1. What’s included in the $2,650 land-only price of the 2023 Slovakia Heritage Tour, Sept. 8-17?
- 9 nights in 3 and 4 star hotels and inns with private bathroom, twin accommodations.($590 single-room supplement.)
- Transfer services in an air-conditioned van, minibus or bus with fridge/refreshments.
- Breakfast each day, 4 included meals. Information reception included. (See Day-by-Day Itinerary)
- 24/7 services of native Slovak guide/interpreter and professional driver.
- Guided sightseeing tours each day.
- Tips/gratuities except for personal restaurant meals/guide/driver.
- Admissions to festivals, historic sites, museums and cultural activities.
- Special programs on Slovak culture, history, music and language.
- Guided moderate hikes and walks in Spania Dolina, and Tatry Mountains. (Optional)
2. What’s not included?
- Round-trip airfare.
- Airport transfers to/from hotel in Vienna/Bratislava, or from departure city. (Can be arranged.)
- Beverages at included meals.
- Medical or travel insurance. (See #8)
- Passport and visa fees.(No visa needed for US citizens.)
- Optional services and fees. (See #3 & 4)
3. Can I add on any additional activities for a fee?
Yes. Since these are small, group tours we’re able to adjust the tours to people’s interests. Just a few of many options you might want to add:
- Spa treatment, saunas, massage at spa hotels.
- Cable car ride to top peak of the Tatry mountains.
- Personal guided hike in the Tatry mountains.
- Musical performances/opera/ballet in cities.
4. What options do I have to visit my family and ancestral villages?
We will be happy to help you investigate your family roots with a professional genealogical researcher before and during the trip. Contact Judy Northup-Bennett 978-544-5144 to discuss your plans.
For an additional fee (paid directly to the service providers), we can help you arrange the following in advance :
- Private day trip to visit family members or ancestral villages with guide/translator.
- Genealogical research on family origins, and local record searches to reconnect with families.
5. Can I extend my stay?
- Yes. Since you probably would like to make the most of your trip to Central Europe, Best Slovakia Tours can help you plan pre-and post-tours to Vienna, Krakow, Budapest Prague and other cities. Often you often can fly in to Vienna and out of one of these other cities at no extra cost.
- Judy Northup-Bennett of Slovakia Heritage Tours will be happy to discuss your options..
6. What is Judy Northup-Bennett’s role in the 2023 Slovakia Heritage Tour?
After 10 years of working together with Best Slovakia Tours on successful small-group Slovakia Heritage Tours, Judy Northup-Bennett is assuming a consultancy role advising Slovak-Americans on their personal travel plans, connecting them with genealogists to find their lost family and ancestral villages, as well as helping them decide whether the Slovakia Heritage Tour is right for them. Peter and Jane Blazicek of Best Slovakia Tours will take over all responsibility for organizing and operating the 2023 Slovakia Heritage Tour. (https://www.bestslovakiatours.com)
7. Why travel with Best Slovakia Tours?
Best Slovakia Tours keeps the Slovakia Heritage Tour group small (no more than 20 people) so that you can experience all that Slovakia has to offer at your pace, on a more personal scale than a larger tour focused on crowded tourist sites and large cities. Traveling in a small bus or van, you’ll explore the cities, but also small towns and countryside to piece together the unique history and culture that makes Slovakia such a charming blend of old and new.
Whether this is your first trip to Slovakia or you’ve been before, Best Slovakia Tours will make it easy for you to relax and enjoy the picturesque, ever-changing landscapes, and experience the traditions and contemporary culture, up close and personal. Rediscover the food, customs and some of the language you lived as a child. Learn about traditional music and crafts. Travel high into the mountains on gondola or foot. Reflect on the architectural and cultural remnants of the Soviet era. Meet the people as they work to make Slovakia a vital part of the European Union.
Also, because of the size of the group, Best Slovakia Tours will be able to give you individualized service before, during and after the tour. Judy Northup-Bennett is in the States to answer your questions, respond to your special needs, help you find resources to find your relatives and ancestral villages, and do her best to help Best Slovakia Tours tailor the tour to your interests. We’re passionate about Slovakia, and we love that we always learn and discover something new through your interests and your eyes.
8. I’m ready to go, how do I sign up?
- To hold a place on this September’s small group tour, contact Judy Northup-Bennett at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978-544-5144, or contact Best Slovakia Tours directly, http://bestslovakiatours.com.
- There are limited places which will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis.
- All payments will be made through Best Slovakia Tours, the tour operator and organizer.
- Payments for optional personalized day tours to family villages and genealogical services are due as the providers when the service is performed, The providers are solely responsible for these extra services.
9. What if I need to cancel?
If an emergency arises and you need to cancel, Best Slovakia Tours will refund your payments on the following basis. It’s important for you to review all the details of their terms and conditions at http://www.bestslovakiatours.com All requests for refunds must be made in writing.
- 25% of the total tour price – if the contract is cancelled more than 35 days before the tour begins
- 30%of the total tour price – if the contract is cancelled between 34 – 31 days before the tour begins
- 50%of the total tour price – if the contract is cancelled between 30-21 days before the tour begins
- 80%of the total tour price – if the contract is cancelled between 20-16 days before the tour begins
- 100% of the total price if the contract is cancelled less than 15 days before the tour begins.
There are no refunds for people who do not have appropriate travel documents. Your passport must be valid for 6 months after your travel date. You need to renew your passport if it expires before April 2024.
There are no refunds for unused services included in the trip, such as hotel, breakfasts, excursions.
10. Does the tour provide travel or medical insurance?
Best Slovakia Tours does not charge a mandatory travel/medical insurance fee like some tour groups, but we recommend that people consider travel insurance by consulting their own insurance agent and health insurance plans. Although we can not endorse or recommend any travel insurance company, some of the names in the travel insurance industry that you can review on the web are: http://www.travelguard.com ; http://www.tripmate.com ; and http://www.globaltravelshield.com .
11. Which airport is best to fly into and leave from?
Since the tour starts in Bratislava at 8:30am at the Hotel Radisson Blu Carlton, it is best to arrive in Vienna, a day or two before the tour starts, so that you can rest up and be at the hotel on time on the first day.
Vienna is about a 45 minute drive from Bratislava, and Best Slovakia Tour can arrange additional comfortable ground transportation for you. Vienna has a bigger airport and there are more direct or one-stop flights to Vienna, depending on where you will be departing from. You can usually get a better air fare price to Vienna. Bratislava is a small airport and usually requires connecting flights through Prague.