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HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

Brisbane, Australia
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HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

Contiki V Topdeck V Busabout V Expat Explore

I'm looking at doing at least a 20 odd day tour of Europe before setting up in London on a working holiday.

I just don't know which company to go with. I've heard mixed reviews about all 4 and all there prices vary so much. I don't want to just pick the cheaper option if it's not as good as one which will be a few hundred more.

I'll be 24 when I go and could possibly be with a friend. I love a drink as much if not more than the next person but I still want to enjoy my trip and not forget half of it.

Hong Kong, China
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1. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

Hello Jamsta_91

Welcome to the Holiday Travel forum.

Can I first ask what is the appeal of traveling with a tour company like these while in Europe. For the most part, the prevailing opinion of the majority of TA forums is that Europe should be visited independently to maximize your travel experience. You can manage costs however you like as you have decision making flexibility regarding accommodation, transportation and meal types. You also make your own decisions about which attractions to visit, how long to stay there and when to move on - not somebody else making these choices for you.

Wales, United...
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2. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

As far as I'm concerned the cons of a guided tour outweigh the pros:

Cons:

More expensive

Not so flexible

Less chance of meeting up with locals

Often rushed

Pros:

Someone else does all the planning g and booking

Travel with other tourists (may not be a pro if you don't get on with someone

Hong Kong, China
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3. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

Possible added con: mandatory shopping excursions which many tours end up including that are not part of your itinerary. You might even find that you spend more time in these shops/factories than you do at important attractions.

Brisbane, Australia
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4. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

I definetley agree with everyone's opinion. I'm thinking I'll go most of it alone and maybe just do a short tour when I first get there to ease myself into the huge move.

With going it alone what's the best mode of transport?? Euro rail or something like busabout bus routes?

Hong Kong, China
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5. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

It really depends on where you end up going. The good news is that most of Europe is very well connected by a comprehensive rail network and it is generally very easy to get tickets throughout the continent. Bus transport is also affordable and a nice way to travel.

We have used Euroline from time to time and taken advantage of some excellent bus fares. This is a great option if you have a bit of time on your hands. For quicker transport, rail is better but usually more pricey.

Wales, United...
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6. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

A good compromise might be independently travelling between cities, then taking some shorter tours while there. These tours might be of the city itself, to get an overview, or an organised half day excursion to some other nearby place of interest. Or both. You will then get the benefit of local knowledge, and the opportunity to make other travellers of all nationalities, as well as the flexibility of making your own arrangements and choosing hotels and sightseeing for yourself.

Aubrey, Texas
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7. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

A person your age doesn't belong on a tour. I suggest you pick 4-5 places you've dreamed of seeing then just go starting with Paris. Learn about cheap tickets on European railroads like the prem fares on French SNCF. Ryan Air has cheap fares around Europe but watch the baggage fees. If a friend is with you so much the better.

8. Re: HELP!! - Pros & Cons of Guided Tours in Europe!!

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