We booked our 2020 Italy trip, which was Covid cancelled, through Tauck. I knew in advance what the lowest business class fare would be and told Tauck to see if they could match or beat the price. They were able to get creative and issues 2 one way tickets, one purchased through Delta and the return through Air France. It was a couple hundred dollars less than I was able to book. I am not sure if they do this anymore, but it is worthwhile checking into. It’s all moot now anyway since the trip never happened. Italy is now on our 2022 agenda.
I use airline points for all of my airfares. And like Alan, I book my air as soon as the flights are posted.
Bobbon, there are so many different factors that influence the price they can offer. Example, just the place or airport you want to fly from. The flights they ‘push’ are often geared to the time the tour starts and ends. That alone will limit what they can offer. I’m surprised how many people arrive on the day the the tour begins, so that would be very important. I’m also surprised how many people do not fly business class, for all the talk about business class here. We have only in recent times flown business class. In past years, it was more important to fit an extra tour in than fly business class, we could not afford both back then.
On our third time to Africa, that was when we probavly flew business class, in fact, it might have been premium economy. While usually we do not see most people again once the tour has ended, that particular time, we were all getting the same flight from Dar Es Salem….we were the only ones not in Economy. Not a nice airport, even the business class lounge had limited facilities and the small choice of food had cockroaches crawling over it…we didn’t eat🤪
When it comes to flights, you soon learn you have to do research, is convenience or price most important, especially in these Covid times. Is the airline or route taken the most important?
Even avoiding airports that have very expensive landing fees like Heathrow, can all add or subtract from the final pricing.
I remember a few years ago when we were doing sailing vacations with a cousin and their friends. Because they had been before, we took their word for it that it was cheaper to fly from Newark, so we would drive up there from Philly the night before, stay in a hotel and then fly the next morning. it took us until the third time to realize it was cheaper to fly from Philly a half an hour’s drive away and told everyone else that’s what we were doing!
I would like to add a bit more about a point British made- if you are flexible with your travel dates, you can sometimes save much more than the cost of one or two pre- or post- stays. Unless you absolutely can't leave until a day prior to the start of a tour or must be back a day after the tour ends, why wouldn't you use a gift of time and/or spend $400 for an extra night or two to save potentially $800 or more in airfare? Remember, fares vary by the day of the week- they often vary by the day of the week you purchase the tickets, but, almost always by the day of the week you start your flights, especially for domestic legs. Google and the travel blog websites (The Points Guy, One Mile at a Time, etc.) are a good source of information on the best days to fly.
first of all i would like to say thank you to all who replied my wife and i are first time tauck travelers (hopefully many more) we are booked on a may 2022 hawaiian tour 12 days flying in a day earlier we usually fly on united from newark .just seems business class prices are a little high yet but i will see if tauck air dept.can help again thanks all
bobbon5357 - If you opt for economy on your 10.5 hour Newark to Honolulu flight, then I hope you are a 'smallish' person or be prepared for the following:
Sam - you haven't bought one of the wedges that prevents the seat in front of you from reclining?
Bobbon, if Business class remains too expensive, premium economy is a great compromise. We flew to Australia on that class of seat and then a couple of years later, New Zealand. I’ve been to Hawaii a couple of times, once 22 years ago and once a few years ago both times Economy class. Admittedly, neither neither of us are tall….about the only time that is a good thing. Yep, I know Smiling Sam is 6 feet 7ins, I hope I never find myself sitting behind him at the theater!
Bobbon, like most people who travel with Tauck, once you experience them, you are hooked! Start saving!
We've found Tauck fares very competitive, and may even be a little less than through our local person, but she's been so helpful and we do try to be supportive on the home front. The Tauck advantage on payment is a nice perk and if we didn't have our local person, tat alone might be the edge.
Our TA always books our trips, Tauck et al...he makes a really nice commission from our bookings, so is very willing to see what Tauck Business costs vs what he can find and we do what favors us. It all works out fine! We've done both...right now, our Savor France trip had excellent connections (AA) that he found with Tauck so we are waiting to pay when it's all due...which is always a blessing!
Nancy - agree with you 100%. Our TA does a great job booking our air with Tauck and it worked out especially well when we had to cancel 4 trips and air over the last 15 months. No waiting on a phone for hours and we didn't have to wait weeks for a refund since we didn't have to pay anything until final payment was due. One phone call to our TA does it all.
Nancy & VirginiaTravelers --
We always use our AAA TravelAgent for Tauck & most other trips. She handles everything for us - I email or call her and it's done - she deals directly with Tauck on our behalf and we get AAA perks also. She is Tauck Certified and knows the ropes.
Right on Terrilynn. Our TA is a Tauck certified TA. Makes it so easy!
Specially now with the uncertainties of COVID-19 I feel better booking air with Tauck because of the ease with which we can change if needed.We have done some cost comparing ;for our flights we have not seen a huge difference to book on our own.
we just booked our air for our best of hawaii may 2022 thru our TA.we asked our TA to see if tauck air was priced better and she came back to us and said tauck no longer does domestic air only international flights
That’s interesting, that means all the US tours
Not sure how long it's been in effect but our TA has always said Tauck doesn't book US air- only overseas. Have done a number of US tours over the years and always did our own air. We do usually use them for International flights to save the cancellation hassle unless there's a huge price advantage to doing them ourselves.
Our TA told us months ago that Tauck only books international air for its customers. Our neighbor was going on the Grand Canyon tour and also found that out.
We are doing Best of Hawaii in February 2022 and booked our air through Tauck.
I use miles for my trips. I check with Tauck to see what the dollar amounts would compare to, but miles work out better. I can usually get a better itinerary, as well. I always fly Business or First Class on long trips and can get reasonable dollar to miles comparisons. My miles people tell me how much the cost would be if I paid for it. In some cases, it is cheap enough to pay for the trip and save the miles for an expensive one.
I made my reservations for the May/June trips and used miles. Business class from Fort Myers to Frankfurt to Amsterdam and Paris to Dulles to Fort Myers. It was the cheapest route.
I know I knew this before and could hunt it in the Tauck literature if I wasn’t being lazy but will my flights be covered by the Tauck insurance if the tours are canceled?
Everyone has been saying that if you pay with miles, the airline just gives you them back, no problem.
I have had the Tauck insurance cover airfare (paid in dollars) that I booked myself.
If for some reason they don't, Tauck (Aon) will cover it if you have the insurance.
I have their insurance. Even with miles a one year voucher will be issued.