Scandinavian Independent Tours and Escorted Tours
Escorted tours are usually via motor-coach, with a tour director in charge. These tours are ideal if you don’t mind having limited free time and traveling with strangers. Your baggage is handled, your time rigorously scheduled, and most meals planned. Such tour are therefore the most hassle-free way to see a destination, as well as generally the least expensive. Independent packages allow plenty of flexibility . They generally include airline travel and hotels, with certain options available, such as sightseeing, car rental, and excursions. These packages are usually more expensive than escorted tours, but your time is your own.
You can either book directly through tour operators or through a travel agent , who will be able to give you rundown of tours and packages offered by various operators . It does not matter what program you prefer, be sure to find out exactly the following items:
1. Are Tips included?
2. Are the transfers included?
3. What meals are included?
4. How is the baggage handling
5. How is the ground transportation?
6. How is the entertainment?
7. How and what are the excursions?
8. How is the sports?
9. How is the recreation ?
10. How is the level of hotel used, its location , the size of its rooms , the kind of beds, and its amenities , such as pool, room service, or programs for children if these things are important to you ?
11. Find out the operator’s cancellation penalties . Nearly everyone charges them , and the only way to avoid them is to buy trip-cancellation insurance.
12. Ask about the single supplement , a surcharge assessed to solo you travelers. Some operator do not make you pay it if you agree to be matched up with a roommate of the same sex , even if one is not found by departure time.
Escorted tours are generally sold in three categories. Most of the itenararies are full with sightseeing. You will get up early each day to travel to your next destination. Make sure you confirm if the motorcoach is air-conditioned and has a restroom on board. The followings are three categories of escorted tours:
· First Class
· Tourist / Budget Class
The most important differences among them are the price and the level of accommodations. The followings are the operators that sell escorted tours.
1. Luxury Guides ( Seatle )
2. Maupintour ( Lawrence )
3. Tauck Tour ( Westport )
4. Winge of Scandinavian ( Santa Monica )
5. Abercrombie& kent ( Oak Brook )
6. American Airlines fly AAway Vacations ( Oak Brook )
7. Bennett Tours ( New York )
8. Borton Over seas ( Minneapolis )
9. Brendan Tours ( Van Nuys )
10. British Airways ( Van Nuys )
11. Caravan Tours ( Chicago )
12. Collette Tours ( Pawtucket )
13. Continental Airlines Grand destinations ( Pawtucket )
14. Delta Dream Vacations ( Pawtucket )
15. Finnair ( Pawtucket )
16. Finn way ( Livingston )
17. Gadabout Tours ( Palm Springs )
18. Globus ( Littleton )
19. Haiman Scandinavia U.S. ( Los Angeles )
20. Holiday Tours of America ( New York )
21. Olson-Travelworld ( Torrance )
22. Parker Tours ( Bayside )
23. SAS ( Bayside )
24. Scantours ( Santa Monica )
25. Scan World Tours ( Chicago )
26. Trafalgar Tours ( New York )
27. Cosmos Tourama ( Littleton )
Independent tours or packages are usually called FITs ( it stands for foreign independent travel) are offered by airlines or tour operators. Some of the these tour operators also offer escorted programs. Their programs consist of different range of prices based on level of luxuries and options. The followings are the airlines or the tour operators that offer independent tours:
1. Icelandair Tour Desk
2. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
3. DER Tours ( Los Angeles )
4. Gadabout Tours
5. Jet Vacations ( New York )
6. Nordique Tours ( Los Angeles )
7. Passage Tours ( Fort Lauderdale )8. Travel Bound ( Penthouse, NY )