9 Day Essential Sicily
Air & Land
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|2022 Dates & Prices Single Supplement: $300|
|Hotel||Dates||Embark||Tour Starts||Ship||Land Only||Air & Land|
|2023 Dates & Prices Single Supplement: $300|
|Hotel||Dates||Embark||Tour Starts||Ship||Land Only||Air & Land|
|Only 1 seat left!||$1499||$2329*|
Optional tours and gratuities.
Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers.
Your tour will begin with an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager at approximately 6 PM. We recommend you to select flights that arrive no later than 4 PM.
Passengers traveling abroad require a passport valid for six months beyond their travel dates. All travelers are responsible to check if a visa is required for all countries on their itinerary. For visa information, check our Visas page.
Is This Trip Right for You?
Escorted Package Includes
- Round trip flights New York-Catania, Catania-New York
Other departure cities available. Click on date of departure for selection and prices
- Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
- 7 nights First Class accommodations
- 3 nights Catania
- 2 nights Ragusa
- 2 nights Palermo
- Italian city hotel taxes, fees & service charges
- Hotel porterage
- All transfers included only with airfare purchase on package arrival & departure dates†
- 9 meals: 7 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner with wine
- Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
- Services of English-speaking tour manager throughout
- Services of local guides and entrance fees per itinerary
- Stroll in the Old City of Catania, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Tour the old city of Siracusa, famous for its ancient ruins
- Discover Agrigento's Valley of the Temples, the best-preserved outside of Greece
†Transfers are available for purchase for land only or on alternative flight dates
Is This Trip Right for You?
This program is active. Walking is done over cobbled streets, uneven surfaces, stairs, steps, and significant slopes. Expect most of the sightseeing to require three to four hours of walking as well as a considerable time standing. Many historic cities have specific driving regulations, with set drop off and pick up points, that result in extra walking to and from the sights. During the Mt. Etna sightseeing, you will be ascending to an altitude of approximately 6,500 feet above sea level. It is important to dress in layers and bring a jacket as it may be cold and windy. The pacing is active as many sites are included. This is a Value program. For more information, click here.
Gate 1 Travel itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.
This superior first class hotel is ideally located in the heart of historic Catania, close to many attractions.Hotel Details
This first class hotel is a five minute walk from the Cathedral of San Giovanni Battista.Hotel Details
- Tours purchased while travelling may cost an extra 10% or more
- Tours often sell out. Avoid disappointment
- Save your cash. Credit card processing may not be possible locally
- Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure
- Book Online or call to book these tours up to 1 week before your departure
- The day the optionals operate varies by the day of the week
Enjoy an afternoon tour of Taormina, one of Sicily's most prominent attractions, also known as the Jewel of the Ionic. Start off with a walking tour including the city's most famous archaeological monuments, piazzas and medieval homes. Continue with a visit of the Greek Theater, one of the most celebrated in Sicily, from which you can enjoy magnificent views of the coastline, countryside and the imposing volcano of Mt. Etna.
Pick up details to be advised locally. Approximate tour duration is 5 hours.
|Day #3||20 Oct 2021 - 31 Mar 2024||$79.00|
Join a walking tour of Ragusa with its baroque atmosphere and its many breathtaking sights. Houses, churches, and palaces all seem layered on top of one another, and will be revealed through the narration of your local guide.
Pick up details to be advised locally. Approximate tour duration is 2.5 hours.
|Day #5||01 Nov 2020 - 31 Mar 2024||$49.00|
Start your tour of Palermo with a visit to the hilltop town of Monreale to visit the Norman Cathedral, an architectural masterpiece, with its interior of glittering 12th century Byzantine mosaics. Return to Palermo for a walking tour of the ancient Old City with its incredible mix of architectural styles, including its magnificent Cathedral.
Pick-up details to be advised locally. Approximate Tour Duration: 4 Hours
|Day #7||01 Nov 2020 - 31 Mar 2024||$59.00|
|Know Before You Go|
|Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.|
|Getting Ready to Go|
|Passports and Visas|
|It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.
|Traveling with Friends or Family?|
|If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/res with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display. |
|A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver’s license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks. |
|Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html. |
|Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/. |
Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.
This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.
|Cell Phones & Calling Cards|
|You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Additionally, if your phone can connect to WiFi you may be able to make voice and video calls free of charge. Please contact your cell phone provider for further details. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally. When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card; normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel's reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason. |
|Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another|
|When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your country's Exit Code (often indicated with a “+” sign), then the destination Country Code, then the Phone Number. For most countries, the exit code is 00. Exceptions include the USA and Canada (011), Hong Kong and Cambodia (001), Australia (0011), and Russia (8 Pause 10*). For Brazil, please consult with the local telephone company. If you are dialing from a mobile phone, you can enter a “+” instead of the international Exit Code (011, 001, 0011 or 00) by pressing and holding the 0 key. For most countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America and South Pacific, if you are calling from a local phone to a number within the same country, you should drop both the exit and country codes and then add a leading 0 (zero). Exceptions include Spain, Italy, Hungary and Malta (no additional zero needed to dial locally). |
To dial the following number in Germany (as listed on your voucher): +(49) 0555-555
From USA or your US cell phone: 011-49-555-555
From another country in Europe: 00-49-555-555
From a German phone within Germany: 0555-555
|WiFi access has improved. Free or inexpensive WiFi internet is accessible at coffee shops, airports, restaurants, libraries and on some trains and buses. WiFi access in hotels and cruise lines often involves a fee, determined by that property. Signal strength is subject to local conditions and not guaranteed. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries or, on moving conveyances such as buses and cruise ships. |
|Staying Healthy While Traveling|
|All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations. |
There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.
|Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at:
|Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)|
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways: |
|Climate & Clothing|
|Italy - Spring and Fall: 55-75°F; Summer: 70-85°F; Winter: 40-55°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. The months of October through March are considered rainy season in Venice, leading to high tides and occasionally waters reaching pedestrian areas. We suggest including a rain jacket and boots on your packing list. On cruises, informal dress is the general rule though on formal nights, a cocktail dress for women and a suit or coat and tie for men is required. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops). |
Italy Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#italy-weather
|Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or “drone” technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones. |
|Book & Film Recommendations|
|Many of our guests enjoy reading about their destination - either in advance of their trip or while traveling - as a way of adding context to their visit. Whether reading a traditional guide book, learning about the history and culture, or simply enjoying a fictional novel set in the destination, a good book can add greatly to your experience. Similarly, a good movie set in your destination helps set the mood before you travel. We asked our Tour Managers and staff to recommend books and films which past guests may have enjoyed. The following does not constitute an endorsement of any authors, books or films listed, it is merely a collection of guests' recommendations. |
Venice Is a Fish: A Sensual Guide by Tiziano Scarpa
Secrets of Rome: Love and Death in the Eternal City or Secrets of the Vatican by Corrado Augias
Under the Tuscan Sun: At Home in Italy or In Tuscany by Frances Mayes
Caesar: Life of a Colossus by Adrian Keith Goldsworthy
Italy for the Gourmet Traveler by Fred Plotkin
Medici: Godfathers of the Renaissance by Paul Strathern
A Day in the Life of Ancient Rome by Alberto Angela
The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi
Roma: The Novel of Ancient Rome by Steven Saylor
The Great Beauty (2013)
I Am Love (2010)
Under the Tuscan Sun (2003)
The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999)
Life is Beautiful (1997)
A Room with a View (1985)
La Dolce Vita (1960)
Three Coins in the Fountain (1954)
|Preparing for Your Trip|
| As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. |
|Luggage & Packing|
|Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost. |
|Day of Departure|
|What to do if You Need Assistance|
Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.
|Arrival & Departure|
|Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative. |
|What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed|
|Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services. |
|If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally. |
|Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date. |
The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.
|About Your Accommodations|
|Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center. |
|Hotel Check-in/ Check-out|
|Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later. |
|Catania City Tax - The authorities of Catania apply a city tax on all hotels. The tax requires a contribution of Euro 1.50 per person per night up to a maximum of 3 nights. It will be charged and collected by your hotel and is payable in cash only. We regret that we are currently unable to collect this tax in advance or include it in your price for customers who are traveling independently or who arrange independent pre- or post-tour stays on an escorted tour. This tax is included in the tour price for customers who are traveling on an escorted tour accompanied by a Tour Manager who is able to pay directly to the hotel on your behalf. |
|Palermo City Tax - The authorities of Palermo apply a city tax on all hotels. The tax requires a contribution of Euro 2 per person per night up to a maximum of 4 nights. It will be charged and collected by your hotel and is payable in cash only. We regret that we are currently unable to collect this tax in advance or include it in your price for customers who are traveling independently or who arrange independent pre- or post-tour stays on an escorted tour. This tax is included in the tour price for customers who are traveling on an escorted tour accompanied by a Tour Manager who is able to pay directly to the hotel on your behalf. |
|At Your Destination|
|Eco & Sustainable Tourism|
|We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs. |
|Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience. |
|Suggested Tipping: Escorted Tours|
Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): US $7 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : US $3 per person per day, US $2 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $3 per person per day of sightseeing, US $2 per half day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included
|Italy - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge. 5-10% is customary for good service. |
|About Your Sightseeing|
|To ensure a pleasant and fair experience for passengers on our escorted tours, there is a mandatory seat rotation policy on our motor coaches which will be organized by your Tour Manager. Some buses are equipped with toilet facility, however they are strictly intended for emergency use only and often require the vehicle to stop for safety reasons before use. When travel dates coincide with religious holidays and national celebrations, some monuments and sites may be closed, sometimes without prior notice. On these occasions, escorted touring itineraries may be amended to reflect these closures. Occasionally, during holidays and certain periods, and/or due to other unforeseen circumstances including weather conditions, there may be last-minute changes, sometimes after arrival, which may affect the sequence of the tour and locations visited. National monuments and tourist sites regularly undergo renovations, which can obscure the monument's view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Gate 1 will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary. To respect the privacy of all tour participants, your tour manager will not organize a group photo or collect passenger email addresses for a group list. |
|Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)|
|Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents. |
|Purchasing Tours Locally|
| On escorted tours, the guides will generally sell optional tours to passengers who have not pre-purchased them. Payment can be made by cash or credit card, unless otherwise noted below. This does not apply to Independent packages. Please see Gate 1 Terms & Conditions for more information. https://www.gate1travel.com/terms.aspx#optional |
|Independent Activities - Gate 1 itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses |
|Italy - The Euro is the currency of Italy. Italian bank opening hours are typically Monday through Friday, 9am to 1pm depending on the bank. Most Italian banks do not offer exchange service. For this reason, it is strongly recommended to acquire a small amount of Euros prior to arriving. ATM machines are a better option. |
|Most people enjoy bringing home at least one souvenir from the countries they visit. However, some find any amount of shopping to be too much while others never find enough opportunities. |
We have built into our Escorted itineraries a few shopping stops at recommended spots. These stops are designed to enhance your experience by providing an opportunity to see first-hand quality locally crafted merchandise which you may not be able to find on your own. Shops are checked to ensure the quality and authenticity of the products they offer, and we limit guides from visiting other locations. In some cases, we plan these stops to provide an opportunity to use clean bathrooms and to stretch your legs. All shops want your satisfaction, and therefore in case of any misunderstanding they ask that you kindly submit your claim to us within one week of the item's receipt. Claims submitted later will be subject to each store’s policies.
While shopping independently, we advise you to exercise care and common sense when making any purchase. Always get a formal receipt. And remember that, just like in this country, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!
About Tax-Free Shopping
Tax-Free Shopping allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their purchases in some foreign countries in accordance with restrictions and procedures as dictated by each country. Refund eligibility varies by country, but may require presenting a scanned copy of your passport at the time of purchase, a minimum amount spent, or providing original store receipts. For more details, check the respective country’s online website, with the shop salesperson, with your tour manager or at www.globalblue.com for specific country regulations and airport operation hours. Please keep in mind that you must apply for VAT refund in the airport of the country the items were purchased and allow enough time prior to your flight for the application.
U.S. Customs & Shipping Charges
You may carry items with a fair retail value totaling $800 into the U.S. Taxes may be applied to the next $1,000 worth of merchandise. U.S. Customs determines the value of your items, often honoring a genuine sales receipt. Items which are shipped home are always subject to duty when received in the U.S. (in addition to shipping charges). Some shops may offer to include shipping and duties in the price but this typically means shipping only to the customs facility closest to you and payment only of the export duties; you would still need to collect the item and pay U.S. import duties. Please be aware that it is illegal to import products made from endangered animal species. U.S. Customs & Border Protection will seize these items, as well as most furs, coral, tortoise shell, reptile skins, feathers, plants, and items made from animal skins.
|Italy - Shops are generally open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 3:00 to 8:00 p.m., with some variations in Northern Italy, where the lunch break is shorter and shops close earlier. In the major cities, large stores and souvenir shops remain open throughout the day. |
Italy is renowned for its fashion industry, with fine clothes for men and women, lacework, jewelry, and leather accessories. Other quality goods include ceramics, gold and silver items, alabaster, woodwork, embroidery, glass and crystal ware. Major credit cards are usually accepted, though cash is preferred for small purchases.
|Your Safety is Very Important|
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit. |
It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:
If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.
|Tourist Street Scams|
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed: |
|Caution: Tours of the Forum & Colosseum, Rome - Please note that there have been reports of street vendors wearing Gate 1 Travel identification tags who offer tours of the Colosseum in Rome. These vendors are not employed by Gate 1 and are in no way affiliated with the company. Gate 1 tours are offered only for purchase in advance of your trip to Italy, or locally by your Tour Manager. Passengers traveling independently are recommended to purchase their tours through official vendors and to avoid street sales. |
|Security at Major Sites - Please expect longer wait times at major sightseeing locations due to heightened security restrictions. These locations include, but are not limited to, the San Marco Basilica in Venice, the Accademia in Florence, and the Colosseum & Vatican in Rome. |
Bags of any kind are no longer allowed inside the San Marco Basilica and large bags/backpacks are restricted from the Colosseum. We suggest you to carry only necessary items (i.e. wallet, cell phone, camera) safely on your body and leave all other valuables in the hotel room safe when visiting these sites.
|Local Emergency Phone Numbers|
|Italy - Italian is the local language. English is generally spoken in tourist areas. |
|Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances. |
|Italy - The voltage used is 220 volts. |
|Code of Conduct|
|Italy - Family and social ties are, broadly speaking, stronger in Italy than in other Western European countries, and the Roman Catholic church retains a strong cultural influence. Common courtesies should be practiced. Casual dress is appropriate, but beachwear should be confined to the beach and poolside. Conservative clothing should be worn when visiting religious buildings, meaning legs and shoulders should be covered. While the cities are very safe, pickpocketing can occur. Avoid conspicuous expensive jewelry and be mindful of your wallet or handbag. Even though many Italians smoke, smoking is prohibited in all public buildings, public transport, cinemas and restaurants. |
|Food and Meals|
|As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotel's or restaurant's buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Gate 1 cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure at www.gate1travel.com/contactus. Terminology for dietary requests can vary from country to country and options may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you make your wishes known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant. |
|On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants. |
|Holidays - Italy|
Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Epiphany
Apr 17: Easter Sunday
Apr 18: Easter Monday
Apr 25: Liberation Day
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 2: Republic Day
Aug 15: Assumption of the Virgin
Nov 1: All Saints Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Epiphany
Apr 9: Easter Sunday
Apr 10: Easter Monday
Apr 25: Liberation Day
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 2: Republic Day
Aug 15: Assumption of the Virgin
Nov 1: All Saints Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Please note that in addition, local feast days are held in honor of town patron saints, generally without closure of shops and offices. These include:
Parma: Jan 13-14 (St. Hilary of Poitiers), Aug 16-17 (St. Roch) & May 5 (St. Honoratus)
Catania: Feb 3-5; Aug 17 (St. Agatha)
Sorrento: Feb 14 (St. Antoninus)
Agrigento: Feb 25 (St. Gerland) & Jun 18 (St. Calogerus)
Como: Apr 2; Aug 31 (St. Abbondio)
Ragusa: Apr 23 (St. George)
Venice: Apr 25 (St. Mark) & Nov 11 (St. Martin's Day)
Treviso: Apr 27 (St. Liberalis) & Mar 27; Aug 1; Aug 22 (St. Augusta)
Baveno: Jun 19 (Sts. Gervasius & Protasius)
Matera: Jun 20 (St. John) & Jul 2 (St. Madonna della Bruna)
Florence, Genoa & Turin: Jun 24 (St John the Baptist)
Amalfi: Jun 27; Nov 30 (St. Andrew)
Rome: Jun 29 (St. Peter & Paul)
Siena: Jul 2 & Aug 16, Palio horserace
Taormina: Jul 8-9 (St. Pancras)
Palermo: Jul 15 (St. Rosalia)
Santa Margherita Ligure: July 20 (St. Margaret of Antiochia)
Lecce: Aug 26 (St. Orontius)
Naples: Sep 19 (St. Gennaro)
Bologna: Oct 4 (St. Petronius)
Trieste: Nov 3 (St. Giusto)
Montecatini: Dec 4 (St. Barbara)
Bari: Dec 6 (St. Nicholas)
Milan & Stresa: Dec 7 (St. Ambrose)
Siracusa: Dec 13 (St. Lucy)
|Papal Audiences, Vatican City - Italy|
|General audiences with His Holiness the Pope are usually held once a week (Wednesdays at 11 a.m.) in Vatican City. They may be held inside the Basilica itself or in the hall of the Papal Audiences (Aula Paolo VI, Seating 7000), and in summer in Saint Peter's Square or in the papal summer residence at Castel Gandolfo. Please note that Castel Gandolfo is located approximately 20 miles south-east of Rome, not in Vatican City.|
Catholics are requested to have a letter of introduction from their parish priest. For this audience women should dress modestly, with arms and head covered. Dress should be dark or subdued in color. Men are requested to wear a tie and jacket.
|New Venice Visitor Tax Regulation - It was recently announced that the city of Venice will be implementing an entrance tax of 10 Euros per person for tourists visiting the city for the day. In most cases, the tax will be included in the cost of the transportation to access the city center, including cruise, taxi, or public transportation. However, there may be instances where visitors will need to pay the tax upon arrival. We regret that we are currently unable to collect this tax in advance. Due to the uncertainty of this new regulation the information above is subject to change. |
GATE1 especially our guide Emanuela was absolutely phenomenal! There is not one remotely negative thing I can say about the trip. The hotels were first class. Great location, food and tours amazing. You took care and thought of everything! Will definitely be using Gate 1 again and recommending to everyone we know!Sally G.
Just returned from 12 day tour of Italy with Gate One. Our tour director Remo is absolutely fantastic. He was extremely knowledgeable, quick to solve problems, and extremely attentive to the needs of everyone on the tour, especially due to the extremely hot weather while we were there!! If ever to travel to Italy again I would totally request Remo! He made the trip enjoyable, considering all the walking, which not easy for some in the group. Please send our compliments to Remo.Joseph B.
I would like to Thank our Tour Manager Riccardo for the trip of a lifetime and the countless Memories with our Family. His Knowledge, Patience, and Passion for the areas we visited was extraordinary. The in depth and additional explanations and stories he and his team of tour guides and drivers provided us in each city of our tour inspired us with the "Love for Italy" that many people talk about when they visit. Not being a frequent tour traveler, I was very pleased with the sites we were able to visit in such a short period. The tour group meals together at the various locations was another great experience to increase the relationship of our travel companions and have a taste of the region as well. The unplanned stop to view the fallen soldiers at Florence American Cemetery honoring the American men and women who gave their lives during WWII - a sobering, but inspiring sacred grounds that was unknown to many of us until the tour. Everything was memorable and will remain in our hearts for a long time. Thank You to Riccardo and your team of guides and drivers who brought the past, present, and future of Italy to life for all of us. Thank YouJohn G.
I just wanted to provide additional feedback from my 11 day Italy trip from 7/2-7/12. Maurizio was AMAZING! He was extremely well organized and punctual and went out of his way to help in every way. We always knew what was coming next. There were no surprises. In addition to being helpful, he was informative, humorous and found several opportunities to add his own personal touch to our tour to bring us all together. Whether it was a small token from the glass factory in Venice, or snacks in a Florence piazza or on a long bus ride, he always went out of his way for his "family" as he liked to call us. His recommendations for shopping and eating did NOT disappoint! Our driver Davide was also fantastic and we enjoyed his company and his excellent driving. Thank you for a wonderful Italy experience!Ralph S.
My husband and I recently completed the 11 Day Romantic Italy tour with Tour Director, Marisa S. This was my 12th tour with Gate 1 Travel and without a doubt Marisa was the BEST Tour Director I have had. Her knowledge of Italy was beyond comparison, not only the history but also her suggestions of things to do and places to eat when we were on our own. Her communication was spot on and there was never any doubt about what time and where we were to meet. While she took her responsibility for the group seriously, she was also charming and fun to travel with. She truly is beyond amazing and we were so sorry the tour ended and we had to say goodbye as we enjoyed her so very much. Gate 1 is so fortunate to have her on their staff, she is an amazing example of what a Tour Director should be in every sense of the word. I cannot describe in words how wonderful it was to travel with Marisa and Gate 1, she made it a trip to remember forever.Linda F.
Our recent Gate 1 tour of Italy exceeded our expectations as first time "tour travelers". All of the Gate 1 staff who accompanied us, provided us with excellent service, support and knowledge throughout the trip. Our tour manager, Suzy, was very friendly and welcoming. We especially enjoyed the information she gave on our bus rides through various towns and regions. Our hotels were comfortable and conveniently located to local shopping and dining. It was a big plus to have many meals included during our stay. The food and wine were phenomenal! The Tuscan dinner at a nearby winery was definitely a highlight of our trip! In spite of our luggage being lost the entire time, we had a fabulous vacation in Italy, thanks to Gate 1. We are looking forward to booking another tour with Gate 1 in the future.Janice O.
We just returned from the 14-Day Romantic Italy with Amalfi trip and cannot say enough good things about our trip! Gate 1 did a fabulous job of creating an itinerary that allowed first-time visitors to Italy to truly take in all the high points of the beautiful country. From the sweeping vistas of Lake Maggiore, to the romantic canals of Venice, fun Tuscan wine dinners, historic Rome, and the sparkling blue waters of the Amalfi Coast, we were able to experience the sights, sounds, history, art, architecture, and taste of Italy! The transfers to and from the airport were especially helpful. All of the local guides and drivers were professional and knowledgeable. However, the BEST part of our Italian trip was our tour manager, Luca! He truly made our trip fun, memorable, and personal. Luca is professional, organized, funny, flexible, and incredibly knowledgeable about each site and city. He gave excellent recommendations on restaurants and went above and beyond to help up coordinate a few personal "must see" moments on our trip. Our entire group commented every day about how lucky we were to have Luca as our guide. Thank you, Luca! Overall, the Gate 1 trip was fabulous. I already have a friend who has booked her first Gate 1 trip based upon my experience and photos. Thank you, Gate 1!Christie W.
Our discovery tour to foods and wine of northern Italy was fabulous. This was our first discovery tour. Our small group of 15 jelled into a family while participating in food, wine, and spirits sampling. Our guide, Carmine , was ultra professional and looked after our safety and health at all times. He arranged for transportation alternatives when Mother Nature denied us water passage to Portofino because of high winds. He hired a van when he deemed the sidewalk-less road too dangerous to walk to get the post trip Covid tests. He treated us to evening drinks on sunny piazzas in Torino and Bologna. He took care of all the worries of getting us from point A to point B while supplying us with geographic historical and cultural aspects of northern Italy. Invaluable experiences and knowledge were shared by all in the beauty and wonder of northern Italy.Joanne Y.
We completed the Food and Wines of Piedmont, Liguria and Veneto with Cinque Terra last week and there are two things I'd like to share. First, what a fabulous itinerary - start to finish! The trip to the rice plantation and balsamic vinegar winery were fascinating. And each of the wineries we visited offered beautiful wines and food. Second, I have nothing but "High Praise" for our tour manager, Vanessa. She is the perfect, caring host. Her knowledge and friendliness added so much more to the trip. And she certainly seems to be in her element as a tour manager. She was terrific! This was our first small group trip with Gate 1 and we loved every minute of it. We are already looking for other small group trips we could take with Gate 1.Marianne T.
The trip to southern Italy and Puglia was wonderful! Our tour director, Silvia was exceptional!! The food, scenery and itinerary was different from the northern and central areas of Italy, but like all of Italy, so much history. I highly recommend this trip from Gate 1 - you can count on knowledgeable tour guides, excellent hotels and a wonderful trip. I have travelled with Gate 1 several times, and they never disappoint!Monica C.
Our trip was absolutely terrific. It was a well planned trip that was executed flawlessly by our tour director Gabrijela and our driver Matija. We loved every minute of it in Croatia, Slovenia & Montenegro learning about the history and seeing the fabulous sights. When we got back to Venice our other tour director, Antonio , was also very welcoming. The care he took to make sure that our party got to the correct gate at the airport was especially appreciated. We are already planning our next Gate 1 trip with one of the friends that we made on our most recent trip. Thank you for the wonderful service you provide in showing us the world and reminding us that we are all connected on this planet.Alan M.
I have traveled with 2 other tour companies and comparatively, our Tour Manager Daniela went above & beyond what I have experienced in the past. Daniela was absolutely wonderful! She did an incredible job and truly wanted everyone to enjoy Italy! She came across as a warm, caring, and knowledgeable person and went far beyond to ensure that we had the best experience we could have. She was very thorough and had many excellent recommendations on local restaurants and other locations to visit. Our local guides were very knowledgeable and helpful, they effortlessly led us through the crowds, offering interesting discourse and adding fun facts and details to everything we saw. I would recommend Gate 1 to all my friends and relatives!Marina K.
Our first tour with Gate 1 was amazing! The trip was well planned. It started out with a slow pace, increased as the days went on and ended in a relaxing setting on the Amalfi coast. Our tour coordinator/guide, Susanna, was the best! Her organization skills, personable nature and sense of humor made her a joy to be with. Ask anything and Susanna would make it happen. The timing of tours, dinners, free time and travel time were well planned out. The group of 23 was a good size to get acquainted with everyone. The city tours had knowledgeable guides as well. We especially enjoyed Nina in Rome and the young man who did the tour in Florence. The wine dinners, and actually all the dinners were delicious! Susanna also suggested places to dine if we were on our own. We will definitely book with Gate 1 again. Thank you for all the detailed, organized coordinating that made our trip so enjoyable in Italy.Judith J.
I would like to thank Francesca, our tour manager for a recent trip to Italy and praise her for a job well done. Due to covid, my husband and I waited two years from our initial booking for our trip to Italy. Every aspect of the trip was fabulous, the trip could not have been better. We experienced so much of Italy, learned volumes and ate like kings. We did not have a worry or concern about anything regarding schedules and timing, everything was organized and handled like clockwork. Even the covid test to return to the USA was completed right in the hotel. Thanks Francesca for a job well done!!Tiffany G.
Would recommend Southern Italy with Gate 1 to all my friends and relatives! The sights, food and weather was amazing and wonderful! Most of all, our tour director, AnnaMaria was excellent! She was informative, thoughtful, considerate, enthusiastic and kept all the tour members together! Thank you for a wonderful trip!Naomi S.
I traveled on the Enchanting Italy with Amalfi tour. Our tour manager, Gabriela, was outstanding - informative, efficient and fun. She arranged great lunch and dinner spots for us: lunch, wine tasting and tour at a winery; dinner at a terrific restaurant overlooking Florence. I chose this tour because it was a "smattering" of everything I wanted to see in Italy: Venice canals, Vatican and Colosseum in Rome, and beautiful Capri with a boat ride through the grottos. along with many other cities and sites. We also had free time to explore on our own. This was my first tour with Gate 1 and I highly recommend. Can't wait to tour the Lake region on my next tour.Lorraine B.
We had a fantastic time and I have to say our guide Remo is who made the trip exceptional. I hope you are taking really good care of him because he is an absolute gem!!! We had such a mix of people and needs and Remo always kept his cool and received us with unconditional hospitality! His knowledge and obvious love for Italy was evident throughout our trip. Truthfully, Remo is one of the most patient persons I have EVER met and wow, did he have so many moving parts with our bunch. The itinerary was terrific! I still can't believe we saw everything we saw, learned so much, had crazy fun and came home exhausted with a head full of beautiful memories. Thank you for all you did to take care of the details so we could just play like kids!Mary B.
It was a fantastic trip. Giuliana, our guide, did an absolutely incredible job!! She was an excellent guide! She was extremely organized, friendly, and had a great rapport with our group. She was very thorough and had many excellent recommendations. She was present and involved with such a loving positive attitude everyday! She always insisted we wear our masks on the bus and any type of transportation! To sum it up, we had an excellent experience and wouldn't hesitate to book another Gate 1 travel experience! Thanks you for doing such an excellent job and hiring such a competent guide to lead us through our journey!!!!Pamela G.
This was our first Gate 1 Tour and we absolutely had a blast! Our Tour Manager Giuliana really made it special for all of us. she was so organized, and had such a lovely, happy, and caring personality! She took great care of everyone individually & as a group. All of the local guides were very knowledgeable and you could tell they were passionate about the areas they showed us. Our favorite tour was Pompeii; absolutely fascinating, yet sad at the same time. Our buses & accommodations were all clean & sanitized and we were encouraged to*mask up" and use hand sanitizer when in close quarters. The bus drivers were also great! Italy was so amazing and we can't wait to tour again with Gate 1! Thank you to Giuliana and the team; they outdid themselves! BravoFranklin P.
This was our first trip with Gate 1 and we hit a jackpot. Our amazing trip through the spectacular cites of Italy was sensational. Our guide Giuliana was very friendly, open, thoughtful, helpful when needed, a lot of fun, and with a little entertainment. She pulled the group together as a big family, all willing to help each other without hesitation. While on the bus she would inform us of the cities we were entering. Our guides were just incredibly knowledgeable of their city treasures and you could feel their love for their country, "Italy". Giuliana had great recommendations of things to do on our free time from restaurants, shops and all the other amazing sites. it was all good. As a first timer with Gate 1, all I can say, we will be back for more adventurous, guaranteed. Thank you Gate 1 for an amazing team of professionals, overwhelming amount of information, and beautiful sites, along with our loving memories.Richard P.
Our trip was fantastic. We covered a lot of the country in 14 days. We especially loved Cinque Terra, Lucca, Capri and the Amalfi coast. The tours were interesting and the accommodations excellent. The very best part was Lorena our tour manager. She does her job extremely well. She is always happy and is extremely knowledgeable and proud of her country. She handled the unexpected issues that arose with calm and patience. It's evident she loves what she does and we loved her. Gate1 is definitely the no worry way to travel.Rosemary G.
I would like to expound on my experience with Carolyn. Since this is my first experience with Gate 1, I was thinking that all your managers were as good as her. But hearing from other seasoned travelers of Gate 1, they have she is the best they ever had. I totally agree she was wonderful, took care of us giving us little memorable gifts from places we tour, little Pinocchio to delicious focaccia to a beautiful calendar. I can still hear her counting us from English to Italian making sure nobody was left behind. But I Will remember most are the injected funny and warm family anecdotes she tells us on our tour while she talks in the bus or in our "whispers" Arriverderci Carolyn, you made my experience with. Gate 1 memorable and want more.Asuncion V.
If there were a category beyond Excellent that would be your tour manager, Mercedes, for our recently completed 14 day tour of Italy. What a truly wonderful, knowledgeable, personable guide you have in her. She was so very organized and approachable and her love of her country and her eagerness to share this love with us was apparent every moment of this trip. She also had a way of bringing our group together as a "family" for the 14 days of our tour. The Tour Managers really make your tours memorable. This was our 4th Gate 1 trip and each tour manager has been beyond excellent. I always think the previous tour manager could never be topped -- but then I meet the next one....Renee M.
Our trip to Tuscany was incredible. Flying with Emirates was incomparable for service and amenities. Staying at the Hotel Grand Plaza in Montecatini allowed us to experience Tuscany at our own pace. Riccardo and Mariano were amazing and we looked forward to our meals there. Everyone should take the funicular trip up to Montecatini Also as the views were fabulous and the history of the town is fantastic.Martin F.
You have a gem in our Tour Manager Vivi. She was lovable, organized, knowledgeable, and her recommendations were excellent. She was extremely helpful in getting optional tours scheduled for us and made our trip an experience to remember. My wife is thrilled and is telling everyone to use Gate 1 Travel. The local guides she had in Venice, Pompeii, Rome, and Florence were great too.John A.
Our guide Mercedes was fabulous. Her knowledge of the regions we visited or drove by was excellent. Every question or recommendation I asked was answered with expertise. She was so friendly with everyone on the tour. I wish I could have her on every tour I do with Gate 1. This was the best tour I have been on with Gate 1.Philip B.
Although on the post trip survey I rated our tour manager, Ana, excellent in all categories I am compelled to provide additional comments. I have traveled with 3 other tour companies and comparatively, Ana went above & beyond what I have experienced in the past. Her assistance with our groups check in at Palermo airport (something that was technically after the tour ended) made the process go much more smoothly. I believe some of us may have missed our flight if not for her. I could go on but suffice it to say that Ana is quite an asset to Gate1 and made our first trip with your company memorable. I do hope that this email is forwarded to the powers that be.Christine G.
Hello. I just want to add to the survey about our trip to Italy. Our tour manager Mercedes was absolutely wonderful! She truly wanted everyone to enjoy Italy. In Florence, my daughter mentioned how uncomfortable the pillows were in the hotel room. When we returned that evening, a nicer pillow was brought to our room - all arranged by Mercedes. It was an appreciated gesture and showed how much she listens and cares. Mercedes is truly wonderful in her role and made our trip even more enjoyable. All the tour guides were so knowledgeable and answered any questions. We enjoyed the history they all shared, including funny anecdotes. After visiting Pisa, lunch being served at the wine tasting was a nice surprise and delicious! The additional dinner in Tuscany (Machiavelli villa) was absolutely amazing! The food was the best; the wine was delicious (we ordered some for home!), and the entertainment was fun and engaging. It was an enjoyable night - one we will not forget. We booked our Italy trip on the recommendation of my brother and his girlfriend who travel yearly with Gate1. I have shared our experience with friends and coworkers telling them how easy it was to travel with Gate 1. We just had to show up and enjoy - the planning and logistics were handled. We look forward to booking our next trip - hopefully sometime soon!Dina S.
I just had to leave a note with some feedback on the amazing Francesca. She truly embodies the Gate1 promise and was an exceptional tour manager. She made sure to greet us when we arrived at the hotel and ensured there were porters to take care of our luggage when we arrived in Italy and departed Italy. She had what she called "hospitality hour" every evening to answer any questions or give suggestions for our time at leisure. She also provided us with city maps in every city we visited where she would highlight our hotel as well as the best way to get back to the hotel from our last location on the guided tour. This was one of my favorite "above and beyond" steps that she took because there was no stress about how to return to our hotel if we wanted to hangout longer in the city. She kept bus conversation relevant and interesting but also let us take time to nap on the way to the next location. Something that shouldn't need comment but after our last Gate1 trip I feel it's important to mention; Francesca stayed true to the itinerary and didn't move things around to make it more convenient for herself. This was extremely appreciated! Some feedback on the tour itself: this was a perfectly balanced trip with guided tours, optional tours and time at leisure. The two additional optional tours we got to add on once we arrived in Italy were also fantastic! We LOVED having a local guide for each and every city we visited versus the orientation tours we received through much of our time through Germany, Switzerland and Austria. This trip brought back my faith in Gate1 tours and has me so excited for our next trip in September!Taryn G.
The 10 Day affordable italy with Pompeii tour was the most wonderful dream vacation. The tour/trip exceeded all my hopes and expectations. There was absolutely nothing changed or wished different. Our tour guides were all knowledgeable and adding fun facts and details to everything we saw. the main guide, Michela was outstanding. I believe she went above and beyond taking care of our group, making sure we were all happy and safe, getting us where we needed to be while having a great time. I would recommend Michela to everyone I know and hopefully be on one of her tours again in the future. thank you for such a perfect trip!Barbara V.
Just wanted to let you know that our Tour Manager, Ana, is outstanding. We were a party of three traveling together and we all felt like she was very knowledgeable, personable and just a great person. She encouraged unity, yet independence. She made sure everyone was comfortable and got to know everyone on the tour. This was our first travel with Gate 1. Based on this tour led by Ana, we would definitely do another tour with Gate 1. We were very satisfied. Thank you.Irene S.
We really enjoyed Vanni as a guide. He was very protective of us all and more than willing to share his information on local restaurants and other locations to visit. He does a great job. He's extremely knowledgeable about Italian culture and history. We have made 4 trips to Italy in the last 40+ years and even with that experience under our belts, we still learned a lot from Vanni. I wanted to especially write about our driver Luigi. What a lovely man and an excellent driver. The traffic was often extremely congested and he navigated through with no problems. We always felt entirely safe being in his bus. I would not want to deal with Italian traffic on a daily basis. On the way home from Pompeii, there was horrendous traffic. If not for his knowledge of Rome and its environs, we would have been stuck in traffic for more than an hour. There was a massive tangle of traffic. Luigi knew the city so well, he was able to leave the highway early and wend his way through a number of small streets managing that huge bus as if it were a small car, and got us to our hotel without any major delays. Luigi is a Keeper!Mary K.
My brother and I like to take brothers trips from time to time. We have used Gate1 several times, and booked a trip to Vietnam for April 2020. As the world closed down, our trip was cancelled. After waiting a couple of years, we decided to change our plans and travel to Italy instead. Gate 1 was very accommodating and helped us with this change. As always, communications were clear and helpful. This was the first time we've taken an independent tour, but everything was perfect. The hotels were clean and located in great spots (especially in Florence and Venice). So what's it like to travel to a foreign country at the tail end of a pandemic? In one word: heavenly! Low crowds, almost no long lines, and very appreciative shop owners and tour operators. I know it won't last forever, but while it does, book your trip! Can't wait to book another one!!!Jeffrey G.
Is an Independent Vacation from Gate 1 right for you? It was the perfect choice for my daughter and me for our recent trip to Italy. The option was an ideal blend of booking an escorted tour while allowing us time to explore on our own. * We had the security of Gate 1 behind us when flights and hotels were changed - we didn't have to worry about rescheduling. * We had the opportunity to join Gate 1 (and other) tours in each city we visited - the excursion to Pompeii was our favorite. * We had the freedom to explore each city on our own - we especially loved taking the "boat-bus" in Venice and riding the Metro subway in Rome. So if you're feeling just a bit adventurous and want to "cut the apron strings," an Independent Gate 1 Vacation may be the perfect option for you too!Charlotte R.
I wanted to reach out to share thoughts on Nicole that my wife and I both felt she did a fabulous job during our trip. She was very knowledgeable and shared much information about each area we visited. We look forward to learning about the history and cultures of areas during our travels and she provided expert information on both. She came across as warm caring and knowledgeable. You are fortunate to call her a Gate 1 representative. Please express our regards and thanks to her.Michael K.
Our trip to Italy in October 2021 was just what we needed to break out of the COVID doldrums. We were somewhat hesitant to travel and waited until the last week before departure before we made our final decision. GATE1 did everything right in providing safe travel and even made arrangements for our COVID testing (before returning home) to be done at our last hotel. Our tour guide, Fortuna, made our trip so very enjoyable. She seemed as happy as the rest of our small group (there were nine of us) to be traveling again. Fortuna was especially adept at knowing how to pack in the most fun and arranged an awesome variety of experiences each day. We've traveled many times on guided tours but Fortuna was by far our favorite guide. She was skilled at keeping everyone happy and meeting our individual requests. Although we should have guessed there would be wonderful food on this trip, we were overjoyed with the multi-course meals we were treated to at each vineyard. And we sure learned a lot about grapes and wine! Who knew? Balsamic vinegar, rice wine and beer, grappa and awesome vineyards - all such a treat. We are so very glad that we went on this fabulous trip!Cynthia C.
My wife and I got back a week ago from spending our Honeymoon on the '14 Day Romantic Italy with Amalfi', and I just wanted to reach out and say how incredible it was. Traveling during COVID with the restrictions changing month-to-month is inherently stressful, but Gate1 did a wonderful job before, during, and after the trip of making sure we knew exactly what was required, and even facilitating the tests while we were in Italy so we could return to the U.S. as stress-free as possible. Everything about Italy, the accommodations, the guides, etc. were perfect, but I absolutely have to give special thanks and credit to our tour manager Lorena. She was so passionate and joyful, and her positive energy helped make the trip so special. At every opportunity she went out of our way to make our Honeymoon better than we ever thought it could be. We absolutely love Gate1. This was our second trip, and we have two more booked for next year. We tell all of our friends that Gate1 is the way to go. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for everything you do to make these wonderful trips.David B.
My 2 boys and I just returned from a 2 week vacation in Italy (14 Day Romantic). First I want to say that traveling with Gate 1 was a wonderful & pleasurable experience and of course Italy was absolutely Bellissimo. What made the experience over the top was our tour manager, the lovely Ms Larena. I never met anyone who enjoyed her job & people as much as she does. Not only was she a wealth of knowledge but her attention to detail & guidance was impressive which took some pressure of of us as to when do we met, what time and so on. She truly cared for all of us. You can also see how well loved she is by the local guides as well as the everyday citizens of Italy. She is full of love, life and has a heart of gold. When my kids and I departed from Naples she accompanied us to the airport and upon saying good-bye we both had happy tears in our eyes. I don't see her as a tour manager anymore but now she is my friend for life. Thank you Larena & Gate 1 for a memorable time.Frank D.
I would like to be more specific in my praise for our tour manager, Dionisio, who accompanied us our tour of southern Italy from Bari to Naples. Dionisio was articulate, detailed and personable in his comments for all instructions, his detailed historical and cultural background along the way, and his responses to our questions. He went out of his way to provide extraordinary assistance, particularly to several members of our group who had trouble walking. His enthusiasm for the various places and foods was infectious, and we could not help but be intrigued by our travel experience. Despite the extra paper work that he was constantly required to fill out to satisfy the Covid response protocol in Italy, he was always available and willing to assist in each of our special requests. Finally, on our last day he got up at 4am to accompany a group of us to the Naples airport to make sure that our Covid test documents would be accepted at check in, easing our way for the flight home. In summary, Dionisio was an exceptional tour manager in all respects, and a remarkable representative of Gate 1 Travel!Elmer B.
The trip was phenomenal, amazing! Felt very safe about Covid protocols 24 of us were on the trip 24 received negative Covid test before we left to come home. Wearing a mask inside was the only inconvenience for the trip. There were no incidents we only had to show our US government vaccine card when entering museums and if we ate inside. However we almost never ate inside, because we were in Italy. Our guide was the typical amazing Gate One tour guide. The day guides were also really great. Though I have been a bit unhappy with some of the planning of this trip, sticking with Gate One was the right thing to do. I will continue to tell everyone about how great Gate One does! I will also be booking some more trips.Scott W.
We had a wonderful vacation in Sicily with Gate1 Travels! Just wanted to say that our Tour Manager Antonella Dicarlo was awesome & is truly an asset to your organization. She is a lovely, kind, helpful person with a bright, sunny personality and extremely efficient, professional, knowledgeable, which made every aspect of our trip such a smooth, enjoyable, memorable experience! We wish her a very Happy Birthday & many Happier, Healthy returns of the day!! Our driver Raymond was exceptional too, not only is he a safe driver but always courteous, helpful, punctual, professional in his dress and attitude! We hope that we can have Antonella & Raymond on other European tours in the future!!!Gabrielle T.
I want you to know what a great trip we had, on our 9 day Classic Sicily. But it was made even better because of our Tour Manager, Antonella. She was wonderful. We have had good tour managers, with Gate 1, but she was the absolute best. We felt she went above and beyond. She would present our group with little gifts of pastries, from bakeries she had recommended, rock salt from the salt fields at Marsala, even little Sicilian flags and tea towels with a map of Sicily on it. She was extremely knowledgeable & very funny. She told my partner and I about a great restaurant in Taoromina, and how to get there by taxi and cable car. Even the amount of cab fare and the cost of the cable car up to Taoromina. She became a friend to everyone on our tour. And I know everyone in our tour group feels the same way about Antonella!!! I hope we have a chance to have her as our tour manager on future Gate 1 tours.Charles R.
I had a wonderful time. Milan is such a beautiful city. The transfers were flawless. The hotel was great and very close to the subway. The Lake Como Tour was enjoyable and instructions from Gate 1 were easy to follow. Thank you for another incredible experience.Deneen K. Indianapolis, IN
Our trip was great! February was a good time to visit Italy—no crowds and nice weather. The tour allowed us to see a great number of historic sites and places of interest. Thank you for getting us started on our way Gate 1!Betty K. Allentown, NJ
Most enjoyable. Gabriela is a real asset. I was most impressed with her knowledge, planning and humor - a real winner. I was also impressed by the subject matter experts we met during our tours - Cindy, Paolo and Regina. Punctual, at ease with every tour member, they effortlessly led us through the crowds, offering interesting discourse and highlighting special areas of interest. Their stories helped paint pictures of Italian history as well as the lifestyles of the common and aristocratic peoples across the ages. Thank you for a wonderful trip.Dave & Carolyn W. Dunedin, FL
The trip was wonderful and went very smoothly. Very pleased with the Gate 1's arrangements. Flights were as convenient as possible, driver met us at airport, hotel Sini Bernini Bristol was in great location in Rome. The information sent to us from Gate 1 prior to trip was thorough and useful. This was our 4th trip to Rome so visited many of the lesser known sites. Following Rome visit spent a week at a villa NE of Rome for a culinary experience and olive harvest, La Cucina Sabina. Very happy with Gate 1, will use againFred & Karen B. Phoenix, AZ
The trip was amazing! We especially loved our tour manager, Susanna! She was a wealth of information and so helpful & organized. We wish we could have her on future trips. Susanna ensured the trip was enjoyable for everyone. All the places we went to were fantastic & we enjoyed all the local guides too. We can’t wait to book another trip with Gate 1. Thanks so much!Angela P. Mooresville, IN
Our honeymoon trip to Italy was just simply amazing. Our tour manager Susanna did a splendid job keeping us on track with the tour schedule and while providing as much knowledge about the areas we've visited and its history. My husband and I certainly adore her, she was kind, warm, professional, and we all felt very comfortable with her.Washington N. San Diego, CA