Before we got married, my husband and I talked about taking a honeymoon in Europe. He’d never been overseas and I had only been a couple places in my youth. We found it extremely difficult to manage all of the fine details: booking travel, finding hotels, selecting our to-do list, etc. etc. etc. Eventually we settled on staying domestic and we had a wonderful honeymoon in San Diego, Los Angeles, and the big island of Hawaii. It was nice to simply relax and enjoy that special time after the wedding rather than trying to see everything we could in Europe.
For the next two years, we were constantly reminded that we still had that itch to travel abroad. We saved up money and started planning, and finally, in September, my husband and I embarked on our first international trip together. Because we both have demanding full-time jobs, we decided that we’d rather have a tour company handle our trip. Leave it to the experts, we thought….
So we searched online for the right tour company for us, weighing cost and destinations available along with reviews of past tours, and ultimately settled on Go Ahead Tours. I am so glad we booked with them. They truly did take care of all of the details. Go Ahead Tours offers so many amazing locations, we found it hard to select just one! As we researched a couple of their many tour options, we set aside a few options – Southern Italy, Rome, Oktoberfest in Germany, and eventually landed on a tour of Ireland in late September.
The booking process was very easy. We selected our preferred dates, set our departure airport (BWI), specified how many people and how many beds were required, and finally picked a couple interesting excursions. We were even able to use a discount that saved us $1000! After booking, we were sent several informative emails and mailings, and by August, we felt like we were completely ready to go. They even mailed us a couple of travel bags for us to use on the trip in one package! Our cat, Penny, certainly enjoyed the cardboard box they arrived in:
Throughout the planning process and while we were on tour, Go Ahead Tours really went above and beyond. As I was worrying about what to pack, their customer service department was able to answer dress code questions as well as suggest weather appropriate attire for Ireland in the fall. While we were on the tour, our tour guide was absolutely amazing. She suggested all sorts of small trips to take, sites to see, and places to eat (and drink, it is Ireland after all!) and did a phenomenal job of making us feel 100% welcome in her homeland. Everyone on our tour of 17 was super nice as well, something that really added to the trip as a whole. (Side note: we were considered “the young couple” in our 30s, so most of the other tourists were a bit older – some in their early 70s but all great people and very interesting travel buddies.) We had a good mix of group time and free time, though the excursions did tend to take up some time that would otherwise be considered “free.”
If you are considering taking a trip with a tour group, I really can’t recommend Go Ahead Tours enough. In this post, I’ve included referral links if you are interested in signing up for an account and booking a tour! I’ll get a small thank you commission if you sign up and book with Go Ahead.
If you need a place to go, I definitely recommend Ireland! Here are just a few photos from our trip – almost all taken from my Samsung Galaxy Note5 – one’s from my iPhone 5S:
Happy travels to you! Please let me know if you have any questions or would like any more info in the comments below! If you’ve traveled with Go Ahead Tours, please let me know your impressions of the company as well. I’d love to hear your thoughts.