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pablopaul Sep 9th, 2005 10:13 AM

Touring independently on an escorted tour
I'm considering taking an escorted tour with Globus to Central Europe. I like their itinerary and hotels, but dislike touring on a bus with a large group.

Would it be unusual or a problem for me to tour each city independently, rather than go on the city tours with the group? With the hotels being fairly centrally located, I think I can pretty much get around on my own and be able to see more in a day than with a large group.

FainaAgain Sep 9th, 2005 11:12 AM

Yes, this may be a problem. Very often the tours start at one point and end at another. Are you going to rent a car in each city?

Another thing - liability. The tour director is legally responsible for your safety. Did you see the disclaimer - anybody can be taken off the tour?

The tour director will be against it as there could be another person in your place to buy optionals (commissions!!) and tip the tour guide.

There are tour companies which offer only hotels, transfers and 1/2 day city tours, the rest is on your own. Ummm... maybe on Globus website? If not, check Affordable Tours website - not sure where I've seen those.

suze Sep 9th, 2005 11:33 AM

I would ask Globus your question. It's really their call. My guess is you would be better off finding a tour company that is set up to include individual touring time and/or a less structured package.

kayd Sep 9th, 2005 12:23 PM

Are you talking about skipping a daytime activity while staying in the same hotel and traveling with the group between cities? I'd be surprised if anyone cares whether you skip a scheduled daytour -- what you do with your time (sleep late, visit a nearby village of particular interest to you, go shoe shopping) shouldn't concern anyone else as long as you don't expect the tour operator to refund money for the activity you declined.
If you mean to find your own transportation between cities, then I'd ask why you want this tour at all.

Scotia Sep 9th, 2005 01:08 PM

I have been reviewing a Globus brochure myself, and they have independent tours called "Monograms". They are not escorted but everything is prepaid, pre-arranged and tours arranged by local tour operators. This might meet your requirements.

FainaAgain Sep 9th, 2005 02:34 PM

Yes, Monograms, that's it! Thank you, Scotia :)

gail Sep 9th, 2005 03:38 PM

I have been on only 2 tours (One when we went to Egypt - we did not want to make arrangements alone) plus one to Ireland - my mother was paying and so I had no right to complain - she loves group tours.

Besides the obvious issue of day starting and ending in one city, neither of these tours would have had a problem with this. Another option is to use the bus as transportation and set your own schedule at each stop. I think the guide may be very willing to tell you that the bus leaves at a specific time and as long as you are back by then, who cares what you do.

An issue to consider with this is price of admission to various places. This is usually included in tour, but only if you go as a group. So you will end up paying for admission (thru price of tour) to places twice - once when the group goes and once when you go alone.

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