The coronavirus pandemic is still impacting travel, and destinations around the world have different COVID-19 restrictions in place. Always check and adhere to local government policies as you're planning any future trips.
I went to Egypt with Contiki, a group travel operator, and it exceeded my expectations.
TL;DR, I'm just now realizing how awesome these group trips are...aaaaand you can continue scrolling to see my thought process behind this statement.
1.The idea of "solo travel" feels more accessible.
2.You also don't have to coordinate with friends.
3.There is no predeparture planning required on your end.
4.You will get thorough instructions as to what is required preflight, plus all docs will live in one convenient place.
5.Necessary tourist stops are packed into your itinerary.
6.Your tour guide lives in the destination you're visiting and has the best itinerary suggestions as a result.
7.Travel hiccups are not your problem to solve.
8.You can pay for your trip in installments.
While there are certainly ways to be cost-efficient, the reality of travel is that it is expensive. Please don't believe all the aesthetic "well I got my flight to Madrid for $3" TikTok accounts that would have you thinking otherwise.
Many group operators (particularly ones catered to the under-35 crowd) allow you to pay in installments. This Egypt tour, for example, costs $1,409 but you can opt for 11 installments of roughly $124 per month, along with an initial booking deposit. This monthly plan will charge an interest fee with rates dependent on several factors including credit score, and it's okay if you haven't paid for your trip fully before departure.
9.Speaking of $, it'll be easier to stay on budget.
10.All transportation is arranged.
11.Friends. You will make friends.
I am the coworker who will not show up to virtual happy hours. I dreaded syllabus week in college because I knew it would lead to icebreakers. Giving a one-sentence answer about my favorite meal made me die a bit inside. I say this because I arrived in Egypt with a friend, had initial meetings with the group I'd spend the next eight days with, and thought, Alright, that's the end of it. We'll exchange pleasantries and have brief convos about the weather and I'll carry on speaking exclusively to the friend who arrived in Cairo with me. Wrong!
Egypt was magical but the best part was the people I met and shared this once-in-a-lifetime experience with; I made friends with travelers from Illinois, England, Saudi Arabia, Alabama, Switzerland, Ireland, Texas, and the list goes on.
Most of the friends I made had, by the way, gone on several Contiki trips prior to this one: The unanimous reason for doing so was the breadth of people they meet along the way.
Have you ever gone on a group trip like the one above? Let us know in the comments below.
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