CEO and President, United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA)
Here is how tour operators help travelers mitigate risk and get the most out of their vacation.
Peace of mind is priceless while traveling. Sometimes being thrown off-course during a trip can lead to unexpected and engaging discoveries, but more often weather, strikes, illness, or other unforeseen disruptions can cause stress and uncertainty.
Booking travel through a tour operator offers access to local hosts and representatives who can offer immediate assistance whenever an issue occurs. There’s always a full team working on travelers’ behalf to manage airport transfers, meals, excursions, and accommodations, all of which are each vetted by industry professionals.
In partnership with destination experts, tour operators build trips that offer unparalleled access to local hotspots and hidden gems that even more enterprising explorers may not find on their own. This wealth of insider knowledge allows travelers to venture to unknown corners of the earth, whether on an escorted tour or a self-guided adventure.
There are thousands of trips, highlighting everything from cycling and birding to art and cuisine, and many tours offer locally immersive experiences such as learning to cook a traditional dish in a family home or practicing with a local photographer.
Tours and packaged travel also offer unparalleled value. Since tour operators purchase experiences in bulk, travelers often benefit by receiving additional savings, and, pre-paying for a trip in U.S. dollars helps travelers better manage their budgets.
As the ultimate protection of vacation dollars, each tour operator member of the United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA) participates in its $1 Million Traveler’s Assistance Plan, a symbol that’s widely recognized by travel agents and travelers. It offers further peace of mind that their vacation investment is protected in the event of a USTOA member bankruptcy or insolvency.
To get the most out of a travel experience, working with a tour operator may offer the most value.