How to Make the Most of Your Fat Tire Tour
By Sadra Sumner
Whether you’re gearing up for that guided museum tour or putting on your kicks to take in a historical city on foot, here are our 9 suggestions to make the most of your tour!
1. Check the Weather
There is nothing more annoying than showing up for a tour ill-prepared to deal with the elements. You can often find cheap ponchos at souvenir stores, but nothing beats a real rain coat. Same goes for sunny days! Hats and sunglasses are a must. You may think that this only applies for outdoor tours, but you won’t want to show up for your museum tours with soaking wet shoes, do you? This brings us to our next suggestion…..
2. Dress Appropriately
There is no need to wear your cute uncomfortable shoes when visiting a new city; save those for a fancy dinner out! Bring flat walking shoes and make sure you have something that can withstand a little water.
You’ll be taking a lot of pictures while you’re on vacation; do you really want your universities sports’ team logo in all of your photos? Wear something flattering, appropriate for the type of tour you’re doing, and photo-friendly.
3. Bring What You Need
Because it’s more than just your ticket! If you’re touring in the summer, don’t skimp on water & sunscreen. An external battery charger is a must, but be sure to check the restrictions with the airline/country you’re flying with/through. And do you really need that massive backpack? Pare things down by focusing on the essentials. Long cross-body shoulder bags are perfect for the ladies, and gentleman, bum bags are coming back in style!
4. Know How to Get to the Meeting Point
Read your confirmation email the day before your tour. Know the address of the meeting point and save it on your phone or star it on a paper map, or both! Have a look at directions beforehand, and know how long it will take you to travel from your accommodation to the meeting point. Especially if it’s your first time in a new city, don’t hesitate to call and ask! Nobody likes to wait for latecomers.
5. Know What to Expect
If you did your research via 15 tabs and cross-referencing, then great, you’re all set! But if someone else booked you on this tour or you booked it months ago, it might be a good idea to have a look at the highlights and what the tour offers/promises. Aligning your expectations with what the tour tries to accomplish is essential to you having a good time.
You’ve spent your money on this tour, so enjoy it! If your guide asks you questions, venture a guess. This isn’t high school; no one will make fun of you for raising your hand, or even blurting out an answer. And if you have a good guide, he/she will still encourage you even if the answer if wrong.
7. Make Friends
One of the best things about group tours is getting to know the other people in your group. So many people focus on the facts and neglect the human aspect that makes every tour unique. Who knows, maybe you’ll come away with lifelong friends from around the world!
8. Be Patient
Is there an issue at the entrance? Is someone’s child acting up? Take a deep breath, remember that you’re on vacation, and find the positive aspect of your situation. This doesn’t mean that you should accept missing out on key elements of your tour, simply allow for a little leeway. Remember that you’re in a foreign country where things aren’t necessarily done the same way, and sometimes efficiencies are an afterthought. Allow any issues to be handled by your guide, and enjoy the spare time to take some pictures!
9. Have Fun!
This should be a no-brainer, but enjoy yourself! There’s no need to play try-and-stump-the-guide, or constantly check the time to see if you’re getting what you paid for. Enjoy the experience and know that you can debrief with your traveling partner later and leave a review if you’d like.
There you have it, our nine ways to get the most out of your guided tour. We hope that you’ll book a tour with us soon!