Before I met significant half, I used to love touring with a tour group. My parents did it, my friends did it and I didn’t thought that there are any other easier and safer way to explore an unknown country. For the easy part is just walking into a tour agency or click on a travel website, select a country and you have a list of readily made tour packages cater to all sorts of needs. Want to go to Canada? Here, we have 5 packages! How about Egypt? Here, another 5 more packages. Haven’t been to the States? Consider these 10 packages!
We’ll have the biggest travel fair every quarterly when all the tour deals are thrown in your face. Sign up now and you pay 0% downpayment. Place your order and we will give you a luggage for free!
But this day and age, everything is about your experience. If money is precious, time is pretty rare to come by. Here are some of the benefits that why I stop signing up for a tour package but a customised one.
Hate to Be In a Herd
I love my mornings lazy and take my time to savour the first meal of the day, slowly with each bite of carefully buttered French loaf. A tour group means I have to adhere to their timing, irregardless I am ready or not. You really don’t want to be the person who is holding up everyone’s excitement to start the day.
Don’t you hate to be rushed? Tour packages usually gives me the feeling that I am brought from place to place, with only minutes to spare. I don’t get to slow my pace down and enjoy the beauty of the scenery nor do I get to stroll along the beautiful gardens or even spend time reading tiny descriptions in the museum. So it is either I rushed through every exhibits and get to see everything or I take my time to digress and had to give up some parts of the museum. Why do I have to make such difficult choices on my holiday?
Absorb in the Culture
Having pointed out that I don’t like to be rushed, I want to have time to absorb into the culture of the location that I am in. I want to dance along the Spanish dancers, I want to get down and groovy along the beats of Jamaica or get lost in the winding streets of Marseille.
Although in tour groups, you can make friends especially during the long boring coach ride from Point A to Point B but they are probably self-absorbed in their tight little groups or they are as tired and wary as you are if you are forced to get out of the bed at 6am to gobble down your coffee and a piece of bread before gathering at 8am in the lobby of the hotel. While I have met and made a lot of friends with the locals as I hang around for a beer or two at the pub or I strike up an interesting conversation with a fan of Harry Potter at a local bookshop.
Cramp Into One Moving Tin Can
What I really dislike is that tour groups tend to cramp like 5 touristy locations within a day and most of the time, you actually spend more time on the coach, bobbing your head side to side than to truly explore the beauty of each place. I rather spread my locations across a week, take my time to enjoy the scenery and get to choose if I want to take a train, a bus or maybe even hike to the next destination. The best part? I get to choose to stop by any spots that caught my fancy along my goal destination. I don’t have to pack any sandwiches or chocolate bar just in case my tummy rumble on the coach. Or worse, crossing and uncrossing my legs, wishing we’ll stop by a pit stop soon so I can use the restroom.
Thinking of going solo instead of joining a tour group? You can chat us up to see if we can help you to plan a travel journey seamlessly at email@example.com.
Kally is a former Sales and Customer Service manager turned Writer and Founder of MiddleMe.net. She came from Singapore; lived in Shanghai and now calls Kuala Lumpur her home. After hanging up her corporate briefcase, she now pursue her passions – Writing, Traveling and of course, hunting for good food.
Connect with me @ Kally@ladyredot.com