Go Ahead Tours

Old Mar 10th, 2015, 10:56 AM
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Go Ahead Tours

Hi to All, Here is the note from yet another friend who thinks Fodor's info is wonderful but doesn't get online much. She and her DH have gone on their own, with cruises, in a camper, etc., etc. They want to take a tour this time. I've sent them a 2013 post for Sicily but I am wondering if there is anything more recent about Go Ahead Tours for what my pals are seeking.

"We're looking at combining 2 tours back to back. Starting in Barcelona, through the French and Italian riviera, to Florence, Sienna, Rome. Would be about 3 weeks, seems long enough to tour with the group and still have time for ourselves. Somehow I never encountered this tour company in all my searching, so I wondered if you have."

Can anyone help with his/her experience with this company? Thanks in advance for not suggesting that they go DIY.
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Old Mar 10th, 2015, 11:10 AM
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They apparently are a subdivision of EF Education Tours. Isn't that a company that's gotten bad reviews here as a student tour company?
http://www.tourmatters.com/go-ahead-tours
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Old Mar 10th, 2015, 11:33 AM
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Thanks, elberko. Well, there were no bad reviews on the link you provided (there's a shock). I'll do a search on EF Education Tours.
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Old Mar 10th, 2015, 11:34 AM
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Nothing came up on EF or plain education tours. Maybe someone will have more info.
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Old Mar 10th, 2015, 11:40 AM
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Ef got quite a few hits:
http://www.fodors.com/search/results...2F2015&author=
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Old Mar 10th, 2015, 02:36 PM
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Hi TDUDETTE,

Hope all is well. Nice of you to help out your friends. I would suggest a well known company like INSIGHT. Of course, there are always the standard companies like GLOBUS and TRAFALGAR (Insight is the high end version of Trafalgar.)

If cost is not an issue, they could go for TAUCK. Personally, I would avoid any tour with the words "budget" or "cost saver" in the title - sure to provide inferior hotels and meals.

Do you have any travel plans in view?
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Old Mar 10th, 2015, 02:38 PM
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>>> Well, there were no bad reviews on the link you provided (there's a shock). I'll do a search on EF Education Tours.
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Old Mar 10th, 2015, 04:39 PM
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I went on an EF tour and had a great time- good intro to an area and gives you confidence to go back on your own. A friend has done 12 EF tours and has not had any issues.
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Old Mar 11th, 2015, 05:40 AM
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Thanks to all. I have jury duty in April so am waiting to see how much time that takes before I make any travel plans. Boston and New York City are on my radar to see more Sargent and Sorollo works, ldt. Overseas? Not sure.

deladeb, did you find the nickel and dime-ing that kybourbon described to be a problem?
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Old Mar 11th, 2015, 06:23 AM
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elberko, I looked at the sites you found just using 'ef'-thank you for the helpful feedback.
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Old Mar 11th, 2015, 05:42 PM
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TDudette, I did not. The shopping experience they offered via a glass blowing demo I declined and they were fine with that. I said, "with only 5 hours in Venice I can not waste a second seeing glass blowing when I've seen it dozens of times before, what time and where do I meet?"
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Old Mar 13th, 2015, 04:54 AM
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Thanks deladeb, TDu
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Old Mar 13th, 2015, 05:45 AM
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chiming in with another "I didn't have a bad experience with EF" - but we had the best tour director! I do think luck with tour director is why we had a decent experience. A teacher in the district continues to use EF, though as kybourbon notes she is getting her trip for free. I don't hear complaints in the rumor mill, but maybe she's done enough trips that she gives EF more than a bit of direction for how things will go? I don't know.

When looking at tours, there's also Rick Steves. I've done only one, but an absolutely terrific tour director, so if ever I were looking at doing a tour (vs enjoying planning my own as it's cheaper and I can do it) and had the funds, I look at his tour lists.
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Old Mar 13th, 2015, 05:52 AM
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I've done 2 EF tours and one GoAhead - yes they are considered low end BUT in some ways, that can be OK. It probably means fewer pre-paid entrances and meals. Yes, the tour director will try to sell you "optionals" dinners or excursions BUT it also means you can chose to explore on your own at those times, which IMO, can be a good idea. The tour should get you into the main sights with minimum wait times and get you from city to city. When we traveled with them sometimes the hotels were out from the city center but we had a list of where we were staying ahead of time and could either use taxis or public transportation. We do travel on our own now (or cruise, horrors!)but for my first trips to Italy and Spain EF / GoAhead provided decent value and service for a basic overview of the countries.
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