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jstahl

Number of ships at port

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New to cruising here, and just checking out some of the forums. I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask this question, but nowhere else seemed more appropriate. My question is this: in looking through some of the forums of people discussing port excursions, I see some of the people commenting things like "there will only be 4 ships in port that day", or "there will be 6 ships in port that day". Is there a resource or website where people go to get that information? Just curious how busy my ports will be. From what I've gathered, 4 ships isn't bad, but 6 ships can get really crowded and affect the experience.

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If you do a google search, ex Port of Cozumel, you should find the ports website that has a list of ships in port for the next year or so.   

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When researching ports, I always search first for the port's cruise ship schedule. Many ports provide this information in the public domain and it is generally the most accurate.

 

A few other websites are available - cruise timetables, cruise mapper, crew centre, cruise TT. However these are all 3rd party website and some do have errors.

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39 minutes ago, Heidi13 said:

When researching ports, I always search first for the port's cruise ship schedule. Many ports provide this information in the public domain and it is generally the most accurate.

 

A few other websites are available - cruise timetables, cruise mapper, crew centre, cruise TT. However these are all 3rd party website and some do have errors.

Thanks! I checked out cruise TT. According to them, there are only 2 ships in Nassau on the day we'll be there, and only 1 in Labadee. 

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Agree with others on searching first for the port's schedule. The most accurate source.

 

How many ships is too many? Depends on the port. Some ports struggle with one ship, others handle 6 easily. There is no one "good" or "bad" number. That being said, I don't overly focus on the number of ships in port. We make our plans and do our thing The number of ships matters less than 10% of the time.

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1 hour ago, Heidi13 said:

When researching ports, I always search first for the port's cruise ship schedule. Many ports provide this information in the public domain and it is generally the most accurate.

 

A few other websites are available - cruise timetables, cruise mapper, crew centre, cruise TT. However these are all 3rd party website and some do have errors.

 

 

I'd go further than that - most contain omissions, & often contain errors.

Even official port websites can be incomplete.

Check a given port & date on all those websites - I doubt you'll get the same answer from all of them.

And, contrary to usual arithmetic, one ship in port 8am to 1pm and another in port 2pm to 8pm don't total two ships. Nor would I count a ship the size of Oasis OTS as one ship. .

Best you'll get is a vague idea.

 

A number of big ships in port all day on a small island like Bonaire or even Santorini can have a major impact - in a city like Barcelona or Rome they'll make little difference amongst tens/hundreds of thousands of other tourists

 

JB  :classic_smile:

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Posted (edited)

We go to Venice on our cruise in May and it looks like there will be 6 ships inc us in on the same day. We are the smallest at 1800 passengers, 2 x MSC, an RCL and I forget the others so as we've been there b4 we've opted to do a ship excursion to Murano and the other islands in the lagoon and a look round st marks square for a drink t time ish. 🍺🍰

Edited by 2BACRUISER

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19 hours ago, jstahl said:

Thanks! I checked out cruise TT. According to them, there are only 2 ships in Nassau on the day we'll be there, and only 1 in Labadee. 

 

Wow that’s surprising about Nassau. It is very popular and 4 would be a more common number.  When is your cruise? If it’s a long time from now it could get more bookings by sailing time.

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The heavy load in Nassau is the weekend:  Friday, Sat. & Sun.  During the week there are often only one or two ships there.  EM

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, jstahl said:

From what I've gathered, 4 ships isn't bad, but 6 ships can get really crowded and affect the experience.

Just as example, from our Symphony cruise last week there were 8 ships in port in Cozumel and 4 in Costa Maya, which is a small port of call.  That was the most we've ever experienced in Cozumel with 2 in town, 5 at the Maritime terminal, and 1 in between tendering to the Maritime terminal - which was something we've never seen before.

 

St. Martin routinely will have 6 in port and 5 in Nassau.  Cozumel, St. Martin, and Nassau typically are among the most crowded.

Edited by leaveitallbehind

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25 minutes ago, leaveitallbehind said:

Just as example, from our Symphony cruise last week there were 8 ships in port in Cozumel and 4 in Costa Maya, which is a small port of call.  That was the most we've ever experienced in Cozumel with 2 in town, 5 at the Maritime terminal, and 1 in between tendering to the Maritime terminal - which was something we've never seen before.

 

St. Martin routinely will have 6 in port and 5 in Nassau.  Cozumel, St. Martin, and Nassau typically are among the most crowded.

My mistake - meant to say the 5 ships were at the Cozumel cruise terminal in Cozumel - not the Maritime terminal.  That is the one in town that had 2 docked.

 

Also Grand Cayman can get pretty busy as a tender port with 5 and 6 ships there at times.

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3 hours ago, KmomChicago said:

 

Wow that’s surprising about Nassau. It is very popular and 4 would be a more common number.  When is your cruise? If it’s a long time from now it could get more bookings by sailing time.

The cruise is next month. We will be in Nassau on April 22nd. According to Cruise TT, the day before we are there, there will be 7 ships, and the day after there will be 4. April 22nd will only be Navigator of the Seas (our ship), and Carnival Conquest.

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8 hours ago, 2BACRUISER said:

We go to Venice on our cruise in May and it looks like there will be 6 ships inc us in on the same day. We are the smallest at 1800 passengers, 2 x MSC, an RCL and I forget the others so as we've been there b4 we've opted to do a ship excursion to Murano and the other islands in the lagoon and a look round st marks square for a drink t time ish. 🍺🍰

Great choice, the Murano & Burano tour is excellent. Seeing the glass factory and then wandering around Burano was a great day.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, jstahl said:

The cruise is next month. We will be in Nassau on April 22nd. According to Cruise TT, the day before we are there, there will be 7 ships, and the day after there will be 4. April 22nd will only be Navigator of the Seas (our ship), and Carnival Conquest.

I am fairly certain that the pier capacity at Nassau is for 5 ships at one time.  CruiseTT sometimes double lists the same ship in port.  There are 5 ships in port there now, which appears to be utilizing all of the piers - here is the webcam.  Go to the bottom and open the port map:

https://www.portnassauwebcam.com/

Edited by leaveitallbehind

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Here is my take on ships in port. Nassau can only hold five ships max.  It will be crowded around the port.  Cozumel has two different docking areas; and even with five or six ships in port it was not crowded and shore excursions were not affected by the crowds.  The only time it can be crowded; and this is my opinion; is when you have to tender.  If there are quite a few ships in port then you may have to wait for a tender; even though each cruise line has their own tenders; the lines can get long.

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On ‎3‎/‎22‎/‎2019 at 4:52 AM, 2BACRUISER said:

We go to Venice on our cruise in May and it looks like there will be 6 ships inc us in on the same day. We are the smallest at 1800 passengers, 2 x MSC, an RCL and I forget the others so as we've been there b4 we've opted to do a ship excursion to Murano and the other islands in the lagoon and a look round st marks square for a drink t time ish. 🍺🍰

Not sure if you are aware, but by purchasing a timed vaporetto pass (out of a vending machine or at a ticket office) you can have access to all the islands at a far lower cost then any excursion.  So, for example, a 48 hour vaporetto ticketed (unlimited use) might cost you about 33 Euros per person.  This would give you the ability to go to any (and all) of the islands in the lagoon (Murano, Burano, Torcello. Lido, etc) whenever you please.    Other then in Venice itself, the primary means to get around the islands is by walking :).  On Venice, you can use a combination of walking (the best way to see most places) and the vaporettos.  

 

We often will run out to Burano to escape a very crowded day in Venice and return in the late afternoon, by which time, many of the day-trippers have already left.

 

Hank

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Thanks Hank 

Our trip booked with the ship was  £42 each and at the moment the pound and Euro are like for like virtually. We're self guiding using our rick Steve bible in other ports. 🙂👍

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On 3/21/2019 at 2:19 PM, John Bull said:

 

 

I'd go further than that - most contain omissions, & often contain errors.

Even official port websites can be incomplete.

Check a given port & date on all those websites - I doubt you'll get the same answer from all of them.

And, contrary to usual arithmetic, one ship in port 8am to 1pm and another in port 2pm to 8pm don't total two ships. Nor would I count a ship the size of Oasis OTS as one ship. .

Best you'll get is a vague idea.

 

A number of big ships in port all day on a small island like Bonaire or even Santorini can have a major impact - in a city like Barcelona or Rome they'll make little difference amongst tens/hundreds of thousands of other tourists

 

JB  :classic_smile:

Exactly -just two ships will inundate islands like Santorini Mykonos - while major ports can absorb the extra thousands.  It isn’t just the number of ships - it’s their passenger load:  one Oasis class along with one NCL monster can drop over ten thousand on a small port - when we stay on St. Maarten we check the port schedules and just shelter in place on days when 20,000 to 25,000 more than double the Philipsburg population and clog the roads all over the island.

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On ‎3‎/‎23‎/‎2019 at 1:02 PM, 2BACRUISER said:

Thanks Hank 

Our trip booked with the ship was  £42 each and at the moment the pound and Euro are like for like virtually. We're self guiding using our rick Steve bible in other ports. 🙂👍

We do love those Rick Steve's books and often recommend them here on CC :).  The only negative can be the restaurant recommendations.  Go into a highly recommended restaurant (by Rick Steves) and you are probably going to see a Rick Steves guide book at each table with the tourists.  The locals have long fled to other restaurants.

 

Hank

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9 hours ago, Hlitner said:

We do love those Rick Steve's books and often recommend them here on CC :).  The only negative can be the restaurant recommendations.  Go into a highly recommended restaurant (by Rick Steves) and you are probably going to see a Rick Steves guide book at each table with the tourists.  The locals have long fled to other restaurants.

 

Hank

Have to agree on that one, we tend to find our own eating places its all part of the fun. 😃

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Posted (edited)

While it can be useful to know, I find this topic one of many things cruisers tend to make mountains out of molehills on. Most people could never tell you what the quantifiable difference is between 2 and 4 ships in port. Generally, a port that can dock more ships, can absorb more passengers into the island. Most cruise ships are also going to arrive and leave at different times, which reduces clutter.

 

As long as the excursion, beach, etc that I want to go to is not sold out, I don't stress myself out over things that really don't matter. A big piece of advice for a first-time cruiser that I can give is worry less about what others are doing, wearing, how many of them there are, etc and worry more about enjoying yourself. I was at Cozumel last month with 6 other ships. Big ships too. Honestly, it did not impact me in any way, shape, or form. I didn't even know that there was 6 ships there until I just went back and looked at it.

Edited by Joebucks

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46 minutes ago, Joebucks said:

While it can be useful to know, I find this topic one of many things cruisers tend to make mountains out of molehills on. Most people could never tell you what the quantifiable difference is between 2 and 4 ships in port. Generally, a port that can dock more ships, can absorb more passengers into the island. Most cruise ships are also going to arrive and leave at different times, which reduces clutter.

 

 

 

Totally agree...

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there was a website that let you see what ships were in port. Dang, I wish I had it still.

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On 3/30/2019 at 11:59 AM, Joebucks said:

While it can be useful to know, I find this topic one of many things cruisers tend to make mountains out of molehills on. Most people could never tell you what the quantifiable difference is between 2 and 4 ships in port. Generally, a port that can dock more ships, can absorb more passengers into the island. Most cruise ships are also going to arrive and leave at different times, which reduces clutter....

...

 

You clearly have not experienced small ports on days with few ships/passengers as well as on crowded days.  Having perhaps two thousand vs. twenty-five thousand coming ashore makes a huge difference — especially at any port with anything really worthwhile to see/experience.

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39 minutes ago, Cru1s1ng2009 said:

there was a website that let you see what ships were in port. Dang, I wish I had it still.

 

Have you read the thread...like the 4th post...where several of the websites are mentioned? Again, they are not consistent. Individual port websites are more accurate.

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