FAQs

Ireland

Will I have free time or will I have to stay with the group the entire time?

The foundation of our tours is the flexibility that is built into them. Other than transfers from town to town & scheduled tours or attractions, your vacation to spend as you please. A Hopper Tour is designed to provide you flexibility and independence in which your itinerary, accommodations, transfers and some tours/attractions are all pre-arranged to provide you with the structure you need while traveling. The rest of the trip is up to you to do as you please.

What is the difference between a door-to-door transfer and a private chauffeur driver guide?

A door-to-door transfer is exactly that: You can hire a driver to pick you up at point A to take you to point B. With a service like this the driver is not a licensed guide to provide you with information regarding sites, history or stories during your transfer.

If you hire a Private Chauffeur Driver, they will get you from point A to point D, with stops at point B & C along the way while they are also providing you guidance as to where you are and what you’re seeing.

What will my hotel be like on an Escorted tour?

CIE Escorted tours use three classes of hotels – these are first class (3 star), superior first class (4 star, which include castle properties) or deluxe (5 star, which include castle properties).

First class hotels (3 star) feature a dining room, lounge, bar and comfortable guest rooms. Many have leisure facilities.

Superior first class hotels (4 star) offer the same amenities with higher standards and many have leisure and spa facilities.

Deluxe hotels (5 star) offer luxurious features and are often in unique settings.

When will I be able to check into my hotel/hostel/B&B in each city/town?

Typically, check-in is 3:00pm, although many places will allow you to check in earlier once rooms have been cleaned and inspected. Luggage can be stored in a secure area for early arrivals.

Consider Registering with STEP (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program).

The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to a foreign country. STEP allows you to enter information about your upcoming trip abroad so that the Department of State can better assist you in an emergency. Click here for more information.

Scotland

Is there a host/guide with us on the tour?

Our Singles Tours are set up the same as all of our Hopper tours without a full-time host or guide; however, we do provide a local host during your welcome event on your first evening. Please remember these tours were designed for the independent traveler. See our General Hopper Questions above for more information regarding the structure of Hopper tours so you know what to expect during the tour.

When should I exchange my US dollars?

If you would like to have cash upon arrival we recommend exchanging around $100 before you leave. You can then withdraw money from local ATMs as needed, or use your credit card (Visa & MasterCard recommended). The ATMs will give you the bank’s best exchange of the day. You may also exchange a small amount of money at your hotels. We do not advise exchanging a lot of cash at the airports as they generally give you a less competitive exchange rate. Traveler’s Checks are NOT accepted at most locations outside of airports so we do not recommend them.

Do I have to be a solo traveler to join this trip, or can I bring a friend?

You can absolutely bring a friend! Our Singles Tour is set up to be a great way to meet new people, but if you’re more comfortable traveling with a friend, then you can certainly travel together.

Please note that Hopper weeks assigned for solo travelers are not exclusive to solo travelers. Transfers from town-to-town may include other Tenon Tours travelers and the type of transfer may vary and is subject to change based on the total number of travelers traveling to/from the same destination on any particular date.

How does group airfare work?

Airlines require that you have at least 10 people traveling on the same itinerary in order to be considered a group. Your per seat deposit will hold airline reservations and guarantee your base fare until 90-120 days prior to departure depending on the airline. Tax and fuel are subject to change until paid in full and tickets are issued.

When I book a chauffeur driver tour, can I plan my itinerary on the go?

Prior to travel you will need to have a rough outline of where you want to go and what you want to do so that we can help you determine if it is even possible within the driver’s hired time limits and the countries regulations.  There should be some flexibility built in for unforeseen time issues and/or if you would like to take a more causal approach to your sightseeing.  Always remember, there are time, mileage and driver regulations that must be abided by.  These regulations are not set by Tenon Tours and your driver will work with you directly as to any itinerary changes or updates that may be required.  For more details on itinerary planning for chauffeur driver tours, download our Private Chauffeur Driver Guide here!

England

When will I get my travel documents?

Your travel documents will be issued via EMAIL 7 to 10 days prior to departure. Documents will include your assigned hotel accommodations, transfer details and times, vendor contact information, emergency numbers and more. All you need to do is print out all of these documents and take them with you. You may forward them to friends & family to share your trip details and contact information.

Escorted Tours: Travel documents for escorted tours are mailed and will be  delivered via USPS (sent from our office in Massachusetts) and should arrive approximately 7-10 days prior to departure. 

What is included in my car quote?

Your car quote includes all compulsory insurance – Collision Damage Waiver insurance (CDW with an excess/deductible), theft protection insurance (TP), sales tax (VAT), unlimited free mileage, third party liability insurance, one driver (unless otherwise noted), airport surcharge, free road map and 24-hour peace of mind break down coverage. We highly recommend that you read through all of the terms and conditions of the car rental so you are familiar with what is included and what is not, as they will present you with several options upon pick-up (increased insurance, GPS, etc.).

Why are automatic cars so much more expensive?

Automatic cars are in much higher demand than manual cars in Ireland and the UK because of international visitors not used to driving on the opposite side of the road or driving a manual.

What is the Super CDW?

The Super CDW is additional insurance you can add to your regular CDW for an extra cost. The Super CDW insures against the CDW deductible amounts. Tires, wheels, fuel contamination and loss of keys are not covered by premium. If not included in your quote, daily cost is approximately €/£12.00-22.00 EUR depending on car category.

Consider Registering with STEP (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program).

The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to a foreign country. STEP allows you to enter information about your upcoming trip abroad so that the Department of State can better assist you in an emergency. Click here for more information.

Wales

When will I get my travel documents?

Your travel documents will be issued via EMAIL 7 to 10 days prior to departure. Documents will include your assigned hotel accommodations, transfer details and times, vendor contact information, emergency numbers and more. All you need to do is print out all of these documents and take them with you. You may forward them to friends & family to share your trip details and contact information.

Escorted Tours: Travel documents for escorted tours are mailed and will be  delivered via USPS (sent from our office in Massachusetts) and should arrive approximately 7-10 days prior to departure. 

Will there be someone accompanying our group while we are on tour?

A full-time host or guide is not provided with Hopper Tours. Your Tenon Tours Travel Specialist will be happy to work with you prior to departure to answer any of your questions and make suggestions about available things to see or do. On most day tours and attractions there are licensed tour guides available and we also recommend asking the receptionists at your hotels for helpful tips and information. You will be provided with a 24/7 Tenon Tours Traveler Hotline if any issues or emergencies do arise and you need assistance.

What if I pick up my car before the time on my confirmation?

If you arrive to pick up your car before your confirmation time and a car is available they will let you pick it up early. If you pick up the car early your return time will then change to the same time on the day you need to drop it off as car rentals are valid for a 24-hour rental period.

Will somebody pick me up at the airport upon arrival?

Generally there will not be a Tenon Tours representative at the airport upon your arrival unless you booked a private taxi. Please follow the directions you were given on your transfer vouchers and/or travel documents in order to locate your appropriate transportation company (car, bus, private taxi).

What type of accommodations do you use for a Hopper tour?

With a commitment to immersing travelers in the culture of each city, Tenon selects accommodations that enhance a traveler’s experience. Accommodations are carefully chosen based on location and quality in an effort to meet our travelers’ expectations and ensure satisfaction. Hotel locations provide easy accessibly to attractions, restaurants, pubs and public transportation. Whether it’s a boutique hotel or a large chain property, our hotels will always have a quality rating of three or four stars and a TripAdvisor rating of three or higher. Tenon offers a wide variety of hotels in each of the cities on our Hopper Tours. Hotels are subject to availability and the discretion of Tenon Tours. Hotels of the same class not listed below may also be substituted. Travelers’ exact hotel assignments will be issued with travel documents 7 to 10 days prior to departure.

British Isles

What are the hotel bedding options?

It is important to note that European hotel rooms generally tend to be smaller than North American hotel rooms.

For your hotel room you can choose to have:

Double– One bed for two people (usually Queen size, sometimes Double/Full.  King only by request and not always guaranteed).

Twin– Two separate beds (can be two Single beds, two Double/Full, one Single & one Double/Full, etc…)

Triple– Two beds to sleep three people.  Rarely will there be three separate beds.  (Normally you will find a Double/Full bed and one twin bed for a total of 2 beds.  Sometimes you may find two Double/Full or three Single beds, but it is rare.) Please note there is no reduction in cost for a third person sharing a room with two others. For comfort, we suggest that three adults take two separate rooms.

Twin and Triple Room configurations will be assigned based on hotel availability at the time of check-in.

Note: No more than three people can share a hotel room on escorted tours.

How much luggage can I bring on a small group escorted tour?

There is a restriction to one medium sized suitcase/bag (maximum 15 kilos or about 33 pounds) and one carry-on bag of either a backpack or handbag per person due to the limited space of the vehicle.

Where should we eat?

We suggest checking with the front desk at the hotel or asking locals for recommendations based on what you’re looking to eat and how much you want to spend. Iceland is a very friendly and hospitable country when you are looking for suggestions or are needing questions answered.

When I book a chauffeur driver tour, can I plan my itinerary on the go?

Prior to travel you will need to have a rough outline of where you want to go and what you want to do so that we can help you determine if it is even possible within the driver’s hired time limits and the countries regulations.  There should be some flexibility built in for unforeseen time issues and/or if you would like to take a more causal approach to your sightseeing.  Always remember, there are time, mileage and driver regulations that must be abided by.  These regulations are not set by Tenon Tours and your driver will work with you directly as to any itinerary changes or updates that may be required.  For more details on itinerary planning for chauffeur driver tours, download our Private Chauffeur Driver Guide here!

How do you pick roommates?/When will we find out who our roommate is?

Once we know how many travelers require a roommate, we will pair individuals based on gender and trip length. We will also do our best to match individuals based on age and/or where they are from, if possible. Roommates will be introduced prior to travel via email when travel documents are issued, approximately 7 to 10 days prior to departure.

Italy

What is included in my car quote?

Your car quote includes all compulsory insurance – Collision Damage Waiver insurance (CDW with an excess/deductible), theft protection insurance (TP), sales tax (VAT), unlimited free mileage, third party liability insurance, one driver (unless otherwise noted), airport surcharge, free road map and 24-hour peace of mind break down coverage. We highly recommend that you read through all of the terms and conditions of the car rental so you are familiar with what is included and what is not, as they will present you with several options upon pick-up (increased insurance, GPS, etc.).

How much luggage can I bring on a luxury escorted tour?

Due to motor coach space limitations, most luxury escorted tours only allow for one normal sized suitcase per individual. Remember, a wise traveler packs light! We also encourage just one carry-on bag per individual (for carrying items that might be needed during the day’s sightseeing excursions or camera/video equipment). Dimensions for carry-ons should not exceed 17” x 12” x 10”, allowing it to fit under the seat or in the overhead rack of most motor coaches.

What is the time difference in Italy?

There is a 6-hour time difference between Italy and Eastern Standard Time. 12PM in New York = 6PM in Italy.

When are banks open in Italy?

Banks are generally open from Mon-Fri 8:00AM-1:00PM, then they re-open from about 3:00PM-5:00PM. ATM’s are accessible at all times!

Will somebody pick me up at the airport upon arrival?

Generally there will not be a Tenon Tours representative at the airport upon your arrival unless you booked a private taxi. Please follow the directions you were given on your transfer vouchers and/or travel documents in order to locate your appropriate transportation company (car, bus, private taxi).

Iceland

How do I make phone calls while on my trip? Does my cell phone work?

Depending on your cell phone plan/carrier, your cell phone will work in Ireland and the UK but will come with connection fees and minute charges. Digital Phones with GSM capabilities and an International roaming agreement will work but we recommend you contact your mobile company to see if they have a specific plan available or it will be expensive. Local cell phones are available for rent through Tenon Tours.

What is the weather like in Iceland?

“If you don’t like the weather, just wait five minutes” is often said about Icelandic weather, meaning it changes frequently! Most visitors can expect a mix of sunny and cloudy conditions as well as rain and wind, sometimes in a single day. In winter, snow comes and goes. June, July, and August are the warmest months, with temperatures in the 50’s and you’ll have the most daylight (18-22 hours) from May to August. In the winter, expect only 4-7 hours of daylight and temperatures hovering in the 30’s during the day and 20’s at night.

Check out Iceland’s average monthly temperatures below:
 
WeatherGraph.Iceland.TenonTours-01

Will my chauffeur driver speak English?

Yes! Your driver, while they may have accents native to their respective countries, will always speak English.

Should I get travel insurance?

We recommend purchasing travel insurance. Tenon Tours offers a tour protection plan to cover your trip plus airfare – whether you purchase airfare through us or not. Travel insurance is affordable and gives you the extra peace of mind should anything happen during your trip. For specifics on our travel insurance coverage, contact your personal travel specialist.

Can children travel on a luxury escorted tour?

Children under 6 years of age are not permitted on luxury escorted tours.