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.
Passports and Visas: It is each travelers responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months after the date of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at http://www.righttravel.info/page/visa-5.html 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 unstamped visa pages.
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) are in order and that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. If you lose the originals while traveling, youll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. 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. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage.
Cell Phones & Calling Cards: You may wish to carry a cell phone while traveling overseas. Check with your cell phone provider if your phone will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. U.S. service is dominated by the CDMA technology standard, while most of the world uses the incompatible GSM standard. Some U.S. providers do offer GSM, but you may incur high international roaming fees. With GSM, however, you can often choose to have your phone unlocked and then add a local SIM card for lower fees. If you can access the Internet as you travel, you can take advantage of email or a Skype Internet telephone (VOIP) account for the best value. Alternatively, you may investigate renting a cell phone before you leave or buying an inexpensive phone locally.
When calling the U.S. from a foreign country, you may also use a prepaid calling card normally, the only additional charge (besides the prepaid long distance charges) is a local fee of a few cents and possibly a connection fee if you are using your card at your hotel. It is best to check with the hotel&rsquos reception desk prior to making phone calls to avoid unexpected charges.
Making Telephone Calls from One Country to Another: When dialing a number from one country to another, you should proceed as follows: dial your countrys Exit Code + destination Country Code + 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 the international number you wish to call starts with a 0 (zero), you must this starting digit when dialing the number.
Wireless Internet Access: Passengers traveling with WiFi enabled devices (such as a personal computer, smartphone, tablet, or digital audio player) may be able to connect to the internet via a wireless network access point (or hotspot). WiFi access in hotels and/or cruise lines often involves a fee which, in some cases, can be very expensive. Passengers requiring internet access can often locate free WiFi hotspots such as libraries or coffee shops. Hotspots can often be located and planned in advance via an online search. Planning ahead may help avoid unnecessary fees.
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 health-care provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.
There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home:
Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment: Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements
Climate & Clothing: Spring and Fall: 40°F-60°F Summer: 50°F-70°F Winter: 35°F&ndash45°F. Bring comfortable walking shoes, a sweater, clothes you can layer, an all-weather jacket, and an umbrella. Some religious sites may require modest dress to enter (no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless top).
Hotels: Right Travel has carefully ed each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard rooms with two single beds and private facilities, unless you have specifically requested and paid for an upgrade. Room ion is strictly at the discretion of the hotel management. We reserve the right to make hotel substitutions with those of equal standard.
Hotel Check-in/ Check-out: Check-in time is usually 4pm or later. Check-out time is 12 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.
E-Tickets & Check-In Procedures: Please review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the record locator (airline reservation number) and e-ticket number(s). At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport) and your e-ticket itinerary/ ticket numbers to the agent in order to receive your boarding pass.
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as &ldquoOperated By&rdquo another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the &ldquoOperated By&rdquo airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings.
An e-ticket (electronic ticket) represents the purchase of an airline seat. This form of ticket has replaced almost all formerly provided paper tickets. The e-ticket exists only as a digital record in the airlines computers. In most cases your reservation will be confirmed solely on the basis of your government-issued identification. However it may still be necessary to present the e-ticket itinerary which contains your specific reservation code and ticket number(s). Once confirmed, your luggage will be checked-in and a boarding pass provided.
Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your airline confirmation number or Flight Ticket Number at the airlines website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. 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.
When e-tickets cannot be issued, you will receive paper tickets.
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in these documents, a separate voucher(s) confirming those services will be included. You will receive those tickets at your destination from a Right Travel representative.
Airline Flights: Please check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time to allow for security steps. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination, and although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage &ldquointerlining,&rdquo and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, we recommend that you verify where your luggage is being sent. If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, you must 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, you must have the airlines responsible make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Right Travel 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 for you.
In the event of an airline schedule change, Right Travel will make every effort to inform passengers of the schedule change and new flight schedule prior to departure. Right Travel is not responsible for schedule changes including, when applicable, changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Right Travel is unable to provide compensation for schedule changes or cancellations implemented by an airline. In the event of any change in flight itinerary made directly between passengers and their airline, it is the passengers responsibility to advise Right Travel of amended flight details in writing to email@example.com. Right Travel cannot be held responsible for land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers, if flights are changed without its knowledge.
Connecting Flights: When connecting between flights in major international airports, you may need to pass through two or more 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.
Airline Luggage Restrictions: Most international airlines are consistent with regard to the number and weight of the pieces you may check and bring onboard. Domestic carriers, both inside and outside of the USA, typically on small aircraft, may differ. Therefore, we suggest that you check in advance if you are concerned about size or weight restrictions of hand and/or checked luggage. Most airlines apply charges for checked bags. For detailed information regarding your airlines checked baggage policies please visit http://www.righttravel.info/page/luggage-9.html Airline policies vary and may change at any time. Right Travel is not responsible for any excess luggage/ weight charges levied by an airline.
Airline Seats: Airline seats are confirmed whenever possible. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only. Even when seats are pre-assigned however, you may wish to contact the carrier one to two weeks prior to departure to reconfirm your seats. In many cases there are equipment changes after your initial booking which can cause airplane seating reconfiguration.
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 are not eligible for mileage accrual. Right 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. 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.
Airline Tickets: Most airline tickets are issued using special fares which cannot be changed or canceled without incurring additional cost. Should you lose or misplace your tickets while traveling, you should immediately notify the airline. In most cases they will have you complete a Lost Ticket Indemnity Form, and for a fee, issue replacement tickets.
Code-share Flights: Many airlines participate in alliances and special agreements with other airlines which permit passengers to travel from one point to another using more than one carrier. While your ticket may indicate that you are flying with one carrier (eg: Delta), you may find that you are actually seated in a plane belonging to another carrier (eg: Alitalia). Please review your airline itinerary carefully to determine which airline you should go to for check-in if your flight is operated by a carrier other than the primary airline indicated on the itinerary, your itinerary will state Flight Operated by (Airline). If you have any concerns regarding which airline to check-in with, you may contact the airline directly or Right Travel for clarification.
Luggage: All Right Travel land tour packages allow one piece of luggage per person, plus carry-on bag. Please refer to &ldquoAirline Luggage Restrictions&rdquo for guidance regarding airline policies and charges for checked bags. As Right Travel will not be responsible for loss or damage to luggage and personal belongings, you MUST report any loss or damage immediately at the time of the incident and obtain a written report from the local authority for submission to your insurance provider. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked 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. See www.right-travel.com for Important Baggage Information for U.S. Travelers.
U.S. Hazardous Materials Restrictions - Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard aircraft in your luggage or on your person. A violation can result in five years&rsquo 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. For more information, visit www.tsa.gov.
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.
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 to and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.
About 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. 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 monuments view. No tour will be canceled due to renovations, however Right Travel will decide based on the conditions whether to amend an itinerary.
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 Right 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 Right Travel Terms & Conditions for more information www.righttravel.info.
Independent Activities - Right 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 and with due consideration. Right Travel is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when ing 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 youre visiting before you leave the U.S. It is a good idea to carry a chart with you to help you convert U.S. dollars to the local currency. Its also a good idea not to carry too much money. Many countries have ATM machines that accept most U.S. ATM cards, but be sure you know your ATM password in numbers-the keypads on foreign ATMs dont 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 or travelers checks exchange them at banks where the rate is more favorable than at hotels or exchange bureaus. Please note that many banks and most vendors will not accept or exchange $100 bills. We suggest to carry $20 bills or smaller. The Euro is the currency of the Republic of Ireland.
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.
Most US-issued credit cards rely on magnetic-strip technology rather than embedded microprocessor chips which are increasingly common overseas. These &ldquochip-and-PIN&rdquo 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&rsquot 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 alone. 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.
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 (TFS) allows shoppers to reclaim the VAT (Value-Added Tax) or GST (Goods and Services Tax) they have paid on their shopping in some foreign countries. Currently, about 50 countries allow foreign visitors to have their taxes reimbursed. TFS is subject to national regulations such as minimum spend and restrictions on the types of products on which it can be claimed. TSF is currently available in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Latvia, Lebanon, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mexico, Morocco, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russian Federation, Singapore, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey and the United Kingdom. Eligible countries and their specific regulations are subject to change at any time including the of VAT which is reclaimable and the minimum purchase amount restriction. When planning to shop in a country with Tax-Free Shopping and to reclaim VAT/GST taxes, we recommend that you check the current regulations prior to completing your purchase. In many cases, stores will display signage such as &ldquoVAT Refunds for Tourists.&rdquo Normally, you will need to present your passport and receive a VAT Refund Application form(s) from the store along with an explanation of how to claim your refund. Sometimes this is completed at the airport upon departure or later via mail from your home. Service fees may apply. Alternatively, you may choose to work with a fee-based VAT Refund Service.
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.
Poland offers a variety of quality goods including fine enamel pieces, silver, genuine amber jewelry, woodcarvings, dolls, and sculptures in assorted media. Handwoven textiles are another Polish specialty.
Your Safety is Very Important: Every effort has been taken by Right Travel to ensure your safety. However, it is important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:
If youve purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Right Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Right 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:
Local Emergency Phone Numbers: General Emergency: 999
Languages: English is the local language.
Electricity: The voltage used is 220 volts.
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.
Code of Conduct: There is a marked difference between city and rural life in Poland, with rural people maintaining a more traditional, conservative religious lifestyle. Jokes at the expense of the Roman Catholic church are considered to be in poor taste. Normal courtesies should be observed and conservative casual dress is appropriate.
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 U.S. Dollars or local currency equivalent. 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:
Food and Meals: As specified in each itinerary. Meals are based on the hotels or restaurants buffet or set menu. In general, beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although Right Travel cannot make guarantees, every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests submitted in writing at least 72 hours prior to departure to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oct 28   October Bank Holiday
Dec 25   Christmas Day
Dec 26   St. Stephens Day
Dec 31   New Years Eve
Jan 1 New Years Day
Mar 17 St. Patricks Day
Mar 29 Good Friday
Mar 31 Easter
Apr 1 Easter Monday
May 6 May Day
Jun 3 Bank Holiday
Aug 5 Bank Holiday
Oct 28 Bank Holiday
Dec 25 Christmas Day
Dec 26 St. Stephens Day
Dec 31 New Years Eve
Arrival Procedures: Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities 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 passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Right 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 companys name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Right Travel transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Right Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher.
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, overseas or in the USA, the better we can respond. Right 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 your 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 hotels 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.
Escorted tour programs include transfers, providing you have purchased airfare from Right Travel to arrive and depart on the scheduled tour dates. If you are traveling independently, you may purchase the transfers from Right Travel or contract your own method of transportation to the hotel or cruise ship.
The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Right Travel 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 Escorted Tour Participants in Central Europe: Please note that the number of participants may vary during your tour as we accommodate travelers at different points of the trip. After your arrival, you will be invited to join a welcome orientation with your Tour Manager and will meet your tour companions.