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Italy Travel: Booking a Tour or Planning Your Own Trip

Whenever you plan on traveling outside of the country, or even locally for that matter, you will want a trip that is hassle-free and will go without a hitch. This can be easily accomplished with a booked tour that takes care of your itinerary, your accommodations, and other travel concerns.


Planning a Trip

Planning a Trip

However, with a booked tour, you may find a few things that may not be to your liking. It is, after all, a trip that is not totally to your specifications. It can take you to places that you don’t really want to see and lump you in with other people you may not be compatible with. This is particularly true when you go on a guided or escorted group tour.

This is where the dilemma of deciding whether to go on a booked tour or to plan your own trip comes in. Which one is best for you?

Booking a Guided Tour

If you hate hassles and other problems that come with having to wing things on your own, then a guided tour may be your best option. This is good choice if you don’t mind being shuffled from one place to another and to sticking with a strict schedule. If you find that planning a trip rather daunting  (this will include the need to find a place to stay, fitting all you want to do and see in the number of days you are in the country, and having to experience the country with as few glitches as possible), then this is your best option.

Vatican Crowds

Vatican Crowds

Guided tours cover several high profile destinations across Italy. Such country-wide tours are quite popular, especially for those visiting Italy for the first time. This is in fact a good general rule of thumb if you aren’t well versed in Italian culture and would like someone to walk you through the experience. Tour guides carry a wealth of knowledge when it comes to the country you are visiting and can give you the history and background of the various places that are included in the tour.

These tours can come in many different variants, with most of the options covering the more popular locations in Italy. These include Rome, Florence, Venice, and other similar world-renowned tourist destinations. When it comes to these popular cities, you will find that your stay will stretch over a few days since there will be so much to see in these locales.

The great thing about these tours is that you won’t have to worry about missing a single tourist destination and all you need to get there is prepared for you in advance. You don’t need to line up for tickets, you don’t need to book your own transportation, and other similar concerns that you may have if you choose to plan your own trip. This is great option for first-time visitors to Italy and can give you a stress-free visit while giving you a general feel of the place.

Choosing to Plan Your Own Trip

If you decide to plan your own trip to Italy, you should be aware that this will require more work than going with a guided one. It also does not guarantee that if you book your own trip that it will be cheaper. This is because most travel companies get huge discounts from airlines, hotels, and other establishments due to the bulk of business that they bring.

It is however, a great choice for those who are going to Italy for the third or fourth time and want to get a more personalized trip without time constraints, rushing to one museum after another, and going around with strangers. It can be a very challenging but enjoyable trip, with the opportunity to linger over a cup of coffee in a piazza or to people watch while enjoying a gelato.

Leisurely Cup of Coffee

Leisurely Cup of Coffee

This will require a lot of patience and carefully keeping tab on your expenses and your schedules. You will also need to keep track of local bus and train schedules, if you are planning on going from one location to another using these modes of transportation. You will also need to check for hotel rates and other expenses you may incur, not to mention schedules for tourist destinations you are planning on visiting.

Your Best Bet

With these in consideration, which is your best choice for your trip to Italy? It all depends on what you want and what you plan to do. If you want the best of both worlds, a tour that is planned enough for you to not have to worry about schedules and other concerns, but with enough freedom for you to do what you want at your leisure, you might want to consider booking a custom trip to Italy.

You also don’t need to travel with strangers, share your special moments with people you don’t really like, and rush to multiple stops in one day. Customizing your trip will still put you in the driver’s seat of your vacation, so to speak, but with the convenience of a booked tour since someone else will facilitate what you need via your request for these trip inclusions.

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By Priscila Siano (266 Posts)

Priscila Siano is the Marketing Director of Tour Italy Now, an online tour operator specializing in Italy travel. She's a respected expert on making dream Italy vacations a reality for clients.

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