How to pack and travel in a small group tour
What is a small group tour?
I first heard of small group tours when I interviewed Josie about her ‘en plein air’ small group tour. Josie travelled to the heart of Australia with a small group of like-minded people, all interested in the same thing: an opportunity to see, visit and paint in remote, open air - generally not easily accessible - pristine environments.
This is what Josie said about travelling in the small group tour transport vehicle:
"So this particular trip set out from Alice Springs in the centre of Australia and we travelled there by air and joined the tour which was run by Oztours Australia and they operate with four wheel drive specially modified trucks. They are not buses, they are trucks and they are like the Tardis; they have got everything imaginable on board and cater to all sorts of situations including all of your camping gear, your chairs, your tables to eat your meals from. They are just an amazing thing to see unfold and unpack."
Since chatting to Josie, I’ve discovered there’s a small group tour for every interest, hobby or destination. Over the next few weeks, I will (virtually) explore some small group tours - starting with fishing at Fishing Earth. You'll be able to catch that post soon!
Where can you go with a small group tour?
Where will you go with a small group tour? There’s a small group tour for every interest: food, art, education, extreme sport, walking, cycling. You name it; there's a tour for it - in any country or place imaginable.
Looking at small group tour websites, I think these tours are perfect if you want to quickly and easily immerse yourself in the culture and adventure of your chosen experience. Josie travelled in a small bus, guided through the Australian outback. Her tour visited places that would be challenging to reach if you don’t know the area or don’t have the right vehicle. I expect this personalised approach unveils experiences unreachable without the small group tour guide.
What to expect in a small group tour
What's in store if you’re going on a small group tour? It starts with being in a small group for some time, united by your common interest and being prepared to fit in with the group. But the benefit of having a local guide who smooths out all the downsides of travel - transport, knowing where to eat, how to get to and from places - and provides safety and camaraderie within a group - makes it an experience not available to single travellers. And think of all the new friends you'd make.
How to travel light with a small bag
The one aspect common to all small group tours is you have to travel with a small bag (unless you’re going skiing or visiting the Antarctic, but those are special cases). The luggage instruction for Josie’s tour was prescriptive: one small bag only, without wheels and when filled, to weigh no more than 12 kilograms. (For Planepack that's quite generous: I normally travel with 7 kilograms only - plenty of light travel experience!)
If you want to travel in a small group tour, Planepack's packing guides, tips and advice will help you plan and pack your small bag. If you're interested in exploring small group travel further, have a look at Adventures with Sarah for even more packing advice.
How to pack a small bag for your group tour
You've decided to go on a small group tour, but you're unsure how to fit your things into a small bag. Help is at hand: I've written this 'How to plan and pack for a small group tour' guide - specifically to help you plan and pack your small travel bag for your small group tour.
You can freely download this 6-page guide. Just submit your name and email address in the form below to receive your free guide - and enjoy the Planepack tips, case study and general advice.
About the author
I'm Slobodanka Graham, digital publisher, content entrepreneur and extreme light traveller. While I haven't yet gone on a small group tour, that one to Venice and Slovenia is looking pretty inviting . . .