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Author: ginirn

Joined: 5/2/2012
Posts: 16
Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

US including Hawaii. Ireland twice.

Traveler Since: 2013

October 15, 2013

Just a note to first-time travelers.  When you receive your "final itinerary" prior to departure please by aware that it may not be actually a true schedule of your trip.  I took my first trip last spring and after receiving my "final itinerary" noted that we were to be in Florence on a particular day. Hoping to avoid long ticket lines I purchased a ticket for the museum on-line.  Imagine my disappointment when after arriving in Italy to be informed that we would be in Florence on a different day.  My program director advised my I should have contacted her prior to purchasing.  Of course I know that now but did not as a first time traveler.  I would have saved even more because she would have advised me there would not really be enough time to go to the gallery. Oh well.

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 277
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

many

Traveler Since: 1999

October 15, 2013

Changes to the final itinerary have occurred on some of my GCT trips in the past. In one case, the changes had been planned prior to our arrival but not communicated until after the trip began. In another case, the changes were made "on the fly" during the trip because of inadequate planning prior to the trip.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

October 15, 2013

Somewhere, and now I can't find it, it's written that the daily itineraries are not engraved in stone.  There may have to be changes for various reasons, so that you don't necessarily see things on the day you were originally told you would.

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 277
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

many

Traveler Since: 1999

October 15, 2013

Or you might never do some things on the itinerary  which happened too many times on one of my trips several years ago. Fortunately, this was the only time I have encountered major changes.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

October 16, 2013

Or you might do things that are not listed. 

In 2002, there was a trip to Scandinavia.  In Bergen, we had a free afternoon and the PD asked if we'd be interested in seeing Edvard Grieg's house.  Some of us were, and we chipped in a couple of dollars each to get a van and driver to take us there.  For me, at least, it was one of the high points of that trip.  It was just as he'd left it and it felt as though he'd be walking in the door at any minute.  I said as much to the docent, and she replied that was the effect they wanted it to have.

And if you are in Moscow later in the summer when it gets dark, there's the Moscow by Night city tour.  Where all the buildings and monuments are lit up.  It's not on any itinerary, but if the weather is clear and it gets dark around 10 or 11, they take you on a bus to see them.

Author: jayge

Joined: 3/10/2010
Posts: 146
Trips Taken: 11
Traveler Since: 2004

October 16, 2013

 We took the Russia revealed a few years back and loved it.  However, we were not taken on the bus ride at night to see Moscow by evening.  It was not offered.

Author: grandcircle

Joined: 3/5/2010
Posts: 271
Trips Taken: 0

October 16, 2013

Hello Ginirn -

Thank you for your comments.  We are sorry to hear about your experience in Florence.  Somebody will be reaching out to you offline about it.

We strive to follow our advertised itineraries, but due to local circumstances such as moveable holidays, museum/site closing days, weather conditions, etc.,  we may not always be able to follow this plan in this exact order. The sequence of places visited; the days on which included features occur; and the times Optional Tours are offered may vary.  This disclaimer is printed in our catalogs and in your final document package.  We will look to make sure this also clearer on our website.

Kind Regards,
Michelle
GCT/GCCL Forum Moderator

Author: ginirn

Joined: 5/2/2012
Posts: 16
Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

US including Hawaii. Ireland twice.

Traveler Since: 2013

November 17, 2013

I did not post the original comment to complain but just to advise other first time travelers of the possibility of change and act accordingly.  Our PD made lots of changes during our trip and every one resulted in an enhanced experience for the group.  Of course I had read the handbooks thoroughly but tried to make the most of my trip independently. It is not a big deal just a mistake on my part.  I'm almost sorry I mentioned it

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