ABOUT SMALL GROUP TRAVEL
How is traveling on a group tour different from other types of travel?
These trips are specially designed for small group experiences that feed the soul, mind and palate! Because our tours are carried out in a group, these trips are different from traveling on your own. Group travel requires flexibility and consideration for fellow travelers. We have a set daily itinerary with reservations for the group. This requires guests to meet at certain times. We ask guests to be on time to meet in the hotel lobby in the morning or at meeting spots during the day in order to keep the trip going as planned. People who enjoy meeting and interacting with other people, will enjoy the camaraderie and spirit of group travel. We have people who have made life-long friends on our tours.
Do I have to do everything with the group?
You don’t have to do everything with the group but we must know if you are not planning on attending a group excursion or meal in advance. Sorry, but we cannot give refunds for any planned activities not attended since tour arrangements are made in advance for the entire group.
Couldn’t I just put this trip together on my own?
We take all of the work out of planning your own trip. For our tour destinations, we have made reservations for some events you would have to do with a group. We have arranged for the best group rates on accommodations, meals, cultural tours, classes and wine tastings.
If You are Solo…
These trips are ideal for solo travelers. Guests will have opportunity to get to know others in the group. If you want more time on your own, just let us know your desires ahead of time so your needs can be accommodated.
When will I know the names of the hotels for this trip?
The trip is booked and group room reservations are being held for us. However, we cannot confirm the hotels until all guest trip registrations/deposits are received and we are under contract with our travel suppliers. That is usually the registration deadline for the tour. Hotels are personally selected to provide our guests with modern, comfortable rooms, private baths and breakfast in the hotel. They are all 4* rand 5* rated with location in mind.
What is the difference between bedding for double and single occupancy rooms?
The bedding configuration is based on the individual hotel. Single occupancy rooms could be one bed (a double, queen or king) or two single beds pushed together. Double rooms are often used for single occupancy. Double rooms can be two twins or doubles pushed together. Whenever possible, we request rooms with king beds for couples but we cannot guarantee this.
PACE & ACTIVITY LEVEL
What is the pace of these trips?
Trips are planned to strive for a balance between a moderate pace with build-in free time for relaxation and time on your own. Since we travel by private coach, we also have time on the coach to relax en route.
What if I just want time to myself without the group?
You are free to take time for yourself, at any point. Please let the tour director know if you want to opt out of a meal or site visit as soon as possible since some of our activities are reserved as a group in advance. If you can advise us at the time of registration, that is even better.
When will I know the final Daily Itinerary?
We have provided a Daily Itinerary on this website. This is the planned itinerary but there may be slight changes until all deposits have been made to travel suppliers (usually 60 days out). You will receive a finalized and detailed Daily Itinerary at Tour Orientation on the first night.
MEALS (See Daily Itinerary)
What types of meals should I expect?
Meals are provided as per the Daily Itinerary on this website. Breakfasts are in the hotel and are usually buffet-style. Breakfast is on your own and is not a group meal. We offer either a lunch or dinner in addition to breakfast each day. There is time to purchase tapas, snacks or a third meal during visits to a market, a town or during free time.
We will enjoy everything from our own picnics to lunches in local cafes to sensational gourmet dinners. Our guides are experts on the local cuisine. They often order for the table so everyone can try the local specialties. They will talk about the cuisine or ingredients as the food arrives to the table making it taste that much better! If you want to order off the menu for yourself, you are always welcome to do so.
Is alcohol included in the price of the tour?
Pack A Fork! provides two glasses of wine at lunch or dinner. Alcoholic or mixed drinks are not covered by the tour.
If I am a vegetarian or have a special diet, can that be accommodated?
We will take note at registration if you have a special diet. That should not be a problem in any of the places we are visiting. We can order for you to accommodate your needs or you are also welcome to order off the menu.
WEATHER & CLOTHING
What is the typical weather on your trips?
We generally plan trips in the shoulder seasons (spring or fall). This season can bring warm days and coolers mornings and evenings. Always bring a jacket or light raincoat and umbrella, if desired. Even if we have a trip in the summer, it is a good idea to plan for a cool or rainy day.
What kind of clothing should I bring?
It is generally a good idea to bring layers of clothing for the most flexibility. Most of what we’ll be doing is casual. The restaurants and cafes are casual, as well. Some evening meals are considered upscale casual. Nothing will require formal attire.
The hotels we stay in often offer laundry service.
We will be walking A LOT. It is imperative that you bring comfortable walking shoes. It is also suggested to bring sandals if we will visit a beach and a pair of dress shoes for the evening.
Most of the hotels have some type of gym or work-out facility. Some have pools. If you want to enjoy these amenities, bring your work-out clothes and bathing suits.
Be sure to always bring a hat and sunscreen!
How many bags can I take?
Here’s the tricky part…since we are usually on the move, please limit your luggage to ONE rolling bag and one carry-on. We can’t stress this enough. There will be ample time to wash clothing in the hotel room. It will make the trip go much more smoothly if everyone brings one piece of luggage + one carry-on only.
How much of my prescribed medication should I bring?
Be sure to bring your medication for the number of days we will be traveling. It would be wise to bring along a bit extra. Pack it in your carry-on bag so you will always have it with you.
What do I need to bring for entry to a country?
Most locations we visit only require a passport. However, sometimes it has to be valid for 90 days after the date of the visit. Be sure your passport is valid for the amount of time required after the trip. Ask us if you are not sure.
Will I need money on the tour?
Pack A Fork! will cover lodging, two meals per day (per Daily Itinerary), admission to sites and museums, site visits, guided tours, tastings and gratuities. The amount of money you bring will depend on additional meals and shopping.
Should I bring cash?
We advise using your debit or credit card to obtain cash, as needed, from an ATM or bank. Keep only a small amount of cash with you. We will stop at an ATM or a bank for guests to get local currency.
What do I need to know to keep my belongings safe?
As in any country, it is wise to take safety precautions. Bag-snatching and pickpocketing are likely the worst problem. It is advisable to bring a purse or daypack that has some kind of built-in security. You might consider credit card covers with RFID Blocking. You can also buy wallets, purses and bags with RIFD blocking material which is a lining that protects everything inside from illegal scanners.
Our hotels usually have safes which you should use for your passport and anything of value. It’s a good idea to keep a copy of your passport with you if the original is in a safe. Please do not bring valuable jewelry or belongings. Pack A Fork! is not responsible for loss or theft of items. If you bring a laptop computer, you will likely have to carry it or leave it at the hotel’s main desk (assuming they will keep it secure for you).
Check with us for the type of adapter you will need for the country you visit.
HEALTH & MEDICAL CARE
Do I need any special vaccinations?
We will let you know if you need special vaccinations for the country your are visiting.
Can I drink the tap water?
We will let you know if you cannot drink the tap water. We will have bottled water available. We ask that you bring a water bottle so it can be refilled.
Does my US medical insurance cover any medical needs I might have in Spain?
Check with your insurance provider for specifics about your policy and its coverage Most U.S. insurance policies do not cover doctor, hospital or medical emergencies in another country. Travel insurance is recommended to cover medical needs or emergencies in another country.
Do I need travel insurance?
We strongly urge all of our guests to obtain travel insurance. Travel insurance policies can cover trip cancellation fees, delays, lost baggage, medical emergencies, etc.
What about tipping?
Pack A Fork! will cover tips in restaurants. However, if you wish to add an additional tip for someone who has provided exceptional service to you, please feel free to do so. It will surely be appreciated.
Should I tip the driver?
We generally tip the driver as a group at the end of the trip. We will pass around a tip jar or tip envelope for contributions. This is at your discretion.
Should I tip the tour guides?
This is at your discretion. If you feel the guides have offered you exceptional service, it is always appreciated!