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Old 04-10-2011, 10:06 AM   #1
mapsd
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Viva Italia Info

Tentative plans to take our 2 kids in the summer of 2012. After browsing this site and the ABD site, can anyone confirm some of the assumptions I'm making:
  • Tauck-Bridges is the most similar of the family tour companies
  • I don't want my 13 & 10 yo girls to be the youngest kids in the group, ABD increases the odds of this vs. TB
  • Tauck has a better reputation for not cancelling/changing trips
  • ABD rarely offers promo/discount pricing, even for early booking
  • Booking thru CostCo travel is probably the least expensive route to book Viva Italia
THanks for commenting on any or all of these observations.
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Old 04-10-2011, 11:26 AM   #2
sayhello
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mapsd View Post
  • Tauck has a better reputation for not cancelling/changing trips I think this is probably true, but I don't know it for a fact, as I've never taken a Tauck tour.
  • ABD rarely offers promo/discount pricing, even for early booking It does happen occasionally, but it's really hit or miss, and the discounts are *usually* only on specific departures. They gave away a free DCL cruise one time, but it was well into the booking year, after a lot of folks had already booked. Early booking discounts do seem to be a thing of the past.
  • Booking thru CostCo travel is probably the least expensive route to book Viva Italia Booking through Costco is not less expensive than booking through ABD or any other Travel Agent. However Costco will give you a rebate in the form of Costco Gift Cards, so it is, in effect, "cheaper" if you shop at Costco. But other TA's give Gift Cards, also. (For example, I know that Dreams Unlimited is giving American Express Gift Cards for booking ABD's with them).
Viva Italia is a very popular trip. I did the ABD add-on to the Med cruise, which had some of the same activities as Viva Italia, and it was wonderful.

Booking info for 2012 *should* be out the beginning of August.

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Old 04-10-2011, 05:28 PM   #3
carpenta
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Just a side note....returned from our free cruise on the Dream that we received by booking our Alaska ABD last year. Disney even paid our tips. Even the cabin was on the 5th deck aft. Disney really did not go cheap on the free cruise. We are now looking forward to our Glacier National Park coming up in a couple months.
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Old 04-10-2011, 06:06 PM   #4
DisFan10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mapsd View Post
Tentative plans to take our 2 kids in the summer of 2012. After browsing this site and the ABD site, can anyone confirm some of the assumptions I'm making:
  • Tauck-Bridges is the most similar of the family tour companies
  • I don't want my 13 & 10 yo girls to be the youngest kids in the group, ABD increases the odds of this vs. TB
  • Tauck has a better reputation for not cancelling/changing trips
  • ABD rarely offers promo/discount pricing, even for early booking
  • Booking thru CostCo travel is probably the least expensive route to book Viva Italia
THanks for commenting on any or all of these observations.

I think booking a departure during the summer will increase your odds of having other kids who are the same age range as your kids, regardless of whether it is AbD or Tauck Bridges.

And yes, AbD took the cake for cancelling the most departures of any company last year. However, we have experienced the rare Tauck cancellation ourselves. We had booked an August 2009 departure on their Philadelphia/Williamsburg/Washington D.C. trip and they cancelled! We were really surprised since we figured families would still be on vacation during August, but apparently not enough...
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Old 04-10-2011, 07:10 PM   #5
Bobo912
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Quote:
I don't want my 13 & 10 yo girls to be the youngest kids in the group, ABD increases the odds of this vs. TB
I think you are more likely to have a greater number of kids on a TB trip than ABD, since TB only allows families with kids to book their trips, while ABD allows adult couples and singles on all their trips, not just the adult only. We had 17 kids on our California Tauck trip. The oldest was 15, the rest we between 6 and 13. This was more than on either of our ABDs. Our Alaska ABD has only 5 kids. But it was a fantastic trip and the kids got along wonderfully.
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Old 05-15-2011, 06:08 PM   #6
deedeetoo
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We are looking at the same type of trips for next year with our kids who will then be 11 and 14. In addition to ABD and Tauck Bridges, I have also found a Trafalgar family trip which is called Gladiators and Gondolas. The itinerary is similar to Viva Italia and the Tauck Bridges trip, but the cost is a lot less. I priced out a week for this summer just to get idea and Trafalgar was about half the cost of ABD. I haven't researched enough to know why - don't know if they stay at cheaper places, leave stuff out, less tour guides, or what? We are also considering a mediterranean cruise as a way of seeing things. We were actually looking at the DCL trip until we realized they weren't going to the mediterranean next year.
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Old 05-18-2011, 03:45 PM   #7
disneybound31
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We just talked about doing a week-10 days in Italy in a couple years- it would be DH and I, DS15, DD12 and my parents...early summer/June...anyone have any specific experiences with ABD for this timeframe for Italy? weather? etc...TIA!
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Old 05-18-2011, 04:23 PM   #8
WeLoveABD
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We did the Disney med cruise in 2007--and also the ABD Italy trip--all in mid June to early July. Warm weather but evenings were very pleasant.
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