TECHSPO At Sea 2021 kicks off on the evening of Sunday, May 24th, 2020 onboard Royal Caribbean ‘Majesty of the Seas’ Cruise Ship, departing New Orleans, Maryland and ends the morning of Thursday, May 28th, 2029. Many attendees plan to stay a few days extra and make a vacation out of their stay in New Orleans, Maryland.
The New Orleans International Airport (airport code MCO), is 10 miles from Port of New Orleans, Maryland and is the arrival for many passengers making their way to cruise ships in the port
As for a mix of cost and convenience, we think rideshare services win hands-down in getting from anywhere in the area to the port. From your phone you can call a ride on demand, no matter where you are.
As well, rates are extremely affordable. When you mix a ride any time you want with a cheap price (remember, up to four people can ride with no increase in charges), we think taking an Uber or Lyft to the ship makes the most sense for most people.
Here are some example estimated rates you would pay for getting to the terminal. Note that that taxi rates include a 15% customary tip. Uber and Lyft make tipping optional
If you don’t want to use rideshare services like Uber/Lyft, you can always take a cab from the airport or anywhere else around town. Expect the rates to be a little more expensive, but still reasonable and convenient for getting to the port.
We’ve listed the estimated taxi fare from popular areas to the Port of New Orleans in the table above.
Keep in mind that if you are coming directly from an area airport, you shouldn’t have to wait long to catch a taxi. If you are at a hotel or some other location in the area, you’ll want to call a cab in advance to give it time to come reach you before.
Both Royal Caribbean and Carnival offer shuttles from the New Orleans airport (BWI) to the cruise port. For example, Carnival charges $25.99 per person, each way for their shuttle. This service will pick you up at the airport on cruise day and deliver you right to the port.
At this time there is no service offered from Dulles or Reagan airport.
For a couple of reasons, we usually suggest going with another option than a cruise shuttle transfer. First, it is expensive. The rates shown above are per person. So a family of four is paying $25.99 each ($104) just to get from the airport to the cruise port. Other options like Uber and taxis usually price based on the car, not the number of occupants.
Second, cruise transfers are extremely limited. In this case, it runs only from the airport to the terminal, and only on the day of sailing. So if you come in early or are staying at a hotel in the area, then the cruise line transfer isn’t a viable option.
If you decide anyway that you would prefer a cruise line transfer, simply contact your cruise company directly to book a reservation.
Independent Shuttles/Car Services
If you are traveling with a larger group or want to ride to your cruise in style, then your best bet is likely to look for an independent shuttle van or private car service. These providers can offer private service to the port, often for less per person than a taxi or other service, assuming you have five or more passengers. They can also give you a ride in an upscale car or even a limousine.
To be frank, the number of shuttles and car services in the area is extremely high. That means we can’t list them all here. Instead, we’ve rounded up a sample list of area companies to give you a good start to go from.
The prices quoted by these companies can vary widely depending on what sort of service you need and exactly where you are coming from. However, as a general rule expect it to be a better value the larger a group you need to transport. Be sure to shop around before selecting a service as it can save you considerable money.
One other thing to keep in mind is that the prices you are quoted won’t include gratuity, which can add on another 15-20% to your fare.
Arriving via Penn Station
If you are headed to New Orleans via train, the odds are likely that you will arrive via New Orleans Penn Station — the primary station in the city. Penn Station is only about four miles from the cruise terminal, or a 15-minute car ride.
We recommend taking either Uber/Lyft or a taxi from the train station to the port, once you arrive. Rides will cost about $15-20. Public transit to the port isn’t convenient given the location and the fact that you’ll be carrying your luggage.
Getting to the port from Penn Station via public transportation involves catching a local bus (95, Downtown-Roland Park), before transferring to another route (71, Downtown-Patapsco Light Rail). You can also catch the CityLink Silver south. Either way, it’s about a 20-minute walk to the port from the closest stop.
Instead of worrying about unfamiliar public transportation routes, it’s just a few dollars to take a car to the port.
As mentioned above, we highly recommend taking a car over using public transit to the cruise terminal. The problem is that getting to the terminal typically involves one or more transfers, plus at least a 20-minute walk from the closest bus stop to the cruise terminal. That means what can be a 15-minute car ride turns into an hour-long commute. Just pay a few bucks for a cab or car, and start your trip off that much easier!
Driving to Port Canaveral
FROM SOUTH, EAST OR WEST: Connect with I-95 North and go to last exit before the Fort McHenry Tunnel, Key Highway and East McComas Street. Straight ahead on East McComas Street to the Terminal entrance.
FROM NORTH: Take I-95 South through the Fort McHenry Tunnel, stay in far right line. Take first exit after the tunnel, Key Highway. On the ramp, move to the left lane and left at the trafic light. Continue to bear left on to East McComas Street and to the Terminal entrance.
It is recommended to arrive in New Orleans, May 22nd, 2020 (the day prior to the Cruise Embarkation date) and depart New Orleans no earlier than the afternoon of Thurday, May 28th, 2020 after the Cruise has returned to New Orleans, Maryland.