For a lot of wily travelers the idea of traveling in a group tour is the ultimate no, no. Group travel is seen as selling out the independence of the travel experience and letting yourself be led around by the nose. This blog is going to explore many of the positives that can come from partaking in group, organized travel. Maybe the travel experience can be expanded traveling with a small group of like minded people.
Gaining Valuable local Knowledge
Many of us want to believe that by reading our lonely planet then walking around historic sites we are getting the full experience. This is not even close though! A guide who knows the stories, history and cultural traditions surrounding a site, or even a section of a city or wilderness area, can and will deeply enrich the experience of being there. In many circumstances having a guide lead a group can take being in a foreign locale from ticking off a box saying you have been there to an interactive cultural experience.
Maximizing your Travel Time
When you are on a tour led by a professional tour company you will see as much as possible without wasted effort or impossible to achieve itineraries. A lot of travel time is crafting where to go next, where to stay, where to eat… while on a tour these variables are removed and it becomes just about soaking in the experience and getting to know the people in your travel group better.
Though travelling independently does give the chance to cut corners in terms of eating – or not eating at all – and accommodations it may actually be more costly in the end then traveling in a group. The reason being is that group travel allows things to be purchased in bulk, thus reducing the price to the individual. You don’t have to be Adam Smith to see that perhaps people selling meals, hotel rooms, and train tickets would be persuaded to sell each unit cheaper if ten were bought at once.
Sharing the Experience
One of the drawbacks of independent travel is getting to one of the great wonders of the world – say to the Angkor Wat in Cambodia – and basking in it, but not having anyone to experience it with. Many say, and rightfully so, that this can be one of travels most lonely moments. Traveling in a group alleviates this as there are people there to soak in the moment with; people that you will be able to re-live it with later. This is definitely an element that makes world travel worthwhile.