The first couple of times we cruised we not only took too many suitcases, we let the ship/stevedores do their thing and went to find them in the terminal., bleccchhh! discovered the "joys" of "walking off"....whole different experience, depending, of course, on how organized the ship is, since it doesn't involve crew or dock personnel handling your bags from the nite before disembarkation. (It also "forces" you to consider taking less and less each time.. one rolling medium suitcase each and a couple carry ons is it for us now..) The best experience bar none was the few times we cruised Carnival...that Faster to the Fun thing actually works...you just have to sign up for it early, because the number of people is limited...and I don't care what it costs...its well worth it. (read their website for other benes)The BEST experience on our own was on NCL BREAKAWAY, and we've cruised her twice so far, so I know it wasn't a fluke...got down to the right deck around 630 or so, folks already lining up, but the crew was well represented and all the areas were properly roped off and organized. No complaints about it at all. Being Platinum, there was a separate area elsewhere, but after inquiring "where" that was, it was of no advantage, matter of fact, it would've involved walking the length of the ship to get to it, and then back to the gangway. So we just got in the normal line..(it pays to ask about the "little things" sometimes). Their other ships not so much...not bad, but nowhere near as organized as BREAKAWAY..

Once the thing started to move, we were on our way and off in record time...TWICE! We're booked on two more on GETAWAY (her twin), and I actually EXPECT things to go the same way...yeh yeh I know...

Whats your experiences walking off?...good bad or oogly...

16 Answers

We did the walk-off of the Dawn a few years back. It was a long slow process. However, once we got to the ground, things moved better. On our first cruise we had package that brought our stuff to the airport and through to the plane. No issue there either.

The first two cruises, we set out luggage out and had a real challenge finding it in the terminal.

More recently, we did it on Princess in Seattle, and it worked like magic! It was very easy to find in the terminal.

Other times, we've walked off with it.

Overall, I prefer walking off. You don't have to worry about leaving something essential in your luggage. Further, I don't like having my luggage out of my sight if I can avoid it. Never had a problem, but I'm always uncomfortable with it.

Our best “off the ship” experience was with Princess last September. We booked our luggage to the airline, put it out the night before and picked it up at the Denver airport when we arrived home (it even was on the right flight). Would really like to be able to do that every time. We usually set it out the night before debarkation, but we are first off and often beat those who are carrying their own luggage.

I have used that luggage service on my last Princess Cruise. It really can’t be beat.

This time I’m staying a couple of days at Copenhagen so I’ll have to take it off. I’ll probably leave it in the hall the night before. (After all, there is no reason not to trust Princess with my luggage, riiiight?

Luggage out the night before and leisurely walk off when we are ready to go which is usually after our designated time.

When we used to book same-day as disembarkation flights home, we would walk off. The best experiences seemed to actually be on Oasis and Allure! the last time we were on Allure, we were walked off, and to the airport in under 25 min!

I love it...now THAT's a 9.9....the crowd roars!!!

We have only been on 2 cruises and we have walked off with our luggage both times. Not doing it the other way I have nothing to compare to but I did like the idea of carrying luggage off and not having to search for it. The first cruise we went to the line once they said to lineup and of course there was already a thousand people lined up so it was a process but the 2nd cruise we got all our luggage ready and went to the outdoor cafe and got a cup of coffee and relaxed for about half an hour after they called to lineup and we walked right off the ship.

We have done both...on Carnival and Princess. After doing self-assist, prefer it and self-assist has always worked just fine for us on both lines. Not having to worry about what I maybe should or should not have packed and being able to just get off the ship early is fine with us. Looking for your luggage in the terminal can be overwhelming although they have made improvements through the years since we did our first cruise in the 90s. Once the debarkation day arrives, we are ready to leave because unfortunately all good things must come to an end and we feel its time to move on as quickly as possible.

Last year, we "walked off" Royal Caribbean's Grandeur of the Seas in Baltimore. Best experience EVER. We were in the Atrium about 6:45-6:50 and while we were a good ways back in line, we were off the ship, through Customs, out of the parking lot, and on I-95 by 8:00 am. I would definitely do the "walk off" again.

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