Am I crazy not to book any shore excursions?
Welcome to Cruise Critic! If you'd like to participate on our forums by joining in the conversation, please Register Now! Be sure to visit our FAMOUS Roll Call forums, where you can meet other cruisers sailing with you and share a tour or shore excursion and SAVE MONEY!
My family and I will be on the Constellation 2/19. We have never cruised during school vacation and now I'm in a panic that all the good excursions will be booked. Can I wait until we get on the ship or is it a MUST that I book excursions now?If school breaks have really ramped up by then, you've picked a time when excursion bookings will be somewhat heavier than usual. As others have noted, you could get locked out. That said, isn't 2/19 still pretty early for school vacations? I would have thought you'd have gotten in ahead of most of them.
Perhaps more important is how you spend your time. Rather than watching the tube one or two evenings before you leave, you can look through the many possibilities (lots of help available in the "destinations" area of this board) and see if you can come to an agreement on things you'll both/all like in advance. Once you've done that, just go ahead and book them to be sure you will be able to do what you prefer. It's better than fussing over it in a hurry once you're already on the water. There's so many nicer ways to spend your time once you're already on vacation than reading about and arguing over how you'll be taking your vacation! I book (either ship or private) excursions ahead of time for that reason alone.
If there are ship excursions that you would really like to do, book them now. You can cancel later (please do so as soon as you know for sure).
What is your itinerary? At a lot of ports of call, it is easier, cheaper, and a lot more fun to book your own. For example, in St. Thomas, the first time we went, we used a ship excursion to go to St. John and spent as much time on the logistics of the trip as we did at the destination. Plus, it was crowded and more expensive than doing our own thing. The last two times, we had a much better time through our own plan. Your post suggests you have cruised before so perhaps, like many of us, you might now be more comfortable making your own arrangements. Check under ports of call and you will get all the information you need.
OOOEEE Bob and Phyl
The drawback is that you pay now as well...
The benefit is you don't get shut out and you don't have to deal with it later...
The other thing I've learned is that it's not "You've bought it, you're stuck with it"...If done with ample time, you can cancel or change...and recieve credit if appropriate...
On the Millie in Europe, we actually changed a prebooked excursion in Livorno about a half an hour before the excursion was to leave...NO Problem!...and our ship account was credited with the difference between what we originally pre-booked and the lesser cost excursion we switched to...So, it's kind of like buying a little insurance...
12/22/17 RCCL Navigator OTS-S Caribbean 9 nt
6/29/18 Celebrity Millennium-Alaska-7 nt
7/18/18 Viking Aegir-E. Europe-13 nt
7/8/19 Celebrity Reflection British Isles 12 nt
HAL Maasdam 7 nt Canada 7/17*RCCL Jewel OTS 7 nt Greece 7/17*RCCL Jewel OTS 7 nt W Med 6/17*Ruby Princess 8 nt Mex Riviera 12/16*Celebrity Constellation 13 nt Iberia 7/16*Celebrity Silhouette 7 nt W. Carib 3/16*Star Princess 5 nt Cabo 11/15*Celebrity Xpedition 10 nt Galapagos/Quito 7/15*Celebrity Millennium 7 nt Alaska 6/15*Crown Princess 3 nt Baja 1/15*Golden Princess 3 nt Baja 11/14*Viking Emerald 17 nt China 6/14*RCCL Allure OTS 7 nt E. Carib 1/14*Golden Princess 3 nt Baja 11/13*Celebrity Silhouette 13 nt Adriatic 6/13*RCCL Mariner OTS 7 nt W. Carib 12/12*Celebrity Eclipse 14 nt Iceland/Norway 7/12*Celebrity Century 13 nt Australia/New Zealand 12/11-12*Oceania Marina 16 nt W. Europe 8/11*Carnival Paradise 3 nt Baja 2/11*RCCL Allure OTS 7 nt W. Carib 1/11*Celebrity Eclipse 14 nt Baltic 7/10*Celebrity Summit 7 nt S. Carib 3/10*RCCL Mariner OTS, 7 nt Mex Riviera 1/10*Oceania Nautica 14 nt Med/Egypt/Israel 6/09*RCCL Mariner OTS 1 nt Pre-Inaugural 2/09*Sapphire Princess 7 nt Mex Riviera 12/08-9*Celebrity Constellation 14 nt Baltic 7/08*RCCL Vision OTS 7 nt Mex Riviera 3/08*Carnival Liberty, 8 nt Panama 7/07*RCCL Liberty OTS 7 nt W. Caribbean 6/07*RCCL Monarch OTS 5 nt Baja 1/07*Oceania Nautica 14 nt Med 7/06*RCCL Monarch OTS 3 nt Baja 4/06*Celebrity Constellation 14 nt N. Europe 7/05*Celebrity Constellation 7 nt S. Carib 3/05*Celebrity Summit 13 nt Alaska Cruisetour 7/04*RCCL Monarch OTS 3 nt Baja 1/04*Celebrity Millennium 13 nt Med 8/03*RCCL Grandeur OTS 7 nt Mex Riviera 7/02*Crown Princess, 10 nt Baltic/Russia 8/01*Carnival Elation 7 nt Mex Riviera 8/00*RCCL Grandeur OTS 7 nt E. Carib 8/98*Carnival Jubilee 7 nt Mex Riviera 7/97*RCCL Viking Serenade 4 nt Baja 7/96*RCCL Viking Serenade 3 nt Baja 6/94*Norwegian Southward 3 nt Baja 12/89*Premier Big Red Boat Atlantic 7 nt Disney 3/89
Did someone on these boards say that the Countryside Tour went to see a place where they do cock fights in DR? I remember reading that, but couldn't find the post again. They obviously will not put that in the description in the guide, but the description there is only 1 sentence. Is there someone who could let me know? My son want to see that.
Canderson, the NY metro area, Massachusetts and Michigan have the week off that week.Sounds like you have some sort of master schedule. Where did you find it? Would be interested to see if we've managed to miss most of the mob on our 4/9/05 trip.
Canderson, (what's your name by the way, mine you can easily figure out)Chris
after this many cruises, and living on Long Island my whole life, I know that President's Week is our mid-winter vacation, and we always run into people from the 2 other states. My boys always meet different kids playing basketball, so it wasn't hard to come up with who's off. Here on Long Island, and the NYC schools, we also have off for the week of Passover, which usually overlaps with Easter, because the food thing is easier. This year we have 3 days off around Easter because the holidays don't coincide.Got it. I was hoping you'd discovered some magic decoder ring somewhere for the various Easter/Passover/Spring Break schedules. This year, Passover and Easter are about as far separated as I recall ever seeing them. Easter is going to be on March 27, and the 1st day of Passover isn't until April 24. I figure that we'll be sailing well after the former and well before the latter, but have no idea when everyone is taking time off!
I am sure you will not have many kids on board. Are you traveling with your grandchildren this time? Hope they won't be too board if they are going. Probably too young for that. The college spring breaks vary from March 12th or so until later in the month. I'll bet alot of the public schools that have a spring break will have the week that ends on Easter Sunday.
My family and I will be on the Constellation 2/19. We have never cruised during school vacation and now I'm in a panic that all the good excursions will be booked. Can I wait until we get on the ship or is it a MUST that I book excursions now?Feb isn't a really big winter break time as many schools only get a few days off for Pres day so I don't think you will have any real problems. We usually book with private tour operators either via the net or when we arrive at the pier. The one time I do book via the ship is the long excursions. We have cut it pretty close a few times and almost missed our ship. too scarey for this old lady!!! LOL
I am sure you will not have many kids on board. Are you traveling with your grandchildren this time? Hope they won't be too board if they are going. Probably too young for that. The college spring breaks vary from March 12th or so until later in the month. I'll bet alot of the public schools that have a spring break will have the week that ends on Easter Sunday.No, Ethan will be staying home with mom and dad this time. The five of us together is a bit like herding goats, so my wife and I are taking a solo trip this time just for the R&R. Truth to tell, we think that just taking Ethan with us would be easier! Life is too new and amazing for him to bore easily on a cruise so far (he's not quite 2-1/2), and by the time he's ready to cruise again, he'll be eligible for the Fun Factory.
By 9 April, I think we're out past university spring breaks, too. Most of them seem to be over before the end of March.