Tips to travel abroad with travel agencies!
Good Morning Ladies!
I have been to many countries and the majority of the time, I went with a tour group organized by a travel agency (Like the one in Jab Hary Met Sejal). Going to Australia was my third experience with a tour. Earlier, I have been to Singapore/Malaysia with D.Pauls and on a Europe Tour with SOTC and I loved the service I got from towingless when my car ran out of gas in the middle of the road.
Going with a tour has its own pros and cons.
- Not worrying about travel, food, or accommodation
- Not buying your own tickets
- You get a tour guide which not only helps you in arranging everything but also act as a local guide by informing you about the historical importance of the place.
- You can get a 4-5 star grade hotel at much lesser price
- It is cheaper
- You cannot explore the place on your own, you have to follow the itinerary made my the company (until you get a free day or you decide to ditch the group and travel alone)
- You have to follow a strict time schedule. It feels like you are in some sort of a camp rather being on a holiday.
- You have to manage with all kind of people (which might be a part of your group)
Personally, if you ask me, I love and at the same time hate traveling with a tour. I personally prefer going with a tour whenever I am traveling abroad especially to Europe or any other non-Asian country but when I am traveling in India, I hate to travel with a group. I have some pages that I like to check when I have to travel, for example Planet Traveler has reviews like winter jackets and coats for men, travel gears and more.
Before planning a tour with a traveling agency, certain points must be kept in mind.
1. Are you and your family willing to be on a strict time schedule?
There are multiple people in a group and thus a strict time table needs to be followed in order to keep everything under control.
2. How much are you willing to pay for the tour?
There are many travel agencies in the market and all of them offer different prices for the same kind of tour. The difference mainly occurs in the facilities they provide like the grade of the hotel or the airlines. It is on you to decide which one to opt for, you can visit caravan.com.
3. Is the travel agency reliable?
This is the most important thing to be enquired about. It might be possible that the travel agency show you dream about your vacation and when you actually reach your destination, you get a completely different thing. Cross check each and every detail including the hotels the agency is claiming to provide you.
4. Don’t be in a hurry to finalize things.
The agents sitting in the offices want to gain business from you and you too are there to pay, but try to bargain as much as possible. You might get an unexpectedly amazing deal.
5. Get you tickets and visa done as soon as you can.
Sometimes it happens that the agency fails to provide you with the visa or ticket on time. All they would say is that you will get the tickets before you go to the airport, but don’t trust them. Never leave the formalities of tickets or visa for the last day before the travel. You might end up missing the flight. The agency might or might not compensate for the losses later, but you will end up ruining up your mood and your vacations.
Once everything is done, you are good to go. But in order to enjoy your vacations without any hassle:
1. Always be on time
This not only applies to the spots or the bus but is true for the transit flight too. I have seen people missing their transit flights just because they were careless and enjoying their time on the airport. If you tend to miss your flight during transit, the travel agency will not pay you for the next flight. You would end up wasting your time as well as money.
2. Try to be good to fellow members of the group
Not everybody in the group comes from the same background, some people are good and some are annoying but try to be nice to everyone. Afterall it is said ‘paraye desh mein apne he kaam ate hein’. Amongst all the people in that foreign country, your group members are the only ones you know.
3. Always try to cooperate with your tour leader
You tour leader is also a human and he might also get tired or frustrated. He has the responsibility of 30-40 members of the group and in order to keep everything smooth going, he needs cooperation from all the members of the group.
Trust me, going with a tour isn’t that bad. Some adventurous travelers say that going with an escorted tour is not an actual tour as you cannot explore on your own and what you get is not your experience. But, going on a tour not only saves you money but also saves time. Exploring on your own might seem attractive, but not everyone has the time, money or guts to rome about on the streets of a foreign country all by themselves.