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#1
El Paso, Texas
74 Posts
Joined Jun 2011
Hello. We plan to do a world cruise on Regent in a few years. We don't enjoy being hauled around on coaches with 50 other people. I was wondering how many of you book the ship excursions, how you have found them, and if the included ones are good. Also, how many of you book your own excursions privately (we do this on cruises, but this would be a massive undertaking for an around the world cruise) and how many of you just wing it and take a cab to the city or major site and explore on your own? I am guessing a combination is probably the way to go, but there are so many choices. Thanks!
Jen
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#2
Virginia
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If you have an active roll call you would likely be able to join some independent excursions and not have to plan all yourself. Also, many cities have hop-on, hop-off buses that are a great, inexpensive way to see the sights.
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#3
El Paso, Texas
74 Posts
Joined Jun 2011
Thanks Scrapnana (are you a scrapbooker?? me too!)
That is a great idea!
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#4
Fl
989 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
For my world cruise I booked ship excursions for ports that I didn't feel comfortable on my own. Most others I found something when we hit port. I had done my research so I had an idea what I wanted to see or do.

I sometime just wander around town. Especially if I could easily communicate with the locals, aka Australia & New Zealand.

Don
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#5
101,371 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
I am sorry that I hadn't seen this thread earlier.

I really would be posting this on the Regent Board.

There are several people who sail the Regent World Cruise who post to that board and they can give you their experience in terms of the World Cruise and of course others can give you their experience with Regent excursions in general.

This link will take you there.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/forum...prune=-1&f=176

We have sailed several World Cruises but on another line.

As the years have evolved we find ourselves doing less formal excursions but doing the ones we do mainly privately and either by ourselves or with a couple of other people. Once in awhile we supplement this with a ships tours in say areas that we are either concerned about getting back to the ship in time or areas where we can't find a reputable private tour company or areas that we do not feel comfortable touring on our own privately. You might find this as well on the world cruise depending on your itinerary.

Keith
#6
Triangle area, NC
1,139 Posts
Joined Sep 2003
I am returning to Regent in a couple of months after a few years of using another cruise line and/or non-cruise vacationing, but my last couple of cruises on Regent were after they had started to include many of the excursions in the up-front fare. From discussions on the Regent board, I gather that my experience still holds.

Regent does use buses, but does not pack them as tightly as main stream lines. You'll find this with all of the lines that are considered luxury, whether the excursions are included or not. But, other than the number of people on the tour, the excursion is largely the same as offered by its sister line, Oceania.

The exception to this "no packing 'em in" practice can be in the ports that are more exotic (for lack of a better word) and there is very little tourism infrastructure. They are more likely to tightly pack in these ports because of limited availability of transportation, guides, etc. World cruises are more likely to go to these ports, so there is greater likelihood of running into this issue on a world cruise. Again, this is not limited to Regent's included tours. I ran into this on last year's world cruise on Crystal, and that line does not include excursions.

I think it's true of all cruise ships that excursions are a mixed bag--some are great, some mediocre, some awful. And to some extent, it's a matter of taste. An excursion with lots of shopping is my definition of travel hell, while to others an excursion without shopping is a non-starter. Asking on the Regent forum or on the forums for the individual ports can help you sort which are which. Also, learning to read the excursion descriptions with a critical eye helps.

Note that some Regent excursions do involve an extra charge, just not as much as on a ship that is not inclusive of excursions. Those do tend to be a little more personalized, but the extra money is not necessarily a guarantee of that.

What I have found--on Regent and otherwise--is to do a mix of ship's excursions, private guides, and just heading out by taxi, on foot, or by HoHo or local bus/subway. It does involve some planning and research, but at least to me, that's half the fun. For example, we had great experiences with private guides in Bali, Singapore, Melbourne, St. Helena, and Mumbai. We had wonderful ship's excursions in Kerala, Fujairah, and Ho Chi Minh City. In Zanzibar and Bangkok, not so much. HoHo buses in Dubai did the job admirably. A taxi engaged at the port gave us a good tour of Bora Bora. In Fiji, it was a disaster. And so it goes.

On world cruises, there are often opportunities for off-ship side trips: leave the ship for an inland adventure and meet the ship at a later port. Sometimes they are included in the fare, such as to Petra and Beijing on Regent. Both were wonderful, and extremely well done (same with Beijing on Crystal). Others, you pay extra for, and can do through the ship or on your own. Regent "extra" off-ship excursions in Egypt were well-done, as was one to Xian. My TA set up off-ship excursions for us for a safari in Africa, and it was wonderful. Those who did the ship's safari also found it wonderful, but they paid a lot more for a similar experience. My TA also set up our side trip to Angkor Wat. We paid somewhat less than the ship's trip, but had one guide for the two of us and a wonderful experience. Those who went on the ship's trip were disapointed (this was Crystal, but the same issues would apply on Regent).

Sorry, I got a little carried away, so probably too much info. But hopefully you can find something helpful in the above.
#7
Washington DC
107 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
[quote=cruisinpoler;53052387]Hello. We plan to do a world cruise on Regent in a few years. We don't enjoy being hauled around on coaches with 50 other people. I was wondering how many of you book the ship excursions, how you have found them, and if the included ones are good. Also, how many of you book your own excursions privately (we do this on cruises, but this would be a massive undertaking for an around the world cruise) and how many of you just wing it and take a cab to the city or major site and explore on your own? I am guessing a combination is probably the way to go, but there are so many choices.


Jen:
We have been on 2 Regent Cruises one in Caribbean and the other Australia/ New Zealand. Our experience is that Regent does a good job of planning excursions. My daughter in her 20’s was as thrilled with excursions as we were. We have booked the 2019 Regent WC. We plan on using Regent for excursions in ports they have them. In ports they don’t offer them we will get a cab and plan what we want using Frommers or TripAdvisor.
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#8
USA
5,282 Posts
Joined Jun 2007
Originally posted by cruisinpoler
this would be a massive undertaking for an around the world cruise) and how many of you just wing it and take a cab to the city or major site and explore on your own? I am guessing a combination is probably the way to go, but there are so many choices.
When my friend and I started planning for our 6 month long world cruise on Oceania, this was the problem. We usually do private tours, but with 90 ports, and each private excursion costing $50-100, that's an additional $4,500-9,000 on top of our cruise fare! Not realistic for us.

So, we decided to take the Oceania perk of 36 "free" excursions each, then do the rest as DIY walks or other cheap/free options. We're planning one overland private tour in China.

Our travel agent gave us a choice of a huge amount of OBC or the same amount subtracted from our cruise fare....we chose the discounted fare so we can more easily afford the China tour.
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