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CruiseCompete Currents
Cruise News and Information
September 23, 2013

2,000 Fantastic Shore Excursions in Stunning Cruise Ports All Over the World, From Rugged Alaska to the Dazzling & Tropical Caribbean, Gorgeous Hawaii to the Mesmerizing Mediterranean, Mother Russia to Exotic Asia.

CruiseCompete is partnered with Shore Excursions Group the largest shore excursions company in the world, which features more than 2,000 excursions in cruise ports all over the world. The excursions provide an excellent alternative to cruise line excursions – they have fewer people, better prices and an unbeatable series of guarantees.
  1. Guaranteed Better Prices
  2. Guaranteed Fewer Guests
  3. Guaranteed Return-to-Ship on Time
  4. Guaranteed Satisfaction or your Money Back
  5. Guaranteed Tour Departures
To see all of the shore excursions by ship simply click here:

To see shore excursions by port, click here:

Frequently asked question about CruiseCompete Shore Excursions:

Will you refund my money if I miss my tour because the ship is late or cannot make it into port?
Yes. You will receive a full refund for your tour if you cannot make a tour departure due to a ship delay or a missed port call. You will of course also receive a full refund if weather or an equipment problem prevents the tour operator from delivering the tour. Simply let us know within two weeks of date of the tour, and we will issue a full refund.

Christmas Markets Cruises:

The Christmas market sailings on river cruise lines generally begin in mid-to late November and continue through the end of the year. These sailings are typically held on the Main, Rhine, Danube and Seine rivers. They are perfect for those wanting to experience the quintessential magic of the holidays while shopping for one-of-a-kind treasures. More…

The European “Christmas Cruises” are very popular, but for many of us the holidays on a riverboat in Europe may be out of reach financially, or simply due to time constraints. So I was pleased to see this information come across today about a domestic cruise option that still allows vacationers to spend the holidays on a lovely and relaxing small ship cruise – Blount Small Ship Adventures’ ”Southern Antebellum: Charleston to Jacksonville” cruise. This unique holiday cruise travels down the Eastern Seaboard for an immersive experience of an authentic southern holiday celebration. More…

This month’s highlighted cruise line is AmaWaterways!

AmaWaterways 8-night Christmas River Cruise Promotion on the MS AmaBella
8 Nights on Europe’s scenic waterways, departing Nuremburg with stops in
Regensburg, Passau, Melk, Vienna and Budapest. A wonderful opportunity to visit the famed Christmas Markets!
2013 Sails: Nov 30Dec 14Dec 28
Rates from $1,650

Read more about AmaWaterways Christmas Market Cruises here.

Rankings from actual consumers: The AmaDolce ranks 4.2/5

Mlboyer1 says:  This was our first river cruise and it was just what I wanted in a cruise - very good food, no nickel and diming, a white and red wine with every dinner (no limit) and excellent prices on full bottles, wonderful staff, well coordinated shore excursions (included), spa services and fitness center (although I didn't use on this trip).

See more AmaDolce reviews here:

AmaWaterways cruises are geared toward older children and adults: Read more about their children’s policies here:

See more Ama Waterways Deals here…

Wondering about other AmaWaterways Ships? Read all AmaWaterways Reviews here…

For the ultra-luxury lover in you

Cunard Line has dominated the Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships rankings for 2014, which were released on Friday, giving the company clear leadership over competitors in the “Large Resort Ship” category. The top three ships are all Cunard: Queen Mary 2 (Grill class), Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria, ranked first, second and third, respectively, with Celebrity Reflection and Celebrity Silhouette coming fourth and fifth, respectively. More…

EUROPA 2’s Entertainment Program, has been awarded the highest distinction of “five-stars-plus” by the 2014 Berlitz Cruise Guide, and continues to offer new innovations for guests. Three stage shows created exclusively for the EUROPA 2 by the Berlin production company “Phase 7” is currently running in the on-board theater which covers two floors/decks. These shows combine spectacular lighting effects, video and software art with music, dance and drama. The ensemble consists of ten artists, and present two shows per week for the next three months. More…

Silversea is to sail to even more remote and stunning destinations in 2014 with the arrival of its newest expedition ship, the 128-guest Silver Discoverer. Aboard Silver Discoverer, guests will be able to explore remote areas of Micronesia, Melanesia, and Polynesia in addition to the Russian Far East, Southeast Asia, New Zealand and Australia, including one of its hidden treasures, the Kimberley. This vast area in North West Australia is three times the size of England and three-fifths the size of Texas. More…

Private Jets, All-Inclusive Resorts, Tahiti and the South Pacific – If this is what you dream about for your vacation, try the new VacationCompete

Fun things happening on the cruise ships

When I took my grandson Logan on a Disney cruise, he knew exactly what he wanted for a ship souvenir. And, as a 22-year-old college student, Logan was old enough to buy it. “The Disney refillable beer mug is a great idea,” he says. “It’s much cheaper to have a beer every evening if you buy the mug. And you get to take the mug home so it’s a nice souvenir. More…

Family travel tips

Planning a multigenerational or family reunion vacation? A cruise is the perfect environment- there’s something for everyone! If you’d like help planning a family or group vacation, just complete a simple form telling us about the group cruise you've envisioned. Up to three independent agents will contact you directly with options, answers, and quotes.

Latest diaries of the AllThingsCruise writers

Kimberly Button brings us an up-close look at the much-anticipated Royal Princess. See her reports here.

Marcia Levin is traveling to London with her grandson Jakob, 13, and then they sail home on the Queen Mary 2. Follow them here.

Cindy Boal Janssens sails to Alaska with grandchildren on HAL's Oosterdam. Read their adventures here.

Jackie Finch is sailing on the Seabourn Odyssey on a 7-day Adriatic Odyssey out of Venice. Follow her here.

Heidi Allison-Shane sailed across the Atlantic on the Cunard Queen Mary 2Read her diary here.

Cruise Line Charity Work

To mark the National Day of Service, nearly 100 employees from the cruise industry volunteered with Habitat for Humanity San Fernando/Santa Clarita Valleys (SF/SCV) to build a house for a United States veteran in the Southern California area. Volunteers from three Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) member lines – Princess Cruises, Cunard Line and Uniworld Boutique River Cruises – joined the “Habitat for Heroes” initiative, which was created by Habitat for Humanity SF/SCV and the California Department of Veterans Affairs to help build 12 houses for low-income veteran families. Together, the volunteers helped with the framing, insulation and construction of a new house in the Sylmar neighborhood. More…

Plus an airline booking tool, cars, hotels and vacation packages that you might find of interest. Visit this new section here:

Private Jets, All-Inclusive Resorts, Tahiti and the South Pacific – if this is what you want for your vacation, try the new Vacation Compete

Recent ship review from an AllThingsCruise site member:
August 27, 2013
Reviewer: Starfighter (Sailed on the RSSC Mariner)

My first Regent voyage was an eye-opener! The suite was large enough, with very comfortable and attractive furnishings. Housekeeping was impeccable throughout the voyage. Meals were varied, beautifully presented and delicious. More…

Shore excursion of the week:

Atlantic Deep Sea Fishing:
Hop aboard a shared sport fishing charter boat and head out into the Atlantic for four hours of deep sea fishing adventure. Whether you’re looking to bring home some fresh fish for dinner or you want to score a trophy for over the mantle, this sport fishing trip off the Ft. Lauderdale coast has it all.

Start your adventure aboard a beautiful charter fishing vessel as it motors out from Ft. Lauderdale’s famous Intracoastal Waterway. Admire some of South Florida’s most opulent waterway homes on your way out to the open ocean. Take a quick pitstop at a bait buoy where you’ll catch fresh live bait for the adventure ahead. Then, because the ocean floor drops off so quickly off the coast, it’s only another few minutes before you’re fishing for the big game in the depths of the Atlantic. Your experienced captain will find out exactly what you’re interested in catching and tailor your trip around your interests and desires. Your chartered sport fishing boat is well appointed for the action at hand, featuring extra large fishing cockpits with three fighting chairs, an air-conditioned inner cabin, a full fly-bridge, and a tuna tower. This sport fishing charter is geared toward what you want to fish. Catch sailfish with kites, troll the bottom for dolphin, wahoo, and tuna, fish actual shipwrecked reefs with live bait, or tackle the monsters of the deep and go after big game sharks and amberjack. Whether you’re looking for a record breaker or just a fresh, delicious dinner for friends, you’ll find it all on this sport fishing trip off the Ft. Lauderdale coast.

Reserve your charter ahead of time for yourself and a fishing partner and the captain will pair you with another couple. These shared sport fishing charters are four hours long, and run every day from 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m., and 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. catch the biggest and most sought-after game fish on this exciting chartered sport fishing trip.

Our Price: $138 per person More…

Special deal offerings

Check out the “Deals” section on AllThingsCruise… there are some fantastic opportunities in cruising here:


Carnival Cruise Lines recently unveiled an unprecedented new program that offers consumers a one-of-a-kind, hassle-free money-back guarantee when booking a Carnival cruise vacation. Designed to provide consumers with complete peace of mind, the “Great Vacation Guarantee”  allows guests to end their voyage early and receive a 110 percent refund plus complimentary transportation home, along with a $100 shipboard credit for a future cruise, should they be dissatisfied with their cruise for any reason. More…

Royal Caribbean International has announced that interior designer and HGTV Star Genevieve Gorder is the first Quantum Experience Advisor for its newest class of ships, the Quantum class. Watch as Genevieve and the team from Royal Caribbean International dive into ship design together. More…

River Cruise News

Amid record levels of consumer interest in river cruising, Viking Cruises announced it has increased its order for additional Viking Longships, bringing the total number of new ships launching in 2014 from 12 to 14 vessels. More…

Special offerings we found on the Web

What’s your favorite travel quote? Here’s one of ours:
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

If you’d love a book of some of the very best travel quotes, take a look at:
No Foreign Lands - 100 of the Most Inspirational Travel Quotes of All Time
Juxtaposing the most memorable and thought-provoking quotes with fascinating images from around the world, NO FOREIGN LANDS is an inspirational meditation on how we travel.
Click here to purchase this book:

Interesting websites you may like to visit

In the market for luxury travel amenities? Take a look at the offerings from Otis Batterbee…

A valuable unique feature of AllThingsCruise is a complimentary e-card with vital cruise line and cruise ship contact information travelers can send to family members and others prior to departure.

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Looking for past Currents Newsletters? Just click here for more…

We are interested and truly welcome and encourage feedback about our Currents newsletter. Please email any comments or suggestions to Heidi Allison, Executive VP & Group Publisher, at

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