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Why You Should Consider a Guided Tour

  • @Tumutoa Tours

Find out what’s great about joining the club

Imagine an all inclusive holiday package where major expenses have been paid, you really do have to do lots of driving, entrance tickets and dinners are part of the deal. The costs are up front and a well researched guided tour gives you freedom to explore for half a day if you so desire.

 

SAVINGS – GUIDED PACKAGING HOLIDAYS

A holiday costs; it’s expensive. A holiday is often a balancing act between what you want to do and what you can afford. A package holiday allows consumers (that’s you) to enjoy the benefits of a wholesaler’s bulk purchasing power. Your room rate is likely to be cheaper on a guided tour due to the bulk buying power of a tour operator. However it’s important you independently check reviews on the hotel rooms offered by the tour operator.

@Jeroen Jongejans
@Jeroen Jongejans

Investigate the following:

  • Does the tour operator have good reviews for room type matching advertised offers? Tripadvisor is a very useful information source here along with social media.
  • Does the tour operator get good reviews for the location of the hotels? It’s no good having half a day to independently explore the area if it’s a 5 km trek to the nearest attraction. You know what you want to see, check on google maps proximity to the offered accommodation.
  • Does the tour operator slip in too many half day ‘free time’. You are paying for a local expert to show you around not simply bus transport.
  • Airline package deals with a suite of hotel offerings is an excellent opportunity to save … especially for short breaks and weekends away. The proviso is to check where the hotel is located as you are an independent traveller.
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IS IT CHEAPER TO BOOK DIRECTLY WITH A HOTEL RATHER THAN USE AN AGENT SUCH AS BOOKING.COM?

It is not necessarily cheaper to book directly with a hotel as the online booking platforms have bulk purchasing power at their fingertips. However booking directly means room upgrades and perks are much more likely.

@Hobson's Choice Motel
@Hobson's Choice Motel

More booking platforms to find a cozy place to stay in New Zealand

THERE IS A HOLIDAY DEAL FOR GEN Z TO YOUR GRANDMA

OMG you really want to go bungy jumping in New Zealand, you must join a climb on the ramparts of the Sydney Harbour Bridge … on the bucket list is a leisurely courtyard brunch and the list goes on. Today there are budget holiday deals for the first time travellers to luxury options for a leisurely tour. 

The devil is in the details. Check the daily itinerary for a list of attractions. You don’t want to miss out on a bucket list attraction because it’s not on the scheduled list of things to do. Understand that some attractions insist their guides escort you around.

Caucasian man taking a selfie with smartphone in Split Apple Rock, Abel Tasman National Park, New Zealand
Split Apple Rock, Abel Tasman National Park
Autumn in Queenstown, New Zealand
Autumn in Queenstown

CAN YOU HAVE YOUR CAKE AND EAT IT TOO WHEN IT COMES TO PACKAGE HOLIDAY DEALS?

You can enjoy the benefits of a package holiday with the freedom perks of independent travel. The key to success is guided day trips, packages offering 3 – 4 days maximum with independent travel nestled among the guided trips.

TIP

When you book a guided holiday package, request additional night(s) in the same location. Book additional nights after the guided trips as you are now ‘familiar’ with landmarks. City walking tours are a great way to find out more about a place.

 

More Tours, Activities and Adventures Here...

DO YOU FEEL A FRISSON OF HORROR ABOUT JOINING A GUIDED TOUR?

Does a guided tour feel like a horror holiday, then dip into your package holiday deal with a short version.

A guided day tour or a short weekend travel deal to experience what it’s like to relinquish control of your itinerary to a guide. And you get to mingle with people whose command denominator is you all purchased a travel deal.

Kaikoura Swim with Dolphins Tour from Christchurch
Kaikoura Swim with Dolphins Tour from Christchurch
The Reefman Tour @Cook Islands Tours
The Reefman Tour @Cook Islands Tours

ARE YOU WORRIED A GUIDED TOUR DOES NOT GIVE YOU FREEDOM TO ENJOY ATTRACTIONS AT YOUR PACE?

A guided tour does control the time spent at an attraction yet you do have the freedom to wander off slightly and look at exhibits that interest you.

Gently inform the guide before the tour commences you will be watching him/her for signals it’s time to move to the new location and will move with the group.

TIP

Nzjane travel editor asks the guides where the meeting point is for departure and the time expected. You will get pushback as the guide is responsible for your welfare. Negotiate and make sure you are on time for pickup. 

 

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU DISAGREE WITH THE TRAVEL GUIDE’S NARRATIVE?

If you disagree with the tour guide’s narrative, remember a tour guide is a tourism advocate. You are on a tour and not participating in a debate.

Depending on the size of the tour group ask one or two questions and practice ‘silent listening.’ If you are very uncomfortable with the content, use the tour provider’s messaging system to voice your concerns.

Christchurch Guided Crater Rim Walk and Picnic, New Zealand
Christchurch Guided Crater Rim Walk and Picnic

WHAT ARE THE KEY FACTORS TO CONSIDER WHEN YOU PICK A GUIDED TOUR?

The important points to consider when picking a guided tour are, group size, what feels comfortable, evaluate your interests and compare where the tour is going and scheduled time, look at target audience, for instance, is it an active walking tour or party-centred tour?

Franz Josef, New Zealand. A group of tourists hiking on Franz Josef Glacier
A group of tourists hiking on Franz Josef Glacier
  • Check tour reviews, credentials however read with a grain of salt. There is always someone who complains. One or two complaints versus over thirty good reviews is a good sign the tour is worthwhile.
  • Pick a tour operator that is local. Choose a company located in the country you are travelling in as the tour operator is invested in the local economy.
  • Check what the tour operator includes and excludes. Budget tours usually exclude food and beverage.
  • The easiest way to compare which tour to join is by comparing various tour offerings. Make a list and compare and contrast pricing, places visited, food and beverage offerings and the length of time spent on the bus travelling from point A to point B.

 

AFFILIATE PARTNER STATEMENT
Our editors independently visit tour operators, purchase tickets, pay for accommodation, and rate products and places. We are not paid to go on a tour or visit a place. We only make money if you decide to purchase a product through our website links. We promise to never accept free products from manufacturers in return for boosting their products. Read more about our affiliate programme in the terms and conditions HERE.

 

BEST BITS TRAVEL GUIDE

Best Bits travel guide is published by nzjane.com. Owned and managed by PacificJane Ltd.

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