Is there a deposit required?
Outside of 4 months prior, a deposit is required to hold your place on an upcoming trip. We normally accept deposits via check, or credit card with a 3.6% fee. Most deposits are fully refundable up until a set final payment date, usually 120 days prior to departure. There are some tours where deposits are non-refundable due to supplier policies, but this will be noted on tour information pages. Once booked, please see our cancellation & refund policy noted on the back of your deposit confirmation.
How do I sign up on a tour?
Sign-up is easy, just give us a call at 704-517-5381 or book through our website under the Book a Tour tab. You can download our tour mini-brochures under each tour listing.
Where do I mail the booking form or other items like deposit check?
Stewart Tours / 500 Westover Dr #12025, Sanford, NC 27330
Who do I make a check payable to?
All checks are made payable to Stewart Tours. We do accept credit cards, but with a 3.6% fee.
Do you book or provide the airfare?
On most of our tours, we have competitively priced group flights that include transfers to & from the airport in the arrival and departure cities. We try whenever possible to use direct flights with no more than one stop if needed for scheduling. You are always welcome to book our tours without airfare or upgrade your seats to business class when available.
Can I deviate and go early or stay later after tour?
On most tours you can deviate your arrival or departure dates and we would be happy to extend hotels and arrange the deviated flights, if needed.
How much luggage can I take?
We usually limit luggage to ONE LARGE BAG and ONE CARRY-ON per person. This makes it much easier for hotels and transfer staff when moving luggage for the group. It also streamlines movement when you might be forced to move your own bag for a short distance. We do include porterage at most hotels on almost all tours, but there are exceptions where you will need to move your own bag. There are some tours where one bag is the maximum due to logistics.
Do I need special luggage tags?
We provide full color, destination-themed luggage tags for all tours. All luggage tags are specially marked with your name. This gives you peace of mind that we know your personal bag and that it has made it safely on a bus or transfer vehicle. The tags are nice looking and you can leave them on your bags to announce to the world, "I am a Stewart Tours world traveler!"
What type of hotels do you use?
On most tours we use 4 & 5-Star hotels. We don't choose hotels based on stars, but on direct feedback from people who have stayed there. Unlike many tour operators, we don't choose hotels that are easy or convenient for a bus, but hotels that are inspiring and say something about the destination. The thing to remember as a traveler is that a 5-star hotel in a remote or exotic country, might not be the same 5-Star hotel you experience here in the USA. Whenever possible we use smaller boutique hotel for our tours, but in some cases, for security or due to the destination, boutique hotels are not always possible.
Do the trips feel like a bus tour?
We are not big fans of the bus tour grind, and that is not the way we like to travel ourselves. We do not typically stay in big bus tour hotels as we seek out the boutique and unusual. Most often we stay multi-nights per stop, thus allowing you to relax and soak up a location a bit. If using a bus for transport, we try to limit overland journeys by bus to less than 3 hours whenever possible.
Do we get tickets or an itinerary for the tours?
Two weeks prior to departure you'll receive Stewart Tours signature tour documents with everything bound into a booklet for easy packing. This tour booklet includes a full day-by-day itinerary, your airline schedule with electronic ticket numbers, a hotel/contact list to leave with family & friends, a list of who’s on the tour, a FAQ section and your custom luggage tags.
Is there a Tour Director on the tour?
Yes, all trips are lead by Mark & Vicki Stewart, owners and founders of Stewart Tours. You are met personally by them at airport in the city where the tour commences. You'll board the plane in your home city and when you land in the final destination you are in Mark & Vicki's care! With most tour companies, you will have a different tour director/host on each new tour your book, not Stewart Tours. It’s like being welcomed home to the familiar each time you travel with us.
Do Mark & Vicki Stewart do the touring in a given city?
Even though Mark & Vicki have traveled to 66+ countries so far, it is the experience and passion of local guides who will bring the destinations to life. Mark & Vicki are present to coordinate all aspects of the tour, helping to make sure you are comfortable and having a fabulous time. Having ownership right on the tour allow decisions to be made on the spot that help make it the best travel experience possible.
Can I do additional touring in a city, town or area?
Because we balance all tours with a formal touring schedule and independent exploration, you are always welcome to soak up a destination on your own as well. Unlike many companies, we don't sell optional tours after giving you a basic tour of an area. We feel our tour experience should be full and
rewarding without the need for extra charges.
What is an Alumni?
The term "alumni" is used in reference to someone who has been on a Stewart Tour in the past. We currently have many Alumni members who have been on more than 5-10 tours over the years. Alumni receive a special notification of all upcoming trips before we release the tours online. On most of our adventures, an estimated 90% of travelers have been on a journey with us before. They may not know each other, but they know Mark & Vicki Stewart and automatically feel relaxed. This makes for a very welcoming atmosphere for NEW travelers, and removes all of the awkwardness sometimes present during the first few days of a traditional group tour.
Can I invite friends to join the trip and travel with me?
Yes you can. We have many past travelers who invite friends to come along on tours. It is always nice to have a friend or another couple to travel with. Although 85% of travelers will own rental property due to our roots as association travel, outside of a rental property owners 2-hour round-table session, the tours are just people who enjoy traveling and the camaraderie of a group setting. As long as the friends booked with Stewart Tours, they are welcome to attend the round-table session as well.
I am a single person, can I still go?
We have numerous single travelers on almost every tour. Some bring friends to share the accommodation and others travel on their own. That is the great part about group travel - once the trip gets going, nobody is alone or single. You get to know everybody and often find a possible future traveling companion on the tour. If desired, we can try to match up singles with other singles of the same gender. Singles travelers who prefer independent accommodation will pay a single supplement that varies from tour to tour, but whenever possible we keep this supplement as low as possible. We love our single travelers!
What are the round-table session(s) during the tours about?
The round-table session on each tour are a tradition and a popular feature. These sessions are very interesting and allow rental property owners to share information and experiences with other owners. Apartment owners should consult their tax professionals about the possible tax benefits of an Apartment Association Travel program.
Know your own health and limitations before traveling.
As a company we travel to some locations in the world that are remote and medical care and immediate assistance is not always available as quickly as at home. We ask our travelers to please be in stable health before joining us on tour for both your comfort and as a courtesy to fellow travelers. It is not possible for Stewart Tours to give special attention to a chronic health issue that might divert our attention from the safety and welfare of the entire group. We do work with a professional team, so if medical issues arise, our local partners will assist in getting travelers medical attention.
I have a frequent flyer number or am a past passenger with a cruise line, can I use those numbers?
Yes, you can use all frequent flyer numbers and past passenger numbers, if applicable, for that carrier or supplier. Please feel free to give us those numbers at time of booking. We will make sure they are provided to the applicable companies. You can also provide any TSA or Global Entry Numbers.
Should I take out medical and cancellation/interruption insurance?
We cannot recommend more strongly that all travelers protect themselves with cancellation insurance and medical coverage. We recommend, at the very least, to take supplemental travel medical coverage with evacuation coverage to protect yourself in the event of a hospital stay or need for transport back to the USA. We have seen multiple scenarios where medical evacuation will not be dispatched without proof of travel medical coverage. Don't be caught without coverage! Please let us know if you need a travel
medical & cancellation insurance quote.
When I Email or Call Stewart Tours, who will I speak with?
All of your communication with Stewart Tours will be directly with ownership of the company, Mark
or Vicki Stewart, no different than when you are on tour.
How do you contact us?
Our direct telephone number is 704.517.5381 and our email is travel@StewartTours.com
You can also contact us via the Book A Tour section of the website.
Didn’t find the answer to your question? Email us directly!