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We've just returned from a cruise with stops at St Kitts and the US Virgin Islands.  As this was a holiday simply to recuperate from a horrendous two years of ill health we had absolutely nothing arranged, just wanting to have a look at the town and then return to the ship to sit by the pool.  At both stops we were approached by locals who wanted us to join them on various tours.  For another time how can we tell which tour is 'valid' and which may not be?  They all seem genuine enough but with so many offering virtually the same tours is there anything we should be looking out for?

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I don't think there's an easy way to tell which local tour might be good/safe/reputable without some advance research. Among the clues I can think of might be, number one, that payment is at the end of the tour, condition of their vehicle, and otherwise, your "gut" feeling. If it's too cheap (and that varies greatly by port) or somehow seems shady, then it just might be.


We have always either found a tour operator in advance using CC port of call boards and the website that is a good trip advisor, or if we had nothing arranged in advance, occasionally we found a group tour operator with a small bus or van near the port. We've never just used a taxi driver or solo operator who offered to drive us around, but I've seen many of these recommended by name on the CC port of call boards. If not making arrangements in advance, that might be a way to find a reputable operator.

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