Of course, it depends on many factors, including your travel experience, personality, and budget. You’ll have to balance the trade offs and decide which is more appropriate for you specifically.
In general, going with an all-inclusive China tour deals in China is more suitable for travelers with little to no overseas travel experience. Or those who really dislike the hassles of deciding where to go, how to get there, choosing a hotel and restaurant, and so on.
Cost-wise, it depends. For the serious budget traveler, going solo is cheaper (but you’ll likely won’t be traveling as comfortably). But because tour groups can get volume discounts and share transportation, they aren’t necessarily more expensive than independent travel and can be a good value.
Organized tours in China: Pros & Cons
Although there are differences, an “organized tour” in China usually refers to a full-package with a tour guide who handles virtually every detail of your itinerary, including which attractions you’ll see (and stops along the way), where’ll you’ll stay and eat, and so on.
Hassle-free: You just show up and do what they tell you. You won’t have to figure out how to buy tickets or negotiate with taxi drivers or look for a hotel. It also means that you and your friends won’t have to bicker endlessly about where, when, and how to go to your next destination.
Join a tour group or independent travel in China? You’ll have a Chinese tour guide, who (should) have specialized information about the sites as well as serve as a translator for your group.
Safety in numbers as well as a tour guide who can help steer you clear of trouble and annoyances.
New friends: You’ll have the opportunity to socialize and share experiences with other travelers in your group.
More variety of foods: You’ll be eating Chinese family-style for most meals (shared by entire table) so you’ll be able to sample a wider range of foods that you might not otherwise try.
Join a tour group or independent travel in China?Lack of flexibility: You might feel as if you’re back in summer camp since someone else will be dictating all the details of your day (such as when to wake up, etc). Want to take a detour to check out something interesting? Have a craving for some non-Chinese food for a change? Sorry, the bus is leaving in 10 minutes.
You”ll have a more “watered down” travel experience. Being part of a large tour group — which largely go to the same popular tourist spots — means fewer opportunities to have genuine interactions with locals and appreciate the subtleties of daily life in the back streets.
If your tour guide is unpleasant (or just annoying), you’re out of luck since you’re stuck with him/her for the rest of your trip. The quality of your tour guide is critical in other respects — some can barely speak English and are not as knowledgeable as they should be so do your homework first.
If other people in your group are unpleasant or annoying,it can be harder to appreciate the majesty of the Li River whose view can be compared with that of Yangtze River cruises as you listen to Bubba loudly tell the story of how he once caught a 20 pound catfish with his bare hands….for the fifth time.
Waste valuable time in attractions and pit stops that are thinly disguised tourist-trap gift shops. Since tours typically get some sort of commission or kickback for bringing in a bus load of rich tourists, you might get annoyed at all of the pit stops as well as the mediocre restaurants that cater to tourist groups.
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