This was our 6th cruise with RCCL and our first 14 day. We had to make the decision of the Panama Canal or the Mediterranean. Since my husband is a civil engineer, the Panama Canal won out.
We flew into San Diego the day before the cruise and stayed at the Holiday Inn Harbor side. Great location across from the port and got to see the ship arrive the next morning from our balcony.
We had read the reviews from the Hawaii group prior to our departure and were ready for a battle at the port with luggage and check-in, but we had no problems at all.