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When to book Rick Steve tour

I'm thinking of booking a Rick Steve tour, probably for end of September. How many months ahead do we need to book it? How soon do they fill up?
(It looks like some May Paris tours are filling up; maybe it depends on how popular the tour is.)

Posted by
1103 posts

You get a $100 discount if you book by November 30th.

We usually book tours in late August/early September. For our 2019 trip (Village Italy) we booked the tour in late June (soon after the tour was announced).

Posted by
1219 posts

It depends on how popular the tour is, and if you have a set time of year you want to go or if your dates can be more flexible. As the previous poster said you can get an additional $100 off if you book by the end of November. If you know the dates and exact tour you want then I'd book it to get the $100 off. If not and you can be flexible you can take more time.

Posted by
3517 posts

Book now if you know which tour you want to take and approximately when. You save $100 if you book before the end of November.

You can always change to another tour or another date with no penalty if things don't work out for what you initially book. Even the $100 discount will still apply. (You can't cancel completely and get your deposit refunded if you wait too long, unfortunately.)

Posted by
3961 posts

I agree with others, if you've chosen your tour and month to travel, book before end of November. If you plan to extend your stay before and or after, this gives you ample time to look at flights and other accommodations. We travel in September. That said, it's a busy travel time. We've found booking accommodations (cancelable) early can bring substantial discounts.

Posted by
13925 posts

Rick usually offers the $100 discount again on the weekend in January he has his Tour Reunion/Test Drive a tour guide weekend. That would be the weekend of Jan 26. I'd keep an eye on the fill rate of the tour you are interested in as well as the fill rate of the ones around you. When they start showing "Filling Fast" that means 4 or 5 spots are left so you need to book by then.

If you are a solo traveler, it's a bit harder as there are usually limited numbers of solo rooms available.

Having said that, I booked in September for a Belgium and Holland tour as I wanted one of the ones that goes to Keukenhof to see the tulips and they sell out.

editing to add: Yikes! Just looked at the Belgium and Holland dates and 4 of them are waitlisted already! My experience, based on a friend's experience last year is that they have some "shadow" dates of tours they will add as the first ones fill. Not sure if that is the same with the Paris tours or not....

Posted by
32201 posts


I'd suggest booking as soon as you have your dates finalized. You'll only have to pay your deposit initially, but at least you'll have a space reserved. May is a popular month to travel, so if the tour you want to take indicates "Filling Fast", I'd get the reservation in as soon as possible.

Posted by
6788 posts

Sincere question: what's the benefit of waiting?

If you've decided you want to go, why not book right away? From what I can tell, business seems good up in Edmonds at the Rick Factory - the tours often (usually? always?) fill up. They're quite popular. Seems to me that there's no benefit in waiting until later to book, just a risk that increases every day that the tour you want will be sold out.