Finding the Right Tour Operator
You’re sure about going on that trip, except you have no idea which tour company to trust. At least, there are many options out there, but how do you take a pick?
Tour Group Size
First of all, look at the tour group’s size. Smaller means you have more flexibility and easier access to what they call a destination’s “secret gems.” But that also comes with spending a lot of time with the same group of people.
Tour Pace and Physical Requirements
Tour pace and physical requirements can affect your travel experience more than you think it can. If you usually enjoy lingering at a specific attraction, a guided tour may be your best bet. If you fancy seeing as many attractions as you can, then without a doubt a ship cruise or a coach tour is for you. In terms of physical requirements, you can expect various modes of transportation to be available. Also, you will only be required to join some – not all – of the activities during a tour.
You need just what what exactly will be included in the basic cost of the trip. Do you cover your airfare? What about accommodation or other amenities? Will the tour include any free days that you might want to use shopping? Confirm as well if there will be additional activities as part of the tour. Note that these will likely cost extra and need to be booked ahead.
There can be many ways to define cultural immersion. If you like to spend time meeting locals, you can probably share a meal or stay a night in a homestay. You can also learn to cook some local dishes by attending a cooking class. Tour companies can offer varied levels of cultural immersion, so go with the one that is most in line with your preferences.
The itinerary is probably the most important part of a tour, guided or not, alone or with a group. Make sure to choose a tour that features all of the attractions you want to see. This one is quite easy. Simply ask for a copy of your prospect’s itinerary, or just look for it on their website. Of course, you have the option to take a custom tour if you’re not happy with any of their packages.
There are times when you won’t want a lot of free time, like when you dislike your tour group or when the trip is shorter. On the other hand, more free time may be exactly what you want so you can enjoy the attractions on your own. Most of the time, tour companies will be happy to accommodate your preferences if you tell them.