Friday, June 29, 2012

Our first cruise: Carnival Victory

March 27 San Juan PR
March 28 St. Thomas
March 29 Day at Sea
March 30 Barbados
March 31 St. Lucia
April 01 St. Kitts
April 02 St. Maarten
April 03 San Juan PR

This was not only our first cruise but our first time out of the country as well. We flew into San Juan the day of the cruise with no problems. Since we landed around noon and had some time to wait before the embarking process started, we went from the airport to Senor Frogs right across from the pier. 

After eating, we walked across the street to the cruise terminal around 2 and checked in within 30 minutes. The process is extremely simple. You fill out all of your documents online and print out your boarding pass. Once you show your identification you are allowed into the terminal. Here is where you can give your bags to porters and they will deliver them to your room later on in the afternoon. It is customary to tip the porters $1/bag. We had only brought carry-ons so we skipped this.

There are no words to describe your first experience seeing a cruise ship up close. It is way bigger than you imagine, basically like a floating hotel. The rooms aren't open to passengers until 3:30 so we hung out in the Atrium lounge and had drinks. Another option is to go up to the Lido Deck to eat lunch. After we checked out our stateroom, we headed back out to the CVS to grab toiletries and headed back on board. San Juan has been said to be a lenient port so you can try to bring on extra wine/soda/mixers once you check in and get back off to stop at CVS.  You can also go out to explore Old San Juan until 8:30. After that you get ready for the Muster Drill (life boat drill) and then the Sail Away Party on the Lido Deck!

 The view of the Victory on the way back from CVS. The orange building on the side of the ship is the cruise terminal.

Me before debarking the cruise in San Juan.

 This is a copy of the zone rates for taxis in San Juan. You can get a copy of this from the taxi stands at the airport. The port is located in Zone 4. It costs $19 each way, plus $1 per bag.

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