Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Guided, Semi-Independent and Independent Travel to Norway – What’s the difference?

Today we have a guest blog post from none other than Linda McCormick, Managing Director of Sons of Norway Travel Partner Borton Overseas! In it she discusses the various types of tours available to travelers who are looking to explore Norway. Enjoy!

There are many options available when it comes to travel packages, and it may be confusing to know the difference. Each has its own benefits so you must evaluate what type of traveler you are to determine which type of travel package suits you best.

Guided Packages
“If it’s Tuesday, this must be Belgium” may be what you’re thinking of when you hear “guided tour.” However, guided tours have changed over the years, allowing more free time for participants to enjoy shopping or sightseeing on their own. Many guided tours focus on specific regions, or may have a theme or be activity-focused. Guided tours have set departure dates and you will travel in a group on a set itinerary, and everything is taken care of for you from luggage handling to wake-up calls. Your knowledgeable tour guide will be with you all the way, providing valuable commentary on history, culture, and a multitude of other topics of the places you will visit. Tours offer a tremendous value for their price – you pay one price for all inclusions – hotels, transportation, sightseeing, several meals, tour guide services – and you know exactly what out-of-pocket expenses you will be responsible for. It’s a great way to keep within your budget and meet fellow travelers.

Semi-Independent Packages
This is a great option for travelers who want independent travel with some guided touring. With this type of package you have flexible departure dates and will travel with your own companions. There is a set itinerary and your package will include accommodations, transportation such as train and boat, and arrival and departure transfers, as well as specific city tours or guided activities based on your specifications. This gives you the flexibility of being on your own with free time, but having scheduled tours so you won’t miss out on experiences and sights you really want to see. You will also know what out-of-pocket expenses you will have, so this is also a good option to keep within your budget.

Independent Packages
Many people want the freedom of traveling on their own, with the comfort of knowing that there is a confirmed hotel room waiting at the end of the day. This option requires having a basic itinerary, since your accommodations and transportation will be confirmed, but you will have the freedom of traveling on your own without a set schedule during the day. Independent tours can be set up with public transportation such as train, boat or bus or with a rental car, depending on your preference. Your sightseeing and activity expenses will be paid locally.

All of these packages include airfare from the US, and are pre-paid in US dollars before you leave the US. You receive vouchers and tickets for all the included items, as well as detailed itinerary, contact information, and destination information pertaining to your specific itinerary.

Visit www.bortonoverseas.com to view all travel packages. Don't forget, Sons of Norway members receive a 5% member discount on Borton Overseas packages and customized itineraries!

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