13 Day Italy, Switzerland, Austria & Slovenia

From

$2899

Land Only

$4249*

Air & Land

13 Day Italy, Switzerland, Austria & Slovenia

From

$2899

Land Only

$4249*

Air & Land



Book Now!
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Featured Hotels

(Hotels may vary based on departure day of the week)

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Book By Dec 12, 2024 & Save!

2025 Dates & Prices Single Supplement: $850
Hotel Dates Embark Tour Starts Ship Land Only Air & Land
  Book By
Dec 12
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Dec 12
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Dec 12
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Dec 12
$3099 $3599 $4499* $4999*
$2899 $3399 $4299* $4799*
$3199 $3699 $4599* $5099*
$2999 $3499 $4399* $4899*
$3199 $3699 $4599* $5099*
$2999 $3499 $4399* $4899*
$3099 $3599 $4899* $5399*
$3099 $3599 $4899* $5399*
$2999 $3499 $4649* $5149*
$2999 $3499 $4649* $5149*
$2999 $3499 $4449* $4949*
$2999 $3499 $4449* $4949*
$3249 $3749 $4599* $5099*
$3199 $3699 $4549* $5049*
$3199 $3699 $4549* $5049*
$3299 $3799 $4649* $5149*
$3199 $3699 $4549* $5049*
$2999 $3499 $4249* $4749*
$3099 $3599 $4349* $4849*

Not Included:
Optional tours and gratuities.


Additional Information:
Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers.

Milan Linate Airport to Lecco transfers available at an additional cost.


Entry Requirements:
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?

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 historical cities have specific driving regulations, with set drop off and pick up points, that result in extra walking to and from the sights. The pace is active as many sites are included. Some hotels in Lucerne are built in the traditional local style and have no air-conditioning. During heat waves, these hotels can become uncomfortable. This is a Classic program. For more information, click here.

Accommodation Details





Room 1


  • Requests are not guaranteed and are subject to each hotel's discretion and availability

Additional Nights

Flight Details




Escorted Package Includes

  • Flights New York-Milan, Ljubljana-New York
    Other departure cities available. Click on date of departure for selection and prices
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • 11 nights accommodations
    • 2 nights Lecco
    • 2 nights Lucerne
    • 1 night Innsbruck
    • 2 nights Salzburg
    • 2 nights Vienna
    • 2 nights Ljubljana
  • Hotel taxes, fees, service charges and Italian city taxes
  • Hotel porterage
  • All transfers included only with airfare purchase on package arrival & departure dates†
  • 17 meals: 11 breakfasts, 6 dinners
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Services of English-speaking tour manager throughout
  • Services of local guides in all major cities
  • Entrance fees per itinerary
  • Comfortable wireless earphones for enhanced touring

Special Features

  • A scenic cruise on spectacular Lake Como takes you to the exquisite village of Bellagio
  • Admire the 14th century medieval Chapel Bridge, forming the centerpiece of Lucerne's townscape
  • Travel via the scenic Vorarlberg Mountains and Austria's Tyrolean Alps to pristine Innsbruck
  • Tour Salzburg, celebrated as Mozart's birthplace and setting of The Sound of Music
  • In Vienna, visit the impressive Schonbrunn Palace, summer residence of the Habsburg emperors
  • Discover the medieval Old Town of Granz and learn about its history
  • Embark on a city tour of Ljubljana, capital of Slovenia, and admire its beautiful architecture
  • Visit Bled Castle, an imposing medieval fortress, perched atop a steep cliff above the picturesque lake

†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 historical cities have specific driving regulations, with set drop off and pick up points, that result in extra walking to and from the sights. The pace is active as many sites are included. Some hotels in Lucerne are built in the traditional local style and have no air-conditioning. During heat waves, these hotels can become uncomfortable. This is a Classic program. For more information, click here.

Friends & family
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{{fromName}} wanted to share this vacation with you! Message: {{message}} Package Url : https://www.gate1travel.com/europe/italy/2025/escorted/central-europe-tours-13dnisas25.aspx This message was sent by {{fromEmail}} at Mar 02, 2024 at 6:09 PM
Note: your itinerary will change depending upon the day of the week you depart. Click a day above to see what is included.

DAY 1, Thursday - Depart for Italy
Depart for Italy

DAY 2, Friday - Arrive in Milan, Transfer to Lecco
Welcome to Italy! Arrive in Milan and transfer to your hotel in the town of Lecco, with views over the exquisite Lake Como. The remainder of the day is at leisure. Your tour will begin with an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager at approximately 6 PM, followed by a light dinner. We recommend that you select flights which arrive no later than 4 PM
Overnight: Lecco
Meals: Dinner

DAY 3, Saturday - Cross Lake Como to the Village of Bellagio
Today, embark on a scenic morning cruise on the lake to the charming village of Bellagio, "The Pearl" of Lake Como. Nestled amidst cypress groves, its earthy-colored buildings climb up from the lakeside promenade. Wander along the narrow streets and alleyways, lined with craft shops, boutiques and cafés. Or, visit some of the gorgeous gardens with manicured lawns and fountains at Villa Melzi or Villa Serbelloni. Return back to Lecco with time to experience the delights of this lakeside town with its spectacular mountain views
Overnight: Lecco
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Sunday - Lake Lugano, St. Gotthard Tunnel, Lucerne's Old City
Travel this morning to Lugano in southern Switzerland's Italian-speaking Ticino region, on the northern shore of glacial Lake Lugano. Its Swiss-Mediterranean mix of cultures is similar to Italy's northern Lombardy region and reflected in its architecture. The palm trees give way to Alpine peaks and glaciers as you continue heading north traversing through the St. Gotthard Tunnel built under the Swiss Alps. On arrival in Lucerne, get acquainted with the lakeside Swiss city, on your walking tour to the sentimental Lion Monument, the 14th century Chapel Bridge and the cobbled streets of the well-preserved medieval Altstadt (Old Town). Tonight, dinner is at a local restaurant
Overnight: Lucerne
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 5, Monday - Full Day in Lucerne
The day is yours to independently discover Lucerne, in the heart of central Switzerland. Wander through the lively streets, and along the picturesque lakeshore, or shop for chocolates, and famous Swiss watches. Perhaps, join the optional tour to the summit of Mt. Pilatus. Ascend the world's steepest cogwheel railway that winds up through lush meadows and mountain streams to nearly 7,000 feet. After time to admire the splendid panoramic views, descend by aerial cableway. Afternoon is at leisure to discover some of Lucerne's fine shops and cafes
Optional: Mount Pilatus Tour
Overnight: Lucerne
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 6, Tuesday - Liechtenstein en route to Innsbruck
Today on your way to Innsbruck, view the tiny storybook Principality of Liechtenstein and its capital Vaduz, a proud remnant of feudal Europe, sandwiched between Switzerland and Austria. Brief stop in Vaduz with free time. Afterward, continue to Innsbruck, capital of the Austrian Alps and check into the hotel. On the city tour this afternoon, stop at the Golden Roof, in the heart of historic Innsbruck and St. James Cathedral, a spectacular example of Baroque architecture. View the grand Imperial Palace, and famous Olympic ski jump. Tonight, dinner is at the hotel
Overnight: Innsbruck
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 7, Wednesday - Salzburg City Tour
Head to the city of Salzburg, nestled in the foothills of the Alps, surrounded by graceful domes. This Baroque jewel is celebrated as the birthplace of Mozart and well-known as the setting of the movie, The Sound of Music. A guided walking tour takes you to the house where Mozart was born as well as to the city's charming squares and Mirabell gardens. The remainder of the day is free, or join the optional excursion into the surrounding countryside to the ruins of Obersalzberg, once a mountain retreat for senior Nazi SS officers. Then, ascend to Hitler's notorious "Eagle's Nest" hideaway*
*The Eagle's Nest Tour operates from May 12-Oct 31 and Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour operates the rest of the time
Optional: Eagle's Nest Tour (PM)
Optional: Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour (PM)
Overnight: Salzburg
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 8, Thursday - Full Day in Salzburg
Spend the day at leisure in beautiful Salzburg to further explore the city. Perhaps, head to Hohensalzburg Fortress located on top of the Festungsberg Hill, offering panoramic views of the city and the surrounding area, or shop for souvenirs in famous Getreidegasse. Tonight, dinner is at a local restaurant
Overnight: Salzburg
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 9, Friday - Travel to Imperial Vienna
Today, travel to Vienna, the magnificent Austrian capital and former center of the Habsburg Empire. This sparkling city on the Danube has captivated travelers for years with its elegant shops, world-class museums, beautiful parks and gardens. Arrive in Vienna in the afternoon and check into your hotel. Tonight, savor dinner at a unique Viennese tavern
Overnight: Vienna
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 10, Saturday - Explore Vienna
Begin today's tour at the impressive Schonbrunn Palace, the former summer residence of the Habsburg emperors. Visit the opulent Baroque apartments and stroll through the manicured gardens. Continue with a drive along Ringstrasse, Vienna's main boulevard. View the Empress Maria Theresa Monument, Votive Church, City Hall, Parliament, Hofburg Palace and the State Opera House. Balance of the day is at leisure. Tonight, experience a not to be missed optional Classical Viennese Recital performance of the masterpieces of Mozart and Strauss
Optional: Mozart and Strauss Recital (PM)
Overnight: Vienna
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 11, Sunday - Graz, Ljubljana City Tour
Depart Vienna this morning, and travel south towards Ljubljana. Along the way, visit the city of Graz, capital of Styria. During your walk through the Old Town, view Hauptplatz Square, Opera House, Clock Tower and Graz Cathedral. Afterward, spend some free time before crossing into Slovenia this afternoon. Arrive in Ljubljana and embark on a city tour. View its open-air market, the Baroque Venetian inspired City Hall, Robba Fountain, the Triple Bridge, which connects the old and new cities and the Parliament. Later, check into your hotel
Overnight: Ljubljana
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 12, Monday - Visit Bled Island & Bled Castle
Begin the day with a drive to the resort town of Bled. Head to the lake to board a pletna, a traditional rowing boat for a visit to Bled Island and its church, home to a wonderful art collection. Later, explore the imposing 11th century Bled Castle, perched on a steep cliff high above the lake, creating a dramatic backdrop to the city. Stroll through the castle grounds and visit the museum to gain insight into the history of the castle and the surrounding area. In the afternoon, return to Ljubljana. Tonight, enjoy a traditional Slovenian dinner and bid farewell to your Tour Manager
Overnight: Ljubljana
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 13, Tuesday - Depart Slovenia
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 1, Saturday - Depart for Italy
Depart for Italy

DAY 2, Sunday - Arrive in Milan, Transfer to Lecco
Welcome to Italy! Arrive in Milan and transfer to your hotel in the town of Lecco, with views over the exquisite Lake Como. The remainder of the day is at leisure. Your tour will begin with an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager at approximately 6 PM, followed by a light dinner. We recommend that you select flights which arrive no later than 4 PM
Overnight: Lecco
Meals: Dinner

DAY 3, Monday - Cross Lake Como to the Village of Bellagio
Today, embark on a scenic morning cruise on the lake to the charming village of Bellagio, "The Pearl" of Lake Como. Nestled amidst cypress groves, its earthy-colored buildings climb up from the lakeside promenade. Wander along the narrow streets and alleyways, lined with craft shops, boutiques and cafés. Or, visit some of the gorgeous gardens with manicured lawns and fountains at Villa Melzi or Villa Serbelloni. Return back to Lecco with time to experience the delights of this lakeside town with its spectacular mountain views
Overnight: Lecco
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Tuesday - Lake Lugano, St. Gotthard Tunnel, Lucerne's Old City
Travel this morning to Lugano in southern Switzerland's Italian-speaking Ticino region, on the northern shore of glacial Lake Lugano. Its Swiss-Mediterranean mix of cultures is similar to Italy's northern Lombardy region and reflected in its architecture. The palm trees give way to Alpine peaks and glaciers as you continue heading north traversing through the St. Gotthard Tunnel built under the Swiss Alps. On arrival in Lucerne, get acquainted with the lakeside Swiss city, on your walking tour to the sentimental Lion Monument, the 14th century Chapel Bridge and the cobbled streets of the well-preserved medieval Altstadt (Old Town). Tonight, dinner is at a local restaurant
Overnight: Lucerne
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 5, Wednesday - Full Day in Lucerne
The day is yours to independently discover Lucerne, in the heart of central Switzerland. Wander through the lively streets, and along the picturesque lakeshore, or shop for chocolates, and famous Swiss watches. Perhaps, join the optional tour to the summit of Mt. Pilatus. Ascend the world's steepest cogwheel railway that winds up through lush meadows and mountain streams to nearly 7,000 feet. After time to admire the splendid panoramic views, descend by aerial cableway. Afternoon is at leisure to discover some of Lucerne's fine shops and cafes
Optional: Mount Pilatus Tour
Overnight: Lucerne
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 6, Thursday - Liechtenstein en route to Innsbruck
Today on your way to Innsbruck, view the tiny storybook Principality of Liechtenstein and its capital Vaduz, a proud remnant of feudal Europe, sandwiched between Switzerland and Austria. Brief stop in Vaduz with free time. Afterward, continue to Innsbruck, capital of the Austrian Alps and check into the hotel. On the city tour this afternoon, stop at the Golden Roof, in the heart of historic Innsbruck and St. James Cathedral, a spectacular example of Baroque architecture. View the grand Imperial Palace, and famous Olympic ski jump. Tonight, dinner is at the hotel
Overnight: Innsbruck
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 7, Friday - Salzburg City Tour
Head to the city of Salzburg, nestled in the foothills of the Alps, surrounded by graceful domes. This Baroque jewel is celebrated as the birthplace of Mozart and well-known as the setting of the movie, The Sound of Music. A guided walking tour takes you to the house where Mozart was born as well as to the city's charming squares and Mirabell gardens. The remainder of the day is free, or join the optional excursion into the surrounding countryside to the ruins of Obersalzberg, once a mountain retreat for senior Nazi SS officers. Then, ascend to Hitler's notorious "Eagle's Nest" hideaway*
*The Eagle's Nest Tour operates from May 12-Oct 31 and Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour operates the rest of the time
Optional: Eagle's Nest Tour (PM)
Optional: Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour (PM)
Overnight: Salzburg
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 8, Saturday - Full Day in Salzburg
Spend the day at leisure in beautiful Salzburg to further explore the city. Perhaps, head to Hohensalzburg Fortress located on top of the Festungsberg Hill, offering panoramic views of the city and the surrounding area, or shop for souvenirs in famous Getreidegasse. Tonight, dinner is at a local restaurant
Overnight: Salzburg
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 9, Sunday - Travel to Imperial Vienna
Today, travel to Vienna, the magnificent Austrian capital and former center of the Habsburg Empire. This sparkling city on the Danube has captivated travelers for years with its elegant shops, world-class museums, beautiful parks and gardens. Arrive in Vienna in the afternoon and check into your hotel. Tonight, savor dinner at a unique Viennese tavern
Overnight: Vienna
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 10, Monday - Explore Vienna
Begin today's tour at the impressive Schonbrunn Palace, the former summer residence of the Habsburg emperors. Visit the opulent Baroque apartments and stroll through the manicured gardens. Continue with a drive along Ringstrasse, Vienna's main boulevard. View the Empress Maria Theresa Monument, Votive Church, City Hall, Parliament, Hofburg Palace and the State Opera House. Balance of the day is at leisure. Tonight, experience a not to be missed optional Classical Viennese Recital performance of the masterpieces of Mozart and Strauss
Optional: Mozart and Strauss Recital (PM)
Overnight: Vienna
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 11, Tuesday - Graz, Ljubljana City Tour
Depart Vienna this morning, and travel south towards Ljubljana. Along the way, visit the city of Graz, capital of Styria. During your walk through the Old Town, view Hauptplatz Square, Opera House, Clock Tower and Graz Cathedral. Afterward, spend some free time before crossing into Slovenia this afternoon. Arrive in Ljubljana and embark on a city tour. View its open-air market, the Baroque Venetian inspired City Hall, Robba Fountain, the Triple Bridge, which connects the old and new cities and the Parliament. Later, check into your hotel
Overnight: Ljubljana
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 12, Wednesday - Visit Bled Island & Bled Castle
Begin the day with a drive to the resort town of Bled. Head to the lake to board a pletna, a traditional rowing boat for a visit to Bled Island and its church, home to a wonderful art collection. Later, explore the imposing 11th century Bled Castle, perched on a steep cliff high above the lake, creating a dramatic backdrop to the city. Stroll through the castle grounds and visit the museum to gain insight into the history of the castle and the surrounding area. In the afternoon, return to Ljubljana. Tonight, enjoy a traditional Slovenian dinner and bid farewell to your Tour Manager
Overnight: Ljubljana
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 13, Thursday - Depart Slovenia
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

Book Now!
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.
Book your Optional Tours before you travel. See more, save time, save money.
  • 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
Mount Pilatus Tour

Ascend the world's steepest cogwheel railway which winds up through lush meadows carpeted with Alpine flowers, past sparkling mountain streams and fascinating rock faces to Mt. Pilatus. After admiring splendid views of the Bernese Oberland and the snowcapped Swiss peaks from the summit at nearly 7000 feet, descend by aerial cableway and return to Lucerne.

Approximate tour duration is 4 hours.

*From November to May and in the event of adverse weather, the cogwheel will be replaced by the aerial cable car.

Day #5 01 Jan 2024 - 31 Dec 2025 $114.00
Mount Pilatus Tour Thumbnail
Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour

Enjoy one of the most breathtaking drives to the Bavarian Alps stopping at Obersalzberg. During the Nazi regime, this area around Hitler's Berghof became a second seat of government and headquarters besides Berlin. From your local expert you will hear about Hitler and the Eagle's Nest. Then, continue with a drive on the famous Rossfeld panorama road offering spectacular views of the Bavarian and Austrian Alps. Afterwards, relive your favorite scenes from the Sound of Music movie with stops at various locations like Hellbrunn Palace, where the glass gazebo, setting for various scenes is located.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

This tour is offered during April, May, late October and November when Eagle's Nest Tour is not available due to late opening and early closing. Additionally, in the event of bad weather, this tour can be substituted for Eagle's Nest Tour during June - September

Day #7 01 Nov 2024 - 31 Dec 2025 $49.00
Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour Thumbnail
Eagle's Nest Tour

Excursion into the surrounding countryside of Salzburg to Obersalzberg, once an important mountain retreat for senior Nazi SS officers and top party members. Transfer to special motor coaches adapted for the scenic mountain climb to Hitler's notorious "Eagle's Nest." Ascending with the original elevator to the Kehlsteinhaus, you'll see dramatic views of the snowcapped peaks. Afterwards, relive some of your favorite scenes from the movie "The Sound of Music" with views of various locations, like the gazebo in the gardens of Hellbrunn Palace.

Approximate tour duration is 4 hours.
This tour will not operate in April, early May and November. In the event of inclement weather, the Eagle's Nest will be closed and the optional will not operate.

Day #7 01 Apr 2025 - 31 Dec 2025 $75.40
Eagle's Nest Tour Thumbnail
Mozart & Strauss Recital

Experience a delightful evening of Viennese culture in the "City of Music." Attend a recital featuring the classical masterpieces of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johann Strauss, two of Vienna's most famous citizens. The musicians will bring to life the passionate strains of Mozart, a child prodigy who blossomed into one of history's greatest composers and Strauss, the Waltz King, who composed the Blue Danube, the world's most famous waltz.

Approximate tour duration is 2.5 hours.

Day #10 01 Apr 2024 - 31 Dec 2025 $75.00
Mozart & Strauss Recital Thumbnail
Mount Pilatus Tour

Ascend the world's steepest cogwheel railway which winds up through lush meadows carpeted with Alpine flowers, past sparkling mountain streams and fascinating rock faces to Mt. Pilatus. After admiring splendid views of the Bernese Oberland and the snowcapped Swiss peaks from the summit at nearly 7000 feet, descend by aerial cableway and return to Lucerne.

Approximate tour duration is 4 hours.

*From November to May and in the event of adverse weather, the cogwheel will be replaced by the aerial cable car.

Day #5 01 Jan 2024 - 31 Dec 2025 $114.00
Mount Pilatus Tour Thumbnail
Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour

Enjoy one of the most breathtaking drives to the Bavarian Alps stopping at Obersalzberg. During the Nazi regime, this area around Hitler's Berghof became a second seat of government and headquarters besides Berlin. From your local expert you will hear about Hitler and the Eagle's Nest. Then, continue with a drive on the famous Rossfeld panorama road offering spectacular views of the Bavarian and Austrian Alps. Afterwards, relive your favorite scenes from the Sound of Music movie with stops at various locations like Hellbrunn Palace, where the glass gazebo, setting for various scenes is located.

Approximate tour duration is 3 hours.

This tour is offered during April, May, late October and November when Eagle's Nest Tour is not available due to late opening and early closing. Additionally, in the event of bad weather, this tour can be substituted for Eagle's Nest Tour during June - September

Day #7 01 Nov 2024 - 31 Dec 2025 $49.00
Austrian Alps & Sound of Music Tour Thumbnail
Eagle's Nest Tour

Excursion into the surrounding countryside of Salzburg to Obersalzberg, once an important mountain retreat for senior Nazi SS officers and top party members. Transfer to special motor coaches adapted for the scenic mountain climb to Hitler's notorious "Eagle's Nest." Ascending with the original elevator to the Kehlsteinhaus, you'll see dramatic views of the snowcapped peaks. Afterwards, relive some of your favorite scenes from the movie "The Sound of Music" with views of various locations, like the gazebo in the gardens of Hellbrunn Palace.

Approximate tour duration is 4 hours.
This tour will not operate in April, early May and November. In the event of inclement weather, the Eagle's Nest will be closed and the optional will not operate.

Day #7 01 Apr 2025 - 31 Dec 2025 $75.40
Eagle's Nest Tour Thumbnail
Mozart & Strauss Recital

Experience a delightful evening of Viennese culture in the "City of Music." Attend a recital featuring the classical masterpieces of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johann Strauss, two of Vienna's most famous citizens. The musicians will bring to life the passionate strains of Mozart, a child prodigy who blossomed into one of history's greatest composers and Strauss, the Waltz King, who composed the Blue Danube, the world's most famous waltz.

Approximate tour duration is 2.5 hours.

Day #10 01 Apr 2024 - 31 Dec 2025 $75.00
Mozart & Strauss Recital Thumbnail

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/reservations 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.

Trip Preparation
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. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. 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.

Travel Protection
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.

Mobile Phones
Mobile networks differ from country to country. We recommend you check with your provider to see if your wireless plan will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. To avoid possible roaming charges, you may want to consider purchasing an international plan. With most major phone companies, for a modest fee, you will be able to use your domestic plan's talk, text, and data allowances just like you do at home. If you can access the internet while you travel, you can also take advantage of services such as WhatsApp or Skype.

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).

Example:
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
WiFi is available in most airports, hotels, and cruise lines, as well as on some flights, trains, and buses. There may be a fee for access and service quality and speed may vary greatly especially while on moving vehicles. 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.

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.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


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: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Switzerland - Switzerland tours visit areas of high elevation ranging from 5,905 feet to 10,135 feet. High elevation may cause some passengers to experience the temporary effects of altitude sickness. If you have any concerns about traveling to higher than your accustomed elevation, please consult your healthcare provider. Individuals that are affected by high altitude, should avoid over-exertion, drink extra water, abstain from alcohol, and eat lightly.

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:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • No Smoking of any kind (medical or recreational) is allowed on any transportation that is exclusively provided by Gate 1. This includes e-cigarettes, e-cigars or any other smoking device. Furthermore, some countries heavily regulate the public use and possession of cigarettes (including e-cigarettes and vape pens) which could include their complete ban. Please check the regulation for the destinations you plan on traveling to prior to departure.
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

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

Austria - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 70–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Austria Average Temperatures: www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#austria-germany-europe-weather

Germany - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F, Summer: 65–80°F, Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Germany Average Temperatures: www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#austria-germany-europe-weather

Slovenia - Spring and Autumn: 40–65°F; Summer: 55–75°F; Winter: 20–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Slovenia Average Temperatures:https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#slovenia-weather

Switzerland - Spring and Autumn: 35-55°F; Summer: 55-80°F; Winter: 25-35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Switzerland Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx

About Drones
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.

ITALY: Books
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

ITALY: Films
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)

CENTRAL EUROPE: Books
The Eclipse of the Crescent Moon or Slave of the Huns by Géza Gárdonyi
A Modern Midas: A Romance by Mór Jókai
Fatelessness by Imre Kertész
How to be an Alien or How to be Poor by George Mikes
Csardas by Diane Pearson
Who Loves You Like This by Edith Bruck
Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler
Kasztner's Train by Anna Porter
Imprimatur or Secretum or Veritas by Monaldi & Sorti
Europe 101: History and Art for the Traveler by Rick Steves and Gene Openshaw
The Bridge at Andau by James A. Michener
I Served the King of England or Bambini di Praga 1947 by Bohumil Hrabal
Franz Kafka and Prague by Harald Salfellner
The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
Old Czech Legends by Alois Jirásek
The Golem by Gustav Meyrink
The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
The Good Soldier Svejk by Jaroslav Hašek

SWITZERLAND: Books
William Tell by Friedrich Schiller
The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss
Swiss Watching: Inside the Land of Milk & Honey by Diccon Bewes
A Tramp Abroad by Mark Twain
The Lions of Lucerne by Brad Thor
Target Switzerland: Swiss Armed Neutrality in World War II by Stephen P. Halbrook
Swiss History in a Nutshell by Gregoire Nappey
Scrambles Amongst the Alps by Edward Whymper
Why Switzerland? by Jonathan Steinberg

SWITZERLAND: Films
The Miracle of Bern (2003)
The Swissmakers (1978)
On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)
Third Man on the Mountain (1959)
Heidi (1937)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
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.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

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.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

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.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
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.

Be wary of airport scammers who offer unwanted assistance. If you are arriving without a pre-arranged transfer, we strongly recommend going to the Tourist Information Desk to ask for a licensed taxi or transfer service. You may be asked to pay for the transfer at the desk prior to the trip, this will ensure you are not charged extra during the trip.

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.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
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
Hotels
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.

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.

Gratuities
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 $10 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage): US $5 per person per day, US $3 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $5 per person per day of sightseeing, US $3 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.

Austria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Germany - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Slovenia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Switzerland - Rounding up the bill is appreciated. Taxi drivers do not expect a gratuity and rounding up the fare is usually sufficient.

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. On river cruises, color-coded group splits may be used for shoreside included and Optional tours. 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

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

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.

Austria - The Euro is the currency of Austria.

Germany - The Euro is the currency of Germany.

Slovenia - The Euro is the currency of Slovenia.

Switzerland - The Swiss Franc is the currency of Switzerland.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.

While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The "chip-and-PIN" cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don't accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

Shopping
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.

Austria - Austria is renowned for its high quality winter sports equipment, wine, as well as an assortment of top-of-the-line, handcrafted items, including crystal, wood carvings, textiles, and fine leather. If you are traveling during the Christmas season, the Christmas markets are a must-see, not only for the goods but also for the hot mulled wine and unforgettable atmosphere.

Germany - In addition to large department stores featuring a wide range of goods, Germany has many specialized shops that feature high quality items such as optical instruments, knives, glassware, china, handcrafted toys, and antique books and maps, among many others.

Slovenia - Local specialties include bobbin lace, crystal, glassware, and wine. Business hours are Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., and Saturday 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. A value-added tax is now added to the purchase price of most goods.

Switzerland - Shopping in Switzerland offers a great chance to find the highest quality watches and knives, extravagant jewelry, and gourmet Swiss chocolates. Especially famous for cuckoo clocks, ranging from the simplest models to the most extraordinarily intricate, Swiss craftsmanship is unsurpassed.

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:

  • Always use seat belts (if provided)
  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash
  • While in destination, you may encounter local wildlife. Please refrain from touching any animal as they may carry diseases or harm you.

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:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


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
  • Ambulance/Medical: 118
  • Fire: 115
  • Police: 112

Austria
  • General Emergency: 112 or 122

Germany
  • Ambulance/Fire: 112
  • Police: 110

Slovenia
  • General Emergency: 112

Switzerland
  • Ambulance: 144
  • Fire: 118
  • Police: 117

Languages
Italy - Italian is the local language. English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Austria - German is the local language. English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Germany - German is the local language. English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Slovenia - Slovene is the local language. Croatian, Serbian, German, English, and Italian are also spoken by some.

Electricity
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.

Austria - The voltage used is 230 volts.

Germany - The voltage used is 230 volts.

Slovenia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Switzerland - The voltage used is 230 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.

Austria - Shaking hands is a customary greeting and normal courtesies should be observed. First names are not used when being introduced, but after a relationship exists, using first names is appropriate. Politeness is highly valued, and saying hello and goodbye is important even in shops and restaurants.

Slovenia - Dress should be casual, but conservative, except at formal dinners and upscale hotels or restaurants. At restaurants, bread will often be brought and charged even if not requested. This is customary and should not be disputed. Slovenes are known for their friendliness and hospitality to foreigners and even new acquaintances may offer a drink.

Germany - Shaking hands is a customary greeting and normal courtesies should be observed. First names are not used when being introduced, but after a relationship exists, using first names is appropriate. Politeness is highly valued, and saying hello and goodbye is important even in shops and restaurants.

Switzerland - Cleanliness is of utmost importance in Switzerland and even accidental littering can result in a public scolding. Shaking hands is a standard greeting. When being introduced, it is important to shake hands with everyone, including children. Standard courtesies should be observed, and conservative casual dress is appropriate.

Meals & Dietary Requests
Included meals are based on the restaurant's buffet or set menu. Beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although special diets like Vegetarian and Vegan are relatively commonplace in the USA, much of the world's menu options are more provincial. Please do not expect to find the variety of food selection outside of the local norm. Every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests selected no later than 5 days prior to departure in the passenger details section of your reservation. In addition, we recommend that you make preferences known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant. Special requests are subject to local conditions and availability and cannot be guaranteed.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Italy

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Epiphany
Mar 31: Easter Sunday
Apr 1: Easter Monday
Apr 25: Liberation Day
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 2: Republic Day
Aug 15: Assumption of the Virgin Mary / Ferragosto
Nov 1: All Saints Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day


Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Epiphany
Apr 9: Easter Sunday
Apr 20: 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, May 7-9 (St. Nicholas)
Milan & Stresa: Dec 7 (St. Ambrose)
Siracusa: Dec 13 (St. Lucy)

Holidays - Austria

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 29: Good Friday
Mar 31: Easter
Apr 1: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
May 9: Ascension Day
May 19: Whit Sunday
May 20: Whit Monday
May 30: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Oct 26: National Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Apr 18: Good Friday
Apr 20: Easter
Apr 21: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
May 29: Ascension Day
Jun 8: Whit Sunday
Jun 19: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Oct 10: Plebiscite Day
Oct 26: National Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Nov 15: St. Leopold's Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Germany

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 29: Good Friday
Mar 31: Easter
Apr 1: Easter Monday
May 1: May Day
May 9: Ascension Day
May 19: Whit Sunday
May 20: Whit Monday
May 30: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Assumption Day
Oct 3: Day of German Unity
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Nov 20: Repentence Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Apr 18: Good Friday
Apr 20: Easter
Apr 21: Easter Monday
May 1: May Day
May 29: Ascension Day
Jun 8: Whit Sunday
Jun 9: Whit Monday
Jun 19: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Assumption Day
Oct 3: Day of German Unity
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Nov 19: Repentence Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Slovenia

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday
Feb 8: Prešeren Day
Mar 31: Easter Sunday
Apr 1: Easter Monday
Apr 27: Day of Uprising Against Occupation
May 1: Labor Day/May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 19: Whit Sunday
Aug 15: Assumption of Mary
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: Remembrance Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Independence and Unity Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2025

Jan 1-2: New Year's Day, observed
Feb 8: Prešeren Day
Apr 20: Easter Sunday
Apr 21: Easter Monday
Apr 27: Day of Uprising Against Occupation
May 1-2: Labor Day/May Day, observed
Jun 8: Whit Sunday
Aug 15: Assumption of Mary
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: Remembrance Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Independence and Unity Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Switzerland

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: St. Berchtold Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 19: St. Joseph's Day
Mar 29: Good Friday
Mar 31: Easter
Apr 1: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day/May Day
May 9: Ascension Day
May 19: Pentecost (Whit Sunday)
May 20: Pentecost (Whit Monday)
May 30: Corpus Christi
Jun 29: St. Peter and St Paul
Aug 1: Swiss National Day
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: Restoration Day

Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: St. Berchtold Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 19: St. Joseph's Day
Apr 18: Good Friday
Apr 20: Easter
Apr 21: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day/May Day
May 29: Ascension Day
Jun 8: Pentecost (Whit Sunday)
Jun 9: Pentecost (Whit Monday)
Jun 19: Corpus Christi
Jun 29: St. Peter and St Paul
Aug 1: Swiss National Day
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: Restoration Day

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.

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/reservations 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.

Trip Preparation
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. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. 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.

Travel Protection
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.

Mobile Phones
Mobile networks differ from country to country. We recommend you check with your provider to see if your wireless plan will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. To avoid possible roaming charges, you may want to consider purchasing an international plan. With most major phone companies, for a modest fee, you will be able to use your domestic plan's talk, text, and data allowances just like you do at home. If you can access the internet while you travel, you can also take advantage of services such as WhatsApp or Skype.

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).

Example:
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
WiFi is available in most airports, hotels, and cruise lines, as well as on some flights, trains, and buses. There may be a fee for access and service quality and speed may vary greatly especially while on moving vehicles. 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.

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.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


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: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

Switzerland - Switzerland tours visit areas of high elevation ranging from 5,905 feet to 10,135 feet. High elevation may cause some passengers to experience the temporary effects of altitude sickness. If you have any concerns about traveling to higher than your accustomed elevation, please consult your healthcare provider. Individuals that are affected by high altitude, should avoid over-exertion, drink extra water, abstain from alcohol, and eat lightly.

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:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • No Smoking of any kind (medical or recreational) is allowed on any transportation that is exclusively provided by Gate 1. This includes e-cigarettes, e-cigars or any other smoking device. Furthermore, some countries heavily regulate the public use and possession of cigarettes (including e-cigarettes and vape pens) which could include their complete ban. Please check the regulation for the destinations you plan on traveling to prior to departure.
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

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

Austria - Spring and Autumn: 45–60°F; Summer: 70–80°F; Winter: 30–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Austria Average Temperatures: www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#austria-germany-europe-weather

Germany - Spring and Autumn: 40–60°F, Summer: 65–80°F, Winter: 25–40°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Germany Average Temperatures: www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#austria-germany-europe-weather

Slovenia - Spring and Autumn: 40–65°F; Summer: 55–75°F; Winter: 20–35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Slovenia Average Temperatures:https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx#slovenia-weather

Switzerland - Spring and Autumn: 35-55°F; Summer: 55-80°F; Winter: 25-35°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer and an all-weather jacket. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops).

Switzerland Average Temperatures: https://www.gate1travel.com/weather/europe/default.aspx

About Drones
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.

ITALY: Books
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

ITALY: Films
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)

CENTRAL EUROPE: Books
The Eclipse of the Crescent Moon or Slave of the Huns by Géza Gárdonyi
A Modern Midas: A Romance by Mór Jókai
Fatelessness by Imre Kertész
How to be an Alien or How to be Poor by George Mikes
Csardas by Diane Pearson
Who Loves You Like This by Edith Bruck
Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler
Kasztner's Train by Anna Porter
Imprimatur or Secretum or Veritas by Monaldi & Sorti
Europe 101: History and Art for the Traveler by Rick Steves and Gene Openshaw
The Bridge at Andau by James A. Michener
I Served the King of England or Bambini di Praga 1947 by Bohumil Hrabal
Franz Kafka and Prague by Harald Salfellner
The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
Old Czech Legends by Alois Jirásek
The Golem by Gustav Meyrink
The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
The Good Soldier Svejk by Jaroslav Hašek

SWITZERLAND: Books
William Tell by Friedrich Schiller
The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss
Swiss Watching: Inside the Land of Milk & Honey by Diccon Bewes
A Tramp Abroad by Mark Twain
The Lions of Lucerne by Brad Thor
Target Switzerland: Swiss Armed Neutrality in World War II by Stephen P. Halbrook
Swiss History in a Nutshell by Gregoire Nappey
Scrambles Amongst the Alps by Edward Whymper
Why Switzerland? by Jonathan Steinberg

SWITZERLAND: Films
The Miracle of Bern (2003)
The Swissmakers (1978)
On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)
Third Man on the Mountain (1959)
Heidi (1937)

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
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.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

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.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

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.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
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.

Be wary of airport scammers who offer unwanted assistance. If you are arriving without a pre-arranged transfer, we strongly recommend going to the Tourist Information Desk to ask for a licensed taxi or transfer service. You may be asked to pay for the transfer at the desk prior to the trip, this will ensure you are not charged extra during the trip.

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.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
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
Hotels
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.

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.

Gratuities
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 $10 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage): US $5 per person per day, US $3 per half day
Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): US $5 per person per day of sightseeing, US $3 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.

Austria - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Germany - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Slovenia - Gratuities are appreciated and expected for good service in restaurants and other places that cater to tourists. Restaurant bills often include a service charge.

Switzerland - Rounding up the bill is appreciated. Taxi drivers do not expect a gratuity and rounding up the fare is usually sufficient.

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. On river cruises, color-coded group splits may be used for shoreside included and Optional tours. 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

Currency
We suggest getting a small amount of currency for the first country you're visiting before you depart (except India). It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert dollars to the local currency. It's also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs don't always have letters. ATM machines will only dispense cash in local currency. Check with respective consulates to learn current currency allowances and requirements. Use your credit card whenever possible. Should you decide to carry cash, please note that exchange at banks is typically more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. However, bank hours are limited to Mondays through Fridays and sometimes only morning hours on those days. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. In many destinations (except Western Europe), we suggest to bring between $50 to $100 in $1 bills which may be used to pay gratuities.

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.

Austria - The Euro is the currency of Austria.

Germany - The Euro is the currency of Germany.

Slovenia - The Euro is the currency of Slovenia.

Switzerland - The Swiss Franc is the currency of Switzerland.

Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.

While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The "chip-and-PIN" cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don't accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

Shopping
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.

Austria - Austria is renowned for its high quality winter sports equipment, wine, as well as an assortment of top-of-the-line, handcrafted items, including crystal, wood carvings, textiles, and fine leather. If you are traveling during the Christmas season, the Christmas markets are a must-see, not only for the goods but also for the hot mulled wine and unforgettable atmosphere.

Germany - In addition to large department stores featuring a wide range of goods, Germany has many specialized shops that feature high quality items such as optical instruments, knives, glassware, china, handcrafted toys, and antique books and maps, among many others.

Slovenia - Local specialties include bobbin lace, crystal, glassware, and wine. Business hours are Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., and Saturday 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. A value-added tax is now added to the purchase price of most goods.

Switzerland - Shopping in Switzerland offers a great chance to find the highest quality watches and knives, extravagant jewelry, and gourmet Swiss chocolates. Especially famous for cuckoo clocks, ranging from the simplest models to the most extraordinarily intricate, Swiss craftsmanship is unsurpassed.

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:

  • Always use seat belts (if provided)
  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash
  • While in destination, you may encounter local wildlife. Please refrain from touching any animal as they may carry diseases or harm you.

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:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


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
  • Ambulance/Medical: 118
  • Fire: 115
  • Police: 112

Austria
  • General Emergency: 112 or 122

Germany
  • Ambulance/Fire: 112
  • Police: 110

Slovenia
  • General Emergency: 112

Switzerland
  • Ambulance: 144
  • Fire: 118
  • Police: 117

Languages
Italy - Italian is the local language. English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Austria - German is the local language. English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Germany - German is the local language. English is generally spoken in tourist areas.

Slovenia - Slovene is the local language. Croatian, Serbian, German, English, and Italian are also spoken by some.

Electricity
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.

Austria - The voltage used is 230 volts.

Germany - The voltage used is 230 volts.

Slovenia - The voltage used is 220 volts.

Switzerland - The voltage used is 230 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.

Austria - Shaking hands is a customary greeting and normal courtesies should be observed. First names are not used when being introduced, but after a relationship exists, using first names is appropriate. Politeness is highly valued, and saying hello and goodbye is important even in shops and restaurants.

Slovenia - Dress should be casual, but conservative, except at formal dinners and upscale hotels or restaurants. At restaurants, bread will often be brought and charged even if not requested. This is customary and should not be disputed. Slovenes are known for their friendliness and hospitality to foreigners and even new acquaintances may offer a drink.

Germany - Shaking hands is a customary greeting and normal courtesies should be observed. First names are not used when being introduced, but after a relationship exists, using first names is appropriate. Politeness is highly valued, and saying hello and goodbye is important even in shops and restaurants.

Switzerland - Cleanliness is of utmost importance in Switzerland and even accidental littering can result in a public scolding. Shaking hands is a standard greeting. When being introduced, it is important to shake hands with everyone, including children. Standard courtesies should be observed, and conservative casual dress is appropriate.

Meals & Dietary Requests
Included meals are based on the restaurant's buffet or set menu. Beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although special diets like Vegetarian and Vegan are relatively commonplace in the USA, much of the world's menu options are more provincial. Please do not expect to find the variety of food selection outside of the local norm. Every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests selected no later than 5 days prior to departure in the passenger details section of your reservation. In addition, we recommend that you make preferences known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant. Special requests are subject to local conditions and availability and cannot be guaranteed.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Italy

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Epiphany
Mar 31: Easter Sunday
Apr 1: Easter Monday
Apr 25: Liberation Day
May 1: Labor Day
Jun 2: Republic Day
Aug 15: Assumption of the Virgin Mary / Ferragosto
Nov 1: All Saints Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day


Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Epiphany
Apr 9: Easter Sunday
Apr 20: 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, May 7-9 (St. Nicholas)
Milan & Stresa: Dec 7 (St. Ambrose)
Siracusa: Dec 13 (St. Lucy)

Holidays - Austria

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 29: Good Friday
Mar 31: Easter
Apr 1: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
May 9: Ascension Day
May 19: Whit Sunday
May 20: Whit Monday
May 30: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Oct 26: National Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Apr 18: Good Friday
Apr 20: Easter
Apr 21: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day
May 29: Ascension Day
Jun 8: Whit Sunday
Jun 19: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Oct 10: Plebiscite Day
Oct 26: National Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Nov 15: St. Leopold's Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Germany

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 29: Good Friday
Mar 31: Easter
Apr 1: Easter Monday
May 1: May Day
May 9: Ascension Day
May 19: Whit Sunday
May 20: Whit Monday
May 30: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Assumption Day
Oct 3: Day of German Unity
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Nov 20: Repentence Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Apr 18: Good Friday
Apr 20: Easter
Apr 21: Easter Monday
May 1: May Day
May 29: Ascension Day
Jun 8: Whit Sunday
Jun 9: Whit Monday
Jun 19: Corpus Christi
Aug 15: Assumption Day
Oct 3: Day of German Unity
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Nov 19: Repentence Day
Dec 24: Christmas Eve
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Boxing Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Slovenia

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: New Year Holiday
Feb 8: Prešeren Day
Mar 31: Easter Sunday
Apr 1: Easter Monday
Apr 27: Day of Uprising Against Occupation
May 1: Labor Day/May Day
May 2: Labor Day Holiday
May 19: Whit Sunday
Aug 15: Assumption of Mary
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: Remembrance Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Independence and Unity Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays 2025

Jan 1-2: New Year's Day, observed
Feb 8: Prešeren Day
Apr 20: Easter Sunday
Apr 21: Easter Monday
Apr 27: Day of Uprising Against Occupation
May 1-2: Labor Day/May Day, observed
Jun 8: Whit Sunday
Aug 15: Assumption of Mary
Oct 31: Reformation Day
Nov 1: Remembrance Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: Independence and Unity Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve

Holidays - Switzerland

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: St. Berchtold Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 19: St. Joseph's Day
Mar 29: Good Friday
Mar 31: Easter
Apr 1: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day/May Day
May 9: Ascension Day
May 19: Pentecost (Whit Sunday)
May 20: Pentecost (Whit Monday)
May 30: Corpus Christi
Jun 29: St. Peter and St Paul
Aug 1: Swiss National Day
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: Restoration Day

Holidays 2025

Jan 1: New Year's Day
Jan 2: St. Berchtold Day
Jan 6: Feast of the Epiphany
Mar 19: St. Joseph's Day
Apr 18: Good Friday
Apr 20: Easter
Apr 21: Easter Monday
May 1: Labor Day/May Day
May 29: Ascension Day
Jun 8: Pentecost (Whit Sunday)
Jun 9: Pentecost (Whit Monday)
Jun 19: Corpus Christi
Jun 29: St. Peter and St Paul
Aug 1: Swiss National Day
Aug 15: Feast of the Assumption
Nov 1: All Saints' Day
Dec 8: Immaculate Conception
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 26: St. Stephen's Day
Dec 31: Restoration Day

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.

7 Day Malta Vacation, January 2024
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The trip to Malta was amazing!!! Our guide for all of the options, Josette, was fantastic and shared the history of Malta in such an exceptional way. The pace of the trip was relaxed with plenty of leisure time and although it was an independent trip there was a lot of bonding within the trip with the fellow travels. Seeing Malta during winter was wonderful as the crowds were none existent and there were still so many beautiful Nativity Cribs and Christmas decorations still present to see. This was an amazing trip at an exceptional value and I am so glad I we were able to visit this amazing country. It was not a place on our travel bucket list, but the value of the trip made it hard to refuse and I'm so glad we got to visit and learn about the history and culture of Malta. Thank you Gate1 for another wonderful travel experience!!! You have never disappointed us and we tell everyone we can about your wonderful company!

Margaret H.
9 Day Four Star Venice, Florence & Rome by Rail, January 2024
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We just came back from an independent by rail Italy trip which was excellent! We had travelled on the escorted trip before and thoroughly enjoyed this independent version. The instructions provided to find the railway stations, hotels, tour meet up sites were impeccable and easy to find. Thank you Gate1 for a memorable vacation!

Diane A.
8 Day Affordable Switzerland, January 2024
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I wanted to mention our Tour group manager/guide Nadine and our driver Libor. Our guide manager was excellent. She was there every step of the way to help us is needed. Pleasantly suggested areas to visit in our free time when asked. Our group was only 11 and when she told us about our free time in a location she was very helpful about things to see in the area and if we wanted to venture out a little farther she was very helpful in that regard also. Even down to Walking us to the train station to ensure we purchased the correct train tickets. To me that truly showed her concern for us and her willingness to ensure we got the most of our time in any particular area. I know this was not in her duties but showed how fortunate we were to have her as our group manager/guide. This was my first gate1 tour as well as my travel partners and we were very impressed! We all as a group felt very welcomed by her and several our our tour group had been on countless Gate1 tours and they even mentioned how much they enjoyed her as our tour guide. I thoroughly enjoyed our tour. We had such an amazing time I haven't stopped telling my clients and my husband how much I look forward to booking with Gate1 in the future. I normally plan our trips my self. We travel several times a year and love traveling abroad. Gate1 will absolutely be at the top of my looking list when considering booking future vacations. Our driver was very courteous and helpful getting on and off the bus as well as assisting us with our luggage. Thank You Gate1 for hiring such wonderful people to ensure our trips go smoothly and are so enjoyable!

Cynthia C.
8 Day Affordable Switzerland, December 2023
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Great trip as always. Tour director Dennis was excellent. Dennis went above and beyond in every way. Dennis daily delights were unexpected. I can't say enough about all the extras he did. We couldn't go up to Mt Platius because of the wind. He arranged for us to go to Mt Rigi instead. What a great time. Mt Rigi should be a backup for Mt Platius all the time. Dennis took us all on a boat ride on Lake Lugano. He bought us all hot chocolate. He arranged for us to get fondue in Gruyee. Got us an extra glass of wine during the welcome dinner and more. What a tour guide. You know this guy loves his job. Thank you for the memories.

Renee O.
8 Day Affordable Switzerland, December 2023
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We had an AMAZING time during our Affordable 8-day Switzerland tour! Our FABOULOUS tour manager, Dennis, made our tour every more exceptional! I have taken many tours through Gate 1, and all tours have not disappointed. However, Dennis, made extra efforts to make our time in Switzerland beyond exceptional. He provided us with wonderful suggestions to eat and visit during our free time. In addition, during his own free time, he guided us through the cities, providing us with his own "tours", which were lovingly called "Dennis Delights". As mention, I have taken multiple tours through Gate 1, and all tour guides have been great, however, Dennis exceeded our expectations and went beyond. THANK YOU DENNIS! Not only did Dennis provide us with excellent customer service, we was able to arrange the visit to Mt. Rigi when Mt. Pilatus tour was cancelled due to weather. The tour to Mt. Rigi was one of the highlights of our tour. We were all very disappointed when we learned that Mt. Pilatus was cancelled, but Dennis commitment to us and his pride as a tour guide, made it happen to Mt. Rigi. I highly suggest making Mt. Rigi an alternative if Mt. Pilatus is cancelled due to weather. AGAIN, THANK YOU DENNIS, and THANK YOU GATE 1!

Ivette B.
8 Day Affordable Switzerland, December 2023
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I would like to take the opportunity to say how wonderful was our 8 Day Affordable Switzerland tour that we came back just now (December 2023). It took time during the Christmas season and Switzerland was very beautiful. Daily itinerary was carefully organized, we saw a lot of places that we would never visit if go by ourselves. We traveled with my daughter, it was my 3rd tour with Gate1 and 1st for her. We had amazing time!! Special thanks to our tour manager Mihaela, she took care of everything - always with smile and positive attitude. She gave helpful advises and made sure that we are comfortable and safe. I would book the tour with her again without any doubt! In general - our Switzerland tour was enjoyable and we will be looking forward to our next adventure with Gate1!

Ella S.
8 Day Christmas Markets of Switzerland & France, December 2023
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Once again, Gate 1 did not disappoint. Our recent trip to the Christmas Markets of Switzerland & France was enchanting. The hotels were top notch and centrally located, and our tour guide Beatrice and bus driver Vitili were awesome. Basel, Colmar, Obernai. Strasbourg, Zurich, Lucerne, Bern & Lugano - we visited Christmas Markets in every one of these towns! The decorations, the atmosphere, and the gluhwein were amazing in each place, and we truly enjoyed all the wonderful people we met on our tour. We have been contemplating a Christmas Market tour for years, and we are so happy we booked this, our 10th tour with Gate 1. We already have two more trips booked, and we recommend Gate 1 often. People cannot believe what we do for the price we pay - one woman even asked me if we stay in hostels because the price is so reasonable!! I laughed, and told her we stay in 4 and 5 star hotels!! Thanks, Gate 1, for making our dreams of traveling a reality.

Maureen M.
9 Day Christmas Markets of Budapest, Ljubljana & Vienna, December 2023
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It was my first trip and my fiance's second one with Gate1 (I actually proposed on the trip). Everyone in our group was friendly and welcoming. The tour guide Marijah was amazing. She was so friendly, knowledgeable and funny. She went above and beyond accommodating the group, recommending activities, and treating the group with special treats. We would definitely do another trip with Gate1 and especially with Marijah. 5-Stars in our eyes.

George P.
8 Day Christmas Markets of Germany & Austria, December 2023
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To summarize in a word- Outstanding! The entire trip was choreographed and executed by our tour manager, Annemarie in a perfect manner. No details were left unattended and any obstacles were cleared easily. Her professionalism and dedication to her craft shined. The local tour guides were good and we enjoyed the city tours. As this was our first guided tour we have no real reference to the hotel's although all were above average in our opinion. The bus driver, Pavo was skilled, prompt and punctual. Lastly your help organizing and booking was fantastic!

James F.
9 Day Alpine Christmas Markets, December 2023
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This was my first trip to Europe and I did do a lot of research with travel companies - some recommended by friends, however, this particular tour had everything I was looking for so I decided to book it. I could NOT be happier that I did. Bogdan was an EXCEPTIONAL Tour Manager - and Rafa was SUPERB as our driver. Both caring individuals who only had our best interest in mind. Bogdan went above and beyond for our group and made this 1st trip for me special and memorable. He has a heart of gold and it shows day in and day out. He truly cares about his job and the people he oversees on these tours. I cannot say enough about him. I would take 100 trips with Gate 1 if I could be assured that I'd have Bogdan as my Tour Manager. I want to commend Gate 1 for the accommodations as well. Each Hotel was as good or better than the previous. Breakfast excellent, service, comfortable. I cannot stop talking about my experience. This was a first trip with Gate 1 but will NOT be my last. Thank you for making this unforgettable experience.

Theresa A.
8 Day Christmas Markets of Germany & Austria, December 2023
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This was our first trip with Gate1, but I'm sure it will not be our last. We had such a great time. The only thing we would ask for is more time in Salzburg. It seemed we didn't get much time there. But Mihaela made this trip so enjoyable! She always had a smile on her face and was very knowledgeable anytime we had questions. Her positive attitude and suggestions for us at every stop just added excitement with every new city adventure. So happy that we had her as our guide for our first trip with Gate 1.

David G.
8 Day Christmas Markets of Germany & Austria, December 2023
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Our trip was so amazing! And all the credit should go towards our guide Mihaela. She made every aspect of our trip magical. We always knew what was coming up and what our options were. She took care of every need we had while on our trip. We were traveling with our 9 year old son and she made him feel included and important. All while making sure we were comfortable having our child in foreign countries. I can not race enough about what all she did for us. We are hoping to book a trip again with her soon!

Kelley G.
9 Day Alpine Christmas Markets, December 2023
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It was wonderful Bart was amazing. I forgot my phone at the hotel in Munich. He had it waiting for us when we got back into Germany at Heidelberg. As this was my 1st time ever booking a vacation through a tour company I had some concerns. Everything was perfect. Your experience showed with the timing. We never felt rushed plenty of time to explore each stop but not to much time that we got bored. The 5 county travel day wow Bart made it feel like a real adventure each new country, each stop, the roads little bits of knowledge passed out in such a was felt like being read a great book. Then there was Slavamere what a skilled driver driving that bus through the mountains on some of those roads, smooth as silk. I have no concerns about Gate1 now. Looking forward to traveling with you again soon.

Bruce S.
9 Day Christmas Markets of Germany, December 2023
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Our tour guide, Britta was amazing! We enjoyed her wit, knowledge and sensitivity to the group and felt she enhanced the experience immensely! Also loved our driver, Jersey! He did a great job and was so kind and helpful. Thoroughly enjoyed our trip!

Martha G.
9 Day Alpine Christmas Markets, November 2023
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Our 9 Day Alpine Christmas Markets vacation with Gate 1 was an exceptional experience that surpassed our expectations. Robert, our guide, was the perfect companion, exceeding our expectations with his knowledge and enthusiasm. His guidance added immense value to the trip, making it both enjoyable and informative. Despite challenging snowy conditions, our bus driver ensured our safety and punctuality, navigating skillfully through the winter weather. The seamless coordination contributed to a stress-free journey, allowing us to focus on the enchanting markets. The German, French, and Austrian Christmas markets were a delightful immersion into festive traditions. The unique offerings and vibrant atmospheres provided a memorable cultural experience. The diversity of markets showcased the rich holiday traditions of each region. The decision to plan a follow-on trip to Italy speaks volumes about our satisfaction with Gate 1. The seamless execution of this Alpine adventure has instilled confidence in the company's ability to deliver exceptional travel experiences. Overall, this Christmas Markets vacation was a perfect blend of cultural exploration, festive cheer, and efficient organization, leaving us eager to embark on our next Gate 1 adventure.

Grant W.
8 Day Christmas Markets of Germany & Austria, November 2023
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We loved our guide Gaby and the driver Frank. Frank made sure to get us to our destinations safely. Even when Munich had received the largest snowfall they've had in a while. Some of the streets and even the public transportation was closed but Frank got us to our destination safely. Gabby is very kindhearted and kept our Group and check. She's also very generous! She purchased local candies for us to try, and local pastries. She even had a fun game of find the longest German word which my Husband won. He received a beautiful Christmas ornament as a prize. The Christmas markets were absolutely breathtaking with all of the fresh snow that hit the area. This trip truly was magical. we had some friends traveling with us, and they really enjoyed the experience that gate one Has to offer. We will continue to use your company for some of our travels.

Barbara B.
9 Day Christmas Markets of Poland, Prague & Berlin, November 2023
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I can not say enough positive things about our Christmas Markets tour. It's our first time with Gate 1 and we loved everything about our trip. Our tour director Thomas was beyond amazing. He made every part of the experience fun, organized and so incredibly worth it. He is a gem! Thank you for a great trip!

William M.
10 Day Affordable Germany, France, Switzerland & Austria, November 2023
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The trip was wonderful! The sights will stay with us forever. So much to see and try to absorb. (What took us so long?) Was expecting to see far less than we did. Had no idea we would be immersed in the local cultures like we were, with special recognition to our Tour Manager, Sophie, and the local guides. Gate1 was attentive to all our needs for the entire trip, and everything was so well planned. On our first bus trip to the river cruise, Sophie, in her heavy French accent asked if the group minded her voice. She then said, "In a week you will miss it." She was right. To our surprise, even the bus trips were used as an opportunity to detail such things as local customs, historical event connections, and interactions of the people and countries. We had rain the first 5 days, then about 8" of snow the day we went to Mt. Pilatus. It restricted our view, but the snow seemed more realistic for our surroundings. We looked forward to seeing a Christmas Market on the trip. Had no idea we'd be at 7 of them. The architecture throughout the tour was just fascinating. We went through maybe 6 churches that almost took our breath away. Our group was composed of people from all over the U.S. We found the group easy to interact with and made a lot of friends. In the 8 days together as a group we covered a lot of territory and took a ton of pictures. The memories will last us a very long time.

Robert J.
8 Day Affordable Switzerland, November 2023
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Our first trip ever with Gate1 and it was everything we had hoped for and more. We are long term Grand Circle travelers, but Gate1 now has us hooked. My wife Mary Ann has had Switzerland on her to go list for decades, but we were always reluctant because of the high prices. When a friend told us about Gate1 and we saw this incredible deal, we were amazed and so snagged it. The day before our Mt Pilatus tour we sadly learned it was cancelled because of weather, but our incredible director Dennis was able to book our group on a cogwheel train up Mt Rigi! Thank you Gate1 for this perfect length affordable Switzerland tour.

Paul M.
11 Day Affordable Italy with Sorrento or Naples, November 2023
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Our recent trip to Italy was everything we hoped for. Every aspect of the vacation was perfectly planned. Our meals and side trips were all spot on. Each of our guides in the visited cities were extremely knowledgeable, interesting and a pleasure to spend time with. Having said this let me say a few words about our Tour Manager Lorena . Lorena absolutely made our trip as great as it was. Lorena at every aspect went well above and beyond to make sure that all the planned activities were perfect. She made us feel so welcome like we were part of her family. I would certainly recommend to any friends and family to use Gate 1 for their future travel plans.

John P.
9 Day Affordable Italy, November 2023
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My wife and I went to Dubai with Gate 1 at the end of April this year and I thought that nothing could top that. I was wrong! Our recent trip to Italy by way of Gate 1 was absolutely wonderful! Neither of us had been to Italy before and I cannot imagine how this trip could have been better. The accommodations at each location were beautiful, like 5-star hotels (which I suppose they were). I must say that the most impressive thing about the entire trip was the tour guides. They were very knowledgeable about the areas that they were showing us through. They were all very passionate about their country and the sights we were seeing while we were there. Despite my hearing problem, they were able to get their messages across to me with complete understanding. We will never forget Italy, especially Rome, after this visit. We have been telling everyone we know to check out Gate 1 for any travel needs. I cannot imagine that anyone could do better (probably no one could do as well) than Gate 1.

William G.
9 Day Affordable Sicily, November 2023
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It was amazing! I went because of Palermo but I stayed for everything amazing about Sicily! I'm a Greek/Roman geek and every day was filled with discovery and new treasures --the last one -the Roman villa -- was the most incredible collection of mosaics I've ever seen! Our guide was incredible - funny, smart, self-effacing and able to "mother" us into being on time every time. I am so grateful that you helped me get there!

Kathryn C.
10 Day Affordable Italy with Pompeii, November 2023
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Thank you for asking. Our Italy experience was awesome! Francesca, our tour manager was knowledgeable, personable, courteous and prompt. From hotel accommodations to our tour itineraries we're top notch. All of the local guides were excellent in terms of their knowledge. This was our 5th tour with Gate 1. I am yet to find anything to complain about. Thank you for making the whole experience a pleasant one.

Asha P.
8 Day Affordable Central Europe, November 2023
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The whole experienced was beyond expectations. Karol (Kayo) our tour manager did an amazing job. He is very knowledgeable, friendly & a joy to travel with. He also had a lot of surprises & go extra mile to enhance our experience. Our entire group bonded like a small travel family, Thanks to Gate1 & Kayo. We cannot express enough gratitude to Gate1 & Kayo for an amazing holiday. Looking forward to our next Gate1 travel adventures.

Douglas H.
10 Day Affordable Germany, France, Switzerland & Austria, November 2023
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Absolutely amazing!! Tereza was a fantastic tour guide and wonderful wealth of information! The hotels were perfectly placed and all exceeded our wildest expectations! I honestly can't believe how well everything went truly a great trip and I've already recommended this company and especially that tour to several of my colleagues and friends!! Thank you for such a wonderful experience!!

Cody C.
13 Day Affordable Croatia & Slovenia with Venice, October 2023
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Excellent. Kristijian was the best tour guide ever! Knowledgeable, courteous, personable, prompt, thoughtful, considerate. He was careful to follow up the rear of the tour group when we had a local guide in a city. This ensured that no one got lost or left the group. He posted the rotation schedule for the bus every day and that worked perfectly!. He posted the daily schedule and repeated instructions multiple times so that there was no confusion. This was especially helpful with our group because we had a fairly large number of travelers for whom English was not their first language. We honestly cannot praise him enough!

George A.
9 Day Enchanting Italy, October 2023
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Our trip to Italy exceeded all of our expectations. All of the couples, partners and single travelers in our group treated each other like family. We looked our for each other and made sure everyone was doing okay on a daily basis. All of the amenities were top shelf, from the hotels, transportation, restaurants, tours, optional tours and entertainment. It was a lovely selection of cities from Venice in the north to Rome in the south and all of the lovely cities in between. And last but not least, our tour director, Andrea. He was excellent, knowledgeable, funny, serious, stern but in a concerned way and a great leader. Thank you Gate 1 for making this Italy experience a success and the best ever.

Robert S.
12 Day Affordable Central Europe with Warsaw & Krakow, October 2023
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Our trip to Europe was great, we enjoyed seeing the new sites and learning about each country and city. The tour guide assigned to our trip "Dean" was fabulous. Dean talked to us each day on the bus and explained what area of the country and the names of the cities, mountains and sites we would be viewing. I felt I was getting a good education each day on the sites and cities we would be visiting. Dean was also helpful with directing us to future trips and details we were interested in. He was always kind and extremely knowledgeable on any topic. I felt safe and comfortable with Dean as a tour guide. What an asset he is to GATE1.

Suzanne M.
11 Day Germany, Switzerland & Austria, October 2023
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Julia our Tour Manager, was exceptionally impressive with her knowledge about not only the areas we toured but also all the detailed historic knowledge she so willingly enjoyed sharing. She was a walking encyclopedia on just about any subject you would ask her about! Our driver, Palvo from Warsaw, Poland, was extremely polite greeting us warmly with a big smile every time we boarded his bus. He was always there to assist us boarding or unloading his bus. He was a very careful driver and was always dressed with a crisp white shirt and tie! He kept his bus immaculately clean and always provided fresh bottles of water for us.

Linda C.
10 Day Affordable Germany, France, Switzerland & Austria, October 2023
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This was our first trip to Europe and our first trip with Gate 1. The entire experience was amazing. We had lots of information prior to the trip to alleviate any concerns we had about travel arrangements to Frankfort and connections with the Gate 1 representative who met us at the airport. All Gate 1 representatives were professional and very personable. Our trip manager Justin helped make our trip extremely memorable. He was professional, knowledgeable about all of the destinations and suggestions for activities in our free time. His organizational skills were excellent- he let us know the upcoming plans, scheduling and kept us on track while making all of the this so much fun. We now have many new friends, amazing memories and will definitely book another Gate 1 tour in the future.

Michele H.
10 Day Affordable Central Europe with Berlin, October 2023
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Central Europe tour was Amazing! The itinerary was packed with so many of the must see places in each of the cities that we visited. Our tour manager Fred was phenomenal. He has such a great sense of humor and made each of us feel welcome. Not only did he ensure that everything went smoothly but he also is exceptionally knowledgeable about the history and culture of the area. The local guides in each city also are very knowledgeable and I felt that they where preparing us for a quiz at the end of the trip, with their help we all could pass. My only disappointment is that we did not receive a stamp in our passports at each border crossing from country to country. I would recommend Gate 1 to friends or family and hope to travel with Gate 1 again in the future.

Janet C.
9 Day Enchanting Italy, October 2023
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The trip was great. The hotels in Florence and especially Rome were very nice. The itinerary was great. The stops in Assisi and Pisa really added to the trip. Nicoletta was a fantastic tour guide and group leader. The best so far. She really added to the experience. I give her and the trip 5 stars.

John R.
11 Day Classic Central Europe, October 2023
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This was my husband's and my first Gate 1 trip. I just wanted to say that we had a wonderful time. We've always booked our own travel, but this trip was a great intro to scheduled tours. Our tour guide, Katerina, could not have been better. She was delightful, organized, personable, knowledgeable, friendly, and just a joy to be around. We found the balance between organized tours in the cities and exploring on our own to be a nice option for us. Our tour group had 27 people, and I think this added to the fun we had. Everybody got along, and the group wasn't too big. Only nine of us went on to Berlin, and having a small group was great. As I mentioned above, my husband and I have always booked travel on our own, and decided to take a chance on a Gate 1 tour. We felt that it was well organized and top notch, and would truly consider doing another trip through Gate 1. The only problem I seemed to have was using the Vox. Between the wind and trying to get the ear plugs in, I lost much of what was being said. My husband used his Bose headset and it worked great. You might want to suggest that people use their own headphones as an option.

Kathryn K.
8 Day Sorrento & Amalfi, Italy Walking Tour, October 2023
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It was awesome, rejuvenating, wonderful! I am ready to book another hiking tour!

Joanna W.
9 Day Tuscany, Italy Walking Tour, October 2023
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Loved it! Alice was an exceptional guide!

Lori D.
12 Day Bulgaria, Serbia & Romania, October 2023
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Our tour to the Balkans was exceptional in every way! We are so happy that friends we met on our Scotland tour in May suggested this destination. We booked this tour together and might not have thought of this travel experience without their recommendation. This tour was incredibly fascinating and full of so much information, so much so, that it will probably take us several days and weeks to fully comprehend all that we have seen and done. I never expected to learn and enjoy so much in such a short time. Our tour guide, Sherban, gave us a wealth of information about the region and went above and beyond to make our tour successful, fun and interesting. He was one of the best tour guides we have had in all our 13 tours and we all became a family of 40 people who loved every minute! The hotels were exceptional, dinners were delicious and so happy we had so many meals together. (I do believe this helps a group to bond so much sooner!). Our bus driver, John, was warm, friendly and efficient. The bus was always spotless. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone interested in a unique and incredible travel adventure!!! Gate 1 Travel has completely enriched our lives by giving us "the world for less" and we are truly grateful to them for giving us so much joy!

Russel L.
12 Day Bulgaria, Serbia & Romania, October 2023
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I had a great trip! This was my first tour with any company and I will definitely recommend Gate 1 to friends. I was completely impressed with Sherban's ability to manage 40 people by providing needed information about general organization, daily activities, and upcoming activities. He is an extremely kind and thoughtful person with a wonderful sense of humor. During our trip, he interacted with each person with interest and helpfulness, making us all feel comfortable and valued. The choices of where, when and how long to stop at daily sights worked out very well. Sherban shared an abundance of information with strong English language skills. He revisited key historical information which helped me, a person who is not skilled at history, be able to understand and remember. The hotel rooms, food and locations were generally excellent. The included meal restaurants varied from amazing to mostly yummy. I'm grateful that we moved seats on the bus since some of the group always clamored for the front seats.

Katherine H.
8 Day Tuscany Fly & Drive with Milan, October 2023
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Fantastic! We had a wonderful trip! The package we bought is perfect for independent traveling. Documents and vouchers were flawlessly prepared, so the flight, car rental, and hotel check-in were easy. The Boston Hotel in Montecatini was friendly, clean, and served a wonderful breakfast every morning. We are, and will be repeat customers again in the future!

Molly C.
9 Day Affordable Italy, October 2023
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It was really great. It was a wonderful first trip to Italy. It was really well-organized; we saw so many of the things that one would want to see in Italy. And it left me wanting to go back again some day. Our tour manager, Suzy, was fantastic. She was friendly, warm, very organized and knowledgeable, and was very good at keeping all the ducks in a row. And she also added a few extras that were not included on the original itinerary: 2 additional optional tours in Rome ("Hidden Treasures" and a dinner & bus tour of the city at night), a tour inside the Pantheon (not just "viewing" it from the outside), and she organized vans to take us back to the hotel after the Vatican and Piazzas & Fountains tours in Rome. Those vans were really appreciated after all the walking we had done that morning and afternoon. I was particularly excited to get inside the Pantheon! I give Suzy the highest marks! Our local guides, particularly Manuela in Venice, the guide in Assisi and Paolo in Rome, were really good. They were very knowledgeable and engaging. I look forward to another Gate 1 tour in the not-to-distant future.

Denise T.
12 Day Swiss Alpine Jewels, October 2023
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I just completed the Jewels of the Alpine trip and it was wonderful. What made the trip so wonderful was our tour guide Nadine. She is excellent. Energetic, caring and compassionate, knowledgeable and professional. We have traveled more than 20 trip with Gate 1 and we had always had excellent guide but Nadine is there on the top of the list. We are so impressed with your company we never hesitate to tell people about you and we know some who have taken our advice and done a trip with you. I am 85 so our land tours are cutting down, even though we have two scheduled for next year, but we cruise a lot more. I always have Gate 1 trips available on my phone to show people where you go and how inexpensive they are. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Darlene C.

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