Trafalgar’s Really Useful Holiday Tips!

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So Trafalgar have compiled this very useful guide to provide you with as much information as possible to help you prepare if you are lucky enough to be travelling with them on one of their coach tours.

Take a look below before you travel on your remarkable global coach tour.

Luggage Allowance

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This is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10” (76x45x25 cm) and a maximum weight of 50 lb (23 kg). Hotel porterage of this luggage is included in your Trafalgar holiday price. Hand luggage should be one piece per person and small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. This is your responsibility and should be carried on/off the coach with you. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach and cannot be accepted as carry-on luggage. If a second suitcase is carried, or if it exceeds the permitted weight and/or dimensions, a charge of €6/£5 per travelling day will be collected by your Travel Director. Airlines may have additional restrictions and may impose additional charges if you choose to check any baggage. Please contact your airline or refer to its website for detailed information regarding your airline’s checked baggage policies. Please note that airport porterage at the beginning and end of your guided holiday is not included. Loss or damage to luggage or any of your belongings is at your own risk, so please protect yourself with appropriate insurance.

 

Packing

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Trafalgar advise that you pack each suitcase with day and evening clothing for each person when travelling as a couple. This is because in the unlikely event one of your suitcases is mislaid on your flight, you’ll still be able to manage. Ensure that your personal and holiday details are written on a label inside each suitcase (including name, address, telephone number, departure and return flight details), but write only your name and destination address on outside labels. Make sure that your luggage is in good secure condition, and use a TSA approved lock for US security checkpoints. Use a rigid style suitcase for protection when carrying fragile items. Check-in only your own suitcases. Do not carry items packed by other people. Under no circumstances ever accept packages or articles from anyone unknown to you to carry on board the aircraft. There are strict airport security regulations on items that may be carried on board aircraft such as liquids/gels and metal objects. These usually need to be placed in a clear bag for viewing at checkpoints. Please consult your airline or travel agent regarding these and other restricted items and how they must be displayed at airport security checkpoints. We suggest you pack only essential items for daytime use in your hand-baggage, both for your flight and while on the coach. For example, your camera, medicines, anything that you use frequently or is particularly valuable. Expensive items such as jewellry should be left at home for your peace of mind.

Clothing & Footwear

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A general tip in regards to suitable clothing and footwear would be to make sure you bring comfortable walking shoes as a number of cities in Europe are developing as havens for pedestrians. What to Bring will depend upon your own personal preferences, where you are travelling to and the time of year you are travelling. Casual, lightweight, drip-dry clothing that requires little or no ironing is generally recommended. Laundry facilities are available at most of the places you stay, however, take sufficient clothing to last for about a week. Below is a list of clothing items to consider packing for your Trafalgar holiday:

• Good walking shoes

• Swimsuit

• Undergarments

• Sandals

• Socks

• Hat

• Sleepwear

• Shorts/skirts

• Jeans/trousers

• Warm jacket

• Pullover/cardigan

• Waterproof jacket

• Shirts/blouses

General Items

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Below is a list of general items to consider packing for your Trafalgar holiday:

• Camera/memory cards

• Spare batteries/charger

• Medications & prescriptions

• Power plug adapters/ converter

• Toiletries • Collapsible umbrella

• Insect repellent

• Sunscreen

• Travel sewing kit

• Pocket calculator

• Plastic bags

• Travel alarm clock

• Water bottle

• Sunglasses (screw top lid)

• Sachets of washing powder

• Money belt or holster Essentials

• Passport (& Visas)

• Travel insurance policy

• Trafalgar documents

• Airline tickets

• Credit cards/pre-loaded currency cards

Tip:  Only take the essential identifiers like your drivers license and just two credit cards  in your wallet or purse – one to carry, another to be locked in your hotel room safe.

 

Budgeting

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Trafalgar itineraries include many features that will save you money on your trip, including many highlight visits and sightseeing, as well as meals and entertainment. For personal items such as souvenirs, gifts, taxi fares, laundry and gratuities, we suggest you allow €9-€11 per day in Europe and £8-£10 per day in the UK.

 

Meals

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Lunches are usually not included in your Trafalgar trip and individual requirements vary, but we suggest you allow €10/£9 per person per day. Where evening meals are not included, the cost will depend on the type and locations of restaurants used. As a guide, allow €25-€30/£22-£30 per day. You should budget for drinks with meals and refreshment stops during the day. Non-alcoholic drinks cost approximately €2-€3/£1.50-£2.50 each.

American Dreams with Trafalgar

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Take a tour of the USA with Trafalgar!

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From Washington to the Wild West, the United States of America is actually a mix of 52 very different and vibrant states. Dynamic, inspirational and optimistic, the USA is where you can dare to dream. Innovative and awe-inspiring, America has long been a place of wonder, marching ahead of the rest of the world. Varied, vibrant and vivacious, as a vacation destination, America’s appeal is limitless.

 

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 For beautiful beaches and wildlife, you cannot beat Florida or California.

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Florida sunset

Immerse yourself in jazz and a supremely chilled vibe in New Orleans.

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New Orleans Mardi Gras

 In idyllic Hawaii, the USA’s only island state, you can enjoy music and dancing and go scuba diving or just relax on the beautiful beaches.

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Hawaii beach

If you’re looking for shopping and excitement, there’s New York. The city of New York has a fast pace of life and never ceases to amaze  its visitors.

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New York skyline

Trafalgar’s Insider moments!

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When touring different countries, Trafalgar provide a more in-depth exploration of the diverse cultures and help people travel deeper with ‘Insider experiences’

 

The insider experience

With Insider Experiences you meet the locals; eat with them and join them at work and play. Together with your incredibly knowledgeable Travel Director, they’ll help bring your destinations to life. Trafalgar Travel Directors are a diverse group of characters who all  share one thing in common: a passion to help you discover more by sharing their stories and knowledge with you. So wherever you are you’ll enjoy a real insider’s point of view.

 

 So for instance if you’re in Amsterdam, they’ll take you to the Royal Delft Pottery workshop to see porcelain being hand-painted by expert artisans. Similarly if you visit Seville,  you’ll also have the opportunity to learn flamenco dancing.

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Learn flamenco dancing

 

Local Specialists are also there to help you experience what’s new and different in a fresh and vital way. These local characters can be dancers, archaeologists, geologists or artisans whose remit is to take you deeper into the local culture – they supply you with fresh insights and anecdotes to make your trip that much more memorable.

 

 

Trafalgar’s ‘Be My Guest’ experiences are also hugely popular – food tastes so much better when it’s shared with local people who have a story to tell. You’ll dine with local families in their homes, learn how to cook regional dishes and share a glass of wine or two with winemakers at their vineyards. This takes the ordinary to the extraordinary by giving you a deeper understanding of local people’s lives and history.

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Have a glass or two at the local vineyard

 

Book a coach tour with Trafalgar and let them bring every destination to life – you won’t be disappointed!

 

Trafalgar’s Tour Styles!

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With Trafalgar you will recognize unbeatable value, a hassle-free experience and unique moments to treasure.

Trafalgar offer a different perspective on their world famous tours, each providing unique experiences at the places you visit.

Trafalgar also offer more trip styles to choose from than any other guided travel company.

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There’s the ‘Regional Explorer’ where you can discover a region in two or more countries.

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Experience Venice on a ‘Regional Explorer’ tour.

The ‘Country Explorer’ to discover one country in depth.

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See Stonehenge on a ‘Country Explorer’ tour.

The ‘At Leisure’ where you can enjoy later starts and longer stays at a more leisurely pace.

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See the Parliament of Budapest on the ‘At Leisure Bohemian Highlights tour’

‘Family Holidays’ designed so the family can learn and have fun together.

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Enjoy the famous Rome Colosseum with your family.

‘Hidden Journeys’ where you can enjoy less visited places in groups of 26 or less.

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See amazing views of Turin on a ‘Hidden Journeys’ tour.

‘Cruise, Rail and Combinations’, amazing holidays from a different perspective.

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See the wonders of Greece on a ‘Cruise, Rail and Combinations’ tour.

 ‘Special Interest’ holidays for people with a particular passion.

Flavours of Italy ‘foodie’ trip starts in Rome

Try the ‘Flavours of Italy’ ‘foodie’ trip which in Rome.

 

 

Book a coach tour with Trafalgar today to experience the most wonderful holiday of a lifetime that suits just you!

 

 

 

 

Discover Autumn, Winter & Spring with Trafalgar

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The world’s seasons offer something new to discover all year round.

 

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Autumn maple tree

 

Travelling in the summer can be amazing, but discovering autumn, winter & spring can also be a truly fantastic experience.

 

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Winter wonderland

Discover autumn, winter and spring with Trafalgar by joining them on one of their off-season tours and their hand-picked ‘Insider Experiences’ will introduce you to authentic seasonal delights, without paying summer’s holiday price tag.

 

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Spring blossom

 

Trafalgar offer more destinations and more types of holiday than any other guided travel operator and you’ll find there’s a range of travel styles to suit everyone.

Book your trip by 31 August, 2015 and you’ll save up to £702 per couple with their 7.5% Early Payment Discount – Wow!

 

Delightful Discounts for the New Year!

The chaos of Christmas can be exhausting at this time of year what with all the stress over present buying and food preparing, not to mention the the school nativity plays and the need to make your child some sort of half decent outfit to wear!

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It’s hardly surprising that come January people are turning their attention to something a bit more exotic or different to look forward to.

It’s also why many people start to look into booking their holidays for the year ahead and even start looking while still on their Christmas holiday.

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The good news is that there are plenty of bargains to be had if you look around a bit.

Trafalgar Tours are specialists in escorted coach tours and have a great deal on at the moment that offers 10% off selected European coach tours if you pay the full amount by the end of January.

The  ‘Early Payment Discounts’ offer gives you the discount on the land-only part of your trip and means you can save  up to £870 per couple if, for example, you book the European Supreme 2015 tour and pay in full before 30 January 2015.

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Trafalgar Tour Coach 2005

European Supreme 2015

Classic favourites meet the roads less discovered, to give a complete view of Europe’s many faces, from well-known characters Rome and Paris, to the lesser known personalities and secrets places of Belgrade and Sofia.It’s Insider moments like… comparing the nuttiness of Holland’s hard cheeses at a dairy farm near Volendam, after finding out how they’re made – and discovering more traditions, from clogs to windmills, at a ‘living museum’

  • A Coach Tour of Netherlands, UK, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Hungary, Serbia, Bul
  • Lasting for 29 Days
  • Prices Starting From £145 per day
From£4195

 

Insight Vacations also offer a similar deal on some of their outstanding tours, including  the wonderful ‘European Breakaway (2015)’ tour.

For example, if you wanted to go on the European Breakaway (2015) tour on the 7 – 14  June 2015 and paid in full by 30 January 2015, the cost would go from £1635 to £1472 – a saving of  £163 per person!

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Insight Vacations coach

European Breakaway (2015)

A sensational sojourn designed to capture the very essence of Europe in a short period of time. Travel from the canals of Amsterdam to the Swiss Alps and elegant boulevards of Paris. Tour Pace – Lively

  • A Coach Tour of England, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, France
  • Lasting for 8 Days
  • Prices Starting From £203 per day

From

£1625

 

Another great saving can be made when you book with  CIE  Tours.


Save 10% and up to £600 per couple on any escorted coach tour of Ireland, Scotland, England & Wales! All you have to do is book by December 31, 2014 and pay a non-refundable deposit of £400 per person.  

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CIECoach

Grand Tour of Britain & Ireland

  • Tour starts and ends in London; In-depth Tour with Prominent Visits; Five Capital Cities; Spectacular Scenery; Historic Castles; 2-Night Stays in Most Locations; Opportunities for Individual Pursuits

  • A Coach Tour of England,Ireland,Scotland,Wales
  • Lasting for 24 Days
  • Prices Starting From £123 per day

From

£2959

Great saving on fantastic holidays so don’t delay and get that bargain now before they’ve all gone !

Grand Group Getaways!

Ever fancied taking the whole family away on a big grand European tour?  Not just immediate family, but whole generations of relatives as well! Be it your own parents, grandparents or uncles and aunties, travelling and experiencing some of the wonderful and facinating countries waiting to be explored.

 Travelling in a group can also save you money. For example, if you travel with Trafalgar Tours or Insight Vacations, you could save 5% for a group of  5 – 8 people on the LAND-only portion of your holiday. Even better, if nine or more guests travel together,  one traveller qualifies for a 50%* discount off the LAND-only portion of the holiday. In a group of 16 guests, one traveller qualifies for 100%* discount off the LAND-only portion of the holiday- WOW!

 If you want to try visiting a few European countries or just stick to one, the choice is amazing as there are numerous travel companies wanting to make your wish come true – without all the hassle of having to plan things yourself! Take in a glimpse of Europe on a tour that lasts a week or try something longer for a much grander holiday.

The choices are endless and it’s not only Europe that wants your company, America and Canada also call for some extensive exploration in their vast landscapes of diverse cultures, breathtaking National Parks and stunning Canadian Rockies.

10 freshly pressed packing tips for your coach tour

Many people ask us what to take for their coach tour.

1. Your cases: You are allowed to bring one suitcase per person on your coach tour with the dimensions of 76cm x 46cm x 25cm (30in. x 18in. x 10in.) and weight not exceeding 23kg (50 lbs) due to the limited space on the coach. This is similar to the maximum weight allowed by airlines. You can also bring one piece of hand luggage, but unlike airline lockers, space inside the coach is more limited, so you should take something small enough to take on the coach and it must not have have telescope handles.

Touring with Trafalgar

Touring with Trafalgar

2. What type of clothes – will you need anything formal? This will depend on not only your personal preference, but the destinations you are visiting and the time of year you will be travelling. Check out your destination and climate at WordTravels. It is advisable to bring at least one ‘smart’ outfit for special evenings or highlight dinners, but this doesn’t mean a tuxedo or even a tie. If your itinerary visits  places of worship, you may be required to wear items that cover your shoulders and in some cases, knees. When travelling, we recommend bringing items that are casual and lightweight, and require little or no ironing

3. How about laundry? It depends how long your tour is and where you are going.  If you are going for less than 10 days you might be able to get away without doing any laundry.   The only chance you will have to do laundry is if you stay two nights in one place and get it done through the hotel.  If you don’t wish to use any laundry services, then you can always wash items in the bath in your hotel room! Hopefully they will dry by morning, but you may have to continue the drying plan next evening if you are moving to a another hotel.

4. Express packing tip! Pack all those t-shirts in double-quick time! A genuinely useful YouTube video that shows you how to fold t-shirts in less than 2 seconds.

5. Label your case with the first destination and put your home address inside your case.

6. Wheelchairs and walking aids. In most circumstances you are able to travel with a wheelchair on your trip as long as you are travelling with a person who is willing and able to provide personal assistance. Please advise us at the time of booking if you plan to bring a wheelchair to ensure we can meet your requirements. Remember that itineraries that visit old places frequently have uneven ground, steps or cobbled surfaces.

7. Travel sized products are lighter. Toothpaste, shaving gels, lotions and creams. They are all available in travel size from your local pharmacy. Not only will they save weight, but you can take them on an aircraft in your hand luggage if they less than 100ml.  Top tip! Hand sanitizer – visiting tourist places, you touch lots of things that lots of other people have just touched. Reduce the risk of catching a bug by regular use of hand sanitizer. And wear sunscreen!

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8. Umbrella – Many couples share their umbrella. It means they only keep half dry. Travel with your own fold up umbrella (it’s better than a raincoat) and you will never be half wet, you’ll be totally dry. You may be lucky and have zero rainfall during your trip, but it’s best to be prepared for the odd shower.

9. Don’t let pickpockets spoil your holiday! Keep valuables under cover. When you travel you must protect your passport and cash.  Pickpockets are more skilled than you might think and unfortunately are common in the popular tourist areas all over the world, so minimize your risk.  Use a neck or money belt that goes under your clothes.

10. Split belongings between two cases when travelling as a couple. If one case goes astray neither person is left without a change of clothes and necessities. Also, have a credit card or ATM card per person, so if one person loses their wallet or purse, you still have spending power.

 

The six best reasons to take an escorted coach tour

 

Never taken a group tour? Not sure it’s the way to go? Then consider these important facts before you attempt to go off on your own:

1. You simply can’t beat the price! Tour operators volume contracting for hotels and services provides you with travel at wholesale rates. You’ll know the cost in advance.  Travel relaxed and hassle-free, knowing that all arrangements have been made for you by reliable specialists.

2. Enjoy the company of interesting fellow travelers, as active, sociable, and curious about the world out there as you are. Many lasting friendships begin on a coach tour.

3. With a professional tour director you not only see the sights, you learn about their meaning as well — a stimulating and enriching experience.

4. Sharing a luxurious, fuel-efficient motorcoach and the services of an experienced driver with other travelers is much more pleasant and ecologically sensible than driving yourself.

5. Who likes standing in line? Because your visit has been arranged months in advance, your group will be ushered to the head of the line at many of Europe’s most popular attractions.

6. A coach tour is carefully planned to make the best possible use of your time. A lifetime of caring for people just like you has taught our selected tour operators which sights and activities you enjoy most, and how much free time you need to explore on your own.  Once you’ve discovered the special advantages and delights of group touring, you’ll never want to travel any other way again!

Bed hopping around the world

Double, Single, Queen, King, Twin, Triple, Quad, Suite, Full Size, Wide Double, Olympic, Super King, California King, King Long, Stateroom?
These are all terms used by bed mattress makers worldwide, but when it comes to travel, they mean different things in different countries!

We all like a nice comfy bed after a busy day sightseeing on an escorted tour of Europe or Britain.

A double bed in a London hotel

A double bed in a London hotel

At Global Coach Tours, we are always explaining the terms, so at last, here is the full explanation you wanted, but were afraid to ask.

All these terms are bed configurations within rooms, except did you spot the deliberate mistake?
The word ‘stateroom’ is not a bed, but is a type of room used on board ships and river cruise boats.

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A romantic four poster double bed in a country house hotel

A single room or bed in North America might mean ‘a room’ rather than a suite, but in Europe it means a room for one or a bed wide enough for only one person to sleep in.

Touring by coach in Britain & Europe you will get a “twin room” as standard. That’s a room with two single beds in it  (approx 90 x 190 cm aka a twin). If you are travelling as a couple, you can request a double (aka a full size bed) but as you will be staying in a variety of hotels, demand may outstrip supply in some hotels. You should get your request fulfilled for most of your tour.  The size of a double will be at least 140 x 190 cm, but you may get a larger bed in some hotels.

Put simply, request ‘double bed’ if you are travelling as a couple and like to sleep in the same bed. This means one larger/wider bed sleeping two, rather than two narrow beds sleeping one person each.

A triple room can either be a double plus a single or three singles. A quad room could be any configuration that sleeps four people, including two separate rooms.

Are you travelling alone? Touring with Trafalgar, Insight and Cosmos, single room prices apply if you want a room to yourself. If you wish to save money, on most tours you are guaranteed to be matched with a room mate of the same gender at the start of the tour and only pay the standard twin-share price. Should there be nobody to share with on day 1 of the tour, you would get a single room at no extra cost, but this doesn’t happen very often. The only way to be guaranteed a room for sole occupancy is to agree to pay the single room price when you book. 

For a definitive explanation with exact bed sizes, please see this Wikipedia article