Originally Posted by AZCRUISER65
The thing not mentioned is that if you take an off ship outing and something happens and you do not get back to the ship before it departs, you have to find your own way to the next port of call.
That's why you do it with a reputable independent company that has insurance so if for some reason you do miss the ship, they'll take care of you.
But in the tens of thousands of excursion Cruise Planners has sold over the last 11 years that I've been an agent, not one person has ever missed the ship when booked with a reputable independent excursion company. So the chances are slim and none that would ever happen. And in the 45 cruises we've been on and the many independent excursions we've ever done, we've never come close to missing the ship. Those who miss the ship our almost always out on their own and lose track of time - at least according to the three captains I've personally talked to about this. They confirmed they've NEVER had anyone miss the ship who did an independent excursion with a reputable company.
And all three captains have confirmed that communication is the most important thing. They have no desire to leave anyone in port, but in the absence of communication, they have no choice in the matter. This is why I always recommend taking the daily newsletter with you when going into port. It has the information you need to contact the port authority should you need to get in touch with the ship.
Besides, you could be walking down the street, trip, break your ankle and end up in the hospital. You'll miss the ship and it has nothing to do with being on a shore excursion. So anything can happen and it's best to be prepared just in case.
So it's not fair to scare people with something that really doesn't exist.
I would much rather pay less money, have a much better excursion, and do it with much less people than those offered by the cruise line anytime.