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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    528

    Default How to get to the resort as early as possible

    So my wonderful husband has agreed to a trip to csa next october (yay!)
    This time we've decided that we are going to be even smarter when booking our flights. We live in Madison, wi so in order to make it to mbj there are always at least one to two stops.
    In the past we have driven to Milwaukee late at night, slept on the ground in the airport in order to get their 6 am flight. That shoots us to Charlotte or atl and usually in to mbj around 1. Not bad.
    Last time we paid more, flew out of Madison to o'hare to catch their early am non-stop that should have arrived before noon. Better, however things went wrong in Madison and we were routed all over the country and finally made it to the resort around 10 pm. Not so great.
    What I want to know is where have you all flown out from non-stop to arrive early.
    As of now we may fly to NYC in the eve, say hi to pals and catch a 6 am flight from JFK that gets to mbj by 9:45. We figure it may cost a bit more, but having another day on the beach is worth it.
    All suggestions and help are appreciated

    I'm soooo excited!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    612

    Default

    Great idea! We used to fly non-stop from Boston, but they discontinued those flights, and it takes forever to go through one of the southern hubs!!

    Have fun!!

  3. #3

    Default

    What we have done in the past was leave for Jamaica the day before we were to go to Couples. We stayed in Montego Bay and then went back to the airport the next morning ($15 + tip for the driver each way). Our driver went to the door where you depart and asked someone to get the Couples Rep. They came out and checked us in. Waited for the next bus, and then we were on our way to Negril.

    So if we did have any delays, we wouldn't miss out any days in Negril.

    Just remember, if you get there early, your room might not be ready, but you can start enjoying your stay.

  4. #4

    Default

    The AirTran flights out of Midway Chicago into MBJ are non stop (for now) on Fridays and Sundays. They arrive at about 1:50. That isn't super early, but it's a lot closer and probably less expensive than first traveling to JFK. Whatever time you end up arriving, have a great trip. We are flying out using AirTran in less than 2 weeks (layover on Saturday departure, direct flight on Sunday return).
    Kelly & Troy
    CTI 2010
    CSS 2013
    CN 2015

  5. #5

    Default

    ya mon, have been to csa many times in the offseason and living in beaver dam, just east of you, we also look for the quickest way, since there is no direct flights out of milwaukee this time of year, we have flown both delta thru atlanta and u s air thru charlotte, really no drama with either one , so that is a toss up, leaving milwaukee at 6 and arrive in mo bay around noon, we now use the arrival service which really helps some times, depending on the plane arrivals, then we head to the couples longe and we then acquire a private car and driver, lots quicker than the bus, he doesnt have to stop, we have used tim air and air link in the past only 15 minutes to fly over, but by the time you walk back into the air port, check in, go thru security, hopefully the pilot and plane are there or its a wait, so we are usually at csa around 1.30 or 2 at the latest, so thats as about as quick on average that we have been able to do it,

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    210

    Default

    12 months out and your already trying to get on the beach! good for you.

    Way I see it is your willing to sleep on the ground, travel at ungodly hours for maybe three more hours on the beach?

    The nice thing about the southern hub early flight out of Charlotte at 7:55 will get you to Mobay at 10:58am. With MoBay service I figure to be in the Shuttle area by 11:30 and in a shuttle by Noon. By 1:30 I expect to be checking in. I will have a swim suit in my carry on and ready to chill with a nice lunch by 2pm if my room is not ready.

    I will go the night before to Charlotte and stay in a hotel and get a good nite sleep. It should not be a torture to travel. Better to hit the resort well rested than exhausted. I've done it both ways. Im very type "A" and have attempted to get on that beach as early as possible.

    Im not sure how early the resort will take you or might even charge you if you arrive at 10am if your eating two meals and drinking the day but you might want to check.

    I like the idea of flying in the day before and staying overnite. Why not even travel to Negril the nite before and stay in a modest hotel avoiding the shuttle in prime daylight?

    For me, a 6 day stay is really enough and about right. Thats why I book 7 days and take an early flight. Things go wrong and I expect them to, so to me if I am on the beach by 4pm and watch the sun go down Im happy. Late Dinner, stroll around the grounds and head to bed knowing I have full 6 days ahead of me is wonderful! The last day I get up early, get in the ocean for a last swim and cry. I have a departure at 1:30 so they will likely want me off the property by 10am.

    I used to try to take a late flight out and enjoy the morning but have learned to enjoy getting home earlier in the day. It also makes any travel problems less stressful. I have Mobay service so I will have time to shop for coffee and chill out. Delays won't be a problem and since its a saturday I can make plans with friends that evening as we'll be back in town by 6pm and still have a day off!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    63

    Default

    We had a great experience using AirTran. We caught a 6am flight out of Providence, then an 8:30 flight out of Baltimore that landed us at MBJ by 11am. Flight was super cheap too!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    39

    Default

    We go in April and we takeg the 7:00 am Jet Blue flight out of JFK, landing in MBJ at 10:10 am. Then, we splurge for the Tim Air flight to Negril. We pack so we are ready to hit the beach and don't care if our room isn't ready until later in the afternoon. Our goal is to be on the beach with cocktail in hand before noon.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    541

    Default

    the 9:40 flight out of CLT arrives at 11:30, we are usually on the beach by 2:00 since we fly on weekdays and there are no lines at the airport

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    162

    Default

    I just ran into the same sort of problem last month when I booked my flights for our aug trip to CN. I found out that the early flight in was gonna cost me an extra $300 to get to MBJ at 10:30 instead of 1:40. My solution to the problem was I extended a day to the trip. It was $300 for 3 hours or $372 for 20 more hours.

  11. #11

    Default

    We live right outside of Pittsburgh. Flying in on the 2nd of Nov (Saturday). Managed to find a flight with US Air (connection in Charlotte) that arrives in MBJ at 9:58 am. We leave at 0 dark 30 but so worth it. This is the earliest flight that I have ever been able to find out of PIT.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    25

    Default

    I believe the earliest flights are on Air Carribean (Air Jamacia). We flew out of Philly a few years ago in April at 6:00 am and arrived at 9:45 or 8:45 am ( Jamacia doesn't do daylight savings time). We were in our room, unpacked,had lunch and on the beach before 11:00 am. So if you find an airport that flys Air Carribean that may be your best bet. I believe they have the earliest flights into the MJB airport. Hope it helps.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    1,308

    Default

    We come from Arizona; so we take an over night fight to the East coast then get one of the first flights of the day. We land in MBJ a little before 10am at the resort around one. Our room has been ready 2 out of 4 times, we kind of like our room not being ready. We change at resort go get a cheese burger from the grill, grab a drink and walk the beach, grab another drink and hop in the hot tub to help relax sore muscles from traveling, by then our room is ready and we are ready for a nap and unpacking before dinner. When our room is ready we feel like we have to rush to unpack and get lunch before our vacation can start.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    54

    Default

    fly to nyc and get caribean air out of JFK flight bw010 5:50 AM puts you in MB at 9:15 AM and at any one of the resorts by 11:00 AM.

  15. #15

    Default

    We are flying out of Minneapolis on Sun Country. It is a non stop flight, landing at 1130 am in Montego Bay. We really enjoy not having to change planes (especially on the way home).

    98 days to go!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    1,169

    Default

    An option we had, but didn't exercise, on one trip to Jamaica was to leave later in the day and fly to Miami, stay overnight and leave early in the morning to get to Montego Bay about mid-morning. Not sure this would be any different than flying to O'Hare and then getting a non-stop to Montego Bay but might get you in earlier. As John_NH stated, getting their early will cause you to arrive before you room is ready. In that case it's important to have things handy so you can begin enjoying/exploring the resort and let the vacation can begin while waiting for the room to be available.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    81

    Default

    A suggestion:

    There are multiple non stop flights out of Toronto through charter companies (Air Transat, Signature) as well as the major Canadian airlines (West Jet and Air Canada). Maybe check some of them.

    My flight leaves at 6 AM, non stop, arrives around 10:30 AM.

    By far the most popular option in Canada is to book through a package company (Sunquest, Sunwing, Signature Vacations, Air Canada Vacations, Westjet Vacations, etc) that covers both air (almost always direct flight, transfers and the resort price itself).

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    81

    Default

    You live in Milwaukee? I bet you could get flights out of Windsor too (6 hour drive though, basically like driving to Detroit). Edit: Yeap checking tripcentral.ca I see direct flights out of Windsor leaving at 6 in the morning.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    81

    Default

    Actually you could drive to Windsor. There are direct Air Canada flights out of Windsor that leave at 6 AM and get to MB around 10. 6 and a half hour drive from Madison WI. Check tripcentral.ca and set your gateway to Windsor.

    Prices are fairly comparable to US travel sites ... often better!

    I bet Detroit has direct flights too ...

  20. #20

    Default

    We are in a similar situation to you. We live just outside Manitowoc, WI. We are leaving on 10/20/13 for our 6th visit to CN. We drive to Chicago the afternoon before departure (2.5 hours) and spend the night at the Four Points Sheraton O'Hare. You pay for one night and park your car for the week for free. They also provide transport to and from the airport. Our non-stop (Frontier) flight departs at 6:15AM and we hit MBJ at about 10:15AM. We have also opted for the Club Mobay arrival and departure services to get us through customs and on our way just a bit sooner. The retuning flight departs about 11:00AM and gets to ORD about 3:00PM.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    316

    Default

    Man I feel for you guys in the states. All Canadain flights are non-stop. Our next trip 7:05 AM from Toronto, arrive 12;15 PM in MBJ.

  22. #22

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bargamon View Post

    I like the idea of flying in the day before and staying overnite. Why not even travel to Negril the nite before and stay in a modest hotel avoiding the shuttle in prime daylight?
    One reason is because Couples will not give you a ride to Negril unless you are going to the resort that day. I don't know how much it would cost for a driver to take you to Negril, maybe $50-60, and then you would need another driver, $15-20, to take you to Couples.

    By staying in MoBay, it was only $40 with tip roundtrip, and by going back to the airport early in the morning, we could take the Couples bus to Negril. We still got there around 11 am.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    197

    Default

    Getting to the resort isn't only about flights. Once you land you have to clear customs and then get to the resort. Do the Club MoBay entry to avoid potentially VERY long lines in customs. We've never done it but others have sung it's praises in that you move to the front of the (often very long) line. Then consider whether you want to pay for a flight to the resort vs. taking the bus. If all goes well, the trip is shortened by 45 mins to an hour if you fly but it's not cheap. The combo of the above could save you a few hours. Yeah, it costs more but you have to weigh $$ vs. time at Couples.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    210

    Default

    Since Jamaica does not do Daylight savings they are currently one hour behind EST.
    Next month when we "fall back", EST will match.

    So adjust for the change folks and plan accordingly depending on when your traveling.

    A three hour flight now gains you an hour but in a few weeks we lose it.

  25. #25

    Default

    I just go a day earlier now. Airfare doesn't cost really anymore.... so when I wake in the morning after getting there I still have 7 nights!!! And I get the little half day from the day before to get settled in... I used to fly out of Chicago when Air Jamaica was around. Now I just go thur Charolette or ATL.

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