Travel Forum

Our Travel Forum was created to provide you with the opportunity to connect with other travelers who share your passion for travel. Sign into "My Account" and you’ll be able to write reviews, share your travel experiences, and post questions for other travelers. Not yet registered? It’s simple to create an account, membership is free, and it only takes a moment to join. Once you do, you’ll be able to write reviews, share your travel experiences, and post questions for other travelers. If you have a specific customer service or quality assurance question, please contact our Traveler Support Team by calling 1-800-221-0814. We value the contributions of our travelers. Please familiarize yourself with the guidelines for participation before you begin.

Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 510
GCT Trips Taken: 10
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 2002

January 31, 2012

I don't wish to be flogging a deceased equine, but I would like some information if such is available from the participants in this forum. I fully understand the limited number of tours sponsored by GCT in North America, in light of the mission statement, "Worldwide discovery at extraordinary value...." Yesterday I received in the mail a catalog from Collette Vacations. It is dedicated to tours in the USA and Canada. There are many and some seem quite desireable.

My question is: Have any of you taken tours before with Collette and how would you compare and contrast the experience with your trips with GCT?

My only experience with tour companies other than GCT is with YMT Vacations and Saga Holidays. I would place Saga exactly on a par with GCT. YMT, on the other hand, is advertised as a budget travel supplier and they deliver what is advertised. I am willing to pay the slightly higher cost of GCT so I booked GCT's Northwest National Parks tour even though YMT has a very similar tour at a slightly lower price.

What Collette is offering is not duplicated by GCT. So were I to book a Collette tour for the itinerary that is not available through GCT, would I, in your opinion, be satisfied?

Author: luisa

Joined: 3/13/2010
Posts: 599
GCT Trips Taken: 6
OAT Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Canada, Mexico, Spain, France, Monoco, Croatia, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, Chile, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji. Ireland

Traveler Since: 2006

January 31, 2012

I don't know about Collette, but friends took a westernUSA  tour with Tauck and said it was wonderful. I know Tauck is more expensive than GCT, but if the itinerary is what you want, it might be worth it.

Author: walshcs

Joined: 1/25/2011
Posts: 107
GCT Trips Taken: 3
OAT Trips Taken: 1
Countries Visited:

Costa Rica, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Guatemala, the Canadian Maritimes incl. Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and PEI, Montreal (Quebec), , and many USA cities incl. NYC, Chicago, New Orleans, Washington DC, Portland Oregon, the Oregon coast, Maine coast, parts of Florida. I took a 10 day tour to Costa Rica where I was especially thrilled to experience the tropical plants, birds, volcanos, and met the friendly Ticos. I did Ireland in Depth with GCT Oct. 2011 and it was an inspiring, beautiful, and meaningful experience to finally visit the land of my Irish ancestors. Completed the Tuscany & the Amalfi Coast with the pre-trip to Venice April 21, 2012 and it was a travel dream fulfilled. I booked Guatemala with Tikal, Antigua and Atitlan for January 2013 and had a wonderful adventure discovering modern day Maya culture and learning about ancient Maya city states with my visit to Tikal. It was very exciting that OAT brought back the trip to Japan. I had the trip of a lifetime including the pre-trip to Tokyo in Nov. 2013 and even did the Maiko make-over in Kyoto. My friends at home couldn't believe the "20 year old" in the photos of a Geisha were really me. Thank you professional photographer & photo shop! :) The next trip booked for Sept. 2014 is the Best of Eastern Europe (land trip version) and I'm looking forward to history & culture in that region. Now I finally have the resources to pursue my "bucket list" of foreign travel and the freedom to chart my own life's course. Ask questions that will satisfy your requirements/interests in a travel buddy. Looking forward to meeting you here and maybe in the world. Warm regards, Cate I'll post a photo when I remember to bring one from home. (Only have internet at work for now.)

Traveler Since: 2011

February 01, 2012


Collette has a great reputation with the University of Southern Maine Senior College who have booked many trips with this company. This group of travelers have high expectations and standards as they are also looking for the educational value (discovery) so don't think they would be repeat customers with collette if not satisfied.

During my trip to Costa Rica last March my tour group sometimes arrived at a site or resort at the same time as a Collette group and the folks I asked were very happy with Collette's version of the tour.

Good luck with your decision and enjoy,


Author: almaruth60

Joined: 1/2/2011
Posts: 10
GCT Trips Taken: 2
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 2011

February 02, 2012

In June of 2001, I booked solo with Collette to Great Britian,Wales & Ireland for 15 days. This was my first trip out of the country and I loved it. The tour guide was wonderful and we had great weather and fun. 

In June 2007, I booked Collette with a girlfriend to Germany, Swizland and Austria. The tour guide was rushing us around and wasn't very good, infomation wise. I was very disappointed. At the time, I decided that Collette was not going to have me travel with them again. A Tour Guide is very important and one who is lazy can be a trip ruiner. My next trip was with GCT solo in 2011. Went to Amsterdam thur Burges.  Loved it so much that my husband will be going with me now. We'll booked for June 16, 2012 to the Normandy beaches to Paris on the seine. Grand Circle had the most friendliess crew and the boat was always ver clean. Sorry I didn't go to Austia and the alps with GCT. loved ti .'

what ever you do enjoy the food and sights  Only 135 days left!!!


Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 510
GCT Trips Taken: 10
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 2002

February 02, 2012

Thanks for the input, guys. It is filed for future reference.

I am eager for my Northwest National Parks Tour, but I don't think I really want to be in the Canadian Rockies right now. I can wait for summer!

I'm not a skier. I helped my younger daughter and her family celebrate her birthday this week at one of our local ski resorts. I didn't ski, but I held my own at the apres ski buffet!

Author: singsling

Joined: 6/23/2010
Posts: 246
GCT Trips Taken: 11
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 1995

February 02, 2012

I think comparison among several providers for trips is to compare what you get for the money.  Many tours do not include air fare to the departure or meeting city (if stateside).  Another is numbr of meals included, tours provided with the price, kind and type of optional tours.  Also compare airport transfers,  and program directors (sometimes you can read bios on them.  I spoke with a YMT tour agent for quite a while, reviewed her itinerary for a trip we wanted, and found it very lacking.  This was a tour to Canada and New Englande.  I compared it to GCT's very similar tour (Maritimes).  GCT would have been less expensive and more meals were included with GCT. 

A few years ago after 6 trips with GCT to Europe, we didn't see an Alaska tour (early enough to get a good cabin).  We booked with World Wide Country Tours.  The price was comparable to a GCT Alaska cruise/tour with Norwegian Cruise Line.  The only thing I didn't like was that we didn't get a chance to pick the cabin and we had bongo drums above us for the 3 nights on board.  We said, oh, well, it's only 3 days. 

The program director was very good, but the friendliness, caring, and spontaneous not to mention knowledgeable of all places visited was not experienced with WWCT. 

You cannot Post or Reply, please sign in

Rules of Use:
Be Relevant

Please stick to the topic of travel when posting in our Forum. Stay on the relevant topic and do not disrupt a discussion in progress. If you have a specific customer service question or issue, please contact our Traveler Support Team by calling 1-800-221-0814.

Be Respectful

Use of any inappropriate language, personal attacks, and hate speech are not permitted. Respect others’ opinions and suggestions.

Be Mindful of Privacy Issues

Please do not post the personal information of other members (full names, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, etc).

Help us help you

Please click on the ‘Report Abuse’ button if you see an inappropriate posting.