To effectively research my travel options for Jordan and Egypt, I have released all preconceived notions. I am re-examining information that I discarded.
I am using traveler feedback, travel guides, travel sites and tourism boards.
Specific sources are:
- TripAdvisor forums
- Fodor forums
- Lonely Planet Egypt Guide
- Jordan tourism board
I have compiled lists of Tour Operators that service Jordan and Egypt. I have contained the lists to a spreadsheet with three tabs, Jordan-based Tour Operators, Egypt-based Tour Operators, and US-based Tour Operators.
Only one tour operator is on all lists, Abercrombie and Kent.
Tour Operators are selected for further review based on the following criteria:
Cost: must be less than US$3000
Entrance fees: must be inclusive of the tour price
Guides: must be an Egyptologist in Egypt and must speak English
Presence: must have an online presence
Itinerary: if a packaged tour, it must be reasonably paced
Transport:private and air conditioned vehicles
Occupancy: pricing for single, double,and group
When researching tours for Jordan, it is common to also see combined packaged tours of Jordan and Israel.
Unlike Jordan, I have traveled to Israel and I didn’t love it.
In 2010, I went on a cruise with Royal Caribbean called Holy Land cruise. It was basically a Mediterranean cruise with Israel.
The cruise also stopped in Sorrento, Athens, Chania and Ephesus.
At the time, I didn’t enjoy Israel because the tour guide said most of the sights were rebuilt by the Franciscans. This took the luster out of the experience.
Also, we were there for two days and saw everything. I was not able to absorb what I saw until I came back.
On the south side of the altar via the ambulatory (an aisle surrounding the end of the choir or chancel of a church)is a stairway climbing to Calvary (Golgotha), traditionally regarded as the site of Jesus’ crucifixion and the most lavishly decorated part of the church
Finally, the trip was not tailored to a Protestant Christian. Therefore, I saw a bunch of sites for which I had zero context.
I recently, read an article from Wendy Perrin about this issue. She suggests working directly with a tour guide such as Joe Yudin that understands how to plan such a trip.
For those that have a religious interest in Israel, you should also research Israel trips for Protestants or Catholics.
If you have never been to Israel and are not religious, a Jordan/Israel tour or a cruise that highlights Israel may work.
I am no longer interested in going to India, SE Asia or the Baltic’s. Well, not in the near future.
My interest waned for the following reasons:
- I can not find the trip I want for the price I want to pay.
- Flights to India and SE Asia are long and business class was expensive. I don’t want to fly coach.
- No urgency. I realized none of these places will disappear in the near future.
Instead, I have decided to focus on places that may vanish by 2025.
I am going to research Venice, Jordan (Dead sea), China (Yangtze river) and Quebec (Magdalen Islands).
The cost of flights is below:
- New York to Venice, May 25, 2017, 10 nights
- Shortest Flight Business Class (8hr(d), 10h(a)) – Delta, United, Lufthansa, Italia – $2929
- Shortest Flight Economy Class (8hr(d), 10h(a)) – Delta, United- $1598
- Jordan (Dead Sea)
- New York to Amman, Oct 13 – Nov 1, 2016
- Shortest flight Business Class (11hr(d), 13h(a)) – Royal Jordanian – $3357
- Shortest flight Economy Class (11hr(d), 13h(a)) – Royal Jordanian – $797
- China (Yangtze river)
- New York to Beijing, May 25,2017, 10 nights
- Shortest flight Business Class (16hrs) – Air Canada – $3928
- Shortest flight Economy Class (14hrs) – United -$2058
- New York to Quebec, Sep 17,2016, 5 nights
- Shortest flight First Class (2hrs) – Delta- $388
- Shortest flight Economy Class (2hrs) – Delta -$270
Based on the cost of flights, Quebec is the only surety.
Next week, I will start the in-depth research.