When you’re travelling solo, you’re the one who’s responsible for finding accommodation, getting there, finding food and drink and making sure you get the best from your destination.
On tour, your guide will tell you where you’re going each morning, probably take you there, and a good one will be able to give you facts about everything you see along the way too.
This is definitely one of the best things about travelling in a tour group. When you travel by yourself, in a country where you don’t speak the language, there’s no one to ask the deluge of questions you might have. On a tour, no matter how silly your enquiry, your tour guide is there to help.
The fact that there will be all kinds of different people on your trip, who’ve also joined to make new friends, means it’s so much easier to get chatting to people.
You can quickly work out who you think you’d like to talk to, and then over the course of the trip others might surprise you. Either way, I can confirm that it’s much easier to make friends on tours than by hoping to strike up conversations in hostel common rooms.
Join a tour group and you’ll always have a tour leader to advise if things go wrong. This is just a safety net though; you’re not five, and they’re not your parent, but at least you have the reassurance that someone’s got your back if it should all go wrong.
I can’t believe I hadn’t thought of this before, but a few people I met on the group tours had come with friends. They’d wanted to go on holiday with their mates but no one had really wanted to sort it out or be responsible for collecting and spending the money.
All you need to do is pick a tour, have you and at least another friend sign up, and then tell everyone else that’s what you’re doing. That way they can settle payments directly with the guide and your itinerary is set. All that’s left to you is to enjoy being with your mates, and meeting the other people on the trip.
As part of a tour your transport can sometimes access areas you wouldn’t be able to yourself. This is especially true when it comes to those hard to reach destinations like Africa. You’ll be taken to projects you would never have heard of, and have a chance to be introduced to locals like you wouldn’t have if you were travelling by yourself.
All those Instagram selfies are getting tiring for your friends, y’know. You need to get some friends in on the action. On tour everyone’s happy to pose for a pic and be tagged as they all want to look like they’re having the best time ever to their friends back home.
They’re also there to take great photos of you, of course.