A TALE OF TRAVEL DESIGN, BEAUTIFUL EXPERIENCES, AND TAKING OVER THE WORLD…OR AT LEAST EXPERIENCING MORE OF IT.
As we mentioned in our email, we are looking forward to working with you on your next adventure…and many adventures to come! Before we jump into the specifics, more than anything, we know that serving you well begins with the right fit.
We love our clients, and want to make sure that you enjoy working with us as much as we enjoy working with you – and one of the ways this starts is with the right expectations.
So please take a moment to read through this document and let us know if you have any questions at all!
If you’re ready to move forward, the next steps are at the bottom of the page.
Travel is the largest industry in the world…and also one of the most complicated. There are so many difference countries, currencies, regulations, and cultural differences – not to mention the uniqueness of your own adventure.
This all makes it’s difficult to say exactly what will be included in your trip, but these are the things that are pretty standard across the board:*
- Customized travel itinerary crafted based on your specific requests and personal vision**
- A dedicated Edge of Wonder Travels Unlimited Travel Designer, looking out for you and your best interests at every stage of the journey.
- Most travel designs include accommodations, transfers, and tours/activities in the pricing.
- Online itinerary delivery which will include any and all of your travel arrangements.
- Meals, taxes, and other local charges and service fees may also be included.
- A personalized destination guide constructed by personal experience of over 120 global correspondents who are not only experts on their geographic areas, but also share a passion for creating extraordinary experiences for travelers.
*Nuances relative to your specific trip will be communicated to you by your travel designer prior to booking.
** Please see the section on Fees & Compensation
In assisting in the planning and booking of your adventure, we may act as agent/intermediary with local operators and partners (cruise lines, tour operators, wholesalers, transportation suppliers, etc.). Tour operators, cruise lines, and wholesalers may be making accommodations and arrangements with the various suppliers for travel services in your itinerary.
Note that because we and our partners at times buy travel in bulk and often utilize group space, things like cancellation fees, penalties, and deadlines for fees may differ from those listed in brochures or online.
For cruises, you can typically access your reservation online as well as check-in, provide additional information if necessary, and book any shore excursions you may not have specified at time of booking. Be sure to note your cabin and verify its location and bedding options
WHAT WORKING WITH AN EDGE OF WONDER TRAVELS UNLIMITED DESIGNER LOOKS LIKE
**STEP 1: DISCOVER YOUR VISION**
First things first, we want to get to know you and your travel preferences. This is a lot of fun for us, and as we move forward and work on future trips, understanding your style, tastes, and preferences will help us better serve you.
**STEP 2: DESIGN YOUR EXPERIENCE**
Here we look to make sure we have a full understanding of your desires and your dreams really start to take shape.
At this point, everyone is committed to moving forward and working together on your trip.
Collaboration and communication are some of the primary components of this part of the process as we tweak and hone your itinerary until the finished product is where you want it to be. Once your itinerary has been perfected, we’ll work on the bookings & reservations, confirming amenities, special requests, and seeing to anything else possible to make your holiday that much more unique and pleasurable.
Before you depart, we will provide you with your custom itinerary, any necessary travel documents, and other reference material to help you on your trip as well as the anticipation leading up to it.
**STEP 3: EMBARK!**
You’re off on your adventure – exploring new cities and countries, experiencing new cultures, or just sitting back on the deck of a ship floating by icebergs and keeping a lookout for whales.
So that you can fully enjoy the moment, we’ll be keeping an eye on the details of your trip both leading up to your departure and while you’re away. We’ll be double-checking the details, connecting with our suppliers, and finding any other ways we can to make your adventure extraordinary.
Once you return, it’s time to get to one of our favorite parts – a welcome back discussion to hear all about your journey! We want to know what you liked, what you didn’t, and learnings we can apply to your next adventure.
DETAILS AROUND PAYMENTS, FEES, AND CANCELLATION
Payment schedules vary greatly depending on the policies of the various services, tour operators, cruise lines, and other suppliers who may be involved in the planning of your adventure. We will always let you know what the deposit and final payment schedule is for your specific itinerary.
Generally speaking, a deposit will be due upon finalization of the itinerary to secure any hotels, cruises, tours, or other services. This amount varies by supplier and/or country, but is typically anywhere from $100 per person to 50% of the total trip cost.
Final payments are typically due prior to departure and also varies by supplier and/or country. Most final payments are due 30, 45, 60, or 90 days prior to departure. Some suppliers require full payment within 180 days, although this is not common. Separately held hotel reservations which are not part of a priced package are typically payable at check-out.
We really hate fees, but as in most industries, sometimes they’re unavoidable. There may at times be fees for certain itineraries or types of travel which your travel advisor will communicate with you in advance.
We engage new clients with a $200 refundable retention fee. This provides assurance of our commitment to your trip design plan as we begin the process and protects the time of everyone involved.
The retention fee is required at the beginning of the trip design process and is fully refundable upon receipt of final payment of your trip plan or completion of your trip (whichever comes first).
Should you decide to not work with us (perish the thought!) and either cancel your trip or do the bookings on your own, you will be invoiced separately at our regular rate of $100 per hour for any time spent designing your trip above the $200 retention fee initially paid (this includes phone calls, emails, and communications with local operators).
Please note that there may be also cancellation policies in effect from tour operators, cruise lines, and other service providers once deposits have been submitted up until departure. Be sure to read through any Terms & Conditions documentation you receive and familiarize yourself with any cancellation policies relative to your trip prior to departure.
* Only the retention fee is refundable.
OFFICE HOURS AND SMOKE SIGNALS
Our available office hours for inquiries and phone appointments are Tuesday through Thursday, 9am to 5pm Pacific Time.
During your trip design process, we will primarily use email and your personalized client portal for communicating (instructions will be sent to you for access once we kick everything off). This helps everything stay organized and in one place.
We do our best to reply to all communications with clients actively planning a trip the same business day, but we ask our clients to all be understanding that we may have some adventures that take priority because they are departing in the immediate future, or times when unexpected travel emergencies pop up (you know, like hurricanes, blizzards, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions) which may delay our ability to respond.
If you would prefer to chat via Skype/phone, you can schedule an appointment with us at any available time using our online meeting scheduler. As an existing client, make sure you select an Existing Client Trip Design Discussion or the Quick 15-Minute Follow-up.
Scheduling calls allows us to focus on our travel design work and take care of our clients currently on the road without interruption.