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Cruise & Stay ... What exactly is it and how does it work?

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With the cost of flights to the Bahamas and other Caribbean destinations increasing every year there's a new take on an old way to travel that's becoming more popular every day. Fast Ferry Service and Overnight Cruise Service offer fast, fun and affordable options that many travelers prefer.

Bahamas Fast Ferry

As the new Fast Ferry gains popularity, more and more routes are becoming available. One of the most popular fast ferries today is the Bahamas Fast Ferry from Balearia Caribbean. The Jaume 1 departs Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale, Florida at 8:00am and arrives at Grand Bahama Island at 11:00am with up to 700 passengers aboard. The ferry offers entertainment options, a restaurant, bar and first class seating. The Bahamas Fast Ferry offers day trips and round-trip service, departing and returning on different days. Add a hotel to your ferry service for the best discounts. Prices for the Bahamas Ferry start at $99 per person (plus tax).

Another popular option is the Grand Celebration overnight cruise. This full service 2000 passenger cruise ship sails from the Port of Palm Beach to Grand Bahama Island every other day. Your cabin and meals are included during your overnight journey. The next morning you’ll disembark and check-in to the hotel of your choice for 2 or 4 nights, before returning to the Port of Palm Beach on your final evening aboard ship. Prices for the 4 night package (2 nights aboard ship and 2 nights at a Bahamas resort) start at $599 per person.

Grand Celebration

Bimini Fast Ferry

The newest ferry destination and fast ferry service is the Bimini Fast Ferry. This new 460 passenger ferry departs the Port of Miami at 9:00 am and arrives in Bimini at 11:00 am. Spend the day or even a few nights in Bimini before departing at 6:00 pm and returning to the Port of Miami at 8:00 pm. Make your Bimini experience unforgettable by adding overnight accommodations at the Hilton at Resorts World Bimini. This new 5-star hotel offers luxurious and spacious guest rooms, multiple pools, various restaurants, bars, a casino and other entertainment options. The Hilton is located on a gorgeous white sand beach with crystal clear turquoise water. Prices for the ferry start at $199 per person or combine hotel and ferry starting at $359.00 per person.

Did you know that when traveling to the Bahamas by ferry, U.S. citizens can travel and stay overnight in the Bahamas with only a birth certificate and a state issued photo ID? The ferry is the only transportation method that allows this option. Flying to the Bahamas requires a valid passport to enter the Bahamas and reenter the United States. Some standard cruise ships will allow you to travel with a birth certificate but only because you're staying aboard ship overnight and not in the Bahamas. The fast ferry allows you to, not only travel, but stay up to 30 days in the Bahamas with an original birth certificate and photo ID. Why is this possible? When traveling from the U.S. to Canada or the U.S. to Mexico over land you may enter and exit with an original birth certificate. This is true for any land crossing. Because the Fast Ferry can carry automobiles, as well as passengers, it is considered a land crossing and the same regulations apply. 

Check out all the cruise and fast ferry options at  goBahamasPlus. We're adding more as they become available so check back frequently.


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