Post # 1
Has anyone ever been on a cruise and NOT gone on any excursions on the islands/ports? I’m going on my third in a few months and none of the excursions really “wow” me for the price. My Darling Husband also isn’t helping much… he doesn’t really ever get into planning and I’m tired of picking everything. I’m wondering if it would be a terrible idea to go without planning anything? It’s totally not how I usually do things but I’m sort of excited about just relaxing in the sun for a week! We only have 3 stops for the whole week if that makes any difference.
Post # 3
You can always get off the ship if you want and do your own thing. Or stay on the lido deck and enjoy all of the empty lounge chairs while everyone else is in port!
Post # 4
My husband and I have been on A LOT of cruises and some of the best times we have had has been when we didn’t have planned excursions. We have gotten off the ship at some ports of call and just found fun things to do.
Post # 5
- Wedding: September 2011 - Bent Creek Winery (Livermore, California); Reception: Family Residence (San Ramon, California)
I’ve only ever been on one cruise, but IMO, the excursions were a total ripoff. They weren’t usually that fun, they were a lot of money, and they usually consisted of things that a reasonable tourist could do on their own. I say skip the excursions, that way, you can stay on the ship and relax if you want to. And like the PP said, you can always get off the ship and do some exploring of your own–which would probably be more fun and relaxing anyway!
Just wondering, but where are you guys going on your cruise?
Post # 6
Depends what the ports are! I went on a cruise with my mother last year–we stopped in the Bahamas. One day we did an excursion, one day not…and both days were a blast.
Over Spring break, SO and I went on a cruise to Catalina Island and Ensenada. We didn’t book any excursions and were bored to tears.
Post # 7
@parasol: agreed. Where are you going? A few you can pay a few dollars, and have a taxi to the beach.
Post # 8
We usually don’t do excursions through the cruise line. One of the best ones that we have done (twice) we found through cruise critic- private beach (30 or 40 people max) with open bar and lunch. It was great.
Most of the time though there is no excursion at all and we just find a beach or wander and find stuff to do.
Post # 9
In most ports it’s easy to get off the cruise ship and find your own things to do. I say don’t worry about the excursions. Even if you decide you want one later, the cruise ship lets you purchase them onboard.
Post # 10
My favorite excursion was a hike of Domenica through a local guide. I got exactly what I wanted, saved money and I felt good the money was staying in his pocket, not the cruise lines! I found him by joining a forum for cruises (can’t remember name) where people raved about him. Look around and see if you can find something that interests you.
Post # 11
We just got back from our Honeymoon cruise a week ago and we didn’t do a single excursion. I did plan a private island tour ahead of time (not through the cruise line) but other than that, we just kinda winged it. That’s not at all how I usually am either and it was great. If I would have made an itinerary and planned everything out then I dont think we would have enjoyed ourselves as much. It was nice to just do what we felt like doing at the time. We did go to an excursions workshop thingy on board and while some looked like they could be fun, we couldn’t get over some of the prices. I found that atleast in Bermuda, there are dozens of places that offer the exact same as experience but for much less.
Post # 12
I have been on 14 cruises in the past 4 years, and only 2 of them did I do excursions, and they were purchased once we arrived. In Nassau we hired a van that took the 9 of us (it was our daughters 16th birthday party cruise) on a tour of the island. We went over the whole thing, took us to the beach for a bit, to Atlantis for an hour, the Fort and Queens Staircase as well as the straw market by the port. In total we were gone 4 hours and paid $29 per person. It was great.
In St. Maarten this year we got off the ship and hooked up with the van tours right at the port exit, the more people they could get the less it cost. I was with a friend of mine, and there were 6 other people interested in the tour, so it was $25 per person. Plenty of room in the van for all of us, and we had a great time. Had 1 1/2 hours for shopping/lunch on the french side as well as stopping at a cool little beach bar by the airport on the dutch side. And he even stopped for a few minutes at Orient Beach (nude) for anyone interested.
All I can say is just be careful and watch the clock to make sure you don’t miss the ship coming back.
Post # 13
I’ve never done the excursions. I felt they were rip-offs. You can tour the islands on your own without paying for that stuff. Now, if some of those things are things you really want to do, you might consider buying one, but otherwise I’d just go with the flow. When you get off the ship, there will be taxis available to transport you around. We normally would just go find some local shops and do some shopping, then hang out at the beach the rest of the time. Some people really enjoy the scuba diving and swimming with stingrays and such.
Post # 14
I don’t think you need them at all!! I have had more fun when I just get off the boat and do my own thing. You can research the place you are docking before you go, and then do that. It’s fun and cheaper that way!
Post # 15
We’re going on a cruise in a month and we don’t have any planned excursions. The only excursion type thing we’re doing is renting a golf cart on one island so that we can drive around the whole thing. We looked into some of the different excursions Carnival offered but they were either a ripoff or just weren’t that appealing to us. We do have plans for some different restaurants we’d like to eat at and things we’d like to do or see, but we’re going to do everything on our own and that I’m excited about!
Post # 16
I like excursions, but it’s usually a lot cheaper if you don’t book them through the cruiseline. The last cruise we went on, we had like 5 or 6 stops and we did planned excursions that we booked on our own at three of the stops and winged it at the other three. It was perfect for us… we’re both pretty adventurous, so the ATV and Segway tours we did were awesome and we got them for a LOT cheaper by booking them straight through the vendors. :o)