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1. What’s the difference between group travel and solo travel?

Today’s small group travel companies are way different than travel companies of the past. Instead of matching t-shirts and cringey city tours, lots of new group travel companies are embracing aspects of solo travel so that there’s a big overlap between the two (today, the number of solo travelers joining group tours is over 60%).


Think of these groups like solo travel experiences with a built-in community and all or most of the planning taken care of.

2. Who are group tours for?

Group travel can be for everyone, from young solo travelers to seniors and families. Different companies cater to different interests, so there are options for any type of traveler. If you’re interested in learning even more about all the options out there, check out this guide to group travel companies.


FTLO Travel focuses on young solo travelers in their 20s and 30s who want a community to travel with and are interested in learning about different cultures, and want to participate in unique experiences that they might not be able to find on their own.


3. How does group travel work?

After you choose your travel date, your destination, and book your trip, the tour company handles most things for you. Most of them will arrange where you'll stay, how you'll get around, and fun activities to do. 


You usually just need to book your flights to and from the destination. Once you arrive, you meet your group and tour leader. Then, the fun begins with organized activities and meals so you can enjoy your time without worrying about planning.

4. What can I expect on a group trip?

Depending on which group you decide to travel with, you’ll either kick things off at fast or slow pace and dive right into your itinerary with your new travel community on day one.


You'll have exciting experiences planned by travel experts, with a mix of activities, meals, and free time to explore alongside other solo travelers looking to experience the same things.


5. What will I need to plan if I join a group trip?

Some group travel companies include almost everything, so you'll only need to plan your flights to the start and from the end of the trip, while others leave a lot of the planning up to you. 


On top of that, usually, you'll have some free time to explore on your own, so you can think about planning anything extra you want to see or do as well (museums you'd like to visit, hikes you'd like to trek, or restaurants you'd like to eat at). 


And if you're unsure where to start, your trip leader can provide recommendations of their favorite things to do and places to see. You can also connect with your tripmates to coordinate plans once you get to your destination!


6. How much does group travel cost?

It depends on which company you decide to travel with. Some companies are able to bring costs down by running larger group tours and staying in basic hostel accommodations with shared bunks and shared facilities. Others focus on immersive small group experiences that aim to build community. These groups usually stay in boutique hotels that are unique to the destinations they visit (no chain hotels). 


For the latter, this may increase costs as you’re supporting smaller, locally-owned businesses. Depending on the type of experience you're seeking, a one-week trip could cost anywhere from $1,000 to upwards of $10,000.


7. What’s included and what’s not on a group trip?

When you’re trying to figure out which trip or tour company to go with, check the website to find out what’s included and what’s not, as these are not always the same. Some tour companies include transportation and accommodations; some do not. Some, like FTLO, include several meals and activities or experiences.


8. How do I pick the right tour group?

There are a ton of choices out there, so it’s important to do your research before purchasing any trip. Some tour companies cater specifically to travelers heading out by themselves; FTLO Travel’s tour groups, for example, are made up of 80% solo travelers. 

Here’s a helpful group travel guide to get you started.


In a nutshell, before clicking the Buy button, you should think about:


  • Tour Operator Specialty & Company Niche: Are you looking for a foodie tour, adventure trip, or something totally different? 

  • Trip Vibe: Do you want a fast-paced trip or a slower one? A trip for singles or only women?

  • Age Range: Do you want to meet travelers your age or from any age group?

  • Destination: Are you after a dream destination or traveling based on your budget?

  • What’s Included: Some groups include everything from flights to meals and activities, while others leave most things up to you.

  • Group Size: Decide if you’re looking for more of an intimate experience or if you’d rather be part of a large group.

  • Trip Leaders: Does the group provide knowledgeable local guides who can provide recommendations and on-the-ground insider tips?

  • Reviews: Past travelers know best, so always check reviews.

  • Price: What’s your budget, and what are you looking for? Are you interested in hostels or boutique hotels? Private adventures or larger shared experiences?


Decide which factors are most important to you and what you’re more flexible about and then start narrowing things down from there. 

9. Is group travel right for me? What are the benefits?

For many travelers, group tours are a great way to see the world and find a community of like-minded new friends. They’re great for people interested in a trip that provides:


  • A Social Experience: Meet new people and make friends to travel the world with.

  • Safety and Support: Split taxis, roam the streets, and explore local nightlife in a safe group environment.

  • Convenience and Ease: Pre-planned trips mean less work for you.

  • Access to Local Knowledge: Learn from local guides and get recommendations that you can’t find online. 

  • Unique Experiences: Take part in special activities that are easier in a group.


10. Is group travel worth it?

Yes, group travel is absolutely worth it! Group travel lets you create lasting memories and build new friendships. These tours offer activities you can't easily do alone and provide a community of like-minded travelers from day one. And to top it all off, those people just may become your friends for life.


11. I'm not sure if group travel is right for me, and I’d really like some more info!

Well, you’re in luck! Most modern group travel companies have excellent Community Teams that will be more than happy to speak with you. Often, you’ll be asked to fill out a profile so that they have all the information they need to help you best.


When you speak with a Community Team member, let them know what you’re interested in and they’ll provide recommendations for your first international trip or your next adventure based on what interests you. Ask about anything you can think of (international travel tips or even if you can pack light in only a carry-on bag, for example). 

Image by Shifaaz shamoon

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