We stress the importance of knowing your budget upfront, prior to itinerary design. This helps us recommend which destinations, activities and other factors will give you the most bang for your buck. It is always better if we can design with your budget in mind- this way, you don't fall in love with a journey that is way out of your price range. We always want to maximize your experience of authentic Europe, no matter your budget.
Our price is shaped by several factors:
- length of journey. Obviously, a larger number of days means a larger price tag. A 10 day journey is 8 nights figuring travel time in, while a 17 day journey is 15 nights.
- level of hotel 5 star is more expensive than 4 star or 3 star superior; a royal suite or a room with a view is more expensive than a simple classic room. If you are on a tight budget, apartments can be a good solution. All of the accommodations we use are clean, centrally located and safe- we inspect them yearly and stay in them to ensure a great experience!
- number of "bells and whistles" More activities like wine tastings, private drivers, cooking lessons, guides, etc. cost more than a simple trip with lots of free time and relaxation.
- location Believe it or not, prices vary greatly from city to city. Venice is one of the most expensive cities in Italy because everything must by shipped by boat, whereas small towns in the countryside are less costly. We like to suggest our favorite less commercialized towns to save money and ensure a genuine experience. For example, Stresa is a great Lake Region alternative to the pricey Bellagio or Como!
- number of travelers Most drivers, guides, etc. charge one rate per service, whether there are 2 travelers or 6 travelers or in between. Having more people to share the costs often takes the burden off!
- time of year High season = high prices. May through early October is considered "alta stagione" - peak season. When weather is beautiful, more travelers choose to visit. Travelling in the shoulder season (March, April, end of October) can save big bucks, as long as you don't mind cooler temps.
- Euro exchange rate Unfortunately, we are at the mercy of the exchange rate. In January 2017, 1 euro was equal to $1.07. In January 2018, 1 euro was equal to $1.25. This increase means that your dollar doesn't stretch as far in Europe. We always quote our prices in US Dollars and guarantee the price to you. Even if the exchange rate goes up, your set price does not change with us after you have put your deposit down.