I've been on a few Rick Steves tours and we always have a fun goodbye for our guide. From poems to songs to fun knick-knacks. Are there any of these goodbye "gifts" that stand out to you?
Our guide on the Adriatic tour was really into T shirts and always had a really memorable one to wear every day. I believe some in our group were planning to send him a unique T shirt post tour.
We have been on 12 RS tours. On most of them, something small in value is given to the guide and sometimes to the driver, especially if he has become part of our group. My only objection has been when someone is taking up a collection to buy some nice, expensive present which is prohibited by the RS house rules.
I am never good at thinking of these things but one tour member on our Ireland tour found a book about the house where the guide has a B&B. Robert Mitchum stayed in it when they were filming Ryan's Daughter. We all wrote notes in it and he planned to put it in the library of the B&B. I think we chipped in for a tie for the bus driver, who had worn one every day and was just awesome.
I agree with Charlie though, would not be comfortable with a collection for a large gift.
I've been on 5 RS tours and someone usually takes the lead to collect 1 euro per person for a gift for the guide and bus driver. Our guide this year wore a scarf every day so we bought her a nice one at a street market. They got the bus driver a bottle of wine from a winery we visited (to drink on his own time!).
I have only taken one rs tour. I recall we collected on euro each for driver , but many threw in 2-5 euros. I honestly do recall if we gave guide something, maybe it was combo collection for driver and guide.
On my first tour, we were lucky to have an art teacher who did murals to fund her trips. She had brought along her paints so she painted a small picture for our guide and driver! That was certainly memorable, but not typical. Usually it's 1-2 euro at most per person. Often it's a favorite wine, drink, or food!