' destinations, there would be more scrutiny required by customs.  


My question is where else would this extra scrutiny be applied.  It could impact which routes we do if there is to be a future cruise.




Tags: debarkation customs

12 Answers

Why would it matter ? Customs will do as customs would like and are liable to scrutinize any given cruise on any given day. I believe the reason for cruises coming in from Roatan is that there is a history of cruise staff smuggling drugs into the States from Roatan or a least a few recent incidents (with recent being a relative term). But my point is unless you are trying to hide something it should not matter. You grin and bear it and carry on. Cheers,

You would pick your itinerary based on what customs does ? WOW !

Just curious, did you even notice customs agents doing their jobs ? don’t let your food (s ) play on your plate do you ? What I mean is, you keep everything separate right ? My brother in law does that. Veggies here, meat there, potatoes over there, and nothing touches anything else. Just wondering though.

The impact would be on whether we self-carry our luggage or let them collect it overnight. Which determines when we try to fly out. Also could impact whether to do short cruise or long.

Biggest concern is don't want to miss flight out. Very challenging to get re-booked and get back to my work.

Sorry about not making that point.

Never book a flight home before 1:00. Delays can happen for many reasons.

Thanks. It confirms that I can never take a cruise that ends on a Friday or Sunday, if I follow this 1pm guideline to the letter. Friday flights are more expensive, and I need to get back to my job that following Monday.
By avoiding these two end days, I can take a later flight on debarkation day and let customs do their job no matter how long it takes. Or stay in the port city the whole day at a cheap hotel to decompress and fly home early the next morning.

That answers it for me, issue with smuggling. Don't affect me, got nothing to hide.

Worried about getting back home timely.

We would welcome any extra security checks at ports, airports etc. - we’ve nothing to hide.

If you’re concerned about getting home, it’s a good idea to not plan a flight out till the afternoon or evening of the day you get back into port. Like the others have said, the debarkation can be delayed for many reasons. Carnival does have the recommendations for earliest flights for each port on their website in the FAQs.

Always best to allow extra time for delays because inevitably sh@t happens. Never plan a schedule too tight. Even if things click into place you are always so rushed that you miss opportunities to relax, enjoy and see things.

Customs, fog, customs, customs...

When we came back from Roatan on the Sunshine, we disembarked about an hour later than usual. If you do self-disembarkation, it's really not a huge difference in the grand scheme of things.

On the Magic, disembarkation was a cluster. We never did determine exactly what the problem was. Some reported that there weren't enough custom lines open initially. The process wasn't organized at all on board. People weren't listening to instructions--they were just heading down to the atrium at will. We sat in the Casino waiting to hear our deck called for a good hour after we should have been off the ship We finally made our way to the elevators. I kid you not--it took forever to get an elevator. Then once you got to atrium, it took at least 20-30 minutes to get OFF the elevator. We had been to the Eastern Caribbean, so no delays due to our ports. It was just a man-made mess. I felt sorry for the crew members who were trying to help us. It wasn't their fault, but they sure had to bear the brunt of the blame.

So delays can happen on any cruise for any reason.


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