Tour Review

I recently returned from this fabulous trip and will post a review soon.



  • Great report. We are signed up for Oct. 2023.
    You mentioned that one couple did not comply with the mask requirement. I have not read all the paperwork we need to sign before we start the tour but isn’t there somewhere notice that if you don’t follow the guidelines you will not be allowed to continue on the tour?
    What did the Tauck Directors do about the non-compliance?

  • Great report…thank you. We are on this trip in September 2023…it all sounds wonderful!

  • TravelGuy -

    Tauck's Travel Well Pledge, which must be signed and turned in at the start of the tour, discusses consequences for non-compliance with the mask policy. From the very start, the couple in question were quite vocal about mask wearing, even going as far as interrupting the tour director during the welcome dinner and proclaiming that masks were useless. I do know they were spoken to many, many times by the tour directors, ship staff, ship security officer and even hotel restaurant management. Because of this and other despicable behaviors, I suspect they will be receiving a letter from Tauck, hopefully banning them from future Tauck tours. I hope so.

  • British -

    Please don't blame Tauck. Be angry at the rude, self-serving, entitled Americans who used this tour to espouse their political agenda. I do believe this couple will be banned from future Tauck travel.

    With respect, you were not on this tour and did not witness the extraordinary measures taken by Tauck to keep us safe.

  • edited December 2021

    Rules are rules. Receiving a future letter doesn’t protect you or the rest of the group.
    They should not have have been allowed to continue the trip.
    From the Tauck Travel Well document:

    agree to take personal responsibility for my health and well-being, to follow COVID-19 protocols – such as wearing a mask and social distancing – as mandated by Tauck, our supplier partners and local authorities. I understand that noncompliance with these measures by myself or my traveling party will result in our party not being able to continue on this Tauck journey.

  • cathyandsteve - Thank you for the kind comments. I wish you all the best on your upcoming tour.

    Nancy - Thank you, as well. You will have a great time on your Savoring France tour and on this one.

    TravelGuy - Please don't shoot the messenger. I understand your frustration. I and many others felt very safe because our masks protected us from that couple. Moreover, they were shunned throughout the trip.

  • Thank you for your honesty, no shooting form here, great review, but people need to know what to expect on a tour in the age of an ongoing Pandemic.
    Just one question, were you able to sit and have a meal on a separate more isolated table at meal times away from this couple? I won’t ask anything else about this. Sorry everyone.

  • edited December 2021

    No shooting here either. I am just concerned that Tauck did not follow through with what they have plainly stated in their pledge document.
    We are going to Hawaii in February and hope we don’t experience this.

    Glad you enjoyed the cruise.


  • British -

    With only 43 guests and two dining venues, there were plenty of empty tables at meal times. As mentioned before, this outrageous couple was shunned throughout the trip. Moreover, two full-sized buses were used on the two long bus rides...Madrid to the Portugal border and Porto to Lisbon, affording ample space to social distance.

    In all fairness to Tauck, were they really expected to throw this couple overboard? That's a rhetorical question.

    I do sincerely believe they have been banned from future tours.

  • Yes, they probably will be banned from future tours. But how many people might Tauck lose reading about broken pledges and promises. There are still people who might only travel with strict mask compliance. Who wants to test positive and not be allowed to get back into the US.

  • kfnknfzk, thanx for the review. Since that's our next Tauck tour I was interested in the details.

    Not shooting the messenger but I agree the pair should have been booted if that many Tauck and Scylla employees attempted to rectify the situation. No doubt Tauck got lots of feedback on it in the evaluations from fellow passengers. On our Switzerland land tour we had a pair that sort of skirted with non-compliance - would get on the bus then remove their masks. Most of the other guests found them "charming" so no one complained and the TD just ignored it. In her defense, making a TD who is dependent on tips being the ogre isn't a great situation especially if others aren't complaining. In France, our tiny group decided after a couple of days not to wear masks on the bus. Since we were eating together every night in close contact it made no sense to wear a mask on the bus where we had much more distance between us. We did agree that if you were seated in the front seat near the driver you had to wear a mask. At all other times everyone complied with local requirements.

  • edited December 2021

    Claudia Sails,

    I am in no way defending Tauck. Everyone was exasperated by this couple, and not just because of their refusal to wear masks. All I can say is that the situation will be handled after the fact. I understand that might not be palatable to some.

    I mean no disrespect, but I disagree with the belief that if everyone agreed to disobey the rules, it would then be acceptable. I fail to understand the logic there.

    I'd rather stay focused on the wonderful aspects of this trip and not have it marred by the idiocy of two individuals.

    Best wishes.

  • To kfnknfzk---Thanks for the comprehensive review. We were booked on this trip next May and just had to cancel due to health related issues. Safe traveling to all.

  • AshvEd,

    I'm sorry you had to cancel this remarkable trip. I hope you can rebook it at a later date.

  • Hope you feel better soon Ed!

  • I was on the same tour at the same time. Mostly, I agree with kfnknfzk's remarks, with a few exceptions. The crew was indeed fabulous. I was amazed that on the first day Christian, the dining room captain, was able to greet each guest by name! Never having been to this part of the world before I participated in all the tours. I agree that the Tapas tour was disappointing. My group actually went to 2 venues, but still not memorable.
    I was COMPLETELY unaware of the issue regarding the mask wearing of one couple. Had no idea. Not only was I unaware, but it was never mentioned by the people I was interacting with.
    All in all, this was a wonderful trip and I recommend it highly

  • So, are you saying you never saw this couple without masks when there were so few people on the boat, how strange.

  • I am booked for the Douro tour next year. I was comfortable in August on my Tauck Spain/Portugal cruise because everyone wore masks onboard the ship and while traveling on the daily excursion buses. The ship provided plenty of distancing due to the small number of guests aboard the Windsurf... less than half capacity. Seville was hot, as expected in August. We were masked on our walking tours outdoors as well, although we felt it was excessive to do so. But... it was what we had agreed to. Compliance by all guests with rules & guidelines allows for an enjoyable experience for all and is expected. It demonstrates respect for others. The portion we will travel by bus especially concerns me as it is an enclosed space. Hopefully my fellow travelers will abide by the Travel Well Pledge as we did in August.

  • Patrice,

    The Spain and Portugal land tour was our favorite of all time. I am glad you enjoyed the small ship cruise. Please don't be too concerned about the bus portion of the Douro tour. Tauck will ensure enough buses are available to allow for distancing, as well as providing hand sanitizer as you board the bus.

    I look forward to your review next year.

  • We were impressed with how thoroughly Tauck cared for our safety. I am confident Tauck will continue this level of care. Thank you kfnknfzk for a fantastic review. Much appreciated!

  • Thank you, Patrice, for your kind words. Stay safe and well.

  • We are scheduled for the May 11-22, 2022, Westbound itinerary. First trip with Tauck, first trip on the Douro, and I greatly appreciate all you are sharing. Thank you!

  • gafly26482,

    I think after this trip you will be taking many more with Tauck! Please be sure to write a review after your tour. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. Stay safe and well.

  • Thank you Gafly for the detailed review. I am looking forward to the June 15 tour in the eastward direction. One question... when I was at the Lisbon Intercontinental in August 2021 (Tauck's small ship Exploring Spain & Portugal) we were limited, due to Covid restrictions, to 2/3 passengers in a taxi, rear seat only, no seating allowed in the front with the driver. We took taxis several times during our free time to the Baixa and Alfama neighborhoods and again to return to the hotel. You mentioned a shuttle. Was this offered by Tauck or by the hotel?

  • Anyone stay at the Intercontinental Madrid? Our October 2023 is not staying at the Westin and just wondering what this alternative venue is like.

  • Gafly, Thanks for a very informative review. To answer your question, in my experience with Tauck, they are indeed very flexible when it comes to tour choice.

    So my DH and I will be going on the Douro cruise this fall…we’ll be staying post-cruise at Le Monumental Palace Hotel in Porto. Has anyone stayed there and can you share any observations?

Leave a Comment

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