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Where else are you going on your cruise? If you book through the ship you have a "known quanity" you are dealing with. We have had good experiences with both book through the ship and local operators. You will find that many of the local operators have contracts with the cruise lines, so you have to book through them. We just came back from St Thomas and St Maarten and did "local"excursions. We did the Capt Alan's 3 Island Snorkel tour in St Maarten and it was excellent, although the visibility for diving/snorkeling was better in St Thomas because of the recent hurricane.
Royal Caribbean Diamond, Celebrity Elite, Holland America Star Mariner