Information for Tour Travelers
I hope you are looking forward to your tour as much as I am….it does not matter how many times I travel, I always look forward to seeing the end result – the gardens, the history and the sights that await me at the other end. Over the years I have brought things with me to make my life a little easier and I would like to share them with you. I have no idea if you are a seasoned traveler or if this is your first time but wherever you are, I hope these tidbits make it easier for you as well.
Don’t forget – Air Tickets, Passport! Name tags on and in your bag! You might also want to take a photocopy of your passport and credit cards and keep that in a separate place in your room or on your person. If you have been given a list of our tour hotels (like for India and China) make a copy and include this in your suitcase.
As far as travelers checks go – no one really takes them any more and it is easy to pick up currency of the country you will be visiting at the airport. Each tour is different and I let everyone know in my tour notes what you should bring.
While on the plane...
I always bring a bottle of water and take every glass they offer me. I always take my shoes off and put on an extra pair of loose fitting socks. Your feet swell and this makes you feel more comfortable and your feet stay nice and warm. While sitting, move your body around – wiggle your toes, rotate your ankles and stretch. Get up and walk around…it is usually a long flight. I also pack with me in my carry on a toothbrush, paste, Visine for my eyes, aspirin, hand and face lotion and any medication you are on (in original bottles), plus neck pillow and ear plugs, snacks.
Things I bring with me for the tour...
- I dress in layers – because the days can start out cool, but end up warm.
Be sure to always check something like www.theweathernetwork.com to see what the weather will be like.
- Always bring comfortable walking shoes – I know I shouldn’t have to say it, but!
- An umbrella – in case it rains and I always bring a plastic bag to put my wet umbrella in – that way I can carry it without it dripping or put it in my bag.
- A nice big bag to carry your ‘stuff’ around for the day – we leave each day and are gone the day – so you might want to bring a bag to carry it all in.
- Bring enough cards with you as well as batteries as you will not believe how many photos you can take on a tour!
- A journal and pen – and someone mentioned bringing along a tape recorder so while at gardens you can make notes. And I have seen some of my guests with road maps as well!
- If you wear glasses, bring along an extra pair just in case – and bring sunglasses too!
- I always stuff my things in ziplock bags…easy for customs if you get checked and handy at the other end.
- Washcloths or facecloths – most hotels do not have these and if they do it’s a bonus. I pack a couple in a ziplock.
- Bring extra tea along with you if you are a tea granny like I am…I am either using it or sharing with someone who forgot and you only have a couple of bags each day…:)
- I bring a cardboard tube along – why you ask? because I am so tired of getting home and finding squished up posters…:)
- If you drink wine, you might like to bring a corkscrew along (not in carry on)
- Pocket calculator and tape measure.
- Small photo album with photos of your garden if you would like to share with us…we always love to see how other people garden.
- I am sure you all have other items that you like to pack that I haven’t even thought of, but the above are things that make you think or what else you might like to bring.
Things to Remember While on the Tour
Not a whole lot to remember here, but never the less, equally important….
Usually the guide will sit on the left side of the coach – she needs to see where we are and to be able to confirm things with our driver and chat with you on the microphone when necessary.
I do not make people move seats each time they board the coach, but I would ask you to note that if someone wants to sit up at the front, to please let others sit there if they wish to as well…
PLEASE BE ON TIME – When we say the coach will be here at such and such to pick us up – be there 5 minutes before – this is a very large vehicle and it cannot sit out on streets or block lanes, so we must be sure to board as quickly as possible. (and you wouldn’t want to be the one that is late – lots of ragging from the group – just ask me!
and lastly, please remember to keep the coach clean – I never really mention this while on tour because my tour guests are just about the best!