St. Petersburg, Russian Federation
The tour was great but nearly didn't happen! I received a document which contained a barcode which I printed off. It said that we needed to confirm our booking with Marie Rose travel, the local contact. The email address did not work so I phoned the number given - from England. All I got was an fax machine.
I went to the Marie Rose website and found a different number to phone. I spoke to a Russian girl who told us our places were already confirmed. I told her that I had the ticket with the barcode - but did I need anything else?. She assured me I didn't.
However, when we disembarked the ship at St Petersburg I presented the paper and was shouted at by the local customs as our paper was not the correct one. My friend and I were commanded to sit on a bench like naughty schoolgirls and told to wait.
The guide was at another ship terminal it appeared but was contacted and she arrived to where we were. Meanwhile a chap at customs had printed off another document which was needed and belatedly we linked up with our guide.
On return home I still can't find this ticket to print off!!!
The tour was good and did all the things it promised. Lida, our guide was very good - in The Hermitage she selected a range of exhibits rather than trying to trail us round all day. She spoke good English and was knowledgeable about her city.
Other private tours were taken on the metro which I would have loved - but maybe you could include that on future tours.
In future I think these private tours offer more than the shipboard excursions which are pricey and ensure that the participants queue up for ages, whereas we were able to jump the queues at the attractions. I would therefore search around for a perfect tour next time I go on a cruise.
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