Monday, November 28, 2011

Reader Question: To Tour Group or Not?

The Netherlands
[Courtesy of Amy Richards]
In an ideal world we would all be able to travel through Europe for a couple of weeks with our best friend. Unfortunately sometimes both money and time can be tight and you are faced with the choice of either traveling without anybody you know or not traveling at all. Since the opportunity to travel Europe is one that doesn't come around very often, many people decide that it's better to simply travel without anyone they know.This is when the question arises of whether to take a guided tour through Europe or travel alone. I have done both and I want to stress that neither are bad choices, nor are they mutually exclusive. The truth is you can do both if you please. There are pros and cons to each aspect.

From personal experience, traveling alone has its benefits, the first and foremost being independence. You will not have to compromise your sightseeing throughout Europe. You can travel where you want, when you want, and you only have to be concerned about your own budget. It's easier to get into some attractions, such as plays or take a night off if you're feeling worn out. However, sometimes it can get lonely without someone to share the experience with. You might not have someone to take a picture of you at a famous landmark, eating alone at a restaurant can sometimes be awkward. It's slightly more dangerous to travel alone as well. Having an extra set of eyes will give you more protection against pickpocketers and other dangers. 
Falvian Amphitheater Rome
[Courtesy of Amy Richards]

Tour groups on the whole tend to be more expensive, however  it'll be nice to share your world experiences with someone. Different tours vary on length, age range, activity level, and price, so you can definitely find something that fits your touring needs. Another benefit of tours is that they are likely to get you into places that it would be hard to get in yourself, and tickets places may be discounted because the touring company will buy them in bulk. One of the biggest benefits of going on a guided tour is getting more information about the place you're visiting than if you were to travel alone. Tour guides often know fun facts about different places in addition to a general overview of the area.

Want to know more about both options or have your own questions answered here on my blog? You can either e-mail me at or post a comment here. 

Happy Travels!


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