10 Tips for You to Know Before You Go On Your Vacation
Having traveled across more than 10 countries on various Cosmos vacations, I realize that the most important part of any holiday is being prepared. I have learnt that having realistic and practical expectations are extremely important to ensure memorable vacation experiences. But how do you know what to expect when it’s your first time on tour?
I have put together some tips to help you with all the important questions that all travelers have asked us for every tour. I will save you the concern or queries – this is your complete guide featuring everything you want to know before you travel.
What Exactly is Included in My Vacation?
This is possibly the first question on your mind, when you decide on where to go and how much to pay. When you travel on a Cosmos vacation, the true value of your vacation is in the accurate detailed vacation description. These are available both on the website and in the brochure. These are unusually specific. Your tour includes about hotels, touring in deluxe motorcoaches, sightseeing, and included meals as mentioned. And for your clarity, the itinerary spells out the agenda for each day with the exact inclusions. Sightseeing with Local Guides where offered is listed. All inside visits, where applicable, are in UPPERCASE in the tour description and these include admission charges.
When should I arrive in the city where my tour starts?
Since travelers come from all around the world to join Cosmos tours, there are typically no scheduled activities on the first day of the tour. There may be some optional excursions like a dinner with sightseeing. Tip: Since the check-in times at hotels worldwide are between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m., it is best to look for a flight which arrives around midday. If you arrive earlier and want to explore the city on your own, most hotels will allow their guests to store luggage at the hotel before check-in. If in doubt, just ask.
How long will we be on the road each day? How often do we stop en-route?
Driving time varies for each vacation. It depends on the itinerary, and the driving distance is mentioned in the travel documents, if available. When driving between cities, the motorcoach stops after every 1.5-2 hours at places where you can pick up a snack/meal and use restrooms. Most vacations do not include drives from one city to another every day.
How early will I have to wake up on the vacations?
Generally speaking, the wake-up call differs based on the vacation you travel on, the season when you are traveling, the city that you are in, and even the weather. While the wake-up times are not the same each day, your Tour Director will definitely give you an idea of what to expect during the tour. This will help you prepare. Tip: Keep in mind that early starts offer the advantage of reaching sightseeing spots before the rush. Thus, leaving you free the rest of the day to enjoy the destination and to do as you please.
Why do I have to be on time?
Considering this is group travel, it is quite important that everyone is punctual at all times. Tip: From departure times to optional tours, to meeting times, be on time so that you do not get left behind and can enjoy the tour stress-free. It would be a waste of time to have to wait for someone who is late, instead of enjoying the sights. Also, group tours are planned to maximise the touring experience. So, on-time operation is necessary.
Who will I travel with?
Cosmos vacations are very popular worldwide. The demographic profile of our travelers is varied. One of the best things about group travel on Cosmos is that travelers are usually of varied ages and professional backgrounds. They include many nationalities, including American, British, Canadian, Australian, New Zealanders, Japanese, Thai, Indian, and many others! Thus, you get a wonderful opportunity to make friends from all around the world. Tip: Go ahead, introduce yourself and mix with your fellow travelers. It is so much more fun for you than being on your own. Who knows you may end up planning your next vacation with them?
What do Tour Directors do?
Most of the feedback we get about our tours are about how amazing our Tour Directors are. Infact, every Cosmos vacation is extra special because of the experienced, and knowledgeable Tour Directors who escort each tour! They are extremely friendly and thoroughly professionals. Highly respected, they are trained in dealing with people from different cultures and backgrounds. They work hard to provide you with an enjoyable and hassle-free vacation. They narrate delightful stories, give local insights, and work behind the scenes and take care of the operational details for your journey. Many also hold professional degrees and are highly qualified.
How will I find my way around in my free time? What if I get lost?
It can be daunting to navigating a foreign city on your own. This is where our Cosmos GoApp proves to be most helpful. Created to help you make the most of precious travel time, CosmosGO is a digital travel guide and journal in one. This App allows you to also take trip notes, organize photos, and share your incredible Cosmos vacation experiences with friends and family on social media. Tip: Just download it before you go. See the wonders of the world at an incredible value. Our complimentary Apple and Android CosmosGO app puts a world of invaluable pre- and on-trip information at your fingertips.
The GoApp also has the listing of the hotels you are staying at along with the contact numbers for you to call them up and maps to take you there with information on how to get there. To know more, click here.
I am traveling solo and booked twin share, who will I share my room with?
Cosmos has a great concept called Guaranteed Share’. With this feature, Cosmos pairs solo travelers with another traveler of the same gender, thus saving on the single supplement. The pairing of solo travelers is done at random. This opens up a world of opportunity for you to make friends from across the world and enjoy your travels even more!
Do I have to tip my tour guide and driver?
It’s a customary practice in many countries across the world to tip the Tour Director and Driver. It is an opportunity to express appreciation to your tour director and driver for a job well done. On Cosmos tours, you have the option to pre-pay the gratuities so that you don’t have to budget for this at the end of the tour. Travelers who prepay their gratuities receive a gratuity voucher with their travel documents—all they need to do is give this to the Tour Director and the driver at the end of the tour.
Hope I have answered most of your questions. If you have any more, take a look at our FAQs on our website or drop us a line!