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Old 09-12-2007, 01:46 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2
Is it better to book excursions in advance? Or should we book on board? Also when they talk about excursions at port of call of 3hrs 30min will there be time after to visit the area alone?
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Old 09-12-2007, 02:04 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Costa Mesa, California
Posts: 4,740
Hello teresin, and welcome to cruise-chat. You should definitely book your shore excursions in advance--as far in advance as possible. Some of the more popular excursions are sold out way in advance, although the ship will sometimes add additional departures if the demand is high enough; but you can't count on that.

To know if you will have extra time to go ashore on your own, you need to know the departure and return times of your excursion, which you will know when you book. Then you compare that with your itinerary to know what time you arrive at and leave the port. You need to be back onboard at least one-half hour before sailing; but I would try to make that an hour, just to be safe.
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Old 09-12-2007, 11:06 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 43
I would recommend that you post the ports you will be going to and you will get a lot of good info on what to see. Then you can compare that to what the excursions are offering. Then you can decide if you would rather see things on your own or take the ship excursion. We took a mediterranean cruise this past June and for the most part the ship docks around 7AM to 9AM and leaves about 5PM to 6PM. If you take a full day excusion, you won't have any time to do anything else. If you take a half day excursion you may have some time but it will all depend on where your ship is docked and how easy it is to get around the town. For a half day excusion you will be arriving back to the ship around 1-2PM. If you want to get lunch on the ship you won't have much time to do much else. Sometimes the port is located within walking distance or short cab or bus ride to the city center. But most of the time you must take a shuttle bus out to the town and those usually leave every half hour but the last one from town will leave at least an hour or more before the ship is scheduled to leave the port. So it is a bit stressful when you know you have to be back to a certain point by a certain time or risk missing the boat! Browse through the subjects on this web site because you can get a lot of good info about ports and towns throughout Europe. Have a good trip.
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