While it was certainly not my cup of tea ( I hate the fleecing in those linzhi jade or dunno what shop traps by these operators ) and I love to laze and spend time drinking kopi and stone a little, but if INDEED your travelling agenda IS to clock as many places as possible, then tour operators are hard to beat. No need to plan, no need to worry about logistics, ( and fits ur annual leave limit ! ) and i can see why they are still so much in vogue. While of course there are still of opportunities for tour trips to screw up, there are much more opportunities for self planned trips to trip over and undermine enjoyment. I have been planning holidays f/e for past few yrs, and there must always be a contingency plan if something fails. ( I have booked an activity before that did not go through because of online glitches on the other end and only find out after an hr drive to the location )
Private tours might offer good balance with catered itinerary with possibly more independent time.
Depends...i joined a few local tours in China, the guides are students and really knowledgeable, not about shopping but more on culture, history, literature.
For Europe, to have a relaxing tour, you need to go on your own; Almost all the itineraries are at most 2 days at a places before moving to somewhere else.
Hey guys is it ok to travel from France to London to Spain then Italy and back to France in 12 days? Look at the attractions and feel like life of pple living there... Is it too short of a time?
It's not about showing off, but you want to be able to sit down and enjoy. Obviously different people have their own styles and time constraints, but two countries will be a better bet and you can slow down to chill.
Unless going helter skelter is your idea of fun.
I have posted a thread in the travel section on Paris and France, and if you want info on Barcelona, I have also posted that.
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after my brother-in-law discovered he had 3rd stage cancer of the liver ..... he essentially stopped working to visit the places he always dreamed of going but never did .... he had little choice with an estimated 2 years left then...
so people have different reasons why they travel in different ways or means
Thanks, I'll definitely look it up. And thanks too for the suggestion.Originally Posted by petetherock
I have never travel on a goup tour. It's insanity to rush from place to place jostling places with fellow tourists. This brought to memory of a S'porean man I met at the check-in counter at LA Airport. Making small talk while waiting to check in, he was very surprised to hear that I self-drive on my holiday and commented that "you are very brave". OMG, that guy never know how to enjoy life. So are many ppl out there.
As I grow older, I started to get lazy. These days i planned a bit, but usually look for somewhere where I have friends - free accommodation plus free guide :X One thing i found useful doing so, I followed my friends around on their daily lives, and observed them and their community in doing so, something that going to tourist attractions wont allow u to do so. For instance, in beijing, I've been to quite a few local residences in various forms, including old courtyards where my friend's relatives live.
but like edutilos said.. as a female who frequently travel alone, i found using local tours very useful. It lifts a load off in terms of safety and logistics is concerned.
Following tour groups has its place - especially if you have the young and the old going with you on the trip. The peace of mind that things are taken care of is sometimes worth paying for it.
Every form of travel has its place and appropriateness. I guess it's more important that you achieve the objective that you set out for the trip - be it relaxation trip, shopping trip, spa trip, photography trip.. etc.
It is more than just "oh, I want to go here" though for photography trips, if there are seascapes then you have to check the tide to make sure it's ok; if it's a landscape you need to check if the view you want is going to be lit up well at the right timing, etc. Loads of homework. Cities are always easier.
Never gone on tours before- usually the company of family and friends I travel with would do research on the places we want to go to then wake up any time we want, travel anywhere we want... It's alot more relaxing and chill (:
and come up with contingencies if u cannot reach a destination or some car incident etc. .
But yes, u got more time for urself as planned, with more breathing space per se.
* the other thing is I dun have to eat what/where tour companies planned for me