This page provides useful advice for planning your trip and help with what to expect during your time on tour. Click on the links below and find out tips on what to pack and general information about life on the road.

  • Our Vehicles

    Our private vehicles are customised to ensure your comfort whilst on tour. With a fleet of Ford vans in North America and a variety of Mercedes/Toyota and other vehicles in Latin America, all luggage, camping equipment and other necessities are secured in a specially designed trailer or storage area. Vehicles are equipped with large windows and stereo systems so you'll be cruising down the road in style, and every group is virtually self-sufficient and able to explore where the crowds can't go. It may be necessary from time to time to utilise an alternative vehicle from the one described in the brochure hereto, or in some cases to utilise complementary public transportation (including trains/airplanes/ferries/buses), as local operating conditions permit.


  • Passport & Visas

    You will need a valid passport, together with visas where necessary for the United States, Canada, Mexico and Central/South American countries. It is important that you apply for visas while in your home country.

    Note on US Electronic System for Travel Authority (ESTA):If you are travelling to the USA, the US authorities have introduced a requirement for passengers travelling under the Visa Waiver Programme to register for Electronic Travel Authority. For additional specifics about the VWP please consult the VWP information on the US Embassy London website. www.usembassy.org.uk

    If you are refused boarding or denied admission at the US port of entry you will still be subject to our cancellation charges in accordance with the terms of our contract with you.

    The US Government has recently announced that there will be a fee of $14 for all ESTA applications after 8th September 2010. You should apply for an ESTA at least 72 hours before travelling. We recommend that you carry your ESTA approval with you when you travel. For further information regarding this requirement, queries should be addressed to the US Embassy Consular department.

    Click here for further Visa information >


  • Tour Departure & Finish

    Grand American Adventures tours begin and end at our gateway hotels. The group will usually meet at 7.30am on day one, but times may vary so check your tour voucher/itinerary for exact details. On the final day your tour will usually end upon arrival at the hotel at approximately 5.00pm. However, some tours vary from these times - please check specific itineraries. If you require hotel accommodation this night, you must buy an accommodation voucher at the time of booking. Please do not book a flight on the last day of your tour that departs prior to 9pm for international flights.


  • Gateway Hotels

    We can pre-book additional nights before and after the trip in twin-share accommodation (or single rooms upon request). We encourage you to make your hotel requests at the time of booking. Hotels cancelled within 30 days of the tour departure are non-refundable. Feel free to contact our sales team with any questions.


  • Airport Transfers

    Most Grand American Adventures passengers self-transfer/taxi to our gateway hotels. You will find detailed instructions on how to get to our hotels on our Gateway Hotel page.


  • Hotel Accommodation

    Grand American Adventures arranges comfortable 3 star hotels and lodges that are ideally located close to the National Parks. Some tours might feature a cowboy ranch or a historic lodge inside a National Park; most of our hotels in Costa Rica have swimming pools. Providing more comfort, our National Park Lodges and Northwest Park Lodges tours stay in the historic National Park lodges and nearby resorts that offer exceptional atmosphere and comfort.


  • Our Campgrounds

    Camping within and alongside the National Parks is an ideal way to access nature's beautiful trails. Grand American Adventures uses high quality camp tents, field kitchens and camp chairs so you can comfortably relax and enjoy the natural surroundings. Our leaders help to prepare delicious meals (included in the price while camping) so you can eat fresh, hearty meals on the road.


  • Sleeping Bags

    Grand American Adventures supplies all camping equipment needed EXCEPT a sleeping bag. A sleeping bag is not required on our lodging tours as all bedding is provided.


  • Luggage

    All luggage is carried in trailers or inside the vehicle, so please don't bring more than one medium sized suitcase or rucksack (maximum 20kg) and your sleeping bag. Your suitcase/rucksack may get some rough handling, so make sure it's a tough one. Small hand baggage may also be carried inside the vehicle.


  • Group Size

    Grand American Adventures maintain a maximum group size of 13 people on most tours in North America (12 on Walking Tours) with travellers from all over the world sharing the common desire to experience and explore the great outdoors. Group sizes vary on some tours in Central and South America, with an average of 14 people.


  • Medical

    Illness or dental trouble can spoil your holiday, so it's always wise to have a thorough check-up before you leave home. You should also consult your doctor concerning which inoculations are advisable and necessary for specific areas.


  • Spending Money

    It is essential that you carry local currency or US dollars on tour for optional activities, souvenirs or restaurant meals. Cash points may not be readily available, and credit cards will often not be accepted for local activities. You should also bring some USD traveller's cheques to be sure that you may access funds during your trip.


  • Age Group

    Grand American Adventures Camping, Lodging and Walking Tours are designed for adults over 18 years old. While most passengers are 25-55, we get many people both above and below this range who prefer to travel in a small group unrestricted by age.

    On our Family Discovery Tours the average age of children is 13 years old and the minimum age is 8 years old (accompanied by their parents).

    For safety reasons, travellers over 55 will be asked to complete a self-declaration of fitness, although experience has shown us that our senior travellers are often in the best shape!


  • Languages

    Although Grand American Adventures groups are made up of a variety of nationalities, tours are conducted in English. As English is the common language, please make every effort to speak English for the group's benefit. If English is your native language, please speak a bit slower and more clearly for the benefit of non-native English speakers. Good communication will make for a more enjoyable tour and will give you the opportunity to meet more locals as you travel.


  • Climate & Clothing

    Climate varies sometimes dramatically, in the regions and altitudes we pass through, but temperatures will generally be hot during June, July, August and early September and warm at other times. For early and late season tours, we strongly recommend that you bring a warmer sleeping bag and jacket, as temperatures fall at night - especially in mountainous areas and in the north. While you will mainly wear casual, light clothing on your tour, you will certainly need a warm sweater, and something smarter for evening wear when we are closer to the big city night life. Hikers and walkers need to bring adequate footwear. For further information please refer to the tour's trip dossier and/or see our website.


  • Guided Day Hikes

    Our leaders enjoy spending as much time as possible on the trail with their groups. As interests and capabilities do vary, our leaders will typically guide day hikes according to each group's needs and the difficulty of the hike. On walking tours with two leaders, they will either guide separate hikes or offer additional activities and support. It will not always be possible for every hiker to be accompanied by a guide when groups divide up to explore different trails.

    N.B. Grand Canyon/Grand Teton National Park regulations limit group size and do not allow guided hikes.


  • Participation

    Tour leaders will organise food shopping, meal preparation and clean up on camping based tours. With instruction from the tour leader, passengers set up, pack their tents/kitchen and assist leaders as requested. Typically it takes only 15 minutes to set up the tents and camp kitchen.


  • Discover, explore and enjoy!

    You may be on tour, but don't lose your self-reliance. When we get to cities or parks where you are on your own for the day, go out and explore. Take subways, trolleys and buses. Go for a hike, get to know the place intimately, stay out all night if you want to.... Live It Up! When you visit cities or towns, you will have the opportunity to dance and party to your heart's content. Enjoy the nightlife and let loose. However, when you are in the campsites, especially the National Parks, remember that quiet hours are in effect. Please respect your fellow campers who are there for the peace and tranquility of camping. Enjoy the campfire nights without disturbing your neighbours.

Call us on 0333 999 7961 0333 999 7961
Real Americas | Real Adventure