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September 8, 2017

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Have you ever dreamed of just leaving your life behind for a weekend? We all think about it, daydreaming can conjure up some fabulous getaways. Key West is that iconic island we all want to visit to re-invent ourselves and throw our cares to the balmy breezes.

"What first appealed to my husband and I was the fact we could go to Key West and not sit in a car for seven hours on a two-lane highway," said Roberta Stephenson, Key West Express reservationist, "Once we were on the boat it was a fun relaxing trip and we met a lot of great people from all over."

With the Key West Express, all your dreams can come true of worry free travel. You will discover it is faster than driving and less expensive than flying and the simplest way to travel to Key West. Relax, sit back, and let the sea worthy crew get you to your next island getaway adventure.

"My favorite part of the trip is definitely the ride. When we moved to Fort Myers Beach four years ago, we sold our boat and thought we would just be enjoying the Gulf of Mexico from the beach," said Stephenson. "Now, when we get the inkling for a boat ride, we simply jump on the Key West Express, it has the best sunset views -Love it!"

You and your entourage will have time to enjoy not just the boat ride but the full-service bar serving beer and liquor. How about the galley filled with sandwiches, burgers, hotdogs, and all kinds of goodies? Just relax in the comfortable seating and open-air sun decks and the one-of-a-kind, ever-changing Gulf views or take in the large flat screened TV in air-conditioned cabins. So pack your bags and your pet, which is also welcomed on board for a fee, just remember to contain them in their carriers. The travel time is only 3 1/2 hours and the cost starts for adults starts around $95 one way and $125 round trip depending on age, time of year, and any special promotions. The Key West Express has two Southwest Florida locations-Fort Myers Beach and Marco Island. Visit their website to find your best cruise dates. Both locations have boarding times of 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. and depart at 8:30 a.m. Then return trip from Key West coming home Fort Myers Beach boarding times are 5 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. and departing at 6 p.m. and Marco Island boarding times are 4 p.m.-4:30 p.m. departs at 5 p.m.

"One of the biggest misconceptions is that the boat trip is a rough ride - not true," said Stephenson "Similar to any mode of transportation we are subject to the vagaries of the weather; there are those days that prevent uncustomary travel conditions that are not suitable for all travelers."

Ready for a smooth ride? Check out their two state-of-the-art vessels, the 170-foot Key West Express Catamaran is their flagship vessel that is based out of the Fort Myers Beach port of call. It is a jet drive-powered boat that cuts through the Gulf waters at an average cruising speed of 34 knots. It has three decks with comfortable indoor and outdoor seating and lots of amenities. The 155-foot Big Cat Express is a jet-powered catamaran that boasts a shallow 4.5 foot draft, making it friendly to the marine environment and enables travelers to get in and out of shallow water ports like Marco Islands and Fort Myers Beach.

Have questions? Call their talented friendly staff and get your answers. The entire staff actually enjoys the Key West experience and have been there and done that and knows all the answers with lots of enthusiasm and smiles. Stephenson and her husband have been married for 39 years and have always dreamed and planned for the day that they would retire on Fort Myers Beach. After one year of retirement, she was going stir crazy.

"So, I thought I should find a job that I loved, we had travel on the Key West Express for many years when we vacationed here and just loved the entire experience," she said. "I applied and lucky me, they had an opening for a reservationist and the rest is history. Key West Express is a GREAT company to travel with but also a great place to work."

So, whether it's a day trip or a weekend trip, or to get you away for just a bit trip, think about booking your escape to find the perfect tropical sunset with the Key West Express - Where getting there is half the fun. www.keywestexpress.net

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