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85

It's like that everywhere for guided tours (not just Chinese people) It makes it easier to follow the guide. The guide tour leader will carry a flag so that if/when people get lost they can spot the flag; This is especially the case now because most guides have radio systems so that people can be further away from the guide and still hear her/him.


30

For the same reason that Western and Near Eastern militaries have been carrying "colours, standards (and) guidons" for 7,000 years: so the troops know where the commander is. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_colours,_standards_and_guidons In military organizations, the practice of carrying colours, standards or guidons, both to act as a rallying ...


15

This is very common in China. You might have a number of tour groups simultaneously at a busy tourist site and the use of a flag (and stickers on the participants) helps keep them together and is very much necessary. Sometimes the tour leader will dress in minority costume as well (for example in Lijiang), which also helps them stand out from the crowd. It'...


12

IMHO, driving yourself is the way to do it if you want any freedom at all once you get there. I've been to Yosemite several times - the most recent just over a week ago. The drive from the San Francisco Bay Area depends a little on where you start out, and what time of day/week you go, but if you plan for about 4 hours you'll be close to the mark. Once ...


11

I found tour radar was quite useful for finding different tours from non main stream companies as well as all the regulars. You can choose tours that go through a specific country or ones based in just the country you select. There are also plenty of options to weed out those that aren't suitable, such as age, duration, price, trip type, group size, dates ...


11

Thorn Tree - Travel Companions The Thorn Tree travel forum on the Lonely Planet Web site has a branch called 'Travel Companions' where you can post about your plans or current location and people can respond to it. I am reading it via RSS and have sometimes 'talked' to people who have similar plans as I, but I have not met up with anybody yet. You usually ...


10

A popular company that does this is Intrepid Travel. They do group tours everywhere including Europe. Just make sure you change your country of residence down the bottom of the page if it is not correct already.


7

Just go with the flow - make sure you (and your wife) are self sufficient, so if a plan someone else is managing goes wrong, you now you two can still have fun. This can take a lot of the worry out of organised events. Alternatively, just work to a couple of meeting points through the day, say lunch and dinner, and do your own thing until then, just meeting ...


6

Use Mifi Mifi is a device that able to host a Wifi connection using 3G card. Small enough to fit in your pocket, but powerful enough to bring the Internet to your whole family wherever your wireless phone goes - no cables required. Just power it on and instantly connect up to five Wi-Fi-enabled devices.


6

Contiki is another company that does group trips, though for a limited age range (18-35). They have tours on several continents, including Europe. I haven't personally used them, but know of people who have and they were very happy with the trip. They called it exhausting, but the time of their life.


6

Since you are Italian, you may want to give Avventure nel mondo a try. It is a well known site that perfectly fits your needs. If I can give you a piece of advice, don't understimate travelling alone. It's one of the best ways to meet other people during your trip, not only other travellers but local people too. Being alone makes you more responsive to ...


6

I've been unable to find anything that is definitively less than 20 people, but there are a few promising options. Day trips between Boston and New York typically leave around 7 a.m. and bring you back to your starting city around anywhere between 7 p.m. and 11 p.m. (that's scheduled only - do expect delays due to traffic and construction, as the entire ...


6

The problem with arranging a group trip involving anyone other than close friends is that you (as the organiser) can easily be left out of pocket or worse if things go wrong; people can and will cancel at the last minute, pull out without telling you, miss their flights, trash their rooms etc. leaving you with the liability. That's why I'd recommend using a ...


6

Probably the official answer is that each adult should use the lane appropriate to her circumstances. That said, in practicality, in the US and elsewhere, a small group of two or three may stay together and use the fastest line. By a small group, I mean perhaps an adult citizen with his alien parent, someone travelling with a disabled person using a fast ...


6

If you get a higher price for a booking for multiple persons, then most likely there are not enough seats for the cheap fare available any more. So you will most probably end up with the same total amount, when you book separately. An edge case could be, that a booking engine would choose the same more expensive fare for the whole booking, even e.g. one seat ...


5

There are absolutely groups whose primary purpose is to meet up at malls and walk. Google has this information: here are some examples: Avalon Mall Walkers Burlington Ontario List of programs in the Greater Toronto Area Article giving some examples


5

I haven't used the site specifically for Cairns, but I have found some great places using the Stayz http://www.stayz.com.au/ website. You can usually find a variety of places (large house, guest accommodation or cabins etc.) to cater for a larger group. The prices are generally better than a typical hotel or hostel, the people are generally nicer and the ...


5

As others said, you'll see those everywhere, not only in Thailand. Each tour guide has a stick with some special identifying items, most often flag or stuffed animals, to make them visible in a crowded area. It's also useful for tours that tourists join individually and arrive at the meeting point on their own. European tourist companies more commonly use ...


4

Search for "wifi tethering". There are some apps that turn your phone into a wifi hotspot in android app market, but i have also seen dedicated devices who are essentially wifi+3g modem+battery in one box. see also the section about carrier contracts at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tethering


4

Some more ideas Dopplr.com (for user generated content reviews on destinations, share your plans with others, get notifications if plans overlap) Location aware services like foursquare or Facebook check-in perhaps? (But depends on people you already know, are "Friend"ed with) CouchSurfers "A volunteer-based worldwide network connecting travelers with ...


4

Comparison website for tours are hard-to-find because of the unstructured nature of the industry. Flights, trains et al have fixed schedules which makes it easy for travel comparison websites to easily sort and compare things. Most online tour booking sites are listing websites as there's no standard way of representing the information, and more importantly ...


4

Any particular region? Or worldwide? For example, http://www.comparelondonbustours.com/ compares, funnily enough, London Bus tours, and http://www.great-barrier-reef.au.com/ compares day trip tours to the Great Barrier Reef, in Australia.


4

I don't know if my experience with group ticketing for airplanes is of any use to you, however I'm going to share it. Every year I take groups of students for language courses abroad and I always face the problem of getting the lowest tariff possible while having everybody on the same plane (they are minors and I can't risk their getting in trouble). What I ...


4

I would recommend GroupTravel. You can get group rates for airfare and hotels. We use this website to get deals on hotels for our gymnastics team. Good luck.


4

Couchsurfing can be used to do something like this: the site includes city-specific forums. Using these forums you can meet up with other travelers who are visiting a particular city.


4

The main problem is these days, almost every big site tries to bill themselves as a community. In addition, many of them don't release stats on demographics, membership numbers and so on. Some of the most popular ones include: Couchsurfing - over 5.5 million members in 97,000 towns, in over 250 states or countries. TripAdvisor claims to be the largest ...


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