Want to explore Seattle after your cruise and not sure what to do with your luggage? Or maybe you simply want to have someone else take care of your bags instead of having to lug them from the cruise port to the airport… while also being checked-in for your flight before you even leave the ship.
In that case, you’re in luck…
The Port of Seattle and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport have a “Port Valet” service for cruise passengers that can save you a lot of time and headache. If you’re taking a cruise from Seattle and plan on flying home from the airport, then you’ll want to take advantage of this little-known cruise perk.
The Benefits of Seattle’s Port Valet Service
With the Port Valet service, cruisers disembarking in Seattle and headed to the airport don’t have to worry about schlepping their bags. The complimentary service will transfer your luggage from ship directly to the plane. In addition, you will be checked in for your flight and provided with boarding passes before you even leave the ship.
What this means is if you want to explore the city before your flight, you can do so without wondering what to do with your luggage. And even if you are headed straight to the airport, you can do so without having to carry heavy bags.
At the same time, since you are already checked in, that means when you arrive at Seattle-Tacoma airport, you simply head straight to the security gate instead of having to wait in line to get a boarding pass or drop off bags.
The service is free, and passengers pay only normal baggage fees an airline may charge for either checking a bag or excess baggage, not for the transfer service.
How to Sign Up for Port Valet
So how can you take advantage?
First, you’ll have to enroll. That can be done on the Port Valet website up until 4:00 p.m. the first day of your cruise. After that time, you can still enroll on the ship. It’s a good idea to simply enroll early online before the cruise. If you do wait, any questions you have should be able to be address by the Guest Services desk on the ship.
The night before your cruise ends, you’ll have airline boarding passes and special luggage tags delivered. Place these tags on your checked bags and then set them outside of your room. The ship’s crew will pick them up for you.
From there, your luggage is delivered directly to your airport, so you don’t have to check those bags. The next time you see them will be on the luggage carousel when you land back home.
Want to track your bags? You can do so at https://portvalet.maketraveleasier.com
Currently, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta, JetBlue, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines participate in the program. If flying a different airline, then you won’t be able to take advantage.
Frequently Asked Questions
What flight times work for the Port Valet service? What if I fly out the next day?
Before you sign up, you’ll want to be sure your flight falls within the window to be eligible for Port Valet. For most airlines, the flight must be between 12 p.m. on debarkation day and 1:30 a.m. the next morning. For Southwest, the eligible window is between 12 p.m. and 4 p.m. on the day the ship arrives back in Seattle.
Can I use this service if flying international?
Yes, the Port Valet service says you can use it even if flying international. The one exception is if you fly Delta. At this time only domestic flights on Delta are eligible.
Is there a charge for the Port Valet service in Seattle?
No, the service is free. There is no additional charge to use the Port Valet.
What if I have a charge for a checked bag on my airline?
Many airlines charge for checked bags. In that case, Port Valet says that any airline baggage fees are applied to your onboard account on the cruise ship. You’ll then pay them with the payment method on file, just like any other charges during the cruise.
What if I need something from my bag after it is picked up?
You should be sure that you have everything you need from your luggage before you set it outside your door. With the Port Valet service, once your bags are picked up you won’t see them again until you land at your home airport. You won’t have a chance to get anything from them once they are picked up the night before your cruise gets back to port.
What if I’m not traveling on one of the airlines offering the service?
As mentioned above, Alaska, American, Delta, JetBlue, Southwest, and United all are participants in the program. That should cover the vast majority of passengers. If you are flying out on a different airline, then you’ll still need to bring your luggage with you the traditional way.
Have more questions about the free port valet service between the Port of Seattle and the airport? Let us know in the comments below.
What Passengers Think of the Program
Obviously having a completely free service that takes care of your luggage should be popular. And while not many people seem to know about the service (its only been around a few years), those that have used it rave about the program.
“It is GREAT!! You are given your airline docs (we were flying Southwest) and baggage checks on the night before docking. We attached them to our bags, put them in the hallway, and the next time we saw them was on the baggage carousel in Tucson. We walked off the ship with our carry-on in Seattle at 6:30, hailed a cab, and we were checked in and at our gate at the airport by 7:30. We were WAY early for our 11:30 AM flight, but that was fine. I had been concerned that 11:30 was too early, but everything worked out as well as we could have ever wanted. Seattle really had its act together, both for check-in at the pier and for disembarkation. I highly recommend the service!”