Sep 2021 Trip a Go



  • Now that this tour has been added to the "Open Tours" list on the Tauck website I wondered about any other French land tours. There is the Paris/London and the Provence tours. Can understand why the London one might not go but wonder about Provence. It lists no tour dates in Jul/Aug but there are 3 in Sep. Curious. All 3 Sep dates showing as fully available.

  • The French vacation a lot in July/August and it’s also very hot there.

  • Since I hadn't looked at the Provence trip, I wasn't sure if it had never had Jul/Aug dates or for some other reason wasn't listing them. OTOH, we got rained on in Paris and Provence several times in July on our first Tauck cruise. Thankfully I'd packed a rain jacket.

    Point of the post was why were those Sep Provence tour dates not showing as "Open Tours" if Normandy/Brittany/Paris is a go?

  • It could be that Tauck is methodically working through the logistics of recontracting with hotels, restaurants, sightseeing venues, bus companies, drivers, local tour guides, et al. I am just delighted that European tours are slowly becoming available!

  • Hi Claudia-Hope you have a great trip & enjoy. Would you post any info. about your trip. If Tauck had an changes in their itinerary and if there were places you wanted to go on your own but couldn't. Any info. would be great for anyone going to France. Thanks

  • Will do. We've been on 2 Tauck French river cruises including the Seine so some on the itinerary is a bit of a repeat - staying at the Versailles hotel, Giverny, Dday, Paris, etc. Happy to see Giverny again, skipping day beaches, filling in some Paris sites. If you have specific questions let me know.

  • edited June 2021

    I saw today that France will require a PCR test within 72 hours of departure for US citizens even if they’re fully vaccinated. We are on the Rendezvous on the Seine 8/27 tour.

  • The Points Guy has a good article on this

    They are using a stoplight system - the color applies to the threat level of the country you're coming from. We're currently orange but that could change. If orange then:

    Vaccinated: If you’re vaccinated and coming from an orange/amber country, you will need a PCR test no more than 72 hours prior to departure or an antigen test that’s no more than 48 hours old. Travelers can visit for any reason, such as tourism, provided they meet these other requirements.

  • The question that I have involves an aspect related not to Tauck moving forward with the Sept tours- which is great- but are the airlines we are booked with traveling running the flights from departure points we had intended to use. I think this is the problem I am concerned about- we have insurance, but I wondered what others who have traveled or plan on traveling out of the USA on one of the European tours are handling the airlines flight schedules that when we booked the trips were scheduled but still are not running.

  • The problem, especially with air travel, is that it is all a moving target.

    We typically book flights at the earliest opportunity (330 days prior for Delta) but it is almost impossible to do that now, especially if the tour hasn't been re-launched yet or the target country is still at level 4. It often requires creative routing, too, since the airlines are far from returning to their pre-COVID levels. We already booked our flights for next March's Jordan & Egypt, but Tauck hasn't restarted the tour and Delta (we've got credits we must use) is not flying into Jordan. All that could and may likely change, but how long do we wait? We decided to take a chance and booked anyway with Turkish Airlines. We'll use the Delta credits for another trip sched for 2022. Currently, Delta has a no-cost change policy but the best option, especially for those who are risk averse, may be to book flights through Tauck.

    Arriving early or staying longer after the tour is another problem in itself. Wasn't some company close to developing a COVID test that gave reliable results in a matter of minutes? We need that and need for countries to accept it.

    What Gov't or medical official or pundit said things won't be back to anything approaching normal until 2024?!?!?! Let's hope they are wrong!

  • One reason we were so relieved our Scandinavia tour was cancelled was because our flights were changed to the extent we had to go through different countries with terrible connections just about a week before they cancelled the tour. Thankfully, our flights were booked with Tauck so it was all their problem in the end.
    We're just about reaching the 330 day window for flights for our Israel Jordan tour….I’m not sure when his lordship will want to book this time, he’s usually a 330 day guy.

  • When the Singapore trip was canceled I decided to book Kenya and Tanzania, I did the South Africa and Elegant Adventure a few years ago but have always wanted to do this one. I'm s excited to finally travel this year.

  • Yep, not only am I not sure which tours will be taking this year but not sure my current airline reservations will hold if they do. Currently outbound to Geneva via Amsterdam. Coming home from Paris. Family - on the same Switzerland tour - are going thru Heathrow to Geneva. Hopefully, if most of Europe opens up, the airports will figure out how to handle transiting passengers. I'd assume KLM has a stake in not loosing passengers to Air France, Delta, etc just because the Netherlands may be more locked down.

  • We were on a zoom call with Tanzania yesterday. We support a clinic/hospital in Karatu, a 2 hour Africa drive from Arusha. They were telling us about the Covid situation and how many people are going hungry. As you may know, many of the Safari drivers and guides support large extended families with their wages and there have been no tourists. We have been on K and T twice. Our next African adventure is Wildlife Odyssey next year, can’t wait.

  • Sounds like a number of OCD sufferers...oh wait, there is no such thing as OCD. It is CDO....must be in alphabetical order, you know.

  • edited June 2021

    Sounds like a number of OCD sufferers...oh wait, there is no such thing as OCD. It is CDO....must be in alphabetical order, you know.

    Welcome back Nial! :D It has been a long time!! Are you going to park the motorhome for awhile and do some real touring? Do you have any tours planned or scheduled?

  • Thanks Alan. I haven't been on here for about five years. It's changed and I am working on figuring out how to maneuver this site again.

    No, we will use the motorhome this summer after a couple of months of PT for the hip. My first hip replacement was at the end of March and I was on my feet without support almost immediately. I flew to Ohio for a wedding in the middle of May and it was no problem. The doctors did a wonderful job being the "mechanics" and replacing the parts and I worked my tail off rehabbing. I took pain pills for about 5 days and haven't taken any since. Importantly, I am not a spring chicken either. These two trips are me giving myself a 75th birthday present.

    I enjoy taking off for some short RV trips.....the Keys, Canaveral, Georgia, Panhandle, etc. There are a number of nice campgrounds close to us. We just pack up the dogs and spend a few days close by. If I don't want to use the RV I can use the boat for a day of fishing and playing in the water. The good news is that I live in Florida, where we have been allowed to get out of the house almost from the get-go. We have the best Governor in the country.....brass balls and all.

    RVing has been about the only way to travel in the past year, or so. We spent three months just before Christmas traveling through Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Masks were short lived here, except in a few liberal haunts, and businesses were open for all but a short period. COVID rates were low, compared to the states that closed completely down (ie New York, California, Illinois, etc.). Schools have stayed open and the COVID rates for students is way below NY, CA, IL, MI, OH, etc.

    I hope you have been getting some travel in. I know how much you love it. I assume you have some trips planned for next year. You deserve it. What are you looking at?

    I do want to go back to Africa again. I went on T and K in 2014 and would like to do it again. I'd like to take my girlfriend there. She wants to go. I've looked at a couple of different trips and almost all of them spend too much time in cities, ports, museums, etc. I want to spend most of my time of doing bush drives and seeing the wonderful animals in Africa.

    I agree with British. No companies that I have researched do as good of a job as Tauck. I am thinking about a company that rents and runs an RV tour. I think that would be fantastic. However, they spend very little time doing game drives. Most is spent touring cities and museums, shopping, etc. Just not my cup of tea. I know a lot of people enjoy that and I have no problem with it. It is all a matter of choice. Tauck is just a special company that works hard to give their clients a quality product. She hit the nail on the head.

    I'll talk to you again, I am sure. I have a bunch of questions about the two tours I am taking and I can always rely on fellow Tauck travelers to assist me. Take care and enjoy your travels.

  • Nvdb, there are many companies that do safari drives exclusively in Africa, or you can build a custom trip with them, but they are much more expensive than Tauck. That should not be a problem for you.

  • Thanks for the suggestion, British. I have a friend that is a retired zoo operator and he has done some personal, private trips to Africa. Once these trips are over, I might look into that more in-depth. It is nice to talk with you again. I'll probably need some some of your experienced tips once I get closer to the river boat trip and French tour. My last international Tauck tours were the Australia and New Zealand trips. Those gave me my seven continents. Since then, Susan and I went to Yellowstone in Winter (2nd time for me) and loved it. I think we'll go camping there one summer. She hasn't been there in the summer, but I have many times. We're actually thinking about working for the Park Service there one summer for fun. Lots of ideas....who knows. I tried to put a picture here, but I don't know if it worked.

  • British
    Nvdb, there are many companies that do safari drives exclusively in Africa, or you can build a custom trip with them, but they are much more expensive than Tauck. That should not be a problem for you.

    Tauck doesn't publicize it much so you won't easily find the info, but Tauck also does "Private Departures" for you and 10 or so of your family and best friends. Likely well beyond my means$$$$$

    Nial, photo worked great (don't forget there is a "preview mode). Nice RV/Motor Home/Motor Coach! What kind of mileage do you get- 4 - 6 mpg? :o Do the dogs drive while you sleep? :D

  • I'm not looking for 10-12 people to go. I just want the two of us to go on a trip that focuses on game drives. We can go with other people too. I'm sure there are a number of tours that do that. Right now, it is not my priority. We've got to decide what trips we want to take with tour groups (Tauck and RV) and on our own. ;)

    The RV is a Tiffin Phaeton 40' diesel pusher and gets around 10 MPG. We tow a Ford Expedition. Obviously we'd get more MPG without it, but it makes going to the grocery store and sight seeing much easier. It's just nice to have the house with us and have access to camp grounds nationwide. Or, we can stop where ever we want, set our own agenda, change the plans, etc. We are 100% self-sufficient. We can hike and bike anywhere. We both like to fish and enjoy being outdoors. Just another choice for enjoyment.

    I wish the dogs could drive while we are sleeping :) We were coming back from a walk and they were sitting there waiting for us. I thought it was a great picture though.

  • edited June 2021

    I did look into Tauck private departures recently for our family of 9, but 10 is the minimum. They will
    I guess take less people of you pay the price for ten. They only do it for a few tours. I figured it would be better to just do the Bridges tour in the end.
    We used to camp with a huge trailer tent when our kids were younger, in England and France. Loved it then, but not now. Do you have to pre-book RV park spots? We certainly had to book almost a year in advance to secure places back then.

  • British, campground availability depends on a number of things. If you want to go to an area that is in great demand (Yellowstone) you might have to reserve a spot well in advance. That also depends on whether you want to stay inside the park (usually a bit cheaper, but a longer reservation time) or in a private campground outside the park (not as much of a reservation issue)

    There are thousands of parks now available nationwide. Some are not worth going to, but many are very nice. In fact, some are very plush.....beautiful spaces, landscaped, pools, restaurants, beach, boat docks, etc. Very unreal. Here is a view from a campsite in the Florida Keys.

    Our RV is a Tiffin Phaeton 40' diesel pusher bus with four slide outs (kitchen, dining area, living room area, 1.5 baths, residential sized refrigerator, generator, two air conditioners, bed room, shower, washer/dryer, water tank, waste tanks, storage area underneath, four TV's, satellite dish, gas range, microwave/convection oven). Like I told AlanS, MPG is not great, but I knew that going in. You don't get one of these things if MPG is an issue. We tow a Ford Expedition for travel and shopping convenience.

  • Is there a current, online version of Woodall's? My parents used that when camping and traveling in their Airstream.

  • Claudia, are you green with envy?

  • Ndvb - Ford Expedition, much better on the gas mileage. 😀 Still under 20mpg probably. Curious as to how many in your traveling party for these plush accommodations.

  • It sounds like the only thing missing is a professional driver/valet!

  • AlanS, are you volunteering? Smiling Sam, the Expedition gets between 16-21 MPG, city to highway. When it is being towed, it 0 GPM. NOTE: GPM!!!!! Also, AlanS, you know you are not OCD, right? You are CDO.....alphabetical order. :D

  • Nope, not envious. I would like a self-contained unit vs truck/trailer combo but nothing that large. We used to have a big 5th wheel and it was a challenge to find parking spots especially in national parks. If I win the state's Vax 2 The Max lottery I'll buy Airstream's Atlas Touring Coach. Base price $244k. Meanwhile we're happy with what we got. Let's see Nial tote a classy Airstream and 2 ATV's. Not to mention getting them down off the 1 Ton Truck. It's an adventure. We've criss crossed the country as far as Key West, Vermont, Glacier NP, most of the west coast and loads in between.

  • Claudia, that looks great. I love ATVing. I used to do it in the Rockies when I lived in Colorado. I also built, from salvage, a rock crawler Jeep with 38" tires, Detroit air lockers, air compressor, 390 hp engine, and a whole lot more. Those ATV's look great. Getting them off that truck would take some labor. I am looking at a golf cart that fits in the back of the Expedition. Can't off-road with it, but can drive around a campground with it. I'm not a big Airstream fan, but I have friends that live by them. I like pulling a toad, rather than a trailer. You look ready for a nice trip though. That rig can't be a whole lot shorter than our Tiffin. How long is it? 36'?

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