How to save money on cruise excursions.

Cruises are a great way of seeing a number of cities in different countries in a short space of time and being pampered en route. But one downside is that you don’t always get much time to spend in your ports of call. With limited time available to see the sights, the cruise line’s offer of guided trips ashore is a tempting option. It can also be an expensive one however, adding hundreds of pounds to your holiday.

Word seems to be getting around and a number of companies are setting up alternative cheaper tours, targeting cruise passengers on their websites. One such small company is Angel Tours, Rome. (www.angeltoursrome.com).

Most of the Mediterranean cruises dock in Civitavecchia for the Italian capital, and the company is offering tours tailor made for groups of cruise passengers at competitive prices which promise to undercut the cruise liner's. Drivers will pick you up from the port and take you to join your tour leader. Tours include the Roman Forum, the Colosseum, the Vatican Museums, St Peter’s and the Sistine Chapel and more.

You can also pre-book excursions with a new online company called Cruising Excursions (www.cruisingexcursions.com), who are currently limited to Europe but promise to cover major Caribbean and American port excursions soon. Good budget trips include a four-hour tour of Barcelona for £25 per person and a four-hour tour of Venice for £30 per person. There are also some reasonably priced tours on offer that are not available through the cruise companies.

So if you’re going on a cruise this summer and like a little guidance when you go ashore, take a look at other excursion options. It could save you a lot of money!

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