Wondering about the activity level for this trip? Walking is not a problem but taking luggage up flights of stairs may be challenging. Was this really necessary on this trip? I'm a senior but very well traveled and in good shape. Please advise about the luggage challenge.......................
I took this trip two years ago and all 3 hotels were easy to get around in and had elevators if you needed them. This is a wonderful tour and you will meet many people who will become long term friends, RS tours are outstanding if you like seeing another country “through the Backdoor”!
OTOH on my VFR tour May 2017 none of the hotels had elevators. We walked up/down with our luggage. My rooms were the 3rd, 4th & 2nd floors respectively. Each tour can be different so I'd want to be prepared to carry if necessary. Pack light!
If you really can’t take luggage up steps this might not be the tour for you. We did this tour a long time ago , so not sure on hotels now. Last tour we took BOE14 had many hotels without elevators. There are lots of steps involved. In Rome you take public transport up & down many stairs. Not to scare you it is a great tour but you really need to be able to carry bags up stairs.
We did this tour last May. They use different hotels for any given tour, but we don't recall there being elevators at our lodgings in Venice and Florence (Pensione Guerrato and Hotel Loggiato dei Serviti, respectively). The Hotel San Carlo in Rome had a tiny elevator that I used a few times, but it was quicker just to carry the bags up.
As RS advises, you must be prepared to carry your own luggage up multiple flights of stairs on any of their tours. And you'll definitely need to carry or roll your bags on cobblestones in all three cities and up and down the bridges in Venice.
That's why they preach packing light.
But it is a great tour.
The good news is it’s only three hotels. The bad news is no one can tell you if there are stairs or not as RS Tours changes hotels time to time. Even they might not know whic hotels they will use, but it’s worth a call. They are pretty explicit regarding your need to manage your own bags and many of their competitors make it a point to advertise that they handle your luggage. So, if managing your own bags is a deal breaker, maybe you should look elsewhere.
Note that just because a place has an elevator, it might not be what your used to. I recall the hotel in Rome had a tiny one person elevator from street level, that took a long, long time to move up to the hotel (which started on the fourth floor), a couple of bags at a time. We also had to walk a couple of blocks with bags to get from where the coach dropped us off, as sometimes streets are too narrow for buses. Then there's Venice, where you may have to walk a long way from the nearest vaporetto stop, through alleys, and up and down staircases over the canals, to get to your hotel and back to the vaporetto on the way out of there. So there is quite bit more of the up and down than you might be expecting. But as was said, you're only staying in three places.
I went on this trip in November 2016. Venice's Pensione Guerreto had no elevator and my room was in the attic up about 4 flights of stairs. I don't recall Florence or Rome's hotels being particularly challenging, though. In fact, I'm fairly certain they were no more than 2 flights of stairs.
In my experience, money talks.
Ask an employee who may be around to help and then tip them.
We were recently on the 5th floor of a hotel in Edinburgh, and the person at the desk offered to help us with our luggage.
I would not worry about it...........but do pack light!
In my experience, money talks.
This was my thought as well. Hand a healthy looking hotel employee the equivalent of $10.00 or $20.00 and ask if they can find someone to carry your bag to your room. I can't imagine no one will. I went on the RS Greece tour, and I can't think of one hotel where I wouldn't have found someone to help had I asked accordingly. They are hotels, and that's not a strange request.
I'm 66 and apparently look it, because I am fairly often offered help with my (not large) luggage in hotels that don't have elevators. Sometimes I don't need help, but other times I welcome it. It is a challenge for me to go up more than one floor, partly because I'm short enough that I can't carry the suitcase straight-armed.
I try to remember to ask for a room on a lower floor when I book at a place that has no elevator, and in my experience the hotels try very hard to grant such requests. On one occasion I was offered a room on the (European) first floor with the warning that it was going to be noisier because of a bachelor party. I opted for the quieter room on the second floor, but it was nice that I was offered that choice.