Frequently Asked Questions
Below please find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about travel in the selected countries and our travel packages. If you don't find the answer to your questions below, please feel free to use our contact form to ask for further information.
Q: How do I recognise the transfer driver at the airport/port/meeting point?
The transfer driver will be waiting at the relevant airport/port/bus or rail station holding a sign with your name on it. For airport arrivals, once you have passed through customs and collected your luggage you would then enter into the international/domestic arrivals hall. On doing so you would then please need to look for the sign with your name on it to reconise the driver there to meet with you. For arrivals to ports, bus and/or rail stations the driver will meet you on disembarkation, again holding a sign with your name on it for you to be able to recognise him/her.
Q: How can I reach my travel consultant should the need arise?
On the travel itinerary document provided would be noted all contact numbers for office hours and after hours so that you can reach your travel consultant 24 hours (day and night) should the need arise.
Q: Am I travelling with a group during your travel packages?
No, unless it is during one of the Mainland Tours in Greece. For all our travel packages these are tailored towards the individual so they are not set departure large group tours with the same persons travelling together from start to end or with a tour leader/escort. We arrange our travel packages by combining the required hotel accommodation, land transfer such as flights/ferries/trains etc together with local regular group or private guided day tours that are available in each area.
Q: Why book a travel package?
We are here to help you put together the travel itinerary of your choice to best suit your wishes and travel needs. We then make all the necessary reservations so that you can travel and enjoy without having to worry about if you will find accommodation at your next stop and/or need to sort out the various connections from one point to the other. Basically booking a package takes out the hassle of doing it all yourself from day to day.
Q: Do you provide travel insurance?
Unfortunately no. It is advised however that you do obtain your own insurance for health and/or loss while travelling. Insurance is also recommended to provide coverage if refunds pursuant to the final payment and cancellation clauses are unavailable due to the terms of those clauses. For more information on our cancellation clauses please see our Terms & Conditions.
Q: Do you provide International Flights?
Unfortunately no. You would need to arrange your own airfare for arrival to the starting point and then again for departure from the ending point as per the travel package selected. (For international routes such as Istanbul/Athens, Istanbul/Cairo and Athens/Cairo, as would be required during one of the combination travel packages, this would be included as part of the package rate).
Q: How do I book and pay for my tour and/or package, what is the procedure?
After we have received your request to go ahead and reserve the tour and/or travel package you selected, we then proceed with confirming all services accordingly. Once all is in place you would then receive a confirmation email with the formal travel itinerary attached noting all services that are confirmed and to be provided as part of the tour/package. Together with the confirmation there would also be a link to our secure online payment form which you would need to complete. We kindly request a 50% booking deposit to secure your reservations with the remaining 50% balance to be received by no later than 02 weeks before arrival/start date (different breakdowns may apply if a Greek Island Cruise is part of your travels).
Q: What is your Cancellation / Refund Policy?
Reservations may only be cancelled by written notice sent by email or certified mail to our agency. If such written notice is received before arrival date / travel start date, we will accept such cancellation and refund the land portion costs recoverable from those entities paid on behalf of the travellers only to the extent/amount that such moneys are refunded by those entities to our agency.
Booking to 30 days prior to departure: No Cancelation fee
29 days to 15 days prior to departure: 30% of total cost.
14 days to 10 day prior to departure: 50% of total cost.
10 days to 05 day prior to departure: 75% of total cost
Less then 05 days to departure or while on trip: NO-SHOW: 100% cancellation fees.
General Cancellation Policy for Greece Turkey Island Cruises: 60-31 days prior to departure: 25% cancellation fees 30-16 days prior to departure: 50% cancellation fees 15 days prior departure or no-show: 100% cancellation fees
Q: Do I need a visa? Can you arrange the visa for me?
Visa requirements vary from country to country, therefore in your travel request or during our correspodence if you are unsure of your requirements please do let us know on what nationality passport you will be travelling and we can provide information accordingly. If you are travelling on a USA passport then for Turkey, Greece and Egypt the visas can be obtained at the airport or port of arrival. (The Visa Counter in Istanbul Airport is located on the left side of the passport control area. You will need to carry Euros or American dollars to pay for your visa as they do not except credit cards or Turkish Lira. For Egypt our representative would assist you through visa and entry formalities.) Please note that we cannot apply to the various embassies on your behalf for the visas if you need to obtain these before arrival. We can however provide you with official documentation that you have reserved your travels with us which you can then yourselves send to your local embassy.
To make your travels even more comfortable, below please find a few travel tips and other useful information:
Electricity: Turkey, Greece and Egypt use the round two-pin plug and socket. The current for all three countries is 220V (50Hz). -It is definitely best to inspect your battery chargers before you travel. Most likely, your adaptors are rated to handle up to 240V, and such capabilities are usually printed on the charger itself or in the manual. If your equipment is not rated for the 220V electrical current, you need to purchase an Electrical Adaptor to protect your equipment before you leave home.
Photography: Photography at ancient sites is permitted with a handheld camera without a flash and in all museums and archaeological sites – some might require a small additional fee. There are certain areas where photography is restricted and they are marked by signs in many languages (please do not even attempt to take any photos of military personel or military installations!). Throughout your travels you will inevitably be around salt water, sand or both. A good idea is to pack some large Ziploc bags (before you leave home) to keep your equipment dry and sand-free.
Clothing: Most important are breathable fabric clothing, comfortable walking shoes, a hat and sun block. For both Turkey and Greece casual and/or informal dress is acceptable. Short sleeved shirts, skirts, shorts etc and all other such attire are generally okay – except when visiting religious sites or at official gatherings. For visiting mosques it is required for ladies hair and shoulders to be covered and mid-length to long skirts/pants required for both men and woman. Our suggestion: in your day bag carry a lightweight sarong that can be used as emergency shoulder/leg/hair cover should it be needed when visiting some more strict dress code sights. It also then doubles up as protection from the hot sun and cover over swimsuits. While in Egypt, casual dress is also acceptable however to try not to wear short shorts or mini skirts while in Cairo as this will may get you a stares and unwanted attention from the locals. While on a Nile Cruise the dress code is more relaxed with regards to swimsuits onboard etc etc. Don’t weight yourself down by packing too much clothing. Choose a few items wisely that can be used for daytime and then made a bit more formal for those special nights out on the town by adding some small accessories. There is also a wealth of clothing shopping that can be done in while travelling.
Currency Exchange: Turkey uses the TL (Turk Lira) although the US$ and Euro are also widely accepted at the hotels and most touristic stores and restaurants. Greece uses the Euro and in general only accepts this currently although some places might still accept US$. Egypt uses the Egyptian Pound however US$ is widely accepted in tourist areas and even in some lesser areas too - the same for all other countries in the Middle East. To exchange monies in any of these countries can be done at local banks, foreign currency exchange offices or through the hotels although hotels tend not to offer the best exchange rates. There is also the option to withdraw local currency from ATMs which can easily be found throughout Turkey and Greece. Credit Cards such as Mastercard and/or Visa are also widely accepted (American Express can cause a few problems as not so widely accept - always a good idea to have a Mastercard/Visa as backup). Travellers cheques incur commission charges and are not always readily accepted as they once used to be so may not the best choice.
Food & Water / Medication: Depending on your constitution, a change in drinking water and food can possibly upset your stomach when traveling. We advise you to drink only bottled water, which can be purchased at hotels and local stores and is inexpensive. During the first few days it is wise to eat lightly and avoid any raw vegetables or fruits, unless you can peel them. If you should come in counter with the "Pharaoh's Curse" your tour guide or representative will be able to help you obtain certain medications specific for this problem. Medications can be purchased in most pharmacies throughout although if you have any special persciption medication it would be wise to bring this with you in clearly marked packaging along with a note from your doctor.
Tipping: Tips to guides, transfer drivers, hotel and cruise staff etc are at your own discretion and highly appreciated by all those that serve you. In general, restaurants 10% of the bill, drinks at cafes round the bill up to the nearest dollar/euro/lira, taxis expect change as do cloak room attendants. In Egypt, tipping is known as “baksheesh” and it is an integral part of life in Egypt. Sometimes it can become annoying but don’t let it ruin your trip.
Shopping / Haggling: In Greece most prices are generally fixed unless in special bazaar / flea market type areas. For Turkey there is always the chance to rest your battering skills when purchasing carpets, leather or souveniers. For Egypt, shopping is a whole different story. Don't be afraid to bargain as bartering is a way of life and like it, or not, as a tourist you either have to play the game, or pay a high price. One point to remember, if you are taken for a ride, don't dwell on it and let it ruin your vacation - simply learn from your experience - it can happen to the best of us. If you really do not fancy honing your bartering skills with the locals, then the solution to your problem is to buy all your presents and souveneirs at 'fixed price' government shops. These can be found in most of the hotels and on the Nile cruise boats. Ermou Street and Monesteraki Flea Market are the most famous shopping areas in Athens. In Istanbul the Grand Bazaar although you may find better prices in other areas such as Cappadocia and Ephesus. The Khan El-Khalili is the most famous suq (market) in Cairo and is well known for its gold, silver and brass goods which demonstrate the skill of Egypt's craftsmen. Leather products and jewellery are relatively inexpensive.
BE SAFE: Keep an eye on your handbags/wallets/cameras as pickpockets can be found in some areas, just as they can in your home town. Try not be out very very late at night in areas that you are not sure of. Don't give out your room number to strangers or leave your room key lying around where strangers can see the room number on it, better to make arrangements to meet in the lobby should you make new friends during your travels. Don't accept drinks from strangers especially if they make you feel uncomfortable – do keep in mind however that it is customary to be offered tea while in a shop in Egypt that would be considered rude to refuse – these offers are the exception to the rule. As you would look out for your safety at home do the same while travelling. If at anytime you feel that you need help or assistance be sure to call your travel consultant immediately.
-Can I withdraw money from ATMs?
Visitors may withdraw money in Turkish Lira as well as Euro and U.S. Dollar with their debit cards from the ATMs in Turkey. The majority of ATMs offer English language or other language options for the convenience of foreigners.
-Can I use my credit cards for shopping?
Visitors may use their credit cards and debit cards for all kinds of purchases. It is advisable, however, to carry some cash with you in case you take trips away from the city center or travel to smaller towns or villages.
-What is the local currency in Turkey?
Turkish Lira is the local currency of the Republic of Turkey. Visitors can exchange their cash money for Turkish Lira at exchange offices and banks.
-Can I drive in Turkey with my driver's license?
Foreigners may drive in Turkey provided that they keep their passport, international driver's license and the vehicle license with them all the time. Turkey drives on the right side of the road and the advanced highway network allows easy access to different corners of the land.
-What kind of sockets are used in Turkey?
European two-pin sockets are widely used in Turkey as everywhere in continental Europe.
-Do I have to speak Turkish to interact with people during my visit?
English is the most spoken foreign language everywhere in Turkey. You should have no problem meeting people who can speak English and help you get around in all the big cities, shopping malls, restaurants and holiday resorts.
-Can I use my mobile phone in Turkey?
Many international GSM operators provide coverage in Turkey in addition to local GSM operators such as Turkcell, Avea and Vodafone. You may ask your GSM operator to activate the international roaming function of your mobile phone before travelling to Turkey or just obtain a new SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) card from local operators in Turkey.
- What are the opening and closing times of museums in Turkey?
All of the museums in Turkey are closed on Monday and are open to visitation from 9:00 to 17.00 on the other days.
-What are the opening hours of pharmacies in Turkey?
Pharmacies are open across the country every day from 09.00 – 19.00 except for Sunday. One pharmacy, however, is open 24/7 in each neighborhood by the time the others are closed.