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More excursion advice Nov 11

You pay a premium for cruise-sponsored shore excursions. In exchange, you get pretty good security and value. Are you willing to be a little more adventuresome in exchange for a lower price? A lot of islands have destinations (such as beaches, towns, and countryside) that you can get to by private taxi, and private boats with captains willing to take you to the same places the sponsored excursions go. These people are generally competent, honest, and fairly priced. How do you tell who’s good and who’s not?

Here are a few tips from an expert:

  • Look for several taxis from the same company. These are more likely to be legitimate and have a stake in giving good service.
  • Ask to see their business license. No license, no customer.
  • Ask to take their picture. On the one hand, it’ll make a good keepsake, and on the other hand, a bad guy won’t want his likeness available to the authorities.
  • Avoid taxis and other services that sport a magnetic sign on the door as their evidence of being legitimate.
  • Don’t go with anyone you have a funny feeling about.
  • Pick a driver/captain whose grasp of English is good, unless you speak the local lingo yourself. Clarify everything in advance.
  • Pay at the end, not up front. Tipping is okay.
  • Expect something more informal than a sponsored excursion.

When you come back, come here and leave tell about your adventure.