cruise parking southampton

A Guide to Southampton Cruise Terminals and Southampton City

Southampton has four separate cruise terminals within a two mile stretch of the waterfront. The Mayflower, City, Ocean and Queen Elizabeth terminals are set out from west to east as in the map below.

The cruise terminals are part of the docks, so people can't simply walk out of the terminals into Southampton city centre. There are very few facilities in these areas other than toilets for people on the public side of customs.

Disembarking and Embarking at Southampton

Most cruise ships arrive at the terminal between 5:00 and 6:00, with assisted disembarkation beginning at around 7:00, and ending around 10:00, although many ships will allow unassisted disembarkation before this time.

All cruise ships will depart on the same day that they arrive, usually around 16:00, with embarkation times usually closing between 15:00 and 16:00. Normally passengers are allowed to embark as soon as disembarkation has been completed.

Please ensure you check disembarking and embarking times with your cruise provider. Most ships do follow these patterns, but yours may be the exception - so please make sure you check first.

Marshalling is usually very well organised, but should you be approached by anyone offering transportation, hotels, tickets for entertainments or similar, please be aware that this practice is illegal and should be avoided at all costs.

There are taxi ranks available outside every terminal, and these are very well regulated. Even when there are four ships in port, queues move quickly and there is rarely a long wait.

If you have booked a coach transfer with your cruise line you will be escorted to your coach which will be waiting just outside the terminal. Pre-booked taxis or charter buses will generally wait outside the customs or baggage hall with your name on a board.

Between The Cruise Terminals & Bus/Train Station

There are currently no shuttle buses provided for travel between the cruise terminals and the bus or train stations so it is advisable to book a taxi, and fares are generally between £6 and £9.

The taxi pictured is a typical Southampton taxi, so make sure you have booked enough transport for your party as well as your luggage, you may need more than one even if there are only 2 or 3 of you.

Walking between the train and bus stations and the cruise terminal is not advised, particularly when carrying luggage. Even the closest terminal (the Mayflower) is a long trek, so we would always advise you to get suitable transport.

Southampton Hotels for Cruises

There are no hotels directly next to any of the cruise terminals, and hotels are located in the city centre.

The Holiday Inn, Ibis, Novotel and ETAP hotels are within walking distance of the City Cruise terminal for those with light luggage, but most people would be advised to take a taxi to their hotel.

To find out about suitable hotels, please take a look at our Hotel Accommodation page for details, locations and a price guide.

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