Have any Cruisemates experienced problems disembarking in St. Petersburg when booked on other than cruise line tours? We are booked on the Emerald Princess 9/3/09 and have read Horror stories about Princess cruise lines stopping passengers from disembarking after the ship has been cleared by Russian immigration. Princess has been sending false information to it's passengers saying it's a new RUSSIAN policy not theirs however, based on other posts on CC who have checked this with Russian Immigration this is totally FALSE. We have booked a private tour w/Anastasia and are very concerned abouth this outrageous practice! Any input would greatly be appreciated.
IN '04, "RCI" had us meet and wait until they had cleared all the folks who paid the exhorbitant prices to go with their vendor. It wasn't too long but on day two, we headed straight for the control booths even though we were supposed to meet again that day.
We just did a private tour with Red October in May. The tour was excellent and we saw so much more than we would have on any ship tour. The tour company will send you tickets and you fill out the customs form the ship gives you and take that ashore with your pass port and you will have no problems. The ship likes to scare people so they take there tours, an income source for them. The people in Russia don't care which tour you take, they want you there so you spend some money and they unlike other Baltic stops like US dollars. Good luck, Mike
Travel Mike's Future cruises: Mariner Galveston 2-26-12,Magic Galveston 3-4-12 NCL Pride of America Hawaii6-2-12 HAL Statendam 9-9-12 Vancouver