The secret to a successful independent tour with out he worry of missing the ship is to make sure that the tour is scheduled to be back at the pick-up area at least 90 minutes prior to the ship leaving port. That will give you an hours worth of time for alternate transportation to get you back to the dock. Also make sure at least 1 time piece is set to the ship's time, mobile phones will default to the local time of the nearest tower.
Before meeting the tour group make sure you stop at the local tourist info booth or desk in port and get the phone # of a couple of cab companies that uses a dispatcher or the driver can be directly contacted. That way if the tour operator is running late for any reason & you feel uneasy about their back-up plan, you can take the prerogative of making your own way back. Now of course this only works if the tour is fairly local and not to an isolated place.
May 2013 Carnival Splendor
April 2013 Carnival Splendor
Sept 2012 RCI Explorer of the Seas
May 2012 Carnival Miracle
July 2011 Carnival Glory
October 2010 Carnival Pride
September 2010 Carnival Glory
Aug 2003 RCI Sovereign of the Seas
July 1992 Premier Oceanic
June 1992 Premier Oceanic
May 1990 Premier Atlantic
Last edited by maryred; January 14th, 2013 at 06:34 AM.