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Tour Group Recommendations for mid 20's to 30's

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Aug 16th, 2012, 06:40 AM
  #1
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Tour Group Recommendations for mid 20's to 30's

Hello - I am looking to go on a 3-4 week European tour in January 2013. I am 26 and hope to find a tour group that attracts travelers around my age up to mid to late 30's. I have been reviewing several groups, Contiki, Intrepid, etc. online however, I am getting mixed reviews. Do you have any recommendations on any other tour groups or reviews of Contiki or Intrepid that may be useful in helping me plan my trip? I also, will be a solo traveler and hope to not be in an all couples tour group. Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!
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Aug 16th, 2012, 07:15 AM
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I was a solo traveler aged 23 and took a Contiki tour and had a lot of fun. There are lots of solo travelers so no problems there. Some things to think about:

1. You will spend a lot of time on a bus traveling between places
2. You will have early morning wake-up calls
3. Lots of people are there to party and drink - I didnt feel any pressure to join them and went to bed so I was refreshed for sight seeing, but many will be up late drinking
4. Many of the hotels are not convenient to city centres so you are pretty much dependent on staying with the group for transportation into and out of the cities to your hotels.

Would I do it again - no, but I like to travel independently and have my hubby to do that with now.

Was it a good experience - absolutely at the time. I had never traveled overseas before, or anywhere by myself and it really gave me confidence! I wouldnt have done it by myself, but felt comfy in the group.

Have fun no matter what you decide!
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Aug 16th, 2012, 09:02 AM
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Well January is not the high season for any tour company so not sure how many choices are out there. And it is probable that any group will have mixed reviews so if it is a tour you want, pick an itinerary you like and go for it. Have you looked at Rick Steves but again, not sure how many tours he has running that time of year.

Since you have a travel partner and plenty of time, maybe you could consider going on your own? You would get alot of help on this board, esp. if you come with at least a beginning plan of your itinerary.
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Aug 16th, 2012, 09:20 AM
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suec1 - where did you get the info that the OP has a travel partner - she says she's traveling solo.

Taylor - there is good and bad about all tour groups. The ones you're considering are reputable. Choose the tour with the itinerary that meets your criteria and price.
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Aug 16th, 2012, 10:58 AM
  #5
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Thank you for all your comments! This is very helpful.

Adrienne - The tours on Contiki I am considering are where I want to go. Also, since I am considering going January or February now, I am hoping I will not have as many undergraduate students and more working professionals. Thoughts?
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Aug 16th, 2012, 11:03 AM
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I think working professionals are much more likely to be traveling independently. Con Tiki is definitely for a party hardy crowd - and even if the members are a little older (grad student?) I don;t think that means much. Also - since so many schools are on different semester or trimester schedules not sure you won't get a lot of undergrads.

Ordinarily I would reco an active tour (biking or something) vs Con Tiki - but obviously in Jan or Feb that isn't an option.
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Aug 16th, 2012, 12:05 PM
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The upside of a tour is you will often get preferential entry into museums and oh perhaps boat tours and going up the Eiffle Tower..just an example, and you won't waste a lot of time getting lost and trying to figure things out.

I was on a tour my first Europe trip and it was very good for me. We got to see a lot, and like Jamikins, it gave me confidence and I have not taken a tour since, all my other trips have been on my own.
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Aug 16th, 2012, 03:42 PM
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I've never done a Con Tiki tour since I'm well over the age limit but I had a long chat with a local librarian who took a Con Tiki tour to Egypt a couple of years ago and one other Con Tiki tour. I talked to her about these tours for someone else who posted questions about Con Tiki. Here's the librarian's answer. She's about 28 or 29 years old.

" She said on the Egypt only trip the average age was late 20s and it was a good tour.

She also did another Con Tiki western Europe trip (at a different time) that she did not enjoy as much. The average age was 18 to early 20s. She did 1 week on her own but booked a tour because she didn't think she would meet up with anyone. She said that after the tour she wished she had done the whole trip solo as she met up with lots of people her age who were traveling solo and wanted people to travel with. She said she had a good time on the Europe tour but wished she had not spent the money for the tour as she had a better time during the week on her own meeting people and traveling around with them.

The tour was too fast and she didn't have enough time in each location. She also didn't realize how far apart places were and how much time she would spend on the bus. "

Which tour(s) are you thinking about? Please post link(s) and folks will give their opinion on the itinerary. If you're looking at one of the long, overview of Europe tours that is probably a mistake.
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Aug 17th, 2012, 06:44 AM
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The trip I was looking at was actually the winter wanderer tour link below...
http://www.contiki.com/destinations/...inter-wanderer

After doing some research and with everyone's comments above it does seem like it could end up being a lot of younger people. I was however, rearranging my plan now to possibly do a Asia tour instead so it wouldn't be too cold. I was looking at doing a 2 week Contiki tour...link below....and then meeting a friend in Japan for 2 weeks of traveling on our own. So much to consider!!

http://www.contiki.com/destinations/...sian-adventure
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Aug 17th, 2012, 06:56 AM
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All I will say is that if you do a decent amount of research you will probably not get lost and even if you did you'd undoubtedly have an unforgettable experience.

Frankly, I think you may be just a bit too picky about exactly who may be in a group in terms of age, undergraduates vs. grad school vs. "professionals" etc.
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Aug 17th, 2012, 07:05 AM
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The Winter Wanderer is definitely as mistake. You'll see mostly highways from the bus windows, not sights.

The Asia tour is all 1 and 2 night stops. I really hate tours like that. I took a tour like that once and felt like I was shunted around for a week, constantly packing up and moving on. You should post the Asia tour on the Asia board and get opinions there.

I'm really anti Rick Steves but people like his tours and they attract all ages. There's an Italy tour in January (Rome, Florence, Venice) for 9 days. You can do some time on your own before and after the tour starts. His tours are expensive

I really think you should do the trip on your own. Stay in hostels and meet other people to talk with and eat with. Have you posted on the Lonely Planet Thorn Tree forum? It's more your age group than this board.

You might consider a 1 week Con Tiki tour plus time on your own. You can arrange get togethers in European cities.

There's also Servas where you join and meet people who live where you're going. I've not done this but have heard good things about the organization. That way you won't be alone all the time. If you arrange a combination of things such as staying in hostels, a one week tour, walking tours in cities, Service, etc. you'll connect with others. At your age I always found it very easy to connect with other people my age while traveling.
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