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Passports and Visas
What documents do I need to travel?
Depending on where you’re travelling and your nationality, you'll likely need a valid passport and may also need visas to enter into certain countries - please check this well in advance of your trip departure date. Some countries also require passports to have 3-6 months left on them before the given expiry date.
Prior to joining the trip, all Contiki travellers will need an Authentic COVID-19 vaccination certificate (electronic or paper showing date and time of vaccination(s) with final or booster dose given at least 15 days before departing for this trip. This proof of vaccination needs to be recognized in your travel destination.
It is the responsibility of the traveller to ensure you have the appropriate, valid documentation for the length of their trip.
Any required Contiki documentation will be made known to you during and post booking.
How do I get a passport?
If you’re getting a passport for the first time you’ll need to fill out a passport application form, which you can download from your government's website, local post office or government buildings, depending on your country of residence.
There is a charge for passports and they normally take 3-6 weeks to be approved and delivered (depending on your country of residence), so make sure you check this out before making any travel plans.
Do I need a visa?
Visas are super important and are essential for entering certain countries. It’s up to you to be responsible for obtaining all necessary visas prior to the departure of your trip.
Information on visa needs is usually readily available on your Government's website.
Remember, visas can take up to 6 weeks to process and a fee is normally charged, so no leaving this one till the last minute. We recommend you apply for all visas through your official visa service or travel agent before commencing your travel journey unless specified in Contiki’s pre-trip information.
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Health and Vaccinations
Do I need to be vaccinated for Covid-19 to travel on Contiki?
We highly recommend all travellers are vaccinated and boosted where applicable, but it’s not a requirement of travelling with us.
Travellers will need to comply with specific vaccine and/or booster requirements imposed by airlines and/or authorities in the destination visited, as well as requirements for accessing restaurants and venues. It is your responsibility to ensure that you comply at all times with these requirements. No refunds will be given if you are unable to undertake some or all of your vacation due to failure to comply with these requirements.
Do I need to get any other vaccinations before I travel?
If you’re heading to places like Asia and Latin America, it’s likely you’ll need some vaccinations, pre-travel. You should consult official medical advice from your country of residence, usually available on the Government website.
What if I have medical conditions or physical disabilities?
If you suffer from any form of medical condition, be sure to have an adequate supply of relevant medication prior to departing on your trip and advise us of any important medical conditions you may have at time of booking. Often Contiki trips occur in locations where pharmacies etc are not immediately accessible.
Some of our trips are unfortunately not appropriate for some physical disabilities. Prior to booking, please contact our contact centre to discuss which trips will be suitable according to the level of assistance required. Failure to communicate additional needs prior to trip booking may mean we are unable to proceed with your booking at a later stage.
We need to ensure any special needs, services or accompanied-bodies are discussed at the time of booking. Contiki do not provide devices such as wheelchairs and will not be responsible for the failure of the person or able bodied companion/s to provide these services.
What if I get sick while travelling?
Sickness is never ideal, but sometimes it can happen when you’re on the road experiencing new foods and ways of life. Depending on the severity of your sickness, your Trip Manager will help you find any medicine or minor treatments you may need. In the event of a severe medical incident, we have robust medical and emergency procedures in place for every trip to ensure you are seen quickly.
Taking out comprehensive insurance before travelling with Contiki is a must, and will ensure you are covered for any personal injury, medical expenses etc. that you may incur.
How can I keep healthy on the road?
Looking after yourself whilst on your Contiki trip is the key to ensuring you get the most from your travelling experience. Keeping an eye on what you're eating and drinking, how much movement you're doing, getting a decent amount of sleep and just knowing when enough is enough will do wonders for both your physical and mental health. Click here for more tips.
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Luggage and Packing
How much luggage can I bring?
This one depends on the destination and trip you’re travelling on. Read your Contiki travel documentation carefully to understand luggage allowances for your specific trip.
Our typical luggage allowances;
For our European, North American, Australian and New Zealand trips, luggage is restricted to one decent sized, suitcase, approximately 29” × 20” × 10” (73cm x 50cm x 25cm) with a maximum weight of 20 kilos (44lbs.) plus one small hand/day bag that can go on the transport with you. Metal frame backpacks are not advised as their bulky shape makes packing vehicles tricky, plus they are more likely to damage other luggage.
For Latin America, Asia & other regions which have internal flights included in the itinerary, luggage weight restrictions must be within the restriction of the given airlines you’re travelling on. It’s up to you to ensure you keep within these measurements and weight restrictions, so please check this out before you travel as excess baggage fees will be at your own cost.
Some trips have specific luggage requirements, such as Contiki sailing, trekking and some Contiki camping trips – you will have this information sent to you in your pre-trip documents should this apply.
For our train trips please note you must be able to carry your own bags on this trip. As we will be taking public transport in cities & getting to the heart of the destinations we visit, pack wisely.
On European ski trips and New Zealand trips with a ski option you have the option to bring one pair of skis and ski boots or snowboard.
Why is the amount you can bring restricted?
As important as unlimited outfit choices are, all of the travellers’ luggage needs to fit on the various transport we operate during the trips. This typically accommodates 1 piece of large luggage per traveller.
Plus, you’re responsible for your own luggage, so less luggage = less carrying luggage. Win. Win.
Should I take a suitcase or backpack?
Depends where you’re travelling to. Trips to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands? A backpack will be your best bet. Oversized suitcases or metal framed backpacks are a no-go due to luggage limitations, but you can bring a smaller bag to pack for the Galapagos. Then you can leave your main suitcase at the hotel in Guayaquil to collect on return.Easy.
On Australia trips which include sailing and/or 4-wheel drive trips, there’s a super small luggage space so again, make sure you bring along a small bag to transfer your essentials into. Your regular luggage will be stored back at your accommodation.
Other than what's mentioned above, travelling with a backpack or suitcase is totally up to you. Weigh up the pros and cons of each here.
Is there any kind of dress code?
If there are specific dress requirements, we’ll let you know before you go. This is especially important if you’re travelling to areas where the culture and religion is different to your own. You’ll be able to get a good sense of the clothing needed from the day itineraries shown on the particular trip page.
On a day-to-day basis we recommend comfortable, casual clothing. Some trips do include bar/club or more formal evening activities, in this case packing a few more evening appropriate pieces is a good call.
If you’re jetting off to a sunny location, you’ll most likely have a beach day or a hotel pool, so swimwear is essential of course. Did we mention the pool parties at our chateau?
What should I pack for my trip?
Depending on where you are going and the time of the year you may need to pack swimwear, scarfs, sweaters, appropriate footwear, or evening wear. Warm clothing is always a good call, even in the summertime as temperatures can get chilly. Below is a checklist covering all the key travel items, take a look at this to see what might be relevant for the locations you’ll be travelling to:
For more packing and tips, head to six-two or use our ingenious Alexa skill packing guide (just say “Alexa, pack my bag!”)
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Are flights included in the cost of the trip?
International flights to/from the destination your trip starts and ends in are not included in the cost of the trip, and must be purchased separately. Booking direct with Contiki? You can add flights on during the booking process. Alternatively, you can book them yourself.
Any flights you take during your Contiki are included in the cost of your trip. Particularly in regions like Asia, Australia or South America, we use planes to get you from A-to-B as quickly as possible, and all of this is included. Check out our full booking conditions for more information on what’s included and what’s not.
How much do flights cost?
This depends on a number of factors including the area you are travelling to/from, and the season you’re travelling in. Take a look at flight comparison sites like Skyscanner to make sure you’re getting the best deal possible. For the best deals, we recommend booking early, and taking advantage of airline sales. For more tips on booking cheap flights, click here.
Do you sell flights?
Yes! Contiki strives to offer the best rates for flights and can assist you with this process, taking out any unneeded admin or complications to your travel journey. Just chat to one of our reservations team to discuss your flight options.
How else do I book flights?
Flight comparison sites like Skyscanner are good for showing you the best flight prices and times for any given flight. You can book through the airline sites directly, or through your travel agent.
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Do I need travel insurance?
Yes! It’s a requirement of travelling with Contiki that you take out comprehensive insurance cover for cancellation, personal injury, death, medical expenses, repatriation expenses, evacuation expenses, personal liability & loss of personal property and Covid related expenses before you travel with us. It’s also super important to check that your insurance covers all of the activities you’ll be trying out, particularly any adventure activities (for all you adrenaline junkies).
Do you sell travel insurance?
We sure do. Contiki travel insurance can cover you for the duration of your trip as well as any days you are travelling pre or post your Contiki trip. For a full quote on what Contiki can offer, send us an email, chat online or give us a call on the relevant home country numbers you can find here.
Where else can I get travel insurance?
There are a whole load of travel insurance companies out there; even large supermarkets/department stores sell travel insurance! Have a google, or speak to your travel agent or our reservations team for advice.
Just remember, travel insurance is compulsory on all Contiki trips.
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