4 Things All Good Tour Operators Should Do

For most of us, an overseas holiday isn’t a regular treat – it’s a rare luxury. So you definitely want to entrust your getaway to a tour operator who will really make it special for you. If you’re not sure what separates a standout tour company from an average one, here are the four key characteristics we recommend looking for.

1. They Know What They’re Talking About

One of the most disappointing things that can happen on a holiday is finding yourself stuck with a tour manager who isn’t passionate about your trip’s destinations or – worse – reads everything to you directly from a handbook. Every good tour operator should create an immersive experience for their guests by hiring and training people who have expert knowledge of each site and city, as well as a genuine interest in sharing their knowledge with travellers.

Touring with a guide who can offer brilliant insights and recommendations is often the key element that makes a great holiday a wonderful one. He or she can tell you why that monument was built, where to get the best photo of the city, and – perhaps most importantly – which restaurants near the hotel serve the yummiest local cuisine!

Tour Guide in Venice, image courtesy of Natalie Pedler


2. They Take Care of Their Guests

When you book a spot on a tour, you’re not just paying to be transported from city to city – you’re paying for a service. Any good tour operator will understand this and act accordingly. This means:

  • Choosing quality accommodation for every leg of the journey
  • Making sure guests are safe and satisfied at all times
  • Having everything planned in advance
  • Being prepared to cater for changes as necessary
  • Going the extra mile to ensure you love every day of your time abroad

Taking care of guests sometimes means giving them space, though. A good tour operator’s itinerary will include all the unmissable attractions (preferably with priority entry!), but it will also feature hours – or even full days – where the schedule is left blank. This ensures you have ample time to pursue your unique interests and do your own thing… or just unwind in the hotel if you prefer!

Exterior of the Le Grotto Delta Civita, Matera Italy


3. They Go to the Right Places

Anyone can look up a country’s most frequented destinations and put together an itinerary that goes from one to the next. But a good tour operator does a lot better than this; they will handpick the best of the best from the popular spots and mix them up with other experiences that are marvellous but not so well-known.

When you choose the right tour company, you can say goodbye to overrated tourist traps and say hello to wonderful, unspoilt spaces and towns. In fact, the tour highlights for many of our guests are places they hadn’t even heard of before!

Trogir, Croatia


4. They Deliver on Their Promises

If you’ve travelled with multiple tour operators, you already know the big promise that gets made but not always kept: everything is included. When a good tour operator attaches the word ‘all-inclusive’ to their tours, they really mean this. You won’t find yourself unexpectedly paying for accommodation, meals, entry to attractions, or even a tip at the end of the tour – everything really will be covered.

More broadly, a reputable tour operator will keep any other promises they might make as well. For example, if a tour is labelled as ‘guaranteed to depart’, you can safely book your plane tickets with the knowledge that your overseas journey will be going ahead.

Want to find out how a good tour operator can enhance your European holiday? All you need to do is travel with us! Browse all the stunning countries we can take you to, and get in touch if you want to find out more about the tours we offer.

Glacier Express, Switzerland - image courtesy of Marissa Maslen