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First look at Royal Caribbean's new Galveston cruise terminal that opens today

09 Nov 2022
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean's new home in Galveston, Texas is open for cruise ships.

New Galveston terminal

Terminal 3 in Galveston is Royal Caribbean's brand new cruise terminal, purpose built to allow the cruise line to send in the biggest cruise ships in the world.

The new $125 million cruise terminal is a symbol of the cruise line's dedication to the Galveston cruise market, and following in the tradition set forth by Royal Caribbean's other recently constructed buildings, it's spectacular to see.

Galveston cruise terminal with Allure of the Seas behind it

I was invited to sail on Allure of the Seas for a 4-night preview event, where we could walk through and experience the new cruise terminal.

The new terminal is located at Pier 10 for exclusive use by Royal Caribbean.

The building is 161,300 square feet and is a state-of-the-art building, including mobile check-in and facial recognition to expedite guest arrival.

Top of the terminal

It will is a LEED-certified terminal (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), which means it is environmentally responsible and use resources efficiently. 

Architects Bermello Ajamil & Partners Inc. came up with the look of the new terminal, but this firm is no stranger to Royal Caribbean. They also designed Terminal A in Miami, Cape Liberty Cruise Terminal, and Port Everglades' Terminal 18 and 25.

Not only can Terminal 3 handle Oasis Class ships, it will also be able to accommodate Royal Caribbean's new Icon Class ships.

Let's take a virtual tour in and around the new terminal!


Galveston terminal entrance area

Similar to the other new cruise terminals that Royal Caribbean has built recently, the new Galveston terminal is bright with lots of large signage.

As you drive in, there is a pick up and drop off area, with multiple lanes to allow cars to easily get in and out.

Galveston terminal drop off
Galveston terminal drop off

The porters in the new terminal all have a new Caribbean-inspired motif to them, which they say they will wear every day. 

Galveston cruise porter

There is parking available across 4 different lots at the terminal.

Galveston parking map

Once you drop off your luggage, the entrance is towards the front of the terminal.

Galveston terminal entrance
Galveston terminal luggage drop off

Keep in mind the waiting area if you have a later check-in time was uncovered from the sun on the day I was there.

Entry way

​ Edit media ​entryway

Once inside the new cruise terminal, you are greeted with a cavernous lobby.

Similar to Terminal A in PortMiami, there are different ways to enter for suite guests and everyone else. Also similar to Terminal A are the large propellors hanging from the ceiling.

​ Edit media ​entry

The main entrance for most guests will be up the escalator on the left. There is an elevator as well.

Galveston terminal entry


Galveston terminal check in area

Your first stop inside the terminal will be for check-in.

There are agents lined up to check you in by scanning your SetSail pass.  This is when completing the online check-in before the cruise pays off, because if you do everything ahead of time, this will take a matter of seconds.

Galveston terminal check-in agents

Once you complete check-in, you'll go through security. This is when your bags and belongings get scanned.

Galveston terminal security

Suites area

Suites entrance at Galveston terminal

The new Galveston cruise terminal has a special area for suite guests.

Galveston terminal suites entry way

When you enter the terminal, there is a special entrance for suite guests.

This not only means a shorter wait, but it expedites the process of getting you physically from curb to the waiting area.

Galveston terminal suites area
Galveston terminal suites area

Waiting area

Waiting area in Galveston terminal

Once you are past security, you will have a seat in the waiting area if the ship isn't ready to board yet.

Galveston terminal

There are lots of comfortable couches on both sides of the enormous room.

Galveston terminal couch

There are also restrooms here and vending machines, should you need them.

Galveston terminal restrooms

There's also a fun Instagrammable wall.

Vacation is calling

You will also find a large piece of art that was sourced by local artists.

Galveston terminal art

Forged in stainless steel and lost-wax bronze, the Galveston Beach Trio is the embodiment of island time and a dynamic first impression. It is the creation of Texas-based Brad Oldham Sculpture.

Galveston beach trio

Boarding and gangway

Walkway to cruise ship

When they call you to board your ship, the process is just like any other cruise terminal.

Your SetSail pass gets scanned one last time and then you walk down a hallway, where you can stop to take a photo with the ship.

Photo opp
Photo opp

Then, it's onto the ship and walking onboard!

Gangway entrance

Galveston port parking coupon

The Port of Galveston is running a special for parking at the port during the month of November.

Cruise Terminal 10 parking includes a park-and-walk lot and parking with free shuttles.

If you pre-book your parking in November, you can save $10 off with coupon code THANKYOU.

Just go to and use the code to save on your next cruise.

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