Personally Conducted Tours By Steamships - 1910
Where personally-conducted tours are cited some correspondence should take place with the tourist agency. The following questions should be asked and answered before booking : "What class of steamer accommodations? Inside--outside room, number in stateroom?" "Does the rate include all meals?" "Does the rate include a trunk, and if so of what weight?" "Does the rate include the transport of hand-baggage from the railway carriage to hotel room?" "Are landing and embarking fees included?" "Are fees to hotel servants included?"
Some programs fully advise as to these points as well RS just what an excursion includes. Plenty of spending money should be allowed, say 7 to 10 per cent. of the amount involved.
Fees to stewards on steamers are not usually included, but they are in some cases, and the organizers of the trip will not be slow to announce this fact when it is included. in the sum total.
Many tonrs givinw i specific times, steamers, etc.. are included solely to enable the prospective traveler to get a rough idea of what may be expected for about so touch money.
Remember that all rates are constantly changing and the fares quoted are subject to alteration without notice. This point cannot be too strongly borne in 'mind. Some of the tours given include no prices, as the itineraries will be changed more or less by the traveler.
With this information in mind the reader will have little difficulty in spending his money to the best ad-vantage. The question of tours is the most perplexing and delicate with which the writer has had to deal in this book.
There are a number of tourist agencies of the highest class which carry out their engagements to the letter. Many travelers, however, claim that they prefer to go by themselves or in selected parties of friends.
The expense seems to be about the same except in the case of Egyptian, Holy Land tours, and "Around the World" tours, when both the expense and trouble are very much decreased by the personally conducted tours.
The large steamship companies often have tours which make immense savings with great comfort. These are usually called "Cruises." It is always better to have a comfortable berth in a steamer with electric light and electric fans and attentive stewards, than to be in a varmitt-infested hotel of a type which does not appeal to American visitors.
Some tourist agencies charter entire steamers for extended voyages, particularly for trips to the Mediterranean and the Orient. Thus we find that at German Lloyd steamship was chartered for at trip extending from February ri to April 19. 1910. at tour of 73 days. costing only $400.00 and up-ward.
Smaller excursions are run eacb year from New York and some-times from Boston. It should be considered that a boat of this size, 13,200 tons, is the most comfortable ship for a long cruise.
This price includes shore excursions, guides, drives, hotel accommodations, fees and all necessary expenses. It gives ample time, 24 days, to Palestine and Egypt.
The trip is arranged so that the travelers can spend 16 days in Egypt and a week in Palestine, or a fortnight in the Holy Land and 9 days in Egypt. Many single rooms are provided for in these excursions at an expense of $500 and upwards.
The cost of the cruise provides also for the return by a number of first class express steamers if a stopover is desired in Europe. Excursions of this kind offer unique advantages.
In the first place, there is no uncertainty as to hotels, meals or railroads. The party is under the charge of very competent directors and conductors.
It is possible with excursions of this kind, for small parties of friends to keep together as much as they like, so that there is no feeling of the ordinary "personally conducted" tour.
Lectures and entertainments are given at sea during the cruise, and sometimes there are a number of events thus on March 30 we find the following schedule :
10 A. M.—Travelers' Club. Topic—Egypt.
2.30 P. M. — Progressive Bridge Whist.
8.30 P. M.—Lecture. "Rome, Ancient and Modern." Farewell Concert by the Musical Club.
This is certainly enough for one day at sea.
The question of personally conducted tours is an interesting one, and the traveler must decide for himself. They are recommended, however, to women traveling alone. In any event this book will be useful on the sea even if "personally conducted."
We have before us as we write, the programme of tours of the largest company in the business. We find tours which grade from $1,165.00 for 89 days down to 52 days' tour as low as $310.00.
The Hamburg-American Line, the North German Lloyd, the White Star and other lines run cruises annually. Get a programme, which is freely sent with full particulars on application.