4 Reasons Why I Dislike Tours (And 3 Reasons Why They Can Be Okay)

Tours. Some love them, some hate them. I’ve been on a few and found some were good, some were bad, some were terrible, some were a mix of all of these, some I liked, and some I certainly didn’t! The longest tour I have ever been on was when my sister and I went on an 11 day Trafalgar tour of Ireland when I was in high school. While I was in Scotland I did a few hour long walking tour of old Edinburgh. More recently (last week), Ried and I decided to try a day tour of Chichen Itza in Mexico because it was simple and cheaper than renting a car or taking the bus. This most recent excursion reminded me of why I generally would always choose doing it myself over taking some sort of touristy tour. We always consider the following points when deciding whether we should take a tour.

Our Tour of Chichen Itza

Why I Dislike Tours:

  1. Limited Time in the Places I Love

I hate being on someone else’s schedule while travelling! There’s nothing worse than getting somewhere you’ve been dreaming of exploring and being told you only have 2 hours or the bus leaves without you. When Ried and I were at Chichen Itza, we only had about 2 hours there. After we had a little info session and then walked around the site our time was basically over. I definitely would have liked to have sat on the grass for a while and admired the architecture and then had another walk around.

  1. Too Much Time in the Places I Don’t Love

Tourist traps! Ugh! Tours tend to spend wayyyy too much time at little souvenir places and touristy areas that don’t resemble anything close to the country you are visiting. You spend too much money on travelling to waste time at some random marketplace that sells cheap souvenirs made in a country you’re not even visiting.

  1. Terrible Jokes

Ever had a tour guide who was trying to be funny and made you cringe the whole bus ride to your location? By the time we got to Chichen Itza, I was pretty tired of the “wives are always shopping, men hide your credit cards!” and “Women talk too much!” jokes. It’s not funny and I would rather hear info about the site I’m visiting. Enough said.

  1. Food

I find tours difficult for eating (especially with allergies). Usually all the food is prearranged and you don’t have a ton of choice. Obviously, I’m sure a more expensive tour would be able to accommodate allergies. But it can be hit and miss and I would rather choose where I eat anyways.

Why Tours Can Be Okay:

  1. Low Stress

It’s all planned out ahead of time! Step on the bus and relax!

  1. Helpful Info

Tour guides can be very knowledgeable and teach you things you might not be able to find in a pamphlet or a quick google search.

  1. Safety

Visiting a place you feel a bit unsure of? Tours can offer some safety in numbers. Also, if it’s a good tour they’ll know where is safe to go and where to avoid.

I think everyone has their own opinion about tours and has both negative and positive stories. It’s truly up to you and your travel style! But next time, I’m renting a car!



8 thoughts on “4 Reasons Why I Dislike Tours (And 3 Reasons Why They Can Be Okay)

      1. Unfortunately no! I don’t do much traveling, which makes blogs like yours fun for me! That’s also why I would use a tour guide! However, I like what you mentioned in this post about doing research before traveling. That way you might be able get around whichever country you’re visiting without having to depend on a tour guide!


      2. Hey Charli!
        Research is definitely an important part of travel. Fortunately it is also a part that we love to do. There are some places that we hope to visit that we wouldn’t feel comfortable visiting without a tour group however (or in some cases is only possible with a tour group).
        So do you have a place you hope to visit one day?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. True! A friend of mine once told me that some people like the whole experience of traveling, including the planning! I would love visit Spain! I always wanted to learn a little spanish!


      4. It’s true, the travelling can go by so fast that the anticipation is great for stretching it out. Spain sounds lovely! I would love to go there (although I say that about everywhere :p). Learning a new language is a great goal though and certainly helps with enjoying.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Lol. Yes, I me learning a language would be so much fun! I’m not sure if everyone would agree with that though! Lol. I hear if you spend enough time in another country you might pick up some the language spoken the there, and I would love to try that!


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