Actually, that amount to upgrade to a balcony isn't terrible, it would depend on if you want to spend the extra for a balcony. Me, of course I would, don't want to miss anything, especially a nice Med cruise like this...
It depends upon the accommodation/service upgrade that you will pay for. But since this is cruise line, it's better to splurge a little on a vacation and enjoy more. Just make sure to make the most of what you pay for.
Last edited by annabellekane; July 17th, 2012 at 04:07 AM.
I sailed the Epic twice,and I know you will enjoy this ship, especially in the Med,and a balcony is surely worth doing for this itinerary.
Excursions can be so long, some up to 10 hours, so it's imperative you feel comfortable booking your excursions. If you post your ports, you can get specific info for booking on your own, if you decide on this option. Splitting the cost of private tours can be well worth the effort.
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We have been on both inside and outside cabins. I always perfer balconies but sometimes it depends on the cost and time of year as well as location. Balconies are great for sea days and warm weather. I like to sit on a chair and read a good book. Very relaxing.
On the excursions, it just depends on how limited it may be. For example, the dolphin swims fill up quickly and are limited as to the number of people, so we book that through the cruise line. For others, we mostly just hit the people at the pier (to go to the beach for instance). A lot of places also have local vendors that you can book online. However, I don't know a lot about those.
For that small amount, I , too, would go for the upgrade to a balcony cabin.
As for shore excursions, there are several really good independent companies out there where you might pay the same amount as the cruise lines, but it'll not be as controlled and no where near as crowded. One company we really like is Shore Trips. But depending on your ports, there are many places where doing your own thing is the best, cheapest, and easiest way to get where you want to go. We've been there and often we were able to do things and go places the shore excursions either didn't go, spent way too much time there, or spent too little time. By doing your own thing, you can control where, when, and how long.
Your travel agent should be able to help you with some options and ideas.
__________________ 45 Cruises & Counting! Favorites: Paul Gauguin to Tahiti: Uniworld River Cruises in Europe; any of the Celebrity Solstice-class ships; Holland America for 12-nights in the Baltics & Russia; RCCL for 14-night Greek Isles, Turkey, & Croatia; Holland America for 14-day Alaska cruisetour; 10-night Canada/New England cruise; 21 days in Hawaii including a 7-night NCL cruise; Oceania for 25 days in Asia; & 3 months touring Europe by train. And many days spent in all-inclusive resorts!