Whether it is a trip through the heartland of America, the medieval cities of Europe, the ancient cities of South America or the lands of the Maharajah, a lot of people find the thought of how to connect one location with the next, and what to do in those locations exhausting. How to I get from Paris to Cologne? Will I have to wait in a long queue at the Taj Mahal? How many places can I reasonably see in Washington in a day?
Sometimes, when you are ready to experience a location – be in a new country, or part of your own, what you really want is to sit back and relax, enjoy the sights and sounds and let someone else worry about how you get between places, or what you are doing for breakfast. Which is where group touring is a fantastic way to experience locations around the world!
There are large group tour operators who offer a number of destinations across the world – their inclusions range for the all inclusive luxury style packages of APT, Scenic and Insight Vacations, to the good quality programmes of AAT Kings, Travelmarvel, Globus, Wendy Wu Tours and Trafalgar that cover what you want to see but may not include as many meals or drinks.
For the more budget conscious or those who enjoy a bit of adventure, but like the security of having someone there to look after your problems there are slew of operators running everything from small to large groups like Cosmos or Peregrine, or smaller groups and more intimate experiences with companies like G-Adventures or Intrepid.
Then you have your dedicated small group tour operators that use good quality accommodation, and tie off the ability to see fantastic sights with an intimate touring experience, or a unique focus on the touring, such as is available through operators like Back-Roads Touring, the Africa Safari Co, or National Geographic Journeys by G-Adventures.
Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and the Americas. Small groups, adventurous travel, luxury travel, large groups, short tours and longer voyages. There is a group tour out there for everyone, whether its the desire to hike around the Inca Trail or relax in Luxury as you cruise the Danube, there are group programmes available for every style of traveller – and no better way to let someone else worry about the little things while you enjoy the opportunity to explore, visit and make new connections.
So if exploring the world in good company sounds like something you are interested in then now is the time to come and speak with the wide range of group travel experts that will for one night only be accessible at ..
My Travel Expo.
4pm til 7pm, 22 September 2016,
@ Shoalhaven Ex-Servicemans Club Worrigree.
Call (02) 4421 5577 for more information
On the doorstep of South East Asia, Singapore, is the first step for many travellers encountering Asian Culture for the first time. Modern, Metropolitan and Magnificent, My Travel Expert wants to show you what we are doing in Singapore this October with a fantstic group tour taking in the highlights of this incredible Island Nation. From Steel Gardens to Wildlife Parks there is always something in Singapore to experience and we want to show it to you! So join us on the 11th of February from 4pm and see what we are planning, and if interested place your name down on this one off departure!
So today we have a couple of exhibitors to introduce to you! With just three days to go before our Expo we have plenty to still tempt you into coming down! Today I want to let you know about one of our fantastic River Cruise operators and one of our more popular Ocean Cruise Providers.
Here in Australia one of the more popular tour operators headed into Asia is Wendy Wu Tours, and people love their journeys through China and India and beyond. What many do not realise is that Wendy Wu Tours also offer a fantastic range of Cruise and Tour Combinations that will allow you to explore the waterways of Asia.
Along the Mekong you can cruise the lower Mekong between Siem Reap and Ho Chi Minh City – possibly the most popular area of the river for tourists. You can also take cruising options along the upper mekong starting at Kampong Cham in Thailand and cruising varying sections up until the island and waterfalls that will eventually flow down to tonle Sap! If we stay within the Indo-China region you can also explore the Red River in northern Vietnam
In China you can have the options of the standard 4 day short cruise along the Yangtze or a longer 8 day sailing. either are combinable with tours that can take in the waterways of the South around Guilin and beyond. In Myanmar you can journey the Irrawaddy (or Ayeryaddy as some call it) between Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan and Inle Lake visiting some of the highlights of the country .. or you can take an off the beaten path trip and cruise the Chinidwan or Saleen Rivers.
If that isn’t enough then Wendy Wu can also take you on some of the most relaxing boat trips in India either on a group tour or a solo adventure as you discover the backwaters of Kerala, the peaceful lake life in Srinigar or maybe even a cruise along the Ganges or Brahmaputra. As you can see if Cruising the waterways of Europe is dominated by a small number of Cruise lines, Wendy Wu Tours has access to the best range of cruising options throught the Asian Region.
If river cruising though does not sound like the right choice at the moment, or you have a family with you that doesn’t necessarily enjoy sightseeing then the option remains to check-aboard with todays other Exhibitor – Carnival Cruises!
While the name is now becoming familiar to Australian travellers with the new Carnival Legend arriving in 2015 and the Carnival Spirit a few years earlier, the Carnival Cruise Line has been around for some time and firmly established their place within the worlds cruise industry.
From Austrlian waters you will find cruises on Carnival that will take you out to discover Tasmania, New Caledonia, Fiji, Vanuatu, Singapore, Hawaii, the Great Barrier Reef and New Zealand. Internationally they have cruises that cover the Caribbean, the Bahamas, Mexico, Bermuda, Panama, Alaska, Canada and New England, Hawaii and Europe. A list of fantastic destinations though is not the only draw card that Carnival have up their sleeve.
Carnival Ships are often referred to as “Funships”and for good reason. Built as the ultimate floating resort they have giant slides, rock climbing, golfing, swimming and more to keep the kids and healthier adults active. There are kid clubs with special themes and shows, regular trivia and other events daily for the adults, and the nights are filled with dances, parties and shows. You can catch a movie at their in-house theatre, or for the adults you can retreat to an adults only R&R area to avoid the swarms of kids and families. With a range of dining options from burger joints to fine dining, from seafood to a kids breakfast with Dr Seuss there is something for everyone to enjoy whilst aboard one of Carnivals Funships.
So If exploring Asia on a river Cruise or taking the family out of a floating resort sounds like the way to spend your next Vacation then why not come down and speak with the experts from Wendy Wu Tours and Carnival Cruises at My Cruise Expo on the 17th March at Worrigee Ex-Servicemans Club from 5pm!
While this has been written up for the Solo Traveller, a lot of these are hints, tips and things to remember for travellers in general !
15. Contact Details. These are important, for you, if you need help, for families if they need to find you. Ensure that you have all contacts you need for whilst travelling – hotels, consulate, airlines, and make sure that someone back home has these as well.
14. Packing. Pack right, make sure your clothes and needs are met but don’t over pack – remember if you can’t carry it, don’t take it. While some flights and taxis allow for a lot of baggage, most tour buses will only allow 20kg of baggage and you should remember that at the worst, baggage handlers at the airport can’t tote more than 35kg.
13. Medicines & Health – Remember to Prepare. Make sure that you have everything organised to make sure your health keeps up whilst on tour. If you have regular medications you need to take ensure that you can take them into the country where you are travelling and that you have several copies of a prescription list from your doctor (so if you lose the meds you can get them replaced), and remember to pack the basics – pain killers, anti-diarrhetics, the usual.
12. Remember the Basics. Make sure that you are prepared for your trip and pack yourself a handy travel bag with the essentials well before you go! Combs, toothbrush, power adaptors, baggage locks, pen – the little things that you will need on a daily basis which if you leave till the last moment you may forget to pack.
11. Document Copies. Always remember to have a couple of copies of your travel documents, with at least 1 electronic version stored away on an easily accessible e-mail. Why? This way in case you lose them, or things go missing you have a copy at hand, one way or another, to guide you along the rest of your trip
10. Arrive before dark! A lot of people like to try and minimise and maximise their time by arriving very early in the morning or late at night – in the end though this is not the best use of your time, especially when travelling across time zones. Early afternoon arrivals will allow you to usually be able to check in straight away, have time to check out the local area and still get a good night sleep and set you up with the local time zone, and you avoid trying to muddle your way to a new location in the dark and presumably tired.
9. Safety Awareness. Like when you are at home, be aware of your surroundings, don’t leave bags unattended, don’t make it easy for pickpockets to come up and slice off a bum bag, don’t look like you have no idea where you are or what is going on. There are always people out there that will take advantage of you, just remember the basic precautions and limit the amount of ways that trouble can stalk you!
8. Street Food . May taste fantastic but can often be cooked and prepared in unsanitary conditions, so think before you eat, take a good look at how food is prepared if possible, and if not pass it by .. or if you don’t pass it by then make sure you have your anti-diarrhetics ready to counter any possible upset
7. Dress Appropriately. You may be comfortable in your short-shorts and sleeveless shirts, but it may not always be appropriate. Cultural Norms, Religious Customs and Social Attitude vary wildly around the globe, and when you are travelling it is best to prepare yourself for these situations so you don’t attract unwarranted attention and don’t inadvertently offend the locals.
6. Alcohol. While drinking Alcohol will ensure that you won’t be poisoned by the local water you should always remember to drink in moderation – the last thing you need is to consume to excess and find yourself in trouble with the local authorities, or worse in a sticky situation that due to your inebriation you don’t realise you are walking into.
5. Stay Accessible. As a solo traveller its imperative that you remain contactable – both so you can call for help or can be called for help. Setting up International Roam on your mobile, buying local pre-paid cards or international Sims will ensure that you are able to stay in touch with friends family, and even local suppliers and hotels who you will need to talk to.
4. Pre-organise. It sounds great to be able to hit the ground and then find your own way around. Which it is, if you want to find yourself more stressed, seeing less and probably spending more. Book in your Accommodation before you go and you will most probably save money, be at better locations, and free up more of your own time to see the local sites. This extends beyond hotels, pre-organising everything from rail to tours to taxis can all help you save time, and get the best out of your trip.
3. Limit Cash! Nothing says “Mug Me!” like carrying around big wads of Cash, keep cash limited to the basics – as you would at home, and leave the rest to credit and debit cards. If your own bank charges excessive fees organising a Cash Passport will allow you to make the best of exchange rates and lack of fees when travelling internationally. By using a card to withdrawal as needed you will escape notice of having too much cash as is good for you.
2. Insurance. The Australian Government has said “If you can’t afford Travel Insurance, you can’t afford to travel”, and they are right. Going away without insurance is putting so much at risk, from being stuck in a location due to natural disaster, or finding yourself with a growing medical bill. Choosing the right policy is important and making sure that should things go wrong, then you need to make sure that you are prepared – and travel insurance is a small price to pay to ensure that should things go bad, you are covered.
1. Use A Travel Agent. Everyone says “but they cost more” and in some cases they do, but those costs are usually minimal and the fees and usually reasonable, and having someone there to be able to call in a panic, who has the experience to help you build your trip and who can make sure that things go right from get to go is well worth it. A few years ago AFTA came out with a slogan that says it all “Without A Travel Agent, You’re On Your Own”. Your Travel Agent is there to look after you, help you out when things go sour, and be there when you want to relieve your trip highlights!