FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
A. Yes! Wherever it’s an option—and it is at most of the sites that are worst for having long queues—we’ll arrange for you to get a privileged entrance. That means you’ll be able to sail past all of those super-long lines to buy tickets that you’ve heard of at the Vatican, Colosseum or Florence’s Accademia. We promise—it’ll feel like the ultimate VIP treatment!
A. We think that sounds like a horror story, too. So we promise: That will never happen on a walk with us! Our maximum group size is 12; as soon as a 13th person books, we’ll hire a new guide to split the tour in two. Plus, our average group size is 8.
A. Using a headset isn’t always better. It can depersonalize the experience, making you feel more like you’re listening to an audio guide than interacting with a real, live human! Luckily, with our 12-person maximum, headsets usually aren’t needed. That said, a headset can be very useful in venues that are particularly noisy or busy. So we’ll use them whenever we think they’ll improve the experience.
A. English. We don’t do multi-language tours, which means you’ll never have to wait while a tour guide speaks first in English, then in German, then in Italian. (Believe us, it happens!). That said, we can arrange tours in languages other than English on request. Just ask.
A. Jason is a travel expert, academic, and lover of art, culture, and history. (He also has his master’s degree in historical theology from Yale, which makes him very interesting to chat with about goings-on at the Vatican!). As a tour guide, he’s been recommended in the New York Times and by Rick Steves. He also happens to be the co-owner and co-founder of Walks of Italy—and he remains personally involved in hand-picking guides and designing itineraries for our clients.
A. Our guides know that it takes more than reciting facts to bring Italy’s history and culture to life. And a big part of getting people impassioned about it all… is being passionate about it yourself! It’s no surprise, therefore, that most of our guides come from the fields they explore with you—like art history, archaeology, or history. That’s not just great because it means Walks of Italy guides know their stuff. It’s also great because it means they love the sites they share with you. That enthusiasm shines through in their tours, whether with their lively anecdotes, dramatic stories, or personal experiences that bring these sites to life.
When we hand-pick our guides, it’s that liveliness and passion—along with expertise, friendliness, and a great sense of humor—that we look for. Regardless of exactly which guide you have, we know you’ll agree that we’ve found it!
A. It means the tour price here, unlike with many other tour companies, includes all ticket, reservation and entrance fees… and we’re true to our word. When you’ve purchased a tour through Walks of Italy, your only job is to arrive at your meeting point on time. You don’t have to bring your credit card with you or hassle with a currency exchange. And there won’t be any “surprise extras” that pop up once the tour has begun. Just arrive, relax, and enjoy your tour, no further discussion over logistics or payments needed!
A. Absolutely! We’re travel experts who are intimately familiar with Italy and the best it has to offer, from cities to countryside, museums to churches, restaurants to hotels. And we’re happy to help with anything you might need, however strange or specific. Just ask! You can get in touch with us by Skype, phone, or email at [email protected]
A. At the risk of sounding like know-it-alls, yes, we can do that too. After all, we live (and eat) here, so we experience all of this on a daily basis ourselves! Just email us at [email protected]
A. Our site does prevent last-minute bookings, but we’re still happy to see what we can do. If you’re already in Italy, call us from your cell phone, a payphone, using Skype on your computer, or from your hotel. Our local, Italian number is (+39) 334-974-4274. (From Italy, the 39 is not required.)
A. Walks of Italy is based in the United States, but offers services based in Europe. So we list the prices in accordance with the country you’ll be visiting, and your card is charged the equivalent in dollars. If you’re from the U.S., like most of our visitors, this benefits you: If your card were charged in euros instead, your credit card would add a conversion fee… not to mention, often, use an unfair exchange rate!
If you have any further questions about this, don’t hesitate to ask.
A. The short version: If you cancel more than 72 hours in advance, get your money back, minus a 10 percent fee. If you cancel less than 72 hours in advance, there’s no refund. (Annoying, we know, but we promise: We won’t cancel on you, either!). Please read the full policy here:
A. All of our "Group" tours are actually "Privilege" tours, which seek to give you the highest quality tour experience while sharing your tour with others. All of these tours have a maximum of 12 spaces, so you can always be in close contact with your guide and optimize your ability to follow along. Once you have reserved a space on a group tour, you can be assured your tour will run, since our tours have no "minimum quota" as is often the case with other tour companies. Because we guarantee such an intimate size to our tours, headsets are not necessary. However, depending on time of year and the site visited they will be provided only if their use will improve the quality of the tour.
Booking our Private "Exclusive" tour assures you the greatest amount of flexibility for your unique travel schedule. You will have one of Walks of Italy's esteemed guides all to yourself to ensure a deeper exploration of the site with a fuller appreciation of your individual interests. The tour will consist of only those in your party, and is then customized to your timing and sightseeing needs. Additionally, it gives you the opportunity to take advantage of Walks of Italy's one-of-a-kind "tour enhancements", taking you off the beaten path, away from crowds and allowing you to dig deeper on your personalized journey of discovery.
A. It depends on how you're planning to sightsee in Rome. Our prices include ticket fees and all pre-entrance, skip the line reservations. So unless you're going to do a significant amount of museum visiting outside the tours you've booked with Walks of Italy, or you are planning to extensively use the public transport network every day that you're in Rome, there is little benefit for you to buy the pass.
For further information about RomaPass pros and cons and other helpful tips, read this article.
A. Once you have received your booking confirmation on the final payment page, your meeting points are displayed. This can also be found within the booking confirmation e-mail you receive upon finalizing payment. If you don't receive this, please check your SPAM/Junk mail folders. Our tour coordinators are easily reached and available to you for any questions or concerns. They will be communicating with you directly regarding all tour specific information you may need to make your tour experience with us as enjoyable as possible.
A. Our primary method of accepted payment is directly through our website's booking engine, which transmits your credit card data securely and assures you the highest level of protection. It also enters you seamlessly into the booking calendar so you won't be required to give us any more information. We'll get in touch with you!
For special requests, last minute tours, unlisted services, or the non-so-internet-savvy we are happy to process your payment in other ways. You can deliver us your card information over the phone and we DO accept PayPal.
Those with walking disabilities are encouraged to book a private tour rather than a group tour to allow the guide to adapt the route to their particular requirements. Please contact us at [email protected] for suitable alternatives.
A. Simply click "Book Now" on any tour page and view the booking calendar on the following page. For some tours we may have additional availability that is not listed on our web site; simply contact us at [email protected] with your requests.
A. If your shopping cart is being emptied on its own:
1) Please make sure that you have cookies enabled in your web browser (usually "Tools > Options > Privacy"). This also affects anyone using a firewall, or using "private mode" browsing (such as at an Internet Cafe or other public space) since your booking session may not be saved.
2) Make sure to click "Continue Shopping" on the shopping cart page every time you wish to add an additional tour to your cart. Please do not use the browser's "back" button.
3) Please try to close your browser program, and then re-open it and try booking again.
If the problem persists, please contact us at [email protected] or call us. We will then charge your card manually and send you a payment receipt, invoice and confirmation email.
Q. If it rains, or if there is acqua alta (high tides, such as in Venice), will my tour still run?
A. All Walks of Italy services will run, rain or shine.