Guided Tours FAQ
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We understand that unforeseen circumstances can arise, and that’s why we’ve teamed up with Trip Mate* to offer you the opportunity to purchase Travel Protection for your peace of mind. You can browse an overview of their coverage here. While purchasing travel protection is not compulsory on a YMT Vacation, we recommend protecting your trip from unexpected events. Coverage will only apply during the tour you choose to protect.
You may have coverage from other sources that provides you with similar benefits, but this may be subject to different restrictions. We recommend comparing the terms of any travel protection policy with your existing life, health, home, and automobile insurance policies. If you have any questions about your current coverage, call your insurer, insurance agent or broker.
Terms, conditions, and exclusions apply. For more details and to purchase Travel Protection, call 1-888-567-8060.
*If you previously purchased travel protection for an upcoming tour through our partnership with Allianz, this remains unaffected.
We strongly encourage you to purchase Travel Protection. Cancelling your tour may result in loss of deposit, airline fees, supplier fees, and cancellation penalty of up to 100%. Please call YMT Vacations immediately to verify penalty fees incurred.
Final travel documents are emailed approximately 4 weeks prior to your departure date.
While YMT Vacations provides passport, visa, and travel document information to the best of our knowledge, ultimately each guest is responsible for ensuring he or she has all the necessary documents. The below is specific to guests holding a US passport:
For tours within the United States, the Department of Homeland Security’s REAL ID requirements mean that all air travelers, including those on domestic flights, will need REAL ID-compliant identification starting on May 7, 2025. Before this date, any government-issued ID, including any state driver’s license and any federal ID, will suffice.
For more information, check out our article Do I Need A Real ID To Fly? or read below:
- All federal IDs are REAL ID-compliant. These include US passports, US passport cards, US military IDs, and federally recognized tribal-issued photo IDs. A full list can be found here:
- Additionally, a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license is also acceptable for flights within the US. To check if your driver’s license is REAL ID-compliant, check for a gold or black star in the upper right-hand corner of your license. California REAL ID-compliant licenses have a gold bear with an inset star in the upper right-hand corner. If your driver’s license is not REAL ID-compliant, be sure to bring a federal ID (such as your US passport) to the airport.
For tours outside the United States, including tours with stops in Canada and Mexico, a passport is required. Most countries require passports to be valid for at least 6 months after the end date of the tour. Additionally, some countries require additional visas, e-Visas, or other travel authorizations for US and other foreign citizens. Each country’s requirements differ, so please check the details for your specific tour. Visit https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports.html for application and renewal information.
For travel to Europe, ETIAS (which stands for European Travel Information and Authorization System) is scheduled to launch in mid-2025. It will allow US citizens traveling to Europe to authorize a trip before they travel using a quick online form. It’s estimated to cost less than $10 and will be valid for 3 years. ETIAS will allow a maximum 90-day stay within any 180-day period. It’s not a visa designed to be a barrier for entry into Europe. It’s a security measure for traveler screening and is reciprocal; something we already ask European visitors to do to enter the US. It will be fast and simple, with no need to visit a consulate or send your passport in the mail. You can find more information here. For now, no visas or permits are required for entry into any country that is part of the European Union.
Please note that the passport application or renewal process is taking longer than before due to reduced operations during the pandemic. It may take up to 16 weeks to complete. It is extremely important that guests planning to travel check the validity of their passports not only for expiration date, but also to ensure that they have at least 6 months of validity after the final date of travel.
You have the ability to move your booking to another date or destination up to 120 days before departure (terms and conditions apply). See our Peace of Mind Program for more details.
Because YMT Vacations offers group travel packages, no individual changes are available on tour itineraries.
The YMT luggage allowance is one suitcase and one small bag per guest. Due to capacity limits on vehicles, the standard maximum weight per suitcase is 50 pounds, and 44 pounds for itineraries that include intra-tour flights. The dimensions of each suitcase may not exceed 30 inches by 18 inches by 10 inches. Carry-ons cannot be larger than 12 inches by 11 inches by 6 inches, and must fit in the overhead compartment or under the seat in front of you. Any luggage that is larger or heavier may not fit on the motor coach, and might need to be shipped home. To comply with safety regulations for motor coaches, mid-size buses, and vans, wheeled carry-on bags are not accepted as hand luggage. View the helpful packing guide here!
As you prepare for your tour, please be mindful of how much you pack. Most itineraries are of casual nature, and 2 pairs of slacks and some collared shirts, or a few casual dresses, are generally sufficient for evening dinners or other more formal events. Dress in layers to be comfortable, and so you can quickly adjust to changing environments and air conditioning. Don’t forget to pack your favorite walking shoes.
If you are traveling on a cruise, please check your cruise line’s informational material included in the final documents emailed to you about 4 weeks prior to departure for specific information regarding what clothing is appropriate to wear onboard.
If you have questions about doing laundry while on tour or on a cruise ship, please read How to Do Laundry on Vacation
Most cruise passengers use their credit cards and assign all charges to their cabins. On a land tour, we suggest you bring what you would normally budget per person, per day for food.
Several weeks prior to your departure date, you will receive notification via email that Optional Tours are available for booking at an additional cost. These Optional Tours are also available for purchase online by logging into your YMT account.
If you have booked a Cruise tour, additional Shore Excursions may be available directly with the cruise line. We highly recommend that you book Shore Excursions well in advance by accessing the cruise line’s website and registering online. Information on how to register with the cruise line will be emailed to you along with your travel documents.
Because YMT only offers package tours, it is not necessary for you to rent a car on any of our itineraries.
Discounts (if applicable) for triple or quad accommodations vary depending on the tour and departure date. Please speak with your Travel Consultant regarding the specifics of your vacation to see if any discounts apply.
Because tour prices are based on double occupancy, each single traveler’s cost needs to reflect the difference. The listed price assumes each passenger pays one half of the cost of a room and/or cabin, so the single room supplement charge (SRS) needs to reflect the entire cost of a private room and/or cabin.
Yes, separate beds can be requested, except on A-Rosa river cruises. Make your request with your Travel Consultant at the time of booking, or with our Guest Services Department. All requests are passed on to the hotels and cruise lines at the time final payment is made, however we are not able to guarantee these requests.
All YMT Vacations tours are guided by professional Tour Directors. In some destinations, such as Hawaii and Ireland, you may have a Driver-Guide who will both guide your tour and operate your motor coach. On tours including a cruise portion, you may also have a YMT Cruise Host onboard to assist you with any questions about the ship, information about your tour, or recommendations.
An invoice is emailed and/or mailed within 24 hours of the payment being made. For a new invoice, please login to ‘my account’.
Final payment is due 120 days prior to departure, at which point the card on file will be charged. As a courtesy, we will send a reminder notice approximately 1 week prior to this date. If you wish to use a different payment method, please update your online account, or contact our Guest Services Department by phone 1-800-231-1234 or email.
Once a reservation is confirmed, no name changes can be made. To change travelers, your original reservation must be cancelled and a new reservation made reflecting the correct configuration of passengers. Any non-refundable deposits paid on the original account will not apply to the new booking; the new reservation made will be subject to normal non-refundable deposit requirements.
If your flight is delayed or cancelled, please call YMT Vacations immediately. We will make all necessary efforts to book a new flight and get you to your destination. In some instances, this may result in partially missing the beginning of your tour. For this reason, we strongly encourage you to purchase Travel Protection, and to file a claim for compensation due to partial tour loss.
YMT Vacations cannot guarantee flight arrangements purchased through a third party. If your flight is delayed or cancelled, please contact the airline directly to secure new flight arrangements. Once new flights are booked, please contact YMT Vacations. We will make all necessary efforts to communicate your new flight arrangements with our ground operations. In some instances, flight delays and/or flight cancellations may result in partially missing the beginning of your tour. For this reason, we strongly encourage you to purchase Travel Protection, and to file a claim for compensation due to partial tour loss.
When you book with your Travel Consultant, we will forward your request for an aisle, window, or adjacent seat to the airlines. Every attempt will be made with the airlines to accommodate your request, however airlines don’t always allow preassigned seating.
For an additional cost, YMT Vacations can make upgraded air arrangements for guests. However, we cannot assist guests with applying frequent flyer miles to their upgraded airfare arrangements.
Frequent Flier accrual miles are dependent on the airline and program enrolled. Refer to your rewards program for clarification on accrual point description. Redemption of Frequent Flier Miles to book air must be redeemed through the airline carrier directly.
Airline checked baggage charges are not included in YMT airfare. You should check with the relevant airline for their latest policy. Additional airline charges apply in most cases that you check in more than one piece of baggage per person. Please see “What are the limits for luggage?” for YMT’s luggage policy.
Guests are responsible for arranging transfers between their home and home airport.
If you have purchased airfare with YMT Vacations, you will be met by a YMT representative in the baggage claim area when you arrive for transfers to your hotel or tour group. If you have opted to make your own airfare arrangements, transfers and baggage services are your responsibility to arrange from the airport to the hotel or tour group . Because many hotels offer free shuttle service to and from the airport, we suggest contacting the hotel to discuss the details of transfers on your arrival day.
If you have purchased airfare through YMT Vacations, this information will be included with your final travel documents emailed to you about 4 weeks prior to your departure. Information may also be available online through our website.
For best routing availability we suggest you decide at the time of booking; however, the decision to purchase airfare with YMT Vacations must be made at least 90 days prior to departure.
All YMT Vacations tours provide standard tourist class hotels, typically 3-4 stars, with either one or two beds and a private bathroom. For international hotels, we recommend bringing a converter and/or adaptor for your electronics, as some countries have different power outlets or electricity voltages. Hotels will either have a hair dryer in-room, or will have one available at the concierge. If you have questions about the specific hotels on your tour, please contact YMT Guest Services to learn more.
Most YMT hotels will have dining options within walking distance or a restaurant in house. Where this is not available, your tour director will inform you of other options. They may make a food stop before arrival at your hotel, or run a shuttle bus to nearby restaurants.
Hotel contact information will be included in your final travel documents emailed to you about 4 weeks prior to your departure.
Yes. If you would like to arrive early or stay later at a specific hotel, feel free to contact the hotel directly to make arrangements. For certain tours, YMT does offer pre-night accommodations. Please contact your Travel Consultant or YMT Guest Services to learn more.
It is strongly recommended that you fill out your cruise line’s online registration before you leave for your tour. Waiting to complete the immigration form could result in delays at the pier during the embarkation process.
Onboard gratuities average between $12 to $20 per person, per day. Most cruise lines charge this amount directly to your onboard ship account. If you have any questions or concerns regarding this policy, please see the front desk staff aboard your cruise.
A tip of $1 a day is recommended for cruise hosts. YMT Cruise Hosts are not part of the Cruise Staff and are on the cruise in order to facilitate embarkation and disembarkation, help you navigate services on the ship, and also to support you in case of experiencing an emergency while onboard.
Your travel documents will be emailed to you about 4 weeks prior to your departure, and will include your cabin assignment and booking number.
We will forward your past customer information and any membership numbers on to the cruise line; special upgrades and other perks are at the discretion of the cruise line and not controlled by YMT Vacations.
YMT Vacations strives to make all your vacation preparations a quick and easy process, and getting ready for your cruise is no exception! Below are some helpful links to our cruise line partners, taking you to exactly where you need to go to get cruise documents or book shore excursions. Can’t find exactly what information you’re looking for? Contact our Guest Services Department at (800) 231-1234 or email our Guest Services Department.
To complete mandatory online registration with Holland America Cruise Line or to access and print your Holland America cruise documents.
To complete mandatory online registration with Norwegian Cruise Line or to access and print your NCL cruise documents.
To complete mandatory online registration with MSC Cruises or to access and print your MSC cruise documents.
To complete mandatory online registration with Costa Cruises or to access and print your Costa cruise documents.
We use modern sight-seeing motor coaches with large picture windows that are perfect for witnessing beautiful vistas during the land portion of your vacation. All motor coaches are air-conditioned.
The length of time spent on your motor coach varies depending on the itinerary planned for the day; comfort/sightseeing stops are planned approximately every 2 hours.
To help foster a friendly motor coaching experience, we rotate seating arrangements regularly throughout the tour.
Tipping can vary greatly depending on the different countries, regions or type of service provided. Please refer to our Know Before You Go document that will be emailed to you as part of the Final Documents approximately 4 weeks prior to your departure date.