So you’re interested in outdoor adventure trips, but haven’t decided which company is the right fit for you. Here are five useful questions to keep in mind while searching for your trip-of-a-lifetime.
1. How long has the company been in business?
2. Do they have references you can contact?
The beauty of a successful adventure travel company is the number of satisfied customers willing to spread the word. Try asking the company for references and checking online for reviews on sites like TripAdvisor.
3. What are the qualifications of the guides?
To put it lightly, your guide will make or break your experience. Make sure the company knows who they’re sending you away with. How many years experience do they have in the destination? What languages do they speak? How are they trained? Do they have wilderness medicine training? Asking these questions will lead to important answers and is an easy way to catch a glimpse of the company's credibility.
4. What is the company’s commitment to responsible tourism?
Be mindful of the impact your company has on the environment and locals. By booking locally owned accommodation, dining at local establishments, and employing local guides, adventure travel companies help sustain local economies and ensure an authentic travel experience. Think about it, who knows the “ins and outs” of a city better than the locals? Also, make sure the company is cautious of fragile ecosystems and sensitive to wildlife.
5. Is the company licensed to sell adventure travel?
You’ve just transferred funds to your adventure travel company when you find out they’ve gone insolvent. What do you do now? These situations highlight the importance of booking with a licensed travel company. Some countries, provinces and states have mandatory licensing. Ideally, choose a company that is licensed. For instance, Consumer Protection BC enforces consumer protection laws in British Columbia. It’s just good business.
By asking these five questions, you’ll be better situated to choose an adventure travel company that is right for you.