Saturday, September 22, 2012

The One Way to Save Money on Cruise Ship Tours

As I’ve said before, cruising can be one of the cheapest ways to travel.  You pay one price, and get room and board included.  What isn’t included are any excursions you want to take.  And those tours can really add up.  When I went on a cruise to Jamaica, it was $80 to climb around in some waterfalls (Dunn’s River Falls for those who are familiar) and go to the beach.  Crazy talk, we took a cheap taxi to the beach instead and made our own fun.

We actually learned a very entertaining reggae
song at this beach called "Booty Man." Google
it and your life will be forever changed.
However, you should take some tours, otherwise you’re just going to get fat because of those 24-hour buffets.  But, believe it or not, you don’t have to book your tours through the boat!

My friend Amy (who got an awesome price on her recent cruise of the Mediterranean) had a long list of things she wanted to see in Ephesus, Turkey.  For starters, no excursions on the ship really offered what she wanted, but in order to come close, she was going to have to pay $140 per person!

A beautiful port, but not worth shelling out that much dough!
So, being the economical explorer she is, she looked around online and found this website.  She emailed with a tour guide in Turkey (who claims to have helped organize a tour for Oprah when she came) and ended up customizing her own personal tour.  The price was a lot lower than the cruise ship - only $89 to do everything she wanted!

One of the things she was able to see - the house where the Virgin
 Mary supposedly died.  Not offered through any ship excursions!
The icing on the cake?  This was a private tour to boot!  She and her mom received personalized attention from the tour guide and explored what they found interesting.

Thank goodness her tour was private because there is certainly
no shortage of people in Ephesus!
Have you ever booked a private tour while on a cruise?

Total Cost: $89/person

Best Deal: Seeing sites not offered through the ship, including the Virgin Mary's house

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