Places We Cover

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ – Of course you have questions! 

There are always loads of questions to be answered before a trip even begins. Should I do this? Do I need to do that? No query is trivial but to save you time, hassle and ensure you get the most out of your holiday, we have created a list of the most frequently asked questions to answer those questions you might have at the back of your mind.  

Should you not find the answer you were looking for, email us and we will aim to get back to you with an answer as soon as possible.

We like to keep things simple, so here we go! Simply click on the question to reveal the answer.

Where will my coach depart from?

Check your booking form for departure points. Usually departing from London Victoria Station. Please aim to arrive thirty minutes before the advertised departure time, to allow for packing luggage and a prompt departure. Our scheduled ferry will not wait for us!

What does my trip include?

Coach transport, ferry crossings, accommodation, meals only where specified, and activities and extras such as local city guides only as specified depending on your specific itinerary and the services of a tour leader and/or driver on all trips. 

What is NOT included in my trip?

Your spending money; visas; personal travel insurance (unless specifically booked through us separately); medical fees; cost of optional activities and excursions, entrance fees to the various museums and sites visited. Also any meals that are not specified on your itinerary. Common sense, really.

How many other fellow passengers will be on the trip?

Group sizes vary. As a guideline, an average trip will have about 30 passengers on board. However, the coaches are often full - especially in high season. Minimum numbers would not normally be below 15 passengers. Note that if a tour attracts a smaller number of customers, Phoenix Tours reserves the right to use an appropriate minibus rather than a full-sized coach. This creates a better ambience and feel for the size of the tour party.

What kind of people will be on my trip?

Unlike other firms, we do not discriminate on grounds of age. Your fellow adult travellers hail from all over the world, in all shapes and sizes and are typically aged between 18 and 80-something. Just like you, they will be up for an immense travel experience and meeting like-minded travellers. A good proportion of our passengers travel on their own and Phoenix Tours counts itself as specialist in serving the single traveller’s needs.

What if I want to bring my child?

Children between the ages of 3 and 12 receive a special discounted rate on all tours. Infants under the age of 3 and seated on a parent's lap are free of charge. If required, infants will be allocated a seat on coaches and this will only be available at an additional cost, please ask reservations at time of booking. Please note that infants carried on laps do not have an additional luggage allowance over and above the limit for the adult with whom they are travelling. One seat = one luggage allowance, in the interests of safety.

Do I need travel visas?

Depending on your nationality, you may need visas to enter certain countries included in your trip. You are responsible for obtaining all necessary visas prior to the departure of your trip. Consult your travel agent or a visa service well in advance to determine which visas you will require and how to obtain them. Important: visas can take up to six weeks to obtain and a fee is normally charged. Failure to obtain all necessary visas could cause you to miss part or your entire trip and will result in considerable expense and inconvenience. It is better to apply for ALL visas through your travel agent or visa service before you leave home.

When will I receive my travel documents from Phoenix Tours?

Provided final payment is received no less than 30 days prior to departure you will receive your travel documents, a daily itinerary, an optional excursion list ahead of departure, to help you prepare and pack.

Obtaining the correct visas is your own responsibility. Not having correct visas might mean you missing out on part or even all of your trip. Please refer to the Visa section on our website (which should be used as a guide only) and double-check with the individual Embassies involved before your departure, remembering that visa requirements can change at short notice. For most of the countries where visas are required, it is NOT possible to obtain the visa whilst on the trip and some visas may take 3-4 weeks to obtain. 

Do I need travel insurance?

Absolutely! Yes, adequate travel insurance is encouraged on all Phoenix Tours voyages. This should be taken out at the time of booking. Phoenix Tours is happy to introduce you to a policy that has been arranged specially for us, with your needs in mind. This insurance is specifically designed so that it covers all the trips that we feature, protecting you if you have to cancel and providing you with the very best and most effective protection if you are unfortunate enough to require medical attention whilst away from home. Phoenix Tours acts as an "Introducer Appointed Representative" for the purposes of your travel insurance who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

Which cross-Channel ferry operator do you use?

Phoenix Tours exclusively uses P&O ferries, as the onboard food is excellent and their departures are every hour. So, should your tour be delayed, you should never normally have to wait more than an hour for the next ferry.

What are the hotels like?

Phoenix Tours has selected hotels that display the local character of the countries we visit and have avoided multi-national chain hotels. We have also selected hotels as centrally located as possible. Please bear in mind also, that European hotel rooms may be smaller than you may be used to for similar standard hotels other countries.

What should I bring with me?

This depends on the type of trip you choose. Use common sense and refer to the weight allowances below. A common problem is people bringing too many things! Please refer to our suggested clothing list in the pre-departure information which you can download from our website. Please don't forget your camera, passport, visas, smile and a great attitude! If you suffer from any medical condition please bring enough supplies of medication to cover your trip, allowing for delays, as they might be difficult to find in Europe, not to mention having to pay for them.

How much luggage may I take?

Each adult person is allowed 1 item of standard size luggage plus a light daypack, under 5kgs maximum. Make allowances for any souvenirs you might anticipate purchasing. The maximum weight of your main bag must not exceed 44lbs/20kgs. Size for all bags should not exceed 70cm x 45cm x 25cm. Due to strict weight regulations for coaches in Europe, passengers whose luggage exceeds 44lbs/20kgs will be asked to off-load the excess on the departure morning. As this is a major safety issue, this policy will be enforced rigorously.

Please note: all baggage is carried at the owner’s own risk and baggage insurance is strongly recommended

What about gifts and souvenirs?

By all means purchase gifts and souvenirs but please bear in mind your luggage weight allowance detailed above. Additional items may only be carried at the driver’s discretion and normal luggage allowances not exceeded to the detriment of the safe limit of the coach.

What about spending money?

Naturally everybody's spending varies. There are many souvenirs to be bought and a great social scene should you wish to join in! Depending on your trip, some meals may be included, so this really just leaves unspecified meals and your personal spending to budget for. Throughout the trip, your tour leader will also inform you of optional activities which you may participate in as an optional extra, such as a gondola ride in Venice or an excursion up the Jungfrau Mountain in Switzerland. For a more detailed list and price guidelines, please refer to your personal itinerary. Most people budget on approximately €70 per day allowing for optional activities and some souvenirs. This is by no means compulsory.

Should I change money before I leave?

We recommend that you change approximately €100 in cash before departure and approximately €30 into Swiss Francs (if your trip goes through Switzerland). This will cover you for spending money until you have the chance to change more or find an ATM. Keep your money in a travel belt or bum bag worn about your person at all times.

 

What about smokers?

Smoking is not permitted on our coaches and especially in the toilet, where chemicals can be ignited causing a risk of burns. However, we make regular rest stops while travelling from place to place. Smoking is not permitted in any type of accommodation, unless a specific smoking room is asked for at the time of booking and even then, if smoking rooms are catered for by the respective hotel.

May I drink alcohol on the coach?

Alcohol is forbidden on our coaches, in the interest of safety and good conduct. There are adequate opportunities to enjoy a drink en route and at meal times. Alcohol consumed whilst on the coach carries the same penalties for the individual(s) as unruly behaviour; see elsewhere.

What if I am on a special diet?

If you have special dietary requirements e.g. vegetarian or vegan, we will make every effort to cater for your specific needs as long as you tell us at the time of booking. Unfortunately in some places in Europe it is not possible to obtain certain special foods, and we cannot guarantee the variety of foods available when eating out. There are some diets we are unable to cater for such as religious diets, so if you are unsure please call us or ask your agent to check with us first.

Will I be contactable on my trip?

As well as having regular access to internet cafés throughout Europe, if someone needs to contact you in the case of an emergency, the Phoenix Tours Head Office in London will be able to get in touch with your tour leader/driver at an appropriate time, when the coach has stopped and it is safe to do so.

You will receive all hotel contact details with your travel documentation sent prior to departure. We also recommend setting-up the roaming facility on your mobile phone, whilst paying close attention to costs at both ends as well as data charges for email and web browsing. Your mobile operator will advise.

When will I receive more information about my trip?

Phoenix Tours will send your travel documents including itinerary several weeks prior to departure and when you have paid in full.   In addition to this, you MUST read the detailed pre-departure information relevant to your trip. The pre-departure document contains a number of important points that you should be aware of. Please take the time to read it.

How much time will be spent on the coach?

We try to spend as little time on the coach as possible so that you have more time to enjoy the places you visit. Please remember though that Europe is a huge place and it takes time to get to far-flung destinations. On driving days between cities you will be on the coach during the day, stopping off to visit places of interest where possible. Strict driving rules apply in Europe that limits the maximum number of hours your driver can drive each day. They also limit the maximum number of days that can be driven before a day off must be taken. We have worked hard to make sure this does not affect your trip, but in some cities it means we will use public transport. The cost for this is included in your trip price and your tour leader/driver will show you how to get around.

What vaccinations do I require?

Please consult your travel agent or doctor to find out which vaccinations are required. Check with your doctor’s surgery that any boosters are up-to-date. If you suffer from any form of illness, be sure to have an adequate supply of your medication before departing on your trip. You must advise us directly of any important medical condition you may have, before departure.

Do I need a valid passport and travel visas?

Yes! Depending on your nationality, you may need visas to enter certain countries included in your trip. You are responsible for obtaining all necessary visas prior to the departure of your trip. Consult your travel agent or a visa service well in advance to determine which visas you will require and how to obtain them. Important: visas can take up to six weeks to obtain and a fee is normally charged. Failure to obtain all necessary visas could cause you to miss part or your entire trip and will result in considerable expense and inconvenience. It is better to apply for ALL visas through your travel agent or visa service before you leave home.

When will I receive my travel documents from Phoenix Tours?

Provided final payment is received no less than 30 days prior to departure you will receive your travel documents, a daily itinerary, an optional excursion list ahead of departure, to help you prepare and pack.

Please note: all baggage is carried at the owner’s own risk and baggage insurance is strongly recommended.

How much money should I bring?

You can also get cash at local ATMs along the way if needed. Remember that you’ll need to allow enough to cover lunches, some dinners, shopping, entrance fees to some attractions, optional excursions and activities, souvenirs, drinks and evening entertainment/nightclubs. A full list of optional excursions and approximate costs will be sent to you with your travel documents.

How do I make a reservation?

Book your Phoenix Tours trip on 020 7231 1118. If calling from outside the UK, please call 00 4420 7231 1118.

How do I make a change in my reservation?

Notify us as soon as possible. There may be an additional charge involved, which you will be informed of prior to the change. Should you change your mind again, a further charge may be payable. Please note, it might not be possible to amend any or all of your request, depending on the circumstances or nature of the change requested.

What if I need to cancel my tour?

You will need to contact Phoenix Tours Reservations direct to cancel your booking. Depending on cancellation notice, a sliding scale of forfeiture will become applicable. Please ensure you are insured to cover this eventuality.

What are the cancellation fees?

Notice Given                        Cancellation Fee Applicable

30 days or more                  100% of deposit

29 - 15 days                         50% of total holiday fare

14 - 8 days                           75% of total holiday fare

7 days or less                      100% of total holiday fare

Are prices based on double occupancy?

Most prices are based on double occupancy, unless otherwise specified. Some tours may offer single occupancy for an additional cost, or triple- or quad-share for a reduced price.

Can I have an extension on my payment?

Everyone paying in advance makes our exceptionally low fares possible and in the interest of fairness and to offer maximum value for money, exceptions cannot be made.

What happens to my deposits if my tour is cancelled?

In most instances, if not all, Phoenix Tours will provide a minimum of 6 weeks’ notice to give you ample time to consider our alternative offer in tour departure date, or tours that are fairly similar in duration or itinerary. In the event alternative offers are not acceptable, Phoenix Tours will refund all the deposits or money paid in advance for your tour.

What are Phoenix Tours’ booking terms and conditions?

Please see our terms and Conditions of Travel below.

Should I know the local languages of the countries I am visiting?

That is one of the benefits of travelling with Phoenix Tours. You’ll be travelling with a tour manager who knows how to get around the countries you will be visiting. However, if you have some time, it never hurts to know a few courteous, friendly words (e.g. hello, please, thank you, menu, where is the toilet, where is the coach station, where is the ATM etc.) of the local languages of the countries you will be visiting. It does enhance the travel experience and you will find that most people from these countries will appreciate the effort and will be more receptive to your visit, as well as enhancing the immersive experience of being in another culture, which is why we travel in the first place! Please note, all our tour leaders and tour drivers speak English.

Are there extra charges if I travel alone?

If you’re planning on travelling alone, (and many of our customers do) and don’t want to pay for a single room, we’ll set you up with a roommate—same gender, of course! However, if you really want sole occupancy, and one is available, it will be offered for an additional surcharge, depending on which tour you are booking.

What other nationalities will be on the trip with me?

Phoenix Tours sells its travel packages in more than 35 countries around the world. It is therefore quite typical to expect between 6-15 different nationalities on any one trip, i.e., Australians, Americans, Canadians, Germans, English, Swiss, New Zealanders, Japanese, Dutch, South Africans, Italians, Danes, Brazilians, Mexicans, Austrians, Singaporeans, Swedes, Koreans, etc.

What are the tour managers and drivers like?

Very friendly and helpful, they are useful sources of information as they have often visited these places many times before. But please try to avoid engaging the driver in conversation whilst driving, except in an emergency as the safety of our passengers is paramount.

Will it be possible to re-charge my mobile and digital camera whilst on tour?

In each country you will visit, they have varying pins and power plugs to electricity source to recharge your mobile or digital camera batteries. We would suggest one to buy a Travel plug adapter, which is interchangeable and works for most countries. We also recommend investing in a spare battery for your mobile phone and charging it before we leave the UK.

How much free time will I have?

We design our trips so that you will have lots of free time to do your own thing. Not only do we schedule free time, but you can venture off on your own at any point during the trip. Just don’t be late back to the departure point!

What are optional excursions?

We have included a great deal of excursions in all our trips, but we cannot and would not want to include everything. From extensive experience, we know which optional excursions have proven most popular with our clients and these will be offered to you. These optional extras do incur extra costs and a full list relating to your trip can be found with your final documents to assist with trip budgeting. These optional extras may be purchased through your tour leader or driver when you’re on the trip. Payment for these is cash only; no credit cards will be accepted for payment on optional activities.

What is the policy on loud music or unruly behaviour?

Phoenix Tours prides itself on providing hugely enjoyable, fun tours for all our passengers. We appreciate that some may enjoy the trip listening to personal stereos with headphones. We request that they do so at a volume that does not distract or disturb other passengers. If you are asked to lower the volume of your music, kindly do so without fuss. A refusal brought to the attention of the driver may lead to a request to confiscate the music device for the duration of the trip. A further refusal to comply will lead to the passenger concerned being asked to leave the trip at the next appropriate stop. It sounds tough but this condition of travel is here to ensure that issues that beset other holiday trip operators do not affect the pleasure of our passengers.

Unruly, drunken, unpleasant or threatening behaviour towards the crew, the vehicle or other passengers, will unfortunately result in immediate removal from the trip at the first appropriate opportunity. In extreme cases, the local authorities in the respective country may also become involved and their policies will be enforced according to their local laws over which Phoenix Tours has no control.

Our message is simple. Every passenger is there for a great experience and we will do our utmost to ensure that the trip remains enjoyable for all.

What size Groups do you service?

We offer discounts and services to large groups, by which we mean parties of 12 or more. To qualify, all ‘group’ members must be travelling together on a specific itinerary and book at the same time.

 

Do you offer a discount for a small group?

Please contact us for specific details of small group bookings that may be available on specific tours. Generally, our tours reflect excellent value for money and to keep value for all, we are usually unable to offer discounts to small groups.