Choosing a tour can be a challenging undertaking. Where should you go? Which tour should you take? How long do you travel for? These are just some of the questions you'll want to answer when planning your trip. To help you choose the right tour and make the most of your next trip, here is a list of essential tips to keep in mind.
- Pick the right destination. Where you travel can often make or break a trip. However, narrowing hundreds of countries down to one can be a challenge. Make sure you take into consideration important factors including weather and time of year. For example, while late summer is a great time of year to visit most destinations, you may want to wait until later in the year to visit India. While less expensive for the budget conscious traveler, summer is also India’s monsoon season. Whatever the case, you may want to put in a little more work than just spinning a globe to decide.
- Choose a tour based on your interests. Do you get seasick when on a boat on choppy waters? Do you like nature tours that involve a lot of wildlife sightings? These are the types of questions you'll want to answer when deciding on a tour. Choose a tour that caters to your interests, rather than just one based on price or availability.
- Choose a tour based on your personality. Almost as important as choosing a tour based on your interests is picking one based on your personality. Do you like some downtime in your schedule for sitting on the beach or enjoying a few happy hour cocktails? If so, then work with IE’s custom travel planners to create a personalized tour with a flexible schedule and free time. However, if you like a scheduled itinerary where most of your itinerary is planned out, then choose one of IE’s small-group nature tours or small-ship cruises.
- Do your research. While you don't have to buy every travel magazine and guidebook, do your research before choosing a tour. Doing some research even before choosing a destination and tour can help narrow down the possibilities. Picking up some reading material and talking to a travel expert can provide valuable information that dictates your trip, such as exchange rates, peak/off-peak times of travel, weather, language and flight availability.
- Carefully review the terms and conditions. In other words, read the fine print. It's here that you'll often find out information about meals, transportation, excursions and tipping. While International Expeditions’ nature tours are essentially all-inclusive and include these things in the package price, many tour operators don't. Make sure you have all of this pertinent information before choosing and booking your tour.
What are your tips for choosing the right tour? Please tell us in your comments below.
Story and photos by Spencer Spellman