Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
3.14

How to book free excursions?

Recommended Posts

With the promotion OLife Ultimate we’ve got 6 free Shore Excursions. I’ve never booked our excursions before the cruise, but to get this benefit we need to book in advance.

The conditions are: OLife Ultimate FREE Shore Excursions vary by voyage and exclude Oceania Choice, Oceania Exclusive and Executive Collection. All Shore Excursions must be chosen at least 14 days prior to sailing.

When I go to My Oceania I see the list of all the excursions with 3 prices: ‘tour pricing’, ‘UPC’(unlimited excursions for € 756) and ‘YWC’ (price when minimum of 5 excursions for 25%off).
I’m not familiar with the Unlimited Passport Collection (UPC).
Does this means UPC equals the possible free excursion?
Does the system make it a free excursion automatically when I make a choice?

The ‘OS’ and ‘OE’ excursions are at a lower price under ‘UPC’ then  under the ‘tour price’. It’s this a supplement price  if I order this excursion as part of the free excursions? Or are those excursions of limits as the conditions mention?

Any other suggestions about the excursions I need to know about?

Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have 6 free excursions on an Ultima priced cruise for next month and after several attempts at booking for them on line, we had to phone our Travel Agent and het her to do it!   I know that is not very helpful but it is the best I can offer!!     J

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Jay23 said:

We have 6 free excursions on an Ultima priced cruise for next month and after several attempts at booking for them on line, we had to phone our Travel Agent and het her to do it!   I know that is not very helpful but it is the best I can offer!!     J

I wound up contacting Oceania direct...so confusing!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54 minutes ago, 3.14 said:

With the promotion OLife Ultimate we’ve got 6 free Shore Excursions. I’ve never booked our excursions before the cruise, but to get this benefit we need to book in advance.

The conditions are: OLife Ultimate FREE Shore Excursions vary by voyage and exclude Oceania Choice, Oceania Exclusive and Executive Collection. All Shore Excursions must be chosen at least 14 days prior to sailing.

When I go to My Oceania I see the list of all the excursions with 3 prices: ‘tour pricing’, ‘UPC’(unlimited excursions for € 756) and ‘YWC’ (price when minimum of 5 excursions for 25%off).
I’m not familiar with the Unlimited Passport Collection (UPC).
Does this means UPC equals the possible free excursion?
Does the system make it a free excursion automatically when I make a choice?

The ‘OS’ and ‘OE’ excursions are at a lower price under ‘UPC’ then  under the ‘tour price’. It’s this a supplement price  if I order this excursion as part of the free excursions? Or are those excursions of limits as the conditions mention?

Any other suggestions about the excursions I need to know about?

Thanks

I'll try to help a little. First, if an excursion says OE or OS it is not eligible as one of the included excursions with Olife. 

 

The Unlimited Passport Collection and the "Free" excursions with Olife are two completely different things. The UPC is where you pay one price and get an excursion in every port, except for the ones that are marked OE or OS. As you surmised for an additional supplement you can take an OE or OS if you have the UPC. YOU CAN'T DO THIS WITH THE "FREE" EXCURSIONS WITH OLIFE. 

 

As you mentioned with the YWC if you book the minimum of 5 excursions per person then you get the discount. What many people don't realize is that your Olife "Free" excursions apply to that minimum. 

 

Generally as a rule in the US we can go to the website and manage our reservation and put the excursions in the cart and it will recognize them as a "free" one. As you are in Europe and have the Ultimate Olife then they might handle it different. 

 

Good Luck. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ORV said:

I'll try to help a little. First, if an excursion says OE or OS it is not eligible as one of the included excursions with Olife. 

 

The Unlimited Passport Collection and the "Free" excursions with Olife are two completely different things. The UPC is where you pay one price and get an excursion in every port, except for the ones that are marked OE or OS. As you surmised for an additional supplement you can take an OE or OS if you have the UPC. YOU CAN'T DO THIS WITH THE "FREE" EXCURSIONS WITH OLIFE. 

 

As you mentioned with the YWC if you book the minimum of 5 excursions per person then you get the discount. What many people don't realize is that your Olife "Free" excursions apply to that minimum. 

 

Generally as a rule in the US we can go to the website and manage our reservation and put the excursions in the cart and it will recognize them as a "free" one. As you are in Europe and have the Ultimate Olife then they might handle it different. 

 

Good Luck. 

Also, the intuitive "cart," where you deposit your choices, automatically assigns your O Life "free" slots to the most expensive of the allowable (non-OE/non-OS) tours and counts them against your total number of tours if you want the YWYW 25% discount on the ones for which you will have to pay.

BTW, even though the Passport option gives you 40% off the OE/OS tour costs, I have never found the initial fee to be attractive enough to make it a good deal.

Finally, once you learn how to decipher the differences and use the website, you'll find that it is quite a simple process. Just remember that, if you are getting only the usual pick of a single O Life perk (SBC, booze OR tours), the tours are the best deal if you intend on doing the YWYW required minimum and your "freebie" O Life selections (automatically applied by cost) average more that $100 per tour. Why? Because the O Life SBC is the equivalent of $100 per tour awarded.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you all for these really helpfull answers!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The excursions are built into the O life price.  We’ve included O life and the not so free air in some initial bookings but then canceled it a couple times at final payment.  We watched roll calls and looked for DIY options but we had the O excursions as backup.  

We kept the O life excursions once but cherry picked the tours very carefully.  We were reasonably satisfied but if you don’t do research on the port you might get a meaningless drive around.  

Agree with the comments that the Passport discount is still overpriced and we don’t want a guided  tour everyday.

Any excursions booked individually on Oceania are generally overpriced by a significant amount.  But a couple times we booked after hitting roadblocks to see a particular sight or show.  

If you have O life excursions and change your mind once on board, you can switch to another one or get $100 pp OBC.  It was surprisingly flexible.  And sometimes Oceania cancels an excursion and will give you generous options.  

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, sammiedawg said:

Any excursions booked individually on Oceania are generally overpriced by a significant amount.  

This is true in general but paying essentially $100 for an O Life excursion can sometimes be a good deal (especially in locations where private excursions are difficult or expensive)

If you have O life excursions and change your mind once on board, you can switch to another one or get $100 pp OBC.  It was surprisingly flexible.  And sometimes Oceania cancels an excursion and will give you generous options.  

I don’t think that this is entirely correct. I believe that you can change O Life excursions but I don’t think you can cancel them for OBC once onboard. If the excursion is cancelled by O then you will get $100 OBC (regardless of the price of excursion).

I believe this is correct - if not, someone will surely correct me 😊

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There ARE places (small ones) where Oceania -- and/or other cruise lines -- will have booked up all the available tour guides.  This has happened to us on occasion.  So there can be times when the ship's tour is your best option, whether you are paying for it or you have the oLife benefit.

 

What I mean is -- there were several times when we looked for private tours and no guides were available.  So doing your research is always a good idea!

 

Mura

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It was fall 2017 that we canceled one O life on board and got $100 pp OBC.  We casually mentioned to someone we changed our mind on taking the tour and offered them free tickets.  They told us to go to the excursion desk for credit.  

The policy may have changed.  

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Random thoughts 

 

1.  No such thing as free excursions. The costs are included in the OLife package which has a price tag. Kind of like 2 for 1 sailing, or unlimited internet advertising!

 

2. If Oceania charges $150 for a shore tour one can book independently for $75, Only claiming to pay an equivalent of $100 with the OLife package still isn’t a “deal “! If one gets 25% off the price in one of the packages it’s still $112.50 for a $75 tour. How tightly do you like Mother Oceania holding your wallet, uh I mean hand while on a shore tour.?!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
49 minutes ago, pinotlover said:

If Oceania charges $150 for a shore tour one can book independently for $75, 

Are these actual or just theoretical figures? Do you have actual specific examples?

I thinks everyone (at least most everyone) knows that nothing is free in life - not Oceania air, not O Life, etc, etc. That doesn’t mean that all these things cannot be a good deal in specific instances.

Many people find that they cannot beat O’s air prices and so they take it. Likewise, not everyone is willing or able to arrange private excursions (for any number of reasons) and thus finds the various excursion packages a “good deal” for them.

The good thing is that we have the option to take “advantage” of these offers or not - unlike with the all inclusive cruise lines where one pays for everything whether they use it or not.

I consider myself a very savvy consumer of Oceania’s product. For example, I never use their air as I fly for miles but not everyone has that as an option.

I have organized many a group excursions on several cruises with up to 10 participants. Despite that, on many occasions I choose to take advantage of their O Life excursions because I cannot or don’t want to “bother” with arranging private tours or groups; or private tours are too expensive or not available.

Edited by Paulchili

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Paul;

 

On my report of our F.P. Cruise in February, I gave detailed examples of where O passengers where on the exact same shore tour as us, in fact along with us on privately arranged tours, paying 2-3 times our price.

 

I totally understand that some don’t want the hassle of arranging their own tours or even reading the Roll Calls to see what’s available. There’s a cost for that also. Like you , we still occasionally take an O tour, but we never say it’s free, it was only seemed convenient at the time. Convenient has a price.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have just booked a cruise which includes all the O life amenities.  We don't normally do tours, prefering to explore on our own but since we have 6 included (3 each) we might as well use them.  I understand that tours with the prefix OS and OE cannot be booked  but is there are price limit on the rest of the tours?  If not it would make sense to go for the most expensive options (full day rather than 1/2 day)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IIRC, for OLife included excursions, you can book any that cost less than $200.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Marmaduke said:

I have just booked a cruise which includes all the O life amenities.  We don't normally do tours, prefering to explore on our own but since we have 6 included (3 each) we might as well use them.  I understand that tours with the prefix OS and OE cannot be booked  but is there are price limit on the rest of the tours?  If not it would make sense to go for the most expensive options (full day rather than 1/2 day)

if those  tours are available  go for it

usually the O Life excursions are  priced up to $199 pp 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, LHT28 said:

usually the O Life excursions are  priced up to $199 pp 

Exactly.

That said, anything without OS,OE, etc is bookable with O Life regardless of price.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do you have to book your O life excursions before the cruise or can you wait and book them onboard ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Marmaduke said:

Do you have to book your O life excursions before the cruise or can you wait and book them onboard ?

Before, but if you have OBC you can book onboard with it, or before. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, ORV said:

Before, but if you have OBC you can book onboard with it, or before. 

Actually, O Life excursions have to be booked no later than 14 days before sailing. Regular excursions can be booked onboard (or 14 days before boarding) using OBC

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I had opted for the 600.00 credit, but now am thinking of getting the 6 excursions instead.  We actually do not drink, so not really sure what we would use the shipboard credit for?  The excursions are pricey and likely would cost more if I booked them with the ship so maybe I should make the switch.  Any thoughts?  We have not been on Oceania for many years, so this is new to us.  We have, however, cruised often on other lines.  So I am not crazy about the excursion offerings since we have been to these islands so many times before (originally booked this cruise as it was going to Cuba).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, bunzini said:

So I had opted for the 600.00 credit, but now am thinking of getting the 6 excursions instead.  We actually do not drink, so not really sure what we would use the shipboard credit for?  The excursions are pricey and likely would cost more if I booked them with the ship so maybe I should make the switch.  Any thoughts?  We have not been on Oceania for many years, so this is new to us.  We have, however, cruised often on other lines.  So I am not crazy about the excursion offerings since we have been to these islands so many times before (originally booked this cruise as it was going to Cuba).

if you do not want to do the excursions, you could use the OBC for tips unless you get those  already or in the spa

You could always just take the cruise only fare  ..no O Life ,  No air

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the past we pretty much did DIY tours (with groups we formed on our roll call) with only occasional ship's tours but when oLife came into play we did start using a number of the "free" tours ... which were quite good.  We didn't have complaints, and most of them were NOT too large.  Of course, more people than on an 8 person privately booked tour, but not over crowded.

 

When we were in Amsterdam a couple of years ago we did the ship's "Beer Tour" in Bruges, which was fabulous.  If you like beer ... but they didn't only take us to the beer museum!

 

As the price differential goes up between oLife and cruise only, we're more apt to take the latter ... of course, since we're not booking anything these days due to DH's vision problems our opinion doesn't much matter.

 

For people who want the security of a ship's tour, while pricey O's are generally quite good.  For those who prefer smaller groups, they will continue booking privately, I'm sure.

 

Mura

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/7/2019 at 12:43 PM, 3.14 said:

With the promotion OLife Ultimate we’ve got 6 free Shore Excursions. I’ve never booked our excursions before the cruise, but to get this benefit we need to book in advance.

 

 

I booked our "free" excursions yesterday.  It is a pretty straight forward process.

 

1.  I clicked on select time and then clicked the desired time I wanted. 

2.  Another window opened showing the availability of the excursion and asked to me to select the guest(s) I was booking for.  

3.  Once I selected the guest(s), the Add to Cart button lit up.  I clicked on that button.

4.  I was taken to another window and asked to confirm my reservation.  

5.  Once I confirmed the reservation, I went to the check-out window and found my selection had defaulted to the Individual Excursion tour covered by the so called "Free" perk.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Just booked my included excursions and even though cart total was £0 I was still required to enter a card. I was then emailed a receipt for £0 🤣

Normally we book private tours but as my cruise was upgraded to O life ultimate after we booked, it would have been rude not to book them.

We have visited all of the ports before but found new things to do in some and have chosen to revisit others.

Edited by Glenndale

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • SAIL-AWAY GIVEAWAY - Enter for a chance to win a $3,000 Norwegian Cruise Line Gift Card
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...