Tour Companies

Jan 17th, 2009, 08:04 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 6
Tour Companies

Hi!
I am planning my lifelong dream trip to Australia for October. I'll be travelling alone & would feel more comfortable with an 18-day or 21-day escorted tour. So far, I've researched Globus, Oversea Adventure Travel, & Trafalgar Tours. I would really, really appreciate your expert advice & input as to which company to use & if you have any other good suggestions.
I look forward to your responses.



KBinFL is offline  
Jan 17th, 2009, 09:10 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
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I suppose age and whether you're a more retiring type or are outgoing, prepared to meet and greet and would like something with a bit more activity can come into it for there are a number of tour companies that do shorter trips and even greyhound bus passes or rail passes that you can get, Australia being an easy country in which to travel.

Some tours include camping out or using hostels but also offer accommodation upgrades where available.
www.waywardbus.com.au and www.adventuretours.com.au are typical of some companies, pricing outcome likely to be to your advantage.
www.greyhound.com.au and www.railaustralia.com.au you'll find passes and though http://www.rex.com.au/Backpacker/default.aspx is an airpass targeted at backpackers, no reason why any traveller cannot use it.

As to where you go, October may not be the best travelling time as you can have unsettled changeable spring weather in the south, a mixture of mild days and windy rainy days, sometimes a bit cool. It'll be better further north up the eastcoast without getting too warm/humid yet in tropics though I've known of people finding it plenty bwarm enough that way in en September/October and October is not a great time for the NT and NPs near Darwin.
Bushranger is offline  
Jan 18th, 2009, 03:26 PM
  #3  
 
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There's another post on this board at present regarding escorted tours. You should check out AAT King's and Adventure Tours Australia.

They would be more 'adventurous' than say Trafalgar, I expect (camping style accommodation I think). Check them out.

I've done a Trafalgar tour overseas and found them to be extremely good and delivered all that was promised.

Let us know your age and interests and we can help you further. It's your lifelong dream we'd love to make sure you get it right!
stormbird is offline  
Jan 19th, 2009, 02:13 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
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HI

I just booked my trip to Australia. Also traveling alone and wanting an escorted tour. I went with Contiki (not sure how old you are)...I'm on the higher end of the Contiki (did a few of their trips) spectrum but its a tad more fun/lively than Trafalgar (I've gone on several tours with them).

I guess it comes down to comparing what the different tours offer and if that's where you want to go.

Good Luck!
nelle_1234 is offline  
Jan 20th, 2009, 04:33 PM
  #5  
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Hello, Again,

I do appreciate your various responses. I guess it really does make a difference in choice of tours & activities by one's age. I'm a middle-aged female so back-packing & hiking are not my interests but I'm also not the type that wants to be confined to a bus for long periods of time. I don't want to feel hurried along through Australia,(but for 18 or 21 days, that's probably the way it is!)

Any more suggestions out there?I'm paying close attention. By the way, is there any best time of year to go? Thanks again.
KBinFL is offline  
Jan 20th, 2009, 07:17 PM
  #6  
 
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"I'm a middle-aged female so back-packing & hiking are not my interests but I'm also not the type that wants to be confined to a bus for long periods of time."

"I don't want to feel hurried along through Australia,(but for 18 or 21 days, that's probably the way it is!)"

"By the way, is there any best time of year to go? Thanks again."

Just answering the last bit first, best time of year is a bit dependant on where you might want to go and what chance of what type of weather you're prepared to risk.
Already given you some ide on what to expect for October and a general rule of thumb here is that October/November to April/May is better for south rather than the tropical north - if FL means you're from Florida, think a few degrees warmer than the summers there and greater humidity in Queensland and northern NT and WA with southern summers also quite warm even hotter many times than tropics but a more temperate climate either side of summer.

Conversely, May/June to September/October are great for the north though far north of NT and WA will be more testy in October and it'll be cooler down south being winter but Australian winters are relatively mild, very rare to have snow at lower levels where most major cities are.

On the travelling, if middle aged means 45-60, you'll find people of that age still use the more independant tours and that would fit in well with your desire not to be hurried along for rather than one longer tour as a lot of the escorted fully inclusive tours are;

I'd look at various locations that you want to see, prioritise and group them in regions and then look at booking smaller time wise tours to take in as much of what you want and use a flight between regions.
That maximise what you can see at a slower pace and yet minimise bus travel.
The wayward and adventure type tours are still in a sense escorted and you'll just likely be with more of a mixed age group and not necessarily just twenty something year olds but even travellers of that age can be great companion value.

And you do not have to have a backpack nor is there necessarily a great ammount of hiking and more so some shorter walks involved at some locations and that is part of seeing Australia.



Bushranger is offline  
Jan 24th, 2009, 07:23 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 14
Hi,
I'm also planning my vacation to Australia. I'm going for 3 weeks in May. I'm using Goway from Toronto.
I'm doing a customized trip since I really hate structured tours with about 40 other people. I can eat when I want and go to places and meet people on my own terms. I normally go with small groups or on my own. Since Australia is an English spreaking country, I decided to do it on my own.
Here's my schedule:
Sydney 4 days
Melbourne 3 days
Tasmania 3 days
Alice Springs 2 days
Cairns 3 days
Surfer's Paradis3/Gold Coast 3 days
Brisbane 1 day

I listed the places I wanted to visit and times plus transportation needed.

The cost is not much different that a tour cost.

I did my research reading guide books, internet and Fodors talk plus talk to people that have been to Australia. My cousin went on a tour 2 years ago and she didn't see half the things I mentioned.

May-June is a nice time to go. The weather is cool and great for walking.
Good luck planning.

SG
Saturngirl is offline  
Jan 24th, 2009, 09:01 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 34
Sounds good doing it on your own
thinking of that myself in May but
having trouble coming up with reasonably priced places any idea
thinking Sydney Melbourne and Cairns
mediaqueen is offline  
Jan 24th, 2009, 04:37 PM
  #9  
 
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Author: mediaqueen
Date: 01/24/2009, 01:01 pm
Sounds good doing it on your own
thinking of that myself in May but
having trouble coming up with reasonably priced places any idea
thinking Sydney Melbourne and Cairns

You mean accommodation places or just places to go where the cost of doing things is reasonable/

On accommodation, you can go from hostels, most with single rooms if need be at about same price of cheaper budget hotels and guesthouses, say $70-80/n , caravan park cabins $70-100 up through mid range hotels, about $100-150 and then to greater heights for greater cost.

Prices do get a bit cheaper away from Sydney and Melbourne but not a lot so for the pricier upmarket resort hotels style of place you can find in Cairns, Palm Cove or Port Douglas, but still plenty of cheaper options if not more that way.

Tourist Activities are in a range that goes from about $100 to up over $200 and beyond depending again on what it is you want.
But there's always plenty in lower range and also very cheap or free walk abouts.

So ma few more details on what you're after and we can help more - pay you to start your own thread too btw for then answers will not become a mix for you and KB.
Bushranger is offline  
Jan 25th, 2009, 04:46 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
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Thank you yes mainly interested in cheaper places to stay under 100 a night looks like a hostel might be my best bet. I just want to be able to afford the tours I want to take started my 14 days in Australia question.

Thank you for mentioning free walks as
looking for them now
mediaqueen is offline  

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