What are the differences between “option,” “extension,” and a “deviation”?
An option is the opportunity to participate in additional sightseeing during leisure time. All options must be purchased when final payment is due, if they are to be purchased in U.S. dollars. If options are purchased after final payment is submitted, most options will need to be purchased in the local currency. An extension is an addition to your basic tour. For example, if your tour is an 11-day tour, you may add an extra four days to touring, provided there is a minimum of 15 passengers traveling together in a predetermined itinerary. All extensions must be prepaid prior to departure. Many of our tours offer extensions. A deviation from a tour occurs when a passenger requests: (1) to leave the tour within its progress, or (2) to be ticketed as an individual (e.g. earlier or later return, not with the group), or (3) return later than the group is scheduled to return back. This is often requested when someone wishes to stay on longer after a tour is over or travel prior to a tour and wishes to travel on his own, not with the group. Please understand that deviation fees will be charged by the airlines, and most airlines only allow for 10% of the group to deviate, in order to maintain the group-contracted special airfare. Also, deviations may have additional surcharges if the class of seat that a passenger requests is not available. All deviation requests must be provided in writing with dates and all details. Not all deviation requests will be available. Remember, no group travel situation will ever meet all individual desires. After all, passengers are taking advantage of the savings that are possible through group travel, and deviations defeat the whole purpose. They can also be expensive.
How many people are assigned to each bus?
It depends on the country or countries you are visiting. In Israel, the transportation limits are as follows: 7-seater limousine, 10-seater zoto-bus, and 19-seater midi-bus. The motor coaches in Israel contain capacities of 30, 47, 51, or 55 passengers. The buses in Jordan are 30 and 47-seaters while the Egyptian buses are 10 to 51-seaters similar to those in Israel. In Italy and Greece, the maximum seating is 45. In Europe, there are double-deckers available that can seat as many as 59 passengers, and in some cases, up to 70. We normally do not exceed 45 people in a motor coach unless tour host decides otherwise. Remember that the larger buses cannot fit into the tight streets for up-close sightseeing. So in some cases you may have to walk up stairs in order to reach certain areas.
Does imagine Tours & Travel offer first class hotels, English speaking licensed guides and modern group transportation?
Typically, the hotels are first-class hotels or better, similar to a Marriott Courtyard in the US. Each room will have a private bath, TV, and a phone. Some, not all, will have irons and hair dryers. If they are not in the room, check with the front desk. All guides employed by imagine Tours & Travel speak English as well as other major languages. These guides are licensed, highly trained and passionate about sharing an “insiders” view of the sites you visit along with the differing customs and cultures. All motor coaches used by imagine Tours & Travel are deluxe vehicles with air conditioning and/or heat (unless otherwise stated).
Can a passenger join a tour en route?
Yes, but imagine Tours and Travel requires notification of such plans at least 90 days prior to departure of the tour from the U.S.
Are service charges, local taxes and tips included in my tour price?
Service charges, as imposed by hotels, and taxes levied by local municipalities are included in your tour price. See your specific brochure for U.S. and Int’l. Airport Taxes. Each program varies, so please read your brochure and tour conditions for specific inclusions/exclusions. All standard tip expenses are included in the price of the tour. This includes tips for your guides, drivers, maître’d, front desk, and hotel porters who deliver your bags to your room and back to the bus. The Tour Host should handle the distribution of these tips. If you utilize any special services, please tip generously. Some travelers decide to give an additional “love offering” at the end of their tour to the guide and driver, should they meet and exceed expectations.
Does imagine Tours & Travel offer a reduced-rate incentive for early payment?
The “early bird discount incentive” amounts vary depending on the price of the tour and several other factors. Each person should check with imagine Tours & Travel to find the exact terms for his or her particular tour. We work very hard at providing “early bird discount incentives” to our passengers.