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ProfCruise

Tips for departing from Seattle from a downtown resident

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On 3/27/2019 at 9:47 AM, ProfCruise said:

Hi all,

 

I just posted some tips for sailing out of Seattle to my blog.  I thought I'd post here in case it's helpful to anyone.  I'm also happy to try to answer any questions you might have.  I live downtown and have sailed out of Pier 66 and Pier 91 many times. 

 

https://profcruise.com/a-downtown-residents-best-tips-for-cruising-out-of-seattle-in-2019/

 

 

Thank you.

 

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Posted (edited)

Hi Profcruise,

 

I posted this in the Royal Caribbean Forum but from reading this post I think you may be able to offer us some advice :

 

 

There will be 5 of us travelling to seatac for a flight to San Francisco at 1.30pm, we are planning on using the port valet service - would this be best or take our luggage off ourselves?

If we use port valet can you take things like toiletries in your hand luggage on the flight or are there restrictions like an international flight?

 

As there are 5 of us I’m wondering on the best and easiest transport to the airport.

We won’t have Wi-fi so I don’t think Uber/Lyft will be an option - how big does the taxi queue get? Are we best booking a private transfer?

 

What time do you advise disembarking the ship? With the number of people leaving and if another ship is in port, I’m concerned about the amount of people trying to get to the same place! 

Edited by Milo123
Additional information

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I’m assuming that you’re going to be on the “Ovation of the Seas” Royal Caribbean uses Pier 91. The Port Valet program https://www.portseattle.org/page/port-valet-enjoy-seattle-luggage-free should work well for you, I believe you’ll have to pick up your luggage in San Francisco for the international flight.

There are a number options in getting to Sea-Tac airport from Pier 91. There are a large number of cabs. There are transfer buses  https://seattleexpress.com/ and vans that run out to the airport https://www.shuttlefare.com/ and https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Products-g60878-zfc12044-zfg11875-Seattle_Washington.html

Yes you can have toiletries in your carry on/hand luggage. The limit when you go through the TSA check point is 3 oz. per item. Water bottles are OK if they are empty, you can refill them inside the airport at the refilling stations.

I would probably get off the ship about 9am or so and head outside to catch a shuttle. The “Ovation of the Seas” comes into Seattle on Fridays and the will be another ship on the same pier, so it’ll be crazy busy. Traffic on Friday morning going out to Sea-Tac airport can also be crazy.

I hope this helps

Randy

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On 3/27/2019 at 6:47 AM, ProfCruise said:

Hi all,

 

I just posted some tips for sailing out of Seattle to my blog.  I thought I'd post here in case it's helpful to anyone.  I'm also happy to try to answer any questions you might have.  I live downtown and have sailed out of Pier 66 and Pier 91 many times. 

 

https://profcruise.com/a-downtown-residents-best-tips-for-cruising-out-of-seattle-in-2019/

 

 

 

ProfCruise...thank you for the information.  First time disembarking in Seattle from a cruise.  We (2 of us) are looking for transfers from Pier 91 to SeaTac.

 

From your link, it said:  "Shuttle Express: This shared shuttle service is the most popular option at $22 per person each way. Shuttles are available to/from Sea-Tac to/from Pier 91. Go here for additional information or to book online."

 

However, Shuttle Express online shows $34.99 per person from Pier 91 to SeaTac.  Is this correct?

As a second option, could you kindly recommend a taxi company that charges a "flat rate"...Thank you.

(Estimate of $5-$80. depending on traffic....scares us...we would prefer a flat rate.) 😊

 

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1 hour ago, bonsai3s said:

 

ProfCruise...thank you for the information.  First time disembarking in Seattle from a cruise.  We (2 of us) are looking for transfers from Pier 91 to SeaTac.

 

From your link, it said:  "Shuttle Express: This shared shuttle service is the most popular option at $22 per person each way. Shuttles are available to/from Sea-Tac to/from Pier 91. Go here for additional information or to book online."

 

However, Shuttle Express online shows $34.99 per person from Pier 91 to SeaTac.  Is this correct?

As a second option, could you kindly recommend a taxi company that charges a "flat rate"...Thank you.

(Estimate of $5-$80. depending on traffic....scares us...we would prefer a flat rate.) 😊

 

For the past two seasons (2017 & 2018) the flat rate for taxis leaving Pier 91 going to SeaTac as been $40.  We should know if this same price will be in effect for the 2019 season very early May.

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11 hours ago, Ferry_Watcher said:

You may have to take two cabs since you will have 5 in your traveling party.

Can you have 5 in a taxi if we have no luggage? 

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5 hours ago, Milo123 said:

Can you have 5 in a taxi if we have no luggage? 

Most cabs in Seattle are Toyota Prius or similar vehicles.  You might be able to arrange for a van, but unlikely.  I'd suggest booking an UberXL (which offers SUVs and vans, usually for around 50% more than the standard Uber/cab price, so better for large groups compared with two cabs.)

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Most of the taxis used are Prius' which will not hold five passengers and the driver.  There are some larger mini van type taxis, but there would/could be a longer wait for them.  Some of these mini van taxis could be driven by independent drivers who may or may not honor the flat fee rate from Pier 91 to SeaTac.  The Cruise line transfer buses would be the easiest option, followed by the shuttle van options such as  Shuttle Express and Seattle Express (these would be a shared ride holding up to 9 people).  There are also the hired car service like "Already There" which folks have reported good experiences with.

 

Not having a phone available does limit your options.  Are you sure that your cell phone provider doesn't allow international use for an extra fee?  Would you have time before the trip to buy a local 'burner' phone when you arrive in the US?  Having a cell phone could give you the option of using a service like Uber, or even to call your hired car/van to tell the driver where you are waiting.

 

Are you traveling with all adults, or with some children?

 

 

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28 minutes ago, Ferry_Watcher said:

Most of the taxis used are Prius' which will not hold five passengers and the driver.  There are some larger mini van type taxis, but there would/could be a longer wait for them.  Some of these mini van taxis could be driven by independent drivers who may or may not honor the flat fee rate from Pier 91 to SeaTac.  The Cruise line transfer buses would be the easiest option, followed by the shuttle van options such as  Shuttle Express and Seattle Express (these would be a shared ride holding up to 9 people).  There are also the hired car service like "Already There" which folks have reported good experiences with.

 

Not having a phone available does limit your options.  Are you sure that your cell phone provider doesn't allow international use for an extra fee?  Would you have time before the trip to buy a local 'burner' phone when you arrive in the US?  Having a cell phone could give you the option of using a service like Uber, or even to call your hired car/van to tell the driver where you are waiting.

 

Are you traveling with all adults, or with some children?

 

 

There will be 4 adults and 1 child.

 

We can use our phones but the charges will be ridiculous as we are from the uk.

My phone is not tied to a network so I could get a sim before we go on the cruise as we are in Seattle for 3 nights beforehand. We just haven’t done that before - any recommendations on the best company to use for coverage? 

 

I think I’m leaning towards a taxi/Uber/Lyft for more flexibility and the price! 

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2 minutes ago, Milo123 said:

There will be 4 adults and 1 child.

 

We can use our phones but the charges will be ridiculous as we are from the uk.

My phone is not tied to a network so I could get a sim before we go on the cruise as we are in Seattle for 3 nights beforehand. We just haven’t done that before - any recommendations on the best company to use for coverage? 

 

I think I’m leaning towards a taxi/Uber/Lyft for more flexibility and the price! 

The Uber/Lyft option probably is the most economical one.  Gardyloo gave great advice regarding ordering up the larger Uber XL. I would suggest starting a new thread to ask about buying a 'burner' phone (I dislike that term, but I am not sure what else to call it).  Since you will be in Seattle for three days prior to your cruise you will have plenty of time to find and buy the phone.  Also, you could use the Uber/Lyft app to travel to restaurants or tourist spots.

 

If you decide to use Uber or Lyft when you get back into Seattle I would strongly recommend walking the 1/4 mile to the Uber/Lyft pick up parking lot.  There is a shuttle, but walking is faster. Pier staff can direct you to the path.  Not sure if you will be able to use Port Valet (if you are spending the night in SF (yes), or connecting on to England later that Friday (no), but it is a great service if you can use it.

 

 

 

 

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Ferry_Watcher :  We would be most grateful if you would be so kind as to post as soon as you know......... Thank you.

 

"For the past two seasons (2017 & 2018) the flat rate for taxis leaving Pier 91 going to SeaTac as been $40.  We should know if this same price will be in effect for the 2019 season very early May. "

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9 minutes ago, Penzance said:

Ferry_Watcher :  We would be most grateful if you would be so kind as to post as soon as you know......... Thank you.

 

"For the past two seasons (2017 & 2018) the flat rate for taxis leaving Pier 91 going to SeaTac as been $40.  We should know if this same price will be in effect for the 2019 season very early May. "

I made a note to myself to get back to this thread (LOL).  The local Seattle CC group really works on getting good info to our out-of-town friends.  We will get the info out to all as soon as it is possible.

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51 minutes ago, Ferry_Watcher said:

I made a note to myself to get back to this thread (LOL).  The local Seattle CC group really works on getting good info to our out-of-town friends.  We will get the info out to all as soon as it is possible.

 

Ferry_Watcher....thank you.

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On 4/14/2019 at 6:37 PM, bonsai3s said:

 

ProfCruise...thank you for the information.  First time disembarking in Seattle from a cruise.  We (2 of us) are looking for transfers from Pier 91 to SeaTac.

 

From your link, it said:  "Shuttle Express: This shared shuttle service is the most popular option at $22 per person each way. Shuttles are available to/from Sea-Tac to/from Pier 91. Go here for additional information or to book online."

 

However, Shuttle Express online shows $34.99 per person from Pier 91 to SeaTac.  Is this correct?

As a second option, could you kindly recommend a taxi company that charges a "flat rate"...Thank you.

(Estimate of $5-$80. depending on traffic....scares us...we would prefer a flat rate.) 😊

 

 

Thanks for flagging this Bonsai.  It looks like they increased their prices for this season after I posted my tips.  Sorry about that.  I've updated accordingly.  Hopefully the flat rate taxi will be a good option for you.  I'll keep my eye out too for when this season's cost becomes available.

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On 4/15/2019 at 7:28 AM, Milo123 said:

There will be 4 adults and 1 child.

 

We can use our phones but the charges will be ridiculous as we are from the uk.

My phone is not tied to a network so I could get a sim before we go on the cruise as we are in Seattle for 3 nights beforehand. We just haven’t done that before - any recommendations on the best company to use for coverage? 

 

I think I’m leaning towards a taxi/Uber/Lyft for more flexibility and the price! 

All the major mobile/cell companies have excellent coverage in the Seattle area, and of course most hotels and many restaurants will offer free wifi, so the phone company doesn't matter.  Seatac airport has (excellent) free wifi service, and out of curiosity I phoned the Port of Seattle (who run both the cruise terminals and the airport) yesterday to see if they had free wifi at Piers 66 or 91, and the answer was no, they don't.  That's a shame, because it would make ordering up a Lyft or Uber that much easier.  

 

If you're spending some time before the cruise in Seattle, then I think getting a compatible SIM in advance, or, better and maybe cheaper, just buy a prepaid phone when you arrive, makes a lot of sense.  I'd probably go with one of the bigger carriers like AT&T or Verizon so that you'll be able to use the phone in ports in Alaska.  Some of the smaller companies may or may not have compatibility with those carriers in small markets like Ketchikan or Juneau.  You can buy prepaid phones all over the place; if you're staying in downtown Seattle before the cruise, have a look at the downtown Target store, a block from Pike Place, where they'll have a large selection.

Edited by Gardyloo

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On 4/5/2019 at 12:15 PM, GuardCruisers said:

We are driving north on I-5 to Terminal 91.  What exit do we take off I-5 to get to the terminal?  Thankfully, we are driving up on a Sunday morning!

Last Sunday morning I got an emergency call for some equipment up in Ballard at Fisherman’s Terminal. I don’t normally go up there, but figured why not run up there. I wanted to check out the new Viaduct tunnel. We went up I-5 North bound and took exit #156 Hwy 599 North “Tukwila”, just followed the signs to Hwy 99 and to the viaduct tunnel, it was a piece of cake. Just remember you want to take W. Mercer St. to Elliott Ave W. Coming back we came back on 15th Ave, this turns into Elliott Ave W, we got onto Mercer and back onto I-5 south, I noticed that traffic was stopped on I-5 North bound. It was about 9:45 when we went up and about 10:30 when got onto I-5 to come back. Just remember Google earth is your friend, look at it before you leave on your adventure.

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