Need info re: St Petersburg DenRus/Red October private tours
A group of us are booked on Princess cruise to arrive St Petersburg on June 18. We have decided to use either DenRus or Red October. We have a couple of questions we need help on - in case you have experienced these two private tours:
1. We have read reviews that Red Oct have means of getting through long lines at various sites without waiting, does DenRus have the same ability to do that?
2. Princess specifically said that they would allow passengers who signed up Princess tours to disembark the ship first prior to other passengers who signed up on private tours. Is that your experience?
People who have posted on another cruise board compare RO and Denrus to each other favorably and the answer to the question is yes, they also bypass the lines. DenRus seems to be slightly more flexible for those who want to plan their own private tour according to those who have dealt with both companies. People have also said that Princess will tell you that you have to wait until their tours have left, but that they do not enforce it. Just go down to the gangway when it is time to meet up with your tour. We will be using DenRus on our Constellation tour in July.
We toured with Red October May '05. They were fantastic. It was cheaper than the cruise offered tour and we saw twice as much. You should contact Red October via email and indicate that you would like to join a group ( 10 max) . The ship (CONSTELLATION) assembled us in a room and we were the first to disembark. We passed through a booth and had our passports stamped (we needed no visas just the emailed letter from RED OCTOBER) AND WE WERE THROUGH. We were greeted by our guide Dimitry and an beat up mercedes van and we were off. Right to the head of each line- Russians take vare of their own. Try to buy souvenirs from the vendors who might congregate at sites they are cheaper than the Red October store and are the same. Enjoy
We were very pleased with DenRus in May 2005. Yes, they get you in the sites with speed. Since we had a problem on Celebrity with folks doing private tours being sent to two different places by the ship, do be sure you have a meeting place for your entire group, and then move as a unit. The best thing about our DenRus 2 day tour was riding the subway --wow, not like any subway in the states -- chandeliers and marble!