Common Questions Answered!

Published: Jan 01, 2021
Last Updated: Nov 30, 2023

We here at Alaska Shore Excursions receive a lot of the same questions from our guests and we wanted to make sure that these answers have an easy place to live. Below are some of the most common questions we are asked:

How early should I book my tours?

Our tours are very popular and are sold on a first-come-first-served basis, so it’s wise to reserve your space as soon as you’ve made your tour choices. You can book all of your excursions easily via our website and do so worry-free due to our awesome cancellation policy that lets you cancel for any reason up to seven (7) days prior to the date of the tour!

How soon can I book an excursion after my ship’s arrival? And how much time should I allow to get back on my ship?

Since lines when disembarking or boarding your cruise ship can be unpredictable, we recommend scheduling tours at least one (1) hour after your ship's arrival, then plan to be done with any tours one (1) hour before your cruise ship departs. (Tour durations are listed on each tour description.) The exceptions to the one hour rule are exclusive to the port of Icy Strait where all tours begin 30 minutes after your ships arrival. There are other exceptions to the one hour rule as well, but they are tour dependent and up to the operator of the tour to approve. If you have any questions about if a time will work for your cruise ship, please feel free to give us a call or email us at [email protected].

How will I know where to meet my tour operator when I arrive in port for my excursion?

Meeting locations will vary by port and tour operator, however every ticket voucher has detailed meeting instructions provided, along with a map of the port and occasionally additional photos of what you'll be looking for. We also provide for you the tour operators name and local phone number in case you need to contact them day-of with any questions or concerns.

What's the difference between booking with Alaska Shore Excursions or booking through my cruise line?

When booking your shore tours with Alaska Shore Excursions, you're choosing to support small, local tour operators throughout Alaska. We work hard to foster strong partnerships with family-run tour operators who offer small-group, unique experiences for our guests to cherish. Our highly trained staff are knowledgeable about the tours we offer and ready to help answer any questions you may have before you're ready to book. Besides providing excellent customer service, when you book with us, you can also take comfort in knowing that our tours come with a best-price guarantee; our tours are priced the same as if you were to go directly to the tour operators themselves. Unlike the cruise lines who often mark-up the price of tours considerably, we want to make sure you're not paying any more than you need to on your vacation in Alaska. To learn more about the differences between us and the cruise lines, check out this other blog here!

I've heard that if I don't book my excursions through the ship, I might get left behind by my cruise ship, is this true?

The quick answer is: NO! We offer the same guarantees as the cruise ship! When you book an excursion, our team always checks to make sure that the tours you're booking will allow for enough time to return you to your cruise ship before it departs. In the off chance (we've never had anyone miss their ship in the 8 years we've been in business!) you do miss your ship due to unforseen circumstances, we will handle all of the arrangements and make sure to get you and your party to your next port of call. We would procure and comp all of the hotel accommodations and transportation to make sure that you're able to be back to your scheduled cruise ship by the next day. 

Can I book my tours with you over the phone?

We've worked hard to make our website funcitonal and as easy to use as possible! With that being said, all bookings must come through our website as we do not take any reservation requests over the phone. We have staff available to answer any questions you may have over the phone, so please call if you have any questions regarding tours or if you need help with anything else!