Cruise guest explains reason passengers had to be ‘flown home’ early

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Cruise ships operate on a tight schedule as they have to cooperate with so many ports. Unfortunately this means that passengers need to keep to a strict schedule as well.

A cruise guest asked people on Reddit if they had ever seen a ‘pier runner’. Pier runners are people that are late for the ship and have to run along the port to catch it.

A passenger said: “I’ve never seen it, but we were down the hall from a mother and daughter who were serial pier runners.

“On that cruise, they missed the initial boarding, so they flew to the next stop. When we docked, they missed that one and were flown to the next port.

“On the final stop, they missed that too! Apparently, they were flown home, and the cruise staff had to empty their cabin and send their belongings home. I don’t know how much it cost them!”

Cruise ships won’t be able to wait for passengers who are late, so will have to leave without them.

Guests will then need to fly to the next port at their own expense if they want to catch up with the ship.

Another passenger said: “I’ve never seen a pier runner, but a few years ago we were on a hop on/hop off bus in Miami.

“It was meant to drop off at the cruise port, but it got stuck in traffic and ended up running about two hours behind.

“Two women had ‘hopped on’, thinking they had plenty of time. They couldn’t even jump out and catch a cab, traffic was at a standstill. They missed their cruise, and I felt so bad for them.”

Transport can be unreliable and guests will need to make sure they are dropped off close to the port.

In some cases, city ports are very far from the city centre and guests won’t be able to walk there.

Passengers can use online reviews to find a reputable company to book their cruise with to make sure they’re back on time.

Another passenger said: “I was on a cruise that had a very late excursion with about a dozen people on it due to a mechanical breakdown.

“The captain updated the rest of us regularly but eventually had to pull away from the dock and start to sail off.

“While still in the harbour, the excursion bus arrived. They actually boarded the passengers on a boat and pulled it up to the ship, transferring the passengers boat-to-ship.”

Cruise ship captains will wait as long as they can for passengers who are on the cruise line’s excursions.

However, excursions organised by the company are often more expensive than those run by external companies.

While sometimes ‘pier running’ can’t be helped, the late guests will have to put up with some jokes.

Another passenger said: “Most of the time people are laughing at them or sarcastically clapping.”

Another said: “Once we got back maybe a minute or two late. People on the ship were booing us.”

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