Sep 2021 Trip a Go

Just got an email from Tauck that our 12 Sep tour will be happening. They are requiring either proof of vaccine (CDC vax card) or neg PCR test. Thankfully we have the former. This is one of two trips we have planned. 29 Aug Switzerland crown jewels precedes it which we haven't yet heard about. Though supposedly the Swiss are to make a decision tomorrow on letting on vaccinated tourists. Fingers crossed as that trip is more important to us. If it gets canceled but the Swiss let in tourists in Sep we're strongly considering doing a mini tour following the French one. Tgv to Geneva, Lausanne, Golden Pass to Interlaken then on to Lucerne/Zurich. Would much prefer the Tauck version but have waited 2 years for Switzerland.



  • Hi Claudia, That's great your Paris trip is a go. Tauck cancelled our French Escapade River Cruise for July 23 so we got it rescheduled for July 22 of next year. Originally booked this back Feb 7, 2020, it will be a 2 1/2 year wait. Your Switzerland crown jewels tour we did back in 2015. We did a back to back tour, left Switzerland and did the Best of Ireland tour. Both tours were really great. It was a long time away from home (about 4 weeks)but well worth it. Have a great trip to Paris. Hope everything so smoothly for you & enjoy.

  • Thanx, we were supposed to do Switzerland last year but of course resked. We tacked on the Normandy/Brittany/ Paris to fill in some holes left from our Rhone and Seine cruises which we thoroughly enjoyed. The Rhone is great since so many stops you can walk right from the ship to the sights. Lots to see in Arles and Avignon. We also loved Ireland. Great tour.

    I don't mind back to back tours. Save on airfare, jetlag and that Tauck comps the second trip insurance. Only drawback is trying to find a laundry midway thru.

    Good luck with your tours.

  • I guess hotel laundry would cost as much as airfare :)

  • Bkmd, yep or just buy new clothes. Between our Seine plus Versailles/London cruise and the ESW land tour we bagged up the dirty clothes and walked several blocks from the Savoy to a self service laundromat. Did feel a bit low rent trudging thru the Savoy lobby with my laundry. You do what you gotta do.

  • Claudia Sails
    . . . . Between our Seine plus Versailles/London cruise and the ESW land tour we bagged up the dirty clothes and walked several blocks from the Savoy to a self service laundromat. Did feel a bit low rent trudging thru the Savoy lobby with my laundry. You do what you gotta do.

    To avoid "low rent trudging," you could have put your laundry in an empty suitcase. :)

  • edited May 2021

    What great news for you, Claudia. Congratulations! Many of us will now have renewed hope that our trips might just come to fruition this year. Please post a review of your tour, as well as your experiences with COVID protocols. Thanks.

  • Claudia, has Tauck shared the protocol should someone on the tour become ill?

  • No, the e-mailed letter doesn't address that. It references things on their website like the Travel Well Pledge, Entry Requirements, etc. It also says the trip details (what used to be the old green books) would be emailed closer to the trip.

  • No more green books?

  • Sounds like it at least for now. Bummer.

  • Green Books are history. I submitted a question about them about a week ago, since my Iceland tour is approaching. They said Green Books are no more and that they would email the equivalent information about three weeks before departure. I guess that means that the advance bag tags are history (no big deal).

  • no Green books... Bummer! I collect them.. :((

  • Hopefully the e-mailed versions will make it easy to print what you might want and just have digital copy of the other info on your smartphone. The app could have all that if they ever get it worked out.

  • How Tauck issued any guidance regarding masks on buses. TSA is requiring them through at least Sept 13.

  • edited May 2021

    They were kinda neat, but frankly, I won't really miss the the Green Books and applaud the change.

    First, they were bigger (and heavier) than they needed to be, and as Claudia said, all the info can now can be uploaded to your phone or tablet, where hopefully, it can be easily updated or manipulated. Often, due to early printing and/or late changes, some of the Green book info was out of date when printed or received. Now, if that happens, hopefully, it will be easy to update . - change it or include "Daily Go Sheet" info," etc. similar to what I believe was envisioned for the App. Depending on the format (txt. doc, html, etc.) you may even be able to use it as a basis for taking tour notes or adding private excursion info.

    The Green book only had 2 or 3 tear-out copies of the hotel/emergency contact information that had to be mailed. Before each tour I had to manually enter the info into a doc or email so I could send it electronically to family, friends, etc. Now it will be a a snap to do so if it is already in digital format.

    I suspect the savings in time and money (printing and mailing) will be considerable. Could the savings help with tour costs or result in a lagniappe? :D

    I truly see this as a win, win situation!!! Several years ago I suggested all this to Tauck.

  • Probably all true Alan (except I doubt the lagniappe) but I do love seeing my stack of green books.

  • edited May 2021

    Oh no, no green books. They were so much better than the endless papers we had from Tauck before green books. There were many, difficult to keep decent and took up more room in a rucksack. Then you got those from the Tour Director that were slightly different. This is a big step back in my opinion and shows either they are trying to save money, or anticipating significant last minute changes to the published itinerary due to the pandemic. No, nothing good about this development.
    Sam, we used to get our tags by mail with all the endless papers for the tour itinerary

  • LBerger. If someone on the tour comes down with Covid, I guess it will depend on the rules for the country you happen to be in. I’m assuming no one on the tour will fake Covid vaccine. At least on the boats you are supposed to be vaccinated. You don’t have to show proof for land tours which troubles me. I’m still taken aback by the people I know who refuse to be vaccinated.
    I’m still confused about whether Tauck insurance will cover any Covid related costs, such as quarantine in hotels. We have extra insurance for getting us back home as long as it is not because we have Covid. Some countries are requiring specific separate Covid and quarantine insurance and you have to show the separate insurance certificate in order to enter the country… that is certainly true for our January tour of Costa Rica. Our son has to get it for an upcoming Caribbean trip.
    Now, if you become ill with anything else, break a leg, have a heart attack, whether there will be any room in French hospitals to treat you, Ive no idea. I have been on Tauck tours when people have had everything from a heart attack to broken limbs. We have even been on a Tauck tour where the TD had to go to the hospital.

  • I will miss them. I sometimes refer to them years later, while reviewing pics, telling a friend or family member about a trip, etc.

    Perhaps I can get a custom copy delivered by Pony Express?

  • I won't miss the green books as long as we get the information in a format that can be printed and transferred to my tablet. For those who want a souvenir book, you can always print it and have Kinkos bind it (or put it in a green binder yourself :D ). What I worry is that even fewer newbies will read it and understand the luggage, tipping and other policies.

  • Oh, no! No green books? I always looked forward to receiving them in advance of a trip. I would study them and use a highlighter to mark certain information such as airport arrival instructions, et al. On the daily itinerary pages, there was ample room to jot down what time luggage had to be ready the next day, names of restaurants to return to, streets to explore on our own, names of new friends you just met, on and on. Yes, I understand that some individuals prefer loading information into their phones and laptops, but I prefer to remove myself from technology when I travel.

    British - Do you remember the green bi-fold, large "wallet" that Tauck sent before the green spiral notebooks?

    Ken from Vegas - Kinko's! How I miss them. Thanks for the memories!

  • Yes, I do remember the green plastic wallets. Was organizing my Tauck vacations file cabinet draw last winter and still had a few.

  • British, the letter we received says you have to bring proof of vaccine or negative test results in case it's required so it's not quite as much on the honor system as Tauck implied a few weeks ago. That's all in addition to signing the Travel Well Pledge.

    For fun, I recently saw a T-shirt and hat for sale that said "I Identify as Vaccinated" .

  • British, unfortunately vaccination isn't 100%. I'm scheduled for a river cruise this fall. If someone becomes ill with Covid might we all be quarantined on the boat? For how long? There are many questions that seem to be unanswered on the Tauck website. Would feel more comfortable if I knew the plan.

  • edited May 2021

    British, unfortunately vaccination isn't 100%. . . . . Would feel more comfortable if I knew the plan.

    Very few vaccines are 100% effective. Many vaccines we take for granted, e.g. Polio, MMR, Shingles, Flu (40-60%), Small Pox (95%), etc. are no more effective than many of the COVID vaccines. If we had to rely on vaccines being 100% effective we would never leave our houses. What the COVID vaccines will do is protect most of those inoculated, either completely or greatly reduce the severity of an infection to something approaching an annoyance, and greatly reduce the chance of transmission. Like with any vaccine and disease, there are always a few who will be affected more than others. (FYI Mr. British worked in the pharma field, so she is well aware of vaccine efficacy.)

    That being said, it would be nice to know the details of "the plan", e.g. what happens if one (vaccinated or un-vaccinated) person in your group starts to show symptoms, though I suspect the response might vary depending on the situation- severity, tour location/situation, etc.

  • Re whether itineraries this year may vary, I noticed I can't get into the tour detail pages on the Tauck website for either this tour or the Swiss Crown Jewels. Just get an error message. I could access our Douro river cruise page. They could just be updating some other info or something else completely unrelated. I print out itineraries or tear them from the Tauck brochures when we book tours so will be interested to compare.

  • I believe the latest research is showing that one in 10,000 could become re-infected. But they are likely to be un symptomatic. Unless the boat has a policy to retest everyone while they are on the journey, it’s not likely it will be found out. Now, if someone gets on the tour and they have not been vaccinated and the test they get before they get on the boat is negative because it was taken too early for the infection to show up, and then they start to show symptoms…..there’s one way it could call for everyone be re-tested. Having experienced all the queue jumpers to get the vaccine early on, I would not put it past anyone to show a forged Covid pass, Tauck traveller or not. Boy, they must be so easy to forge. I think there will have to be a mask policy on the boat etc
    I do think Tauck might do well to explain further what their plans are. It may be at the mercy of the country you find yourself in. Maybe there is something hidden in the pledge, it’s not something we personally are worried about since our next scheduled tour with Tauck is not until March 2022, so I’m not bothered to look at it until I’m sure that tour is a go. We are relieved we don’t have an air fare to worry about getting back or anything like that at the moment.
    We have a tour in Costa Rica in January. Costa Rica requires a specific separate insurance that covers for the cost of Covid treatment and quarantining. We took a quick look at the cost of such a policy, it was $153 each. We won’t buy it until we know the trip is going.
    We have just returned from a wonderful US vacation, parts of the US vary so much, it just felt like we were in a foreign land and virtually no masks, no social distance, packed restaurants. Now worried about getting on the scales.

  • British - Any time you talk about getting on the scales it should be done as follows:

  • Claudia, I agree with everything you said. I, too, am a worrier, planner, list maker, et al. I am ready to return to normal however that is interpreted in 2021. We are scheduled for the Rhine River cruise mid August. If it comes to fruition, I will be there, enjoy every minute and abide by whatever safety restrictions are in place.

Leave a Comment

BoldItalicStrikethroughOrdered listUnordered list
Align leftAlign centerAlign rightToggle HTML viewToggle full pageToggle lights
Drop image/file