(5 p.m. EDT) -- Sailing on MSC Cruises out of Miami? Passengers have a new way to get to and from the port, through the line's new partnership with South Florida's Brightline express train service.
MSC Cruises and Brightline in tandem will offer Train-to-Port bundle packages allowing cruisers to travel bag-free between West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale to Miami -- the cities in which Brightline (soon to be rebranded Virgin Trains) has stations.
As part of the packages, which start at $95 per every two passengers, MSC Cruises passengers can park their cars, check in and check their luggage at any Brightline station. Brightline will deliver passengers' luggage directly to their cabins on the ship. Passengers will receive a Lyft ride from Virgin MiamiCentral station to PortMiami; a Lyft ride will return them to the train station after the cruise. Parking services and roundtrip tickets are also included in the packages.
"As MSC Cruises significantly expands its presence in North America and South Florida specifically, we are committed to partnering with world-class and innovative brands that will enhance our guests vacation experience from start to finish," said Ken Muskat, MSC Cruises USA's EVP and COO. "A vacation should be as carefree as possible, and with the partnership with Brightline, MSC Cruises is now able to offer its guests arriving in or traveling from South Florida a more seamless and convenient pre- and post-cruise travel experience."
The partnership positions MSC Cruises as the official cruise line of Brightline. Meanwhile, Richard Branson's new cruise line Virgin Voyages will join the Virgin Group in 2020, when its first ship launches. Virgin has less than a three percent stake in Brightline -- a move Branson has attributed to his commitment to South Florida. Brightline will be rebranded as Virgin Trains by the end of 2019.
Four MSC Cruises ships offer sailings out of Miami: MSC Seaside and MSC Armonia (year-round), MSC Divina (seasonally) and beginning in fall 2019, MSC Meraviglia (seasonally).
Outside the bag-free Train-to-Port bundle package, Brightline offers cruiser-catered packages that cover parking, train tickets and roundtrip Lyft Rides.