For more reasons than we can count, guided tours are one of the best ways to travel. Modern guided tours give travelers a complete vacation experience by making sure you get the most out of your trip without having to worry about things like transportation, language barriers or finding the best things to do in your destination.
Here are five of the top reasons to make your next vacation a guided travel vacation.
Guided Tours Bring You Closer to the Destination
Perhaps most importantly, a guided tour brings you closer to the history, culture and people of your destination than other forms of travel. Most tour guides are passionate and experienced and are there to give you the complete story of your destination, from local history and folk tales to knowledge of the community. They can help overcome language barriers and offer recommendations such as places to eat. Serving as your personal connection, tour guides can give the level of insight that travelers crave.
For example, you can tour Alaska and check off your list of must-see landmarks, but an Alaskan tour guide will make sure you get the most out of your time exploring The Last Frontier.
Tours like AAA Member Choice Vacation’s Iditarod and Alaska’s Northern Lights include experiences you won’t soon forget, like cheering on mushers during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race and a visit to a wildlife conservation center. Your expert tour guide will teach you about exciting Iditarod traditions, suggest local foods to try and make sure you are well-prepared to explore the Alaskan wilderness on your own.
Skip the FOMO, Not the Fun
If you’ve always dreamed of visiting Paris, the Louvre Museum and Eiffel Tower can’t be missed. But what will you see on the rest of your trip? What is the best bistro beloved by locals? And what is the best way to get around? It can be difficult to figure out how to spend your time, especially when it’s your first time traveling to a new place.
A guided tour makes sure you’re not missing out. Your itinerary is built to be jam-packed with the best sites and sounds, both on and off the beaten path, in the best logistical way. Tour itineraries are crafted by experienced experts, often with decades of knowledge. For example, AAA Member Choice Vacations itineraries use over 100 years of experience to provide unique and compelling travel experiences around the globe.
Get Authentic Experiences, Easily
Modern tours have a variety of inclusions specifically intended to bring you face-to-face with the local community and culture. Rather than visits to tourist traps, you’ll find unique opportunities to engage with your destination that you typically can’t find elsewhere, like dining with multi-generational family owners of an Italian vineyard or overnight stays in historic Irish castles. If you want experiences like this, a guided tour is one of the easiest ways to make it happen.
The ever-popular Reflections of Italy tour from AAA Member Choice Vacations includes experiences like a chef-led cooking class and lunch in a historic castle!
Balance of Structure and Flexibility
Today’s guided tours give travelers both exciting daily events, meals, lodging and transportation, all while guaranteeing flexibility to explore as one pleases. On most days, you’ll have a few scheduled events, but also built-in free time. This means you will still have the opportunity to wander scenic backstreets, visit the restaurant you researched online or take advantage of your tour guide’s tips for other sights. Plus, with lodging and transportation are taken care of, you are free from the hassle and worry of planning how to get around on your trip.
Many tour itineraries are offered completely custom, meaning you are able to work with the tour manager and your travel agent to plan all of the stops and experiences you want with their expertise. Want to extend your tour? Many providers offer pre or post-night stays, extensions and other custom excursions. For example, many AAA Member Choice Vacations tours offer It’s Your Choice excursions, where tourgoers can pick two or more available excursions according to their tastes.
There are so many itineraries to choose from, each offering a different flavor of the destination and unique type of tour experience. You are sure to find the tour that will deliver the kind of experience you are looking for, no matter the destination. AAA Member Choice Vacations offers 175 tours for you to choose from across all seven continents and five tour styles!
Friends That Last a Lifetime
Nothing brings people together like travel. On a guided tour, you explore beautiful places, discover new favorite foods and leave your comfort zone in the dust with your fellow tour-goers. You are sure to form bonds over these unique, unforgettable and special experiences. At AAA Travel, it is far from uncommon to hear that our members become friends for a lifetime after their guided tour. It’s often cited as the best part of their travels!
Recently, AAA member Sheyna Medina went on a guided tour of the Western USA’s National Parks. She told us that at the beginning of the tour, she and her group felt like strangers, but ended the trip as friends. “These people truly felt like family that week!,” she said.
So, how does a guided tour sound for your next trip?