Embarkation with Virgin was a little bit of a different experience. We had no choice really, but to arrive early since we were getting of the Celebrity ship and going straight to the Virgin ship. We had a scheduled Black Lane driver pick us up from Port Everglades in Ft. Lauderdaleand drive us to the Miami port. That drive was about and hour including a 5 minute stop at Walgreens to pick up a few things between cruises.
Once we arrived in the Miami port, we had to go into the “Too Early” line. I think this was about 11 am and our scheduled arrival time was 1 PM. Virgin allows guest to disembark as late at 10:30 am and they don’t have to be out of their state rooms by a set time. I think one of the things that Virgin may not have realized with the late debarkation and arrival times is that many times people from further West including California, Arizona, and other West coast states might be coming in on a Red Eye flight which will get them into Miami around 7 or 8 am. So lots of folks, through no fault of their own, may end up in that “Too Early” line which was outside and only partially shaded.
There was a sign with a QR Code for us to scan in order to sign up for the Covid test we would receive inside the terminal. This was to set up our accounts and establish an email address to which we could have our results sent. Virgin seemed to have recruited people with disabilities to assist with the embarkation process as there were several folks in wheel chairs helping to usher us into the terminal. (The ship seemed to be especially accessible too with lots of accessible restrooms.)
Once they had cleared through the folks who were there at the proper time, they ushered in a group of the “Too Early” people. Inside the terminal we queued up for our covid test then went upstairs to another holding area where we waited about 20 minutes for our test to come back. Once we had our results we showed them to officials and then went into the pre-boarding holding area. With the late disembarkation, we had to wait until 2:00 to embark the ship.
Though it would have been nice to embark earlier, it is kind of a trade off with the late debarkation times. Once on board we explored the ship and enjoyed a late lunch. The sail-a-way party, where we went towards the beautiful skyline of Miami and then did a 180 before heading out to sea, was a highlight of the experience for us.This entry was posted in My Cruise History