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For those who are booked, are you happy with the “mandatory” shore excursions?


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1 minute ago, sprinkles said:

 

No offense, it posted out of order.  I understand you are only talking about Princess.  However they are not sailing yet, as Caribill described above in MSC which IS cruising, it is the only way to get off the ship.  

Ok, I find it confusing since this is the Princess forum and the title of your thread says “mandatory “ excursions.  So sorry for my confusion. 

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3 hours ago, Oulton Jim said:

All reasonable logic points to it having to change - I would not countenance the walking tour as was well explained earlier. It so much reminded me of being back at school. One teacher at the front and one bringing up the rear. 

I’m with you, it reminds me of a ship tour I took in Casablanca with armed guards.  Thanks for posting Caribil, glad you enjoyed it.  Wonder what happens during a tour like that when somebody is not feeling well and wants to take an unexpected break.  

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5 hours ago, caribill said:

An example of a ship's excursion on MSC:

 

As planned a couple of days ago, in Palermo, we took our only ship (like there were another choices...) excursion. So, here how it worked out. It was described as a three and a half walking tour of the city. On the ticket we found out that the meeting point was at the pier at 9:45 so five minutes earlier we reached the ship exit but we were stopped by an officer that told us it was not our turn yet(!?...) and left waiting in the hall were of course other people were already standing and more arriving since many had our same tour ticket. Ten minutes later we were allowed to exit and we noticed that on that deck as well, near the elevator, more people were standing waiting to be allowed to exit. We didn't think it was a smooth process, perhaps would be better to gather people for groups at theater or other ship halls as we are used than stop all people around the exit.

At the pier we met with our guide and collect headphones and receivers, we were 20 in our group. An MSC hostess went with us as well, she walked at the end of the group while the guide was at leading the group. During the tour we stopped at several sights and while the guide explained what we were looking at we could wander around, for instance the square we were at and take pictures, headphones worked very well, we could hear her at several meters of distance, the important was that we were always in sight. The times we are living in allow social distancing by default anyway, I'm sure those tourists' places would be crowded one year ago.

 

We went to the cathedral as well and it was the only monument we saw either outside than inside. Then we were offered a small cannolo and a bit of granita as a break, that we had standing outside the cathedral. Of course it was mandatory to always follow and stick to the plan and we were repeated several times we must wear properly the face mask, that is that it must cover nose and mouth, I saw at least a couple of time the MSC hostess approaching personally people of our group asking them to adjust their face mask, there is always someone that never learn, or do not want to. The other major rule you must follow during excursions is that you are not allowed to shop anywhere, the guide reminded us that a couple of time as well since there were people trying to sell us tourist stuff. 

 

In the end the excursion lasts just over three hours, we were a bit tired since it was really hot but it was nice and we definitely would do it again, a good way to see a glimpse of a city for the first time.

 

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2759896-live-from-msc-grandiosa-genoa-september-6-13-2020/page/4/?tab=comments#comment-60350913

Thanks for posting this, interesting to hear how MSC is doing it.  As I stated earlier in this thread I can only hope that Princess still reads this stuff.  I couldn’t take a tour like that anymore.  But IF Princess does make it policy (I have already apologized for using the word mandatory ), that you can only get off the ship in port , via a ship tour, I can only hope that they think out of the box and come up with better options.

 

 

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11 minutes ago, sprinkles said:

I’m with you, it reminds me of a ship tour I took in Casablanca with armed guards.  Thanks for posting Caribil, glad you enjoyed it.  Wonder what happens during a tour like that when somebody is not feeling well and wants to take an unexpected break.  

 

I was not on that cruise. The post is from the link provided on the MSC forum.

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Recently booked Sky Princess British Isles for end July 2021.  Will definitely cancel if options are book a tour (ships or 3rd party) or remain on board.  Being British and living in Britain I don't feel the need to be herded around at my great expense .  To be fair if I was on any cruise any where else I'd also feel the same with a few exceptions such as St Petersburg.

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52 minutes ago, Cruzinnana47 said:

If we have to take ship-sponsored excursions, then so be it.  It's a trade-off.  It's either that or just stay on the ship while in ports visited before.   We are willing to do either, just to be back on a cruiseship!.

 

 

 

 

Often the ports are places we have been to before, sometimes several times, and ship's excursions only visit sights we have no interest in visiting again.

 

As we enjoy cruising as a great way to see the world, we need the option of arranging private excursions or exploring on our own to make a cruise worthwhile.

 

Overall we probably do about 1/3 ship's excursions, 1/3 independent excursions (often set up by ourselves or others on Cruise Critic roll calls) and 1/3 sightseeing on our own.

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Hopefully, we will be able to take our 8/21/21, 7-day cruise to Alaska.  Does anyone know if Princess is reaching out to the independent vendors with regard to shore excursions?  I was looking at our cruise last night and although the ships tours were listed, I could not book one.  Don't know if it was just a glitch in the system or if Princess will only be accepting shore excursion reservations once on board the ship. 

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Let's game theory this a bit...

 

Cruise passengers are tested and/or vaccinated.  Risk to port of call is low.  Reward is high for cruise and for port.  Conversely, risk of passengers getting something from port is low.  

 

Cruise lines will do only what will be allowed to port in the US.  Port of calls will figure it out and welcome any and all cruise ships with open arms.

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we Have a 12 day med-cruise next October 10/2021 booked with only 2 sea days .... Under a ships only excursion scheme the cost of the ships tours would end up costing more than the cruise itself, and as posted earlier many of the ports are repeats, and we're have no great desire to do a structured tour of something we seen before.

 

Love cruising and cant wait to return and use all the pre-paid money and FFC that Princess has been  holding of our's for almost a year, but IMO this type of cruise is not cruising, but rather a glorified bus tour on water 

 

Srpilo

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13 hours ago, caribill said:

An example of a ship's excursion on MSC:

 

As planned a couple of days ago, in Palermo, we took our only ship (like there were another choices...) excursion. So, here how it worked out. It was described as a three and a half walking tour of the city. On the ticket we found out that the meeting point was at the pier at 9:45 so five minutes earlier we reached the ship exit but we were stopped by an officer that told us it was not our turn yet(!?...) and left waiting in the hall were of course other people were already standing and more arriving since many had our same tour ticket. Ten minutes later we were allowed to exit and we noticed that on that deck as well, near the elevator, more people were standing waiting to be allowed to exit. We didn't think it was a smooth process, perhaps would be better to gather people for groups at theater or other ship halls as we are used than stop all people around the exit.

At the pier we met with our guide and collect headphones and receivers, we were 20 in our group. An MSC hostess went with us as well, she walked at the end of the group while the guide was at leading the group. During the tour we stopped at several sights and while the guide explained what we were looking at we could wander around, for instance the square we were at and take pictures, headphones worked very well, we could hear her at several meters of distance, the important was that we were always in sight. The times we are living in allow social distancing by default anyway, I'm sure those tourists' places would be crowded one year ago.

 

We went to the cathedral as well and it was the only monument we saw either outside than inside. Then we were offered a small cannolo and a bit of granita as a break, that we had standing outside the cathedral. Of course it was mandatory to always follow and stick to the plan and we were repeated several times we must wear properly the face mask, that is that it must cover nose and mouth, I saw at least a couple of time the MSC hostess approaching personally people of our group asking them to adjust their face mask, there is always someone that never learn, or do not want to. The other major rule you must follow during excursions is that you are not allowed to shop anywhere, the guide reminded us that a couple of time as well since there were people trying to sell us tourist stuff. 

 

In the end the excursion lasts just over three hours, we were a bit tired since it was really hot but it was nice and we definitely would do it again, a good way to see a glimpse of a city for the first time.

 

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2759896-live-from-msc-grandiosa-genoa-september-6-13-2020/page/4/?tab=comments#comment-60350913

I have seen this report before.  I don't see the reason to be wearing masks outdoors in the open air.  But these are rules made up that don't always follow science or make sense in all situations.

 

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21 hours ago, sprinkles said:

Thank You Jim, for being the ONLY person to understand my post.  

I also understood your post!  Some  people do not read well!

We are hoping that if the cruiselines decide to make their shore excursions mandatory, they will at least have better choices and reduce the prices a little. Fat chance hu!!!

I also see the logistical nightmare of accommodating at least 1200 people on tour buses!!!

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I'm looking forward to my Nov. 2021 Med + TA, and if it is a go, I'll be good with whatever is required.  A few ports are new to me so I would do a Princess tour anyway.   Traveling alone, older, I don't arrange private tours anymore.  I have walked off and gone with a van or bus at the port, depending on how they look and if other passengers are going.

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I'm not thrilled with the shore excursions mostly because I don't see scuba diving being offered.  We usually book through a private company on our own but I don't know if that will be allowed in 2021.  I'm hoping that since we're going to Hawaii, we won't be quite as restricted on shore excursions.  Looks like we'll have to wait and see what happens. 

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Well at least we’re talking/thinking about the actual cruise experience.  As I said earlier, I didn’t think I would book until they actually started cruising again (for several reasons I did not have any fcc when all this broke out, or any cruises booked for that matter).  
 

Imagine the entire on-board experience on port days, should large quantities of the passengers not go ashore.  Come to think of it, I have experienced that in less then desirable ports.   Those types of days can be a bummer, no fresh sailing air, shops/casino closed, etc.  DH doesn’t come on here, but I’ve been telling him about this thread.  When he heard “no shopping” his jaw dropped, lol , as he enjoys shopping in port as much as I do.

 

So despite having lost count of how many Mexico cruises I’ve been on, i have never done the Baja cruise, so will have some new ports.  But Cabo, I have a suggestion for a “tour”.  As stated DH and I are beach babies  So instead of some beach hotel on El Mendano, where I can’t shop and possible even go swimming (out of our babysitters eyes), ok as I just typed that, it is making sense that they haven’t actually addressed the tour offerings in the cruises they are selling.

 

Ok suggested Cabo tour under these “potential port restrictions “,  tender port anyway (yikes, social distancing on a tender?), so beach tour could could take you to a private beach hotel  on the other side of the arches.  Wonder if the vendors would swamp that beach instead.  This sucks, I just remembered I always finished my posts with “happy sailing everybody”, I miss that.

 

 

 

Edited by sprinkles
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11 hours ago, Steelers36 said:

....I don't see the reason to be wearing masks outdoors in the open air.  But these are rules made up that don't always follow science or make sense in all situations.

 

Inside or outside, if you’re in a group, you should wear a mask, should you not?

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2 hours ago, richsea said:

Inside or outside, if you’re in a group, you should wear a mask, should you not?

How close are you to a stranger?  For how long?  I never wear a mask outdoors walking along a street.  Some do by personal observation, but not most.  I'll leave at that, but we could go into the pluses and minuses of mask effectiveness.  It is repeatedly stated that masks are for when you are not socially distanced.  I just don't see the issue for outdoor environments.

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I view only Princess excursions as a necessary evil in this day of the pandemic.  

 

I wear a mask when inside a building of course and outside when other people are within 6 feet of me.  Also in a crowd outside even if they are staying 6 feet or more away I wear a mask but try to not get into these situations.  

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1 hour ago, Steelers36 said:

How close are you to a stranger?  For how long?  I never wear a mask outdoors walking along a street.  Some do by personal observation, but not most.  I'll leave at that, but we could go into the pluses and minuses of mask effectiveness.  It is repeatedly stated that masks are for when you are not socially distanced.  I just don't see the issue for outdoor environments.

I generally take a mask with me when going outdoors and put it on when necessary. But, I do try to cross the street a lot to avoid being near other people.

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