FAQs

England

What do we mean by “independent,” “flexible” or “semi-escorted” tours?

We arrange for transportation from town to town, rather than travelers having to drive themselves (self-drive), or having to be stuck on a bus with a tour group for the duration of their trip (fully-escorted). Paired with a provided itinerary and optional tours and attractions, this is the perfect way to combine the structure you need, with the flexibility you want!

What are travel times on Escorted tours usually like?

Morning departure time depends on the itinerary to be covered on any particular day. In Britain the tour day begins between 8.00am to 8.30am, while in Ireland the day usually begins between 8.30am and 9.00am. Arrival back to the hotel/ or at the next hotel is usually between 4.00pm and 5.00pm.

Do you offer a room sharing service for solo passengers on Escorted tours?

To ensure the comfort of all our passengers, we do not offer the option of sharing service for solo traveling passengers on escorted tours. We do, however, offer a single supplement whereby you will have the privacy of your own room.

For tour options specific to solo travelers and/or roommate matching options please see our solo / singles travelers options here.

When will I be able to check into my accommodation 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.

What are the check-in/check-out times at B&Bs?

You should arrive for your reservation at a B&B by 6pm. Check-in time is normally between 2pm – 6pm, unless otherwise agreed with your host/hostess. Please note that late arrival, estimated after 6pm, is by special agreement with each home. Check-out should be no later than 11am.

Iceland

Are you supposed to tip in Iceland?

Tipping is always at your discretion; please refer to our tipping guide online for customary suggestions.

Ireland

What are travel times on Escorted tours usually like?

Morning departure time depends on the itinerary to be covered on any particular day. In Britain the tour day begins between 8.00am to 8.30am, while in Ireland the day usually begins between 8.30am and 9.00am. Arrival back to the hotel/ or at the next hotel is usually between 4.00pm and 5.00pm.

Will my tour guide be local on my Escorted tour?

All tour guides are locally employed.

What is a day on an escorted tour like?

We generally incorporate a sightseeing feature each morning and afternoon. There are breaks at two hour intervals or less so that you get a chance to stretch your legs, purchase a snack or lunch, take photos, use a restroom, etc.

On all tours, seats are rotated on a daily basis to allow all passengers an opportunity to sit towards the front of the coach. The tour director assigns seats for all clients. Seats belts must be worn when the coach is in motion. If you suffer from motion sickness it is recommended to bring medication with you.

Can children travel on an escorted tour?

Children over the age of 8 years old are permitted to travel on escorted tours however if they are under the age of 8 they are not allowed. Those ages 8-18 are charged 90% of the full adult rate.

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.

Italy

Do I need a Visa to visit Italy?

Travelers from the European Union, the United States and Canada do not need a visa to enter Italy for stays shorter than 90 days. If you hold a passport from a different country or plan on staying for more then 90-days, please check with your local consulate.

What is the quoting process like?

You will work with your Personal Travel Specialist to prepare a preliminary itinerary for your chosen dates including your transportation and accommodations in order for a quote to be provided. Upon approval of the group tour details and pricing a deposit is required to secure the land components. You will also receive a payment schedule so you will know when all deposits & balances are due. If you would like us to hold group airfare for you we would also require a per seat deposit (depending on the airlines deposit terms) to hold the airline reservation.

How far in advance do I need to book my group?

It is never too early to book a group. Keep in mind that the further out from the departure date the better chance you have of reserving the perfect hotels, tours etc. If you are planning to travel between the months of May and September we highly advise at least 10-months notice to if you are set on securing particular properties. Any group that wants to book and travel inside 90 days would have to pay in full to secure the booking.

Will I be charged in my home currency ($USD or $CAD) or in the local currency of the country I am in?

Many times you will be asked if you want to be charged in your home currency OR the local currency. We suggest choosing the local currency of the country you are visiting and in that case your bank/credit card will determine the exchange rate (which may be more favorable for you, especially if they have no International Transaction Fees). If you choose your home currency then the establishment you are in will determine your exchange rate (note: you may also still be charged an International Transaction Fee even if it is your home currency).

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 Double/Full or Queen size, depending on hotel star level. King only by request for certain hotels 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 adults can share a hotel room.

Scotland

Does Tenon Tours operate the day tours? Are they private to Tenon Tours travelers?

Tenon Tours works with various partner companies and local tour operators to provide you with the best day touring options. By utilizing local tour companies you will be provided with the expertise of the area you are touring by a licensed guide. Our day tours are all locked into US rates and pre-booked with voucher entrance for a no hassle entry.

Day tours are not private to Tenon Tours travelers and group size can vary per tour. Some tours are part of small groups (approximately 6-15 travelers) while some are on full coach buses, up to 40 people.

Note: Don’t forget to tip your drivers based on the level of service they provide!

Some partner companies include, but are not limited to: Rabbies, City-Sightseeing, Highland Explorer, Galway Tour Company, Deros Tours, When Where Wales, Cork Taxi Tours, Irish Day Tours, Irish Rail Tours, Dualway, Premium Tours UK and Odyssey Coach Tours.

What do you mean by scheduled service?

With scheduled transfers you’ll enjoy a ride on a luxury coach bus or train. Scheduled transfers can be upgraded to private transfers for an additional charge, please ask your sales representative.

When will I be able to check into my accommodation 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.

What type of clothing should I pack for Ireland and the UK?

The dress is extremely casual in Ireland and the UK so we recommend packing as you would prepare for a weekend away in the states. You can never go wrong with a general mix of casual and comfortable, as well as a bit dressier if you’re one to frequent nicer establishments. However, a light rain-resistant jacket and small travel umbrella are must-haves! To see what you should pack for your specific destination, click on the country you are traveling to below:

 

IRELAND PACKING LIST


SCOTLAND PACKING LIST


ENGLAND PACKING LIST


WALES PACKING LIST

 

What time of day will we depart each city?

Departure times to each city can differ, but are usually between 9:00 am and 3:00 pm. Your By-Your-Side Service℠ TEAM member will review your time and touring options so that you can plan out activities accordingly. All departure times will also be listed on the travel documents issued prior to departure from the U.S..

Wales

What is the average group size of a luxury escorted tour?

The average group size varies depending on the trip that is selected. Most of our land journeys average 20 to 40 guests.

Why travel as a group?

Organizing your own group to travel gives you the flexibility to set the pace of the tour to match your interests and budget. It also allows you to take advantage of groups discounts in hotels, on tours and with airfare. You can reserve the land and air space with a minimum deposit to allow you time to promote the trip and gather participants.

Do I need a Visa to visit Ireland and the UK?

Travelers from the European Union, the United States and Canada do not need a visa to enter Ireland, the UK or most Western European countries for stays shorter than 90 days. If you hold a passport from a different country or plan on staying for more then 90-days, please check with your local consulate.

How can I get a GPS?

GPS can only be requested when reserving the car. They are on a first-come, first served basis at the rental office. Always check to make sure the car doesn’t come equipped with a factory installed navigation system since they are becoming standard equipment in a lot of newer cars. Something we also suggest is the Here WeGo app. You can download the app to your phone before you leave and download the maps for the countries you need as well. Once you arrive at your destination, you will be able to use the app for driving directions, finding restaurants or gas stations and looking for tours and attractions. And this can all be done completely offline, without connecting to the internet.

Do you offer a room sharing service for solo passengers on Escorted tours?

To ensure the comfort of all our passengers, we do not offer the option of sharing service for solo traveling passengers on escorted tours. We do, however, offer a single supplement whereby you will have the privacy of your own room.

For tour options specific to solo travelers and/or roommate matching options please see our solo / singles travelers options here.