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Help with trip to Germany, Switzerland and Austria

Help with trip to Germany, Switzerland and Austria

Old Apr 29th, 2022, 03:33 PM
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Help with trip to Germany, Switzerland and Austria

We are considering a trip to Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. I would like to find a travel agency that is reliable and arranges private tours. We don't plan to drive while there and would like to find an agency that can arrange getting us to each of our destinations, as well as arranging sightseeing tours, special meals, etc. Thanks!
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Old Apr 29th, 2022, 04:13 PM
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Hi, welcome to Fodors. Maybe someone here can help you with a travel agent, but this forum mostly helps people who want to organise their own trips. Of course a travel agent can be helpful, but it's not hard to do a lot of it on your own. If you are interested in the kind of help we usually offer, say so! Tell us where you want to travel and we will tell you how to get there, recommend private guides and hotels, tell you about transportation options and so on. Do you want to start?

Lavandula
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Old Apr 30th, 2022, 03:49 AM
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Thanks!

Perhaps this isn't the right forum for my question. I'm really looking to have the trip planned for us, so I'll keep searching on my own. Thanks for your reply.
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Old Apr 30th, 2022, 02:38 PM
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There was formerly a poster here called PalenQ who used to recommend certain travel services. I think one was something like [name deleted]l. If I find one of his posts I will link to it. Sorry not to have been of more help!

Lavandula

Last edited by lavandula; Apr 30th, 2022 at 03:18 PM. Reason: did not want to advertise a business, so deleted name
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Old Apr 30th, 2022, 02:42 PM
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I found it [comment deleted] However, it looks like it is no longer working. He used to mention Byron who worked there.

If you do look for yourself, in Germany www.hrs.de is a useful hotel booking service (click on flag at top for English if it comes up as German).

Good luck, hope you find what you're after!

Lavandula

Last edited by lavandula; Apr 30th, 2022 at 03:17 PM. Reason: did not want to advertise a business, so deleted name
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Old Apr 30th, 2022, 02:59 PM
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Lavandula: unfortunately PQ passed away a few years ago. He was associated with that agency - maybe ask the moderators to remove your post?
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Old Apr 30th, 2022, 03:16 PM
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Ah, I didn't know that - yes, I will triangle them. The link doesn't work anyway, it's not useful information any more.

postscript - I just deleted the name

Lavandula
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Old May 1st, 2022, 03:43 AM
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Thank you both for your replies. As I am thinking about it, it was probably inappropriate to ask this question, since any answer would be construed as "advertising." I would delete the thread, but I'm not sure how!
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Old May 1st, 2022, 03:51 AM
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no, the question is fine and similar to asking about local guides which is welcome, just not really what we do
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Old May 1st, 2022, 06:10 AM
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Welcome to Fodors. Nothing at all inappropriate with your question. It just isn't in most of our wheelhouses. Posting recommended sites is totally allowed and isn't considered 'advertising'. One can link to Joe's Taxi Service . . . as long as one isn't Joe . You likely would get lots of recommendations for local guides, day trips, those sorts of things - but not full on travel planners.

Now, one exception seems to be on the Africa forum where there are frequently recommendations for safari and trip planners.
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Old May 1st, 2022, 10:41 AM
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It is so easy these days to plan your own trips that I'm surprised many TAs are still in business. There is really no need to drive in Europe as the train system is excellent - I haven't driven on a trip since 2004.

One possibility is a private tour arranged by a tour company. Several of the companies that do group tours also offer private tours. If you give us an idea of your price range we could make some suggestions, although I think it is more common for more difficult destinations. For instance, Geo Ex only does Iceland, Norway and Scotland.

At the high end there is this: https://www.abercrombiekent.com/cust...-made-journeys

At the lower end: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/us/tailor-made
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Old May 1st, 2022, 11:30 AM
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Nonniej, people here are so experienced that they can help you plan, right down to hotels, restaurants, tour guides, etc. Many also have special needs or travel with someone who does, and know how to do that if necessary. There are also companies that just arrange local guided tours in different cities so one of them could likely book most sightseeing tours for you.

Germany, Switzerland and Austria are super easy countries to travel in, much easier, IMHO, than the US. Trains and public transportation is so easy there, unlike the US, plus it is easy to book private drivers everywhere. We rarely drive in Europe.

Some advice and caution.

Do not book flights until you have decided on an itinerary. Do not book round trip until you have checked out multi-city (not two one-way). So many people do that and end up having to spend more time and money getting back to their departure city than the multi-city would have cost.

Even if you decide to have a company create a tour for you, I highly recommend running the itinerary by people here before booking. If you use a tour company, ask if the agent working with you has actually been to the places you want to go. If they have not, do not use them.

I have seen some truly wretched trips planed for people by agents who had never traveled to the countries themselves. A few travelers come here for help after they are fully booked and it is too late to fix things.

Have a really good idea of where you want to go and what you want to see before contacting an agent.
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Old May 1st, 2022, 12:37 PM
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Rick Steves has a Best of Germany, Austria and Switzerland tour. I have not taken his tours, but you might get ideas from looking at: https://www.ricksteves.com/tours/ger...itzerland-tour.

Rick's tours stay at well-located moderately priced hotels and we were at one of those hotels while one of his tours was there. The group seemed to be having a great time and invited us to an evening performance that had been organized for his group. I do like to use his travel guidebooks when planning a trip.

His understand his travel group also does travel consulting and trip planning for independent travelers.


Last edited by KTtravel; May 1st, 2022 at 12:41 PM.
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Old May 1st, 2022, 03:03 PM
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Thank you so much everyone! I have researched quite a bit, including Rick Steves' information. Here is generally what I'm thinking. Our main interests are just seeing the beauty of each country. I realize I can't do them all justice in two weeks, so I've tried to pick the things I think we would most enjoy. I was thinking of flying into Frankfurt, driving through some portion of Black Forest area, then on to Fussen for two nights to see Neuschwanstein Castle. Then a night in Rothenburg ob der Tauber. Then on to Salzburg and stay four nights there. Take two day trips from there, perhaps to Hallstatt and Grossglockner/High Alpine Road. I would like to see Vienna, but we only have two weeks, so I don't think that will be doable. Then on to Lucerne for four nights. Thinking of day trips to Lauterbrunnen, either Mount Titlis or Jungfraujoch, and possibly to Zermatt. I realize that it would be a LONG day trip to Zermatt and back, but I figured we can sleep on the train on the way back! Then Fly out of Zurich. Any suggestions?

Last edited by nonniej; May 1st, 2022 at 03:15 PM. Reason: Adding information
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Old May 1st, 2022, 05:33 PM
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You might want to post a new thread with Germany, Austria and Switzerland in the title now.
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Old May 1st, 2022, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Sassafrass View Post
You might want to post a new thread with Germany, Austria and Switzerland in the title now.

Instead of a new thread and starting from scratch -- I'd ask the moderators to edit the topic's title. Something like Help with trip to Germany, Switzerland and Austria.
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Old May 1st, 2022, 06:21 PM
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Thank you, Sassafrass; that's a good idea. I see the "Ask a moderator" forum, but it doesn't seem to allow me to post there.

Last edited by nonniej; May 1st, 2022 at 06:32 PM. Reason: Adding information
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Old May 1st, 2022, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by nonniej View Post
Thank you, Sassafrass; that's a good idea. I see the "Ask a moderator" forum, but it doesn't seem to allow me to post there.
See the little orange triangle below you name on the post? Click that and you'll get a dialog box to communicate with the moderators
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Old May 1st, 2022, 06:48 PM
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Janisj has given the correct advice. Thanks.
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Old May 2nd, 2022, 03:37 AM
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Thank you!
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