For Captainlarry and others who would like to see GCT do more domestic tour offerings:
I agree with most everything that has been said by others on this topic and I understand that Grand Circle wants to focus on what they feel they can do best, so an alternative company is CARAVAN. Someone else mentioned taking several of Caravan's USA trips with good results.
I would like to offer that this modest company does an EXCELLENT job with tour directors, very competitive pricing, beautiful hotels overall, and worthwhile, interesting, comprehensive itineraries. Part of their price secret is VOLUME...they have good relationships with their suppliers, such as hotels, because they have many departures each year for the same trips. They include everything, no extra charge for optionals, which I like.
I'm not on their payroll either...I have been very satisfied with Caravan myself incl. my 10 day trip to Costa Rica with them and I intend to do many of their USA offerings as they are much less expensive than companies like Collette or Globus for USA tours.
I remain loyal to GCT for my foreign travel...leaving on the Tuscany & Amalfi Coast trip April 21, 2012 and I can't wait!
Happy Trails, Cate