Who is Your Group Escapes?
Group Escapes 4 Less, Inc. d.b.a. Your Group Escapes is an independent agent of Travel Planners International who serve over 4,200 independent locally owned retail travel agencies across the United States. Know what to expect when traveling - we use our experience and expertise from traveling to expand our knowledge to make sure you know what to expect We do the research, so you don’t have to - our travel consultants research destinations and stay up to date on travel offers.
Why shouldn’t I just book the trip myself?
Planning your vacation with Your Group Escapes will save you time and money! An Expedia 2013 study showed that most travelers look at 38 sites before finally making their travel plans. No more travel information overload! An ASTA 2016 study showed that using a travel agent saved consumers an average of $452 per trip! Group Escapes's relationships with suppliers will help you to get the best price, quality and value!
Will I pay more if I book through a travel agent?
No. We have access to the same booking sites and are able to price match for your groups with suppliers to get you the best deals. We also have access to discounts and promotions not available to the public.
Do you charge a fee?
Depending on the nature and size of the group request a custom group vacation plan can involve a significant amount of time. In order to perform the professional services required to plan and arrange certain types of private group travel, a plan to go deposit may be required. The deposit is non-refundable, a portion may be applied towards the cost of your vacation. Vacation planning involves much time. Work is based on years of personal experience and professional expertise. We research cruises, hotels and tours to meet your specific needs, contact suppliers, coordinate transportation, and draft itineraries. However, we provide complimentary 40-minute consultation to ensure that our services are a good fit for you.
How are payments made?
Payments are made with credit/debit cards. Please note: a pre-paid credit card is acceptable form of payment as well.
How much is the deposit?
Prices are subject to change without notice by the supplier until full deposit is received - for every person traveling in room/cabin. Deposits can vary starting as low as $50. Group Escapes will not be held liable for changes in availability, price or itinerary. Deposits also vary depending on type of vacation experience and are set by each applicable cruise line, resort or tour operator. Deposits may also vary based on time of travel, package and resort requirements.
When is the final payment due?
Balances for trips are typically due between approximate 45 – 60 days prior to travel. If you register after the balance is due, the entire amount is due within a week of registration unless you make other arrangements.
Do you offer a “Payment Plan?”
GE uses a Payment Schedule ("Payment Plan") to help facilitate the payments and expense of the trips. The GE "Payment" payment schedule (s) noted for each trip must be strictly followed in order to gurantee the package rates in effect when your deposit is made. Client agrees to be responsible for the layaway amount due at time of Cancellation. Failure to follow the established payment schedule may result in changes or increases to your package rate. Payment of deposit confirms your acceptance of the policy. All rates are effective today and subject to change until a deposit is received. Failure to maintain the schedule amount will make client liable for unpaid portion of payment plan at time cancellation or removal for unpaid balance.
Does the name on my reservation need to match the name on my ID?
Yes.it is important that the name on your reservation be exactly as it is stated on your passport or other government issued picture identification. If your name has changed since your document was issued (e.g., marriage/divorce), it is required that you update the document with the new name or provide an official supporting document of the name change. Otherwise, it may result in delay or possible denial of boarding. Denied boarding will not be refunded and is unlikely to be covered by travel protection.
Does my ID need to be REAL ID compliant to fly?
Beginning Oct. 1, 2021, you must show a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or ID card, or an alternative form of acceptable identification, for domestic air travel and for entering certain federal facilities. The federal Transportation Security Administration website
lists acceptable alternatives to a state-issued REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or ID card. You may not need a REAL ID-compliant card if you:
- Do not fly and you do not plan to enter certain federal facilities, such as military bases and nuclear power plants.
- Have an acceptable alternative to a state-issued REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or ID card, such as a valid U.S. passport.
Note: Standard and Enhanced driver’s licenses and state ID cards are printed with the REAL ID star to show they are REAL ID compliant.
Is a passport required for travel for U.S. born citizens?
Domestic Travel – Not Required
International Travel – ALWAYS Required
Cruise Travel - STRONGLY recommend but, is not required for U.S. Citizens. As long as the ship departs from a U.S. port (i.e. San Juan, Puerto Rico) and returns to the same port it departed from (this is called a “closed loop” cruise), you are not required to have a passport in order to return to the U.S. Keep in mind, that the U.S. State Department can change this in the future.
Also, keep in mind that if you have to leave the ship early in a foreign port, you are required to have a U.S. passport in order to fly back to the U.S. You will have to go through extra measures, possibly paying for an emergency passport at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate, in order to return home.
Please Note: For non-U.S. Citizens (traveling from another country, or legally residing in the U.S. in possession of a Green Card), you will need to confirm what form of ID you are required to travel with, whether that’s a passport from your country of citizenship and/or additional documentation (i.e. a U.S. Green Card).
Can grandparents take the kids on vacation?
Should the last names of the parent and minor child traveling with them differ, the parent is required to present the child's valid passport and visa (if required) and the child's birth certificate (original, a notarized copy or a certified copy). The name of the parent(s) and the child must be linked through legal documentation.
Adults who are not the parent or Legal Guardian of any minor child traveling with them are required to present the child's valid passport and visa (if required) or the child's birth certificate (original, a notarized copy or a certified copy) and an original notarized letter signed by at least one of the child's parents. The notarized letter from the child's parent must authorize the traveling adult to take the child on the specific cruise and must authorize the traveling adult to supervise the child and permit any medical treatment that must be administered to the child. If a non-parent adult is a Legal Guardian, the adult must present a certified certificate of Guardianship with respect to the child.
Where do I apply for a passport?
Applications for U.S. Passports are available at thousands of post offices and state and federal court buildings, as well as passport agencies. * For more information, visit the U.S. State Department website at...http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport 1738.html.
Can I make changes to a guest listed on my reservation?
Name changes will be subject to supplier restrictions. Typically, airline do not allow name changes. When name changes are allowed, there may be fees assessed by suppliers for the change.
When do I Check-In for my flight?
Flight Check-In 24 hours prior to your flight to reconfirm.
When do I need to get to the airport?
It is recommended that you arrive at the airport a minimum of 3 hours prior to your departure for International travel and 2 hours for domestic. Please visit your airline’s website for check-in procedures.
Do you recommend Trip Protection?
As a reminder, a vacation takes a while to save for, but can be interrupted in a moment. Travel Protection/Insurance is recommended to protect your investment. We are not insurance agents, but recommend checking into additional insurance coverage, if you have not purchased any. Also, if you have a major credit card, AAA, or belong to a Credit Union you may want to check if your vacation is already covered.
When do I - AIRLINE CONFIRMATIONS, CHECK-IN, SEAT ASSIGNMENTS, MISSED FLIGHTS?
It is important that you confirm your flights with the airline prior to departure: 24 hours in advance for domestic flights, and 72 hours in advance for international flights. Failure to confirm international flights or failure to use any portion of an airline reservation may result in automatic cancellation by the airline for all continuing and return flights. Familiarize yourself with your airline’s policies and requirements before booking.
- Unless stated otherwise by the airlines, it is important to arrive at the airport at least 2 hours prior to departure for domestic flights and 3 hours prior to departure for international flights.
- Late arrival at the airport can result in loss of assigned seats or denial of boarding. Denial of boarding is not eligible for refund or travel insurance reimbursement.
- Airfare rebooking’s are subject to airline penalties, rebooking fees, plus any cost difference of the new flight.
- Seat assignments are subject to change by the airline without notice.
Do I need shots?
For up to date information about required and recommended vaccines, please contact the Center for Disease Control https and your local personal physician.
Are there cancellation charges?
Cancellation charges reflect the many expenses YourGroup Escapes cannot recover if you cancel, even if you must do so due to illness, injury, or personal emergencies. These fees are not meant to be punitive. These charges reflect expenses incurred in administering your reservation and planning for your participation. We recognize that the majority of those who cancel their reservations do so out of necessity. Please note, we do not make refunds for any unused portion of your trip, not arriving, arriving late, or leaving the trip early. Travel Insurance (even if its not through us) is STRONGLY ENCOURAGED to offset these potential costs!
Can I change my vacation plans?
Where a change requested by you to your travel arrangements is permitted and possible, our standard service fees will apply in addition to any additional Supplier charges. Please note that all reservation changes are subject to availability and the terms and conditions of the product purchased. Changes to name details are not allowed by many airlines and other Suppliers. While we will endeavor to make such a change if necessary, please bear in mind that most airlines and Suppliers treat a name change as a cancellation, to which standard conditions and charges would apply.
Flights must be taken in the sequence they appear on your ticket or eticket confirmation. If you plan not to take a flight as booked, please contact the airline as far in advance as possible to discuss your options. If you do not check in on time for a confirmed reservation, the airline may register you as a ‘no-show’, which could result in extra charges and/or your whole flight itinerary being cancelled and/or render your ticket void.
Can I cancel my vacation plans?
If you cancel your arrangements, you may be entitled to a partial refund. In addition to the cancellation terms and conditions of your Supplier(s), our standard fees will apply as may be outlined on your receipt or booking confirmation. We need to receive from you your original voucher before any applicable refund can be considered. If you decide to cancel arrangements before the balance due date, any deposits, service fees and commissions paid are non-refundable.
Refunds will only be paid to you once we have received the funds back from the Supplier(s). Generally, flight tickets cannot be refunded if they are partially used. We are not responsible for a Supplier’s failure to pay a refund. If the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your travel insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim your cancellation charges through your insurer.
My reservations not found, now what?
A. If you arrive at an airline ticket or passenger check-in counter with your confirmed ticket and find that the airline shows no reservation for you – do not leave the counter. Check your ticket. If the status box shows "OK" for the flight in question, the airline policies typically require them to accommodate you on that flight, or if that is not possible, they must either find you a substitute flight or pay you denied boarding compensation. If necessary, ask to speak to a supervisor.
Is a destination safe?
Prior to booking international travel, we recommend that you review any U.S. Government’s prohibitions, warnings and advisories applicable to your destinations. By offering travel to any particular destination, we do not represent that travel in such destination is safe or without risk.
You further agree that in connection with your activities, you will not permit the use of our services or website by anyone that resides or is staying in a country for which such use is prohibited under U.S. regulations. Note that conditions can change rapidly in a country at any time. To receive updated Travel Advisories and Alerts, choose the method that works best for you at travel.state.gov/stayingconnected
The definition of all-inclusive can vary from resort to resort. However, standard inclusions would be all meals, beverages, taxes, tips, room service, shows and entertainment and on-site activities such as non-motorized water sports. Items in your room such as bottled water, snacks, toiletries and mini-bar, items are almost always included at no additional charge. Check with your resort for a full list of amenities and services as part of their all-inclusive plan.
Are all-inclusive resorts ideal for families?
All-inclusive resorts can be the perfect option for the whole family since their broad range of activities and amenities have something for everyone. From kids’ clubs and playgrounds, kids’ activities, video games, teen discos and even water parks to adults-only designated pools, nightly entertainment and spa facilities – most resorts are extremely diverse so you can do your own thing together or apart at the hotel. While some all-inclusive resorts are adults-only, there are many great hotel chains that are family-focused. Yes, we do have recommendations!
Can I plan my wedding and/or honeymoon at an all-inclusive resort?
Most all-inclusive resorts offer fabulous wedding or honeymoon packages. Ask us and we can find out information on wedding packages and services offered in addition to free inclusions for honeymooners.
Depending on the itinerary, you may visit multiple destinations. Typically, a variety of activities are available while when onboard. The self-contained nature of a cruise ship versus a resort can sometimes seem easier to maneuver for anyone that have trouble with mobility as resorts can be spread across a huge property.
What is an Onboard Cruise Expense Account? How does it work?
An Onboard Expense Account is the cashless system used for all onboard purchases and services on a cruise ship.
The account may be set-up with either a credit card or as a cash account. You may establish a master account and add guests from your stateroom or another stateroom as authorized purchaser on your account.
For each purchase made onboard the ship you will receive a receipt at the point of sale. A final statement will be delivered to your stateroom on the last night of your cruise vacation for your review.
Guests that set up an account with a credit card should verify the statement. If all purchases are correct, they will automatically be billed to the credit card.
Guests on a cash account will need to settle their statement onboard prior to disembarking. The ship will provide you with specific details.
What items are not allowed onboard a cruise ship?
Weapons, illegal drugs, and other items that could interfere with the safe operation of the ship or the safe and secure environment of guests and crew are prohibited. The following are examples of items that guests are not allowed to bring onboard. These and other similar items will be confiscated upon being found. Alcoholic beverages, illegal drugs, flammable liquids, explosives, and dangerous chemicals will not be returned. Please reference each cruise lines website for additional clarification of prohibited items.
Also note that most cruise lines prohibit wearing any types of costumes onboard. Of course, jerseys are fine, but costumes of any other type are prohibited.
What is Travel Insurance/Trip Protection?
While you can’t do anything to prevent unforeseen circumstances, you can help protect your vacation investment by purchasing travel insurance. Individuals declining insurance will be asked to sign a waiver. We recommend you make sure you have coverage, which covers your cost if you need to cancel or interrupt your trip for medical reasons, trip delay, lost baggage, and other unforeseen emergencies depending on what type of coverage you select.
TRIP INSURANCE is highly recommended. You can obtain a quote here. AIG Travel Guard Travel Insurance Comparison Tool