If you are thinking group travel is anything like the old-fashioned bus tour, please think again. Group travel, especially on ocean or river cruises, gives you the best of both worlds – independence but support from fellow group travelers if you need it. Sometimes there is the bonus of an escort for the group, someone who knows the ins and outs of travel and/or the destinations(s).
Here are some of the advantages of groups:
- Quite often the group is like-minded. It might be family, friends, or complete strangers who share your interests. At the very least, the others in your group have decided this particular itinerary and schedule of events is right for them – just as you have.
- For the first timer or the more timid traveler, group travel as mentioned earlier is like a security blanket.
- Groups often have perks such as private cocktail parties, amenities, private or preferred access to points of interest, etc. that you would not get booking independently.
- Groups also receive preferred pricing or travel savings which are passed on to you. This is especially true of cruising where staterooms can be hundreds of dollars less than booking independently, and often include valuable amenities and add-ons.
- If you are the amiable type that likes to make new friends, a group provides the perfect “built-in” opportunity to meet new people from all over the world – or from just across town.
And if your group is escorted, there are additional advantages to group travel:
- Your escort is usually a seasoned traveler . He/she knows the destinations and the cruise line if it’s a group cruise. Hence great advice and tips are just a question away.
- Often your escort is a travel professional so it is like taking your travel advisor with you.
- Your escort works in the background to smooth any wrinkles on your trip or cruise but remains fairly unobtrusive, especially on a cruise.
- If one encounters any difficulties such as illness or problems with flights, excursions, and so on the escort is there with valuable advice and can lend a helping hand.
- On a group cruise you can have as little contact with your escort and the rest of the group as you like; you can chose toremain quite independent in your chosen activities but still enjoy the advantages that come with your group booking.
So if you want the boxes of ➡ Savings, ➡ Security and/or ➡ Socializing ticked on your next holiday – especially if you are a first time or solo traveler – give a group guided tour or group cruise a try. You may never travel any other way again!
Contact your trusted travel professional about group travel. He or she has knowledge of many available groups to suit you and your interests, most times at a price lower or with greater value than independent travel.
Article written by D. MacIntyre of compassmedia.us. Photos courtesy of Bigstock and Pixabay.