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leaving island by ship?

 
iguanabanana
(@iguanabanana)
Advanced Member

I had a stroke in my brainstem in mid-March and we are leaving STT end of June. Our plan is to fly, but if there is a way we could leave on a boat, I would like to explore the option. Dr. says it is OK if I fly, but others say differently. Anyone know of folks who have left STT on an outbound ship? We would have our two kitties, also. Any advice - as always - very greatly appreciated.

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Topic starter Posted : April 20, 2013 12:11 pm
VIsnorkeler
(@VIsnorkeler)
Trusted Member

Oh dear! I am so sorry to hear that. Other than a charter, or maybe keeping an ear open for someone to be taking a fishing boat or a sailboat back to Florida for whatever reason, I don't know of another way to do it.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 1:44 pm
Alana33
(@alana33)
Expert

You could go by criuse ship but you'd have to find someone to fly your kitties to the states.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 2:06 pm
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Trusted Member

So sorry to hear it! Hope everything will be ok!! The company i work for has charter boats and I will keep an ear out for anyone going to FL.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 2:07 pm
Afriend
(@afriend)
Trusted Member

Generally speaking cruise ships that have STT as a Port of Call are prohibited by law from taking on (or dropping off) passengers at any intermediate Port of Call on that cruise. However, sometimes the cruise line can apply for a special exemption. You'd have to contact the cruise line(s) directly to see if such a service could be arranged in your case. If so, you should be aware that you'd have to pay for the cost of the entire cruise even though you might only be aboard for a small portion. You'd still have the problem of dealing with your kitties.

As far as going by private charter boat, while it might be like an easy solution you'd find it somewhat impractical. Assuming you are going back to the mainland US you'll be crossing about 1100 miles of open ocean. Unless you were an experienced open water sailor you'd want to make the trip in a fairly large yacht (think mega yacht) which cost 1,000's to 10,000's of dollars per day to operate. The trip would take about 3 to 5 days (assuming you have a good "weather window" and longer if there were changing sea conditions.

Flying is the much better option.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 3:06 pm
East Ender
(@east-ender)
Expert

IMHO, if your doctor says it is okay to fly, I 'd fly. You will be away from medical help for only a few hours vs. several days on a boat.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 3:24 pm
lc98
 lc98
(@lc98)
Trusted Member

Sorry to hear of the reason you have to leave, iguanabanana. I agree with EE -- if your doc has cleared you to fly, I would do that. There are so many variables that can cause an ocean voyage to not go as planned -- and if your cats aren't experienced sailors, they could have a very miserable trip.

If you do decide to go by boat, consider joining DAN (Diver Alert Network). You don't have to be a diver, and their membership comes with insurance that will pay the cost of a medically necessary evacuation (diving related or not) if you have them arrange it. https://www.diversalertnetwork.org/membership/Travel_Assist

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Posted : April 20, 2013 5:47 pm
divinggirl
(@divinggirl)
Trusted Member

You may want to look into a charter aircraft. They can fly lower than commercial planes and you could bring your kitties with you.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 6:01 pm
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Trusted Member

I may know of a boat going to FL if you really wanted to check into it. I'm not sure when thou, still waiting for more details. IMO I would also do a charter plane. Smarter than a small boat, I'd imagine that's a rough trip. If you're really interested I can try to get you connected with the boat capt.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 6:42 pm
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Expert

if it is the altitude that you are worried about, what about a charter plane. i think they fly lower than commercial airlines and that might be better. I am sorry to hear of your health issues.

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Posted : April 20, 2013 8:38 pm
iguanabanana
(@iguanabanana)
Advanced Member

Thanks ya'll. Hair brained idea, I think. Furthest I've been on a boat is STT to STJ on the ferry. I'll just trust what the doc says and fly.

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Topic starter Posted : April 20, 2013 11:17 pm
Ronnie
(@ronnie)
Trusted Member

I have heard of cruise ships that pick up and drop off here. Never heard of such a ban.

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Posted : April 21, 2013 4:44 am
billd
(@billd)
Trusted Member

Cruse ships WILL pick you up in STT if they leave from PR the day before. But will not drop you off here. I know of no way except by charter that you can get off by boat. One far fetched idea is to talk to the the cargo ships (such as tropical) and see if they take passengers. They go to Ft. Lauderdale.

Good luck.

billd

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Posted : April 21, 2013 12:18 pm
Alana33
(@alana33)
Expert

My sisters and their husbands regularly have taken cruises and sometimes they the get on board in STT, sometimes fly to PR.
They manage to always disembark in STT especially if they return to islands from US/FL.

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Posted : April 21, 2013 1:40 pm
OldTart
(@the-oldtart)
Expert

The decision to allow someone to embark or disembark at a port other than the designated port of embarkation is based on a combination of customs agreements between international borders and the individual cruise ship line's policies. It used to be quite common years ago but, as security has increased, the practice has largely been discontinued. The very few who do allow it often impose a pretty hefty premium on top of the regular price.

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Posted : April 21, 2013 2:16 pm
piaa
 piaa
(@piaa)
Trusted Member

I have disembarked in St Thomas from a cruise (originating in both Miami and San Juan) yes you have to "apply" when you book the cruise and then it is at the discretion of the captain but both times we received permission way before we sailed. The last time we did this was probably 3 years ago (maybe)

Pia

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Posted : April 21, 2013 11:55 pm
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