Holland America strongly "discourages" the use of independent operators. But that is simply to pad their profit margin. Use the independents! Here are the facts: 1) You will be completely safe. The area around the dock at Puerto Vallarta is regulated by the Mexican Federal government, which issues licenses to all tour operators. The Mexican government wants to promote tourism. Enough said. 2) The independents are much, much, cheaper then those operated by the cruise line. 3) The money that you spend with the independents stays local and helps improve the economy of the region. 4) The tours operated by independents are more comprehensive. Frankly, you see more stuff.
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Holland America Line