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Moving tour dates

I was wondering if anyone knows how much of a hassle it is for RS staff to move a tour date?

We booked the RS Turkey Tour. It was a bit of a whirlwind and now I see a departure only two days later that would suit our work schedules better (starts on a Monday).

Thing is, we also have a cruise booked for next year, so I'm not sure which trip we are going on. One will need to go; can't do both. And since we are booked on the cruise with my sister and BIL, we have to tread carefully to extract ourselves from that.

I don't want to bother RS staff over moving the tour departure just two days -- only to end up canceling next month.

Any thoughts? Would you bother? The other date is "Filling Fast".

Posted by
1678 posts

I had to move a tour date in 2010 about three weeks out due to the Iceland volcano explosion. Easily done with a quick phone call, they couldn't have been nicer or more accomodating. By moving your date, it's possible you'll open up slots for someone on the waiting list for the tour you're booked on. I'd give them a call and explain the situation.

Posted by
262 posts

I’ve had to move tour dates several times over the years. The staff was phenomenal.

Posted by
5265 posts

I moved a tour date by phone a few years ago and it was no problem. They e mailed me a confirmation of the new date and everything else followed as usual. If they have spots on the date you want, I'd say go ahead. But if you have to cancel, do it in December or you'll lose your deposit.

Can't help you with the sister/BIL family dynamic. ;-)

Posted by
200 posts

Hi. I’ve had to change tour dates before and the RS staff has always been great. As someone suggested, I’d call them and explain your situation. My experience in years past was that “filling fast” meant six or fewer spots left. So I’d call them today if I were you.

Posted by
84 posts

I also changed our RS Best of Europe tour to the Best of Italy tour just a couple of months ago. The RS staff was very accomodating and made the change easily. Good luck!

Posted by
11451 posts

You are paying for the tour. Move it if you want to.

You are their customer. Part of their job is to make you happy. Not the other way around.

Posted by
6802 posts

Not a hassle, they do that all the time. And they just shift all your data and your deposit over to the new tour dates, so you don't have to fill everything out again. If it were me, I'd chose family.

Posted by
408 posts

I just changed a tour recently. I called and it was done in a couple minutes. No hassle at all.

Posted by
5535 posts

The Rick Steves staff is amazingly helpful and will be glad to help you if you call and ask for the tour to be changed to the dates you prefer.

Sadly, no one can help you decide which trip you end up taking! I will say that I went on a cruise in October and the safety protocols of required vaccinations and testing prior to embarkation as well as the protocols in place on the ship made me feel very comfortable about traveling. (It was Royal Caribbean) If Covid protocols/risks are a factor in your thinking than a cruise might be a good choice.

On the other hand, I think the RS Turkey Tour will probably be a unique experience that will be hard to replicate in another manner. I am confident they will have covid protocols in place for the factors that they can control. I don't think you will have trouble finding other cruises......

Posted by
9928 posts

Siiigh...this is probably not helpful but I'd call "Carpe Diem" and do both. After having to defer travel for 18 months I'd take both trips if you can get the time off work and possibly squeeze financially.

My Mom loved travel and during her last months she repeatedly said her only regrets in life were that she didn't go on a safari or see the Great Wall. Covid has magnified my view as well.

Posted by
285 posts

How did you manage to move your dates? Just curious because I thought pretty much every tour is full, so how does that work? The reason I ask, is we are patiently waiting for someone to cancel their Greece tour , at the end of Sept, so the four of us can travel together, but all tours are full at this time. We are booked for Oct 1, but hopeful of family to be able to join us.

Posted by
183 posts

I have not tried to move a trip so I can not add in that regard and ultimate the answer is with the RS staff but the following is take from the Tour Conditions FAQ.

Transferring to another tour: Change in plans? Up to 60 days prior to your tour's departure, you can transfer to any other tour in the same calendar year with seats available, applying your existing deposit and with no transfer fee. If you transfer to a different tour, the price of that tour will be applied, effective on the date we confirm your transfer. Transfers less than 60 days before your tour's departure are  generally  not possible. 

Posted by
1364 posts

Thank you all for your responses. They confirm my thinking - I should go ahead and move it.

CL, I never considered that there might be someone on the waiting list for our departure. That would be nice if we could open up spots for someone else.

Frank II, I thought the same - I am the customer. Not sure why I dithered over it.

Carol, it is a Royal Caribbean cruise. Transatlantic from Miami to Amsterdam. My biggest fear has always been being met in Amsterdam by people in hazmat suits because of a big outbreak on board, and being sent straight to quarantine instead of our planned two weeks post-cruise in Europe. And a smaller fear that the protocols will change again, and our Canadian vaccine cocktail and schedule will leave us to be considered "unvaccinated", and as such relegated to the unvaxxed venues on the ship. I'm not paying to be held in specific areas of the ship with the truly unvaccinated.

Pam, I could just about take both in terms of vacation entitlement at work, but DH has five fewer days. Its a moot point, we simply can't afford both. The RS tour is in US$, we are Canadian, so its quite expensive. Luckily we put together a very last minute trip to France in October, so aren't feeling the gap between trips as intensely as some!

Judy, the tour we chose is Best of Turkey, and there's a good amount of availability left on a number of departures. I wish when we booked I had thought through it further and just gone for the Monday departure. It was a fast decision to book. DH never had interest, and then suddenly he agreed. I booked as fast as I could before he changed his mind.

The good news is Royal Caribbean has just extended Cruise with Confidence, so we can move our cruise to one departing by April 29, 2023, without any penalties. I will suggest that to my sister. She won't want to incur another cent on this because her booking was made with cruise credit from a cruise in March 2020 - one of those with literally no notice of cancellation, so she lost some money on airfares, etc. We can also move it to any departure past that for $100pp penalty. Sis is in Florida until the 30th, and Royal releases 2023 itineraries on the week of December 6th.

Thanks again, everyone! I will report back.