Frequently Asked Questions - Ecotours and Adventure Travel

Small Group Cultural Travel & Ecotourism in Canada, Costa Rica, Central & South America
Small Group Cultural Travel & Ecotourism in Costa Rica, Canada & across the Americas
Tel. Canada & United States:  1-866-679-7070   ::   Tel.: Costa Rica :  (+506) 4000-1935
 
 
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AMERIKA VENTURE
Based in Canada
& Costa Rica
Inbound travel agency
& Tour operator
Across the Americas
Since 1996

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

 Find answers to your questions...



Questions...

What is Ecotourism? What is Ethical and Fairtrade Tourism?
What are the lodging conditions
and general standards of the tours?
I would like to have information on how
to wisely get prepared for my trip
What are the payment conditions? What are the registration procedures?
Is this specific tour recommended for children? What are the complete booking conditions?
Are your trips indicated for FAMILIES?
Any discounts?



Answers...
What are the lodging conditions and the general standards of the tour?

Standards of the different services offered as part of our tours.

Notes regarding the Traveller's File
All the details - such as names, phone numbers & contact information, addresses and pictures of lodgings - are provided in your Traveller's File. This VERY detailed and complete document contains all the information relative to the various aspects of your tour, including human resources, lodgings, parks and reserves, food, transportation and general information on the visited sites, the country and the regions.
We are well known for the accuracy and the quality of the information we provide our travellers prior departure.

Guides
You will be accompanied by a knowledgeable and very friendly tour guide throughout your journey. Your guide knows the regions, the culture, the history and nature and, above all, he loves to share his passion of his country with the travellers. He is an ideal - and professional - travel companion and is assisted by local specialized guides in different regions throughout the tour.


Transport
The private mini-bus you will be travelling in throughout your guided adventure is modern, comfortable and equipped with a/c. Your tour driver was selected among the best and - apart form being a safe, reliable and habile driver - he's a friendly and helpful travel mate of whom you will certainly enjoy the company.

Lodging
Unless otherwise noted in your program's description, lodgings in your tour have been meticulously selected according to the following standards:
  • Category: Small or medium sized genuine hotels and Inns offering friendliness and a homey touch along with the comfort and services provided in larger hotels. Inns are LOCALY OWNED AND MANAGED, often family run and provide a warm and friendly atmosphere to the visitors. In humid & hot area (and even in temperate regions) the rooms have air conditioning and/or a ceiling fan and most have a pool and/or Jacuzzi and/or private beach access as part of the services proposed to their guests. Three stars is our lodging standard in most regions, although in some large cities we stay in 4 stars accommodations and in some remote regions we stay in more basic lodges, camps and cabins. Please consult your program's day by day description for more information.
  • Hygiene: ALL the hotels, eco-lodges and inns are selected according to very strict health and hygiene guidelines. Your room in every hotel, inn or eco-lodge has a complete private bathroom with hot water.
  • Comfort: Beds are large and firm, rooms are spacious and have a table and/or a desk and a bedside lamp. The private bathroom is pleasant and complete with towels and soaps and the shower has hot water. In warm and humid regions the rooms are air-conditioned and/or include a ceiling fan. If anything goes wrong during your stay, you quickly find assistance in the friendly and considerate staff members.
  • Charm: The building, the surrounding and the rooms have an unquestionable charm. We give priority to places providing a garden access, terrace or courtyards and prefer balconies in the rooms and/or fire place in cold / mountainous regions.
  • Service: Staff members are courteous and helpful. We consider as highly important the quality of the relations established between the human resources involved in the journey and the travellers.
  • Location: close to all services and never far from the attractions, but still in quiet locations away from places likely to be noisy at night. Travelling well also means sleeping well, no question!
 EXEMPLES:  La Ruta Maya accomodations  |  Ecotourism in Costa Rica accomodations

Food
The meals not taken in restaurants are served in the inns and hotels or we prepare them in group with the best, always fresh and typical food of the area. We provide a healthy and nutritive nutrition as - we think - it's not only pleasant but also important to eat well. A well balanced meal is essential to a good day. Vegetarians - or people with special diet requirements - are welcome on our tours as we provide excellent options to all types of eaters! Our guides know well the typical food of the visited regions and they know especially well how to prepare it. One thing is certain; your hungry (and capricious?) stomach is in good hands with us! Although some early morning breakfasts can sometimes be light, most are very complete and the noon and evening meals propose generous portions (according to each traveller's appetite) and at least three options to meet everyone's tastes and requirements : a meat option (beef or poultry), a fish option and a vegetarian option. Very often, more than 3 options are proposed.
I would like to have information to prepare for my trip...
For each tour and/or visited region where we operate, we offer a practical information sheet providing the traveller with a wealth of information such as: Geographic overview of the visited country(ies), technical information on the region, overview of the history, climate, fauna and flora, the group, equipment, booking procedures, food and meals, hiking, luggage and personal belongings, tips on how to dress, what to bring, lodgings, children and the journey, what to read, electricity, time GMT and procedures prior to departure...
Do not hesitate to contact us if you need further information. We will answer to your questions with pleasure.

Keep in mind that, following your booking, you will receive a very informative and detailed Traveller's File with all the information pertinent to the specific tour you booked.

What are the terms of payment?
Together with your booking confirmation you will receive an invoice with payment instructions. Your initial deposit (30%) will be payable upon reception of the invoice. Your balance should be received no later than 45 days prior departure or during the week following the day you received your travel documents if they are not yet in your possession 45 days prior departure (in case of late or last minute booking). Final payment will not be expected until you have your Traveller's File in hands.

To proceed with your payment, you have different options :

  1. Send a cheque, a bank draft or a postal money order through registered mail.
  2. Use a bank transfer.
  3. Pay with a credit card (Amex, Visa or MC).
What are the booking procedures?
Hereunder are the several steps preceding your departure :
  1. You choose the trip you want to participate in (or you elaborate, together with one of our advisers your custom tour).
  2. We come to an agreement on the final program (itinerary, activities, pricing and conditions).
  3. Using our Booking Form you make your reservation/booking.
  4. As soon as your booking request is received we get in touch with you to confirm the booking and we send you an invoice including payment instructions and booking conditions.
  5. Upon reception of this invoice you must send your initial deposit (30%) to secure your booking. NB: If your package includes the international flights and/or an insurance plan, it will be integrally payable with your initial deposit. You will receive your flight tickets and/or insurance enrolment confirmation on the next business day following the reception of your payment. .
  6. The Traveller's File is then mailed out to you.
    NB : Unless your booking request is received within 45 days from the departure date, in which case you will receive your Traveller's File upon payment of your initial deposit, please allow between 15 and 45 working days for the preparation of this document and 2 to 3 more days before receiving any printed material. This very complete file specific to your tour AND unique departure contains the following information :
      • Voucher / proof of your booking.
      • Detailed program with a map of the tour's route.
      • Information on your tour guide(s) and other human resource(s) involved in the project.
      • Information on the meeting point and a list of the inns and hotels with their description, address & contact information.
      • Info on the cities, sites & regions visited on the tour .
      • Technical & practical information together with general recommendations to travellers.
      • Emergency plan and detailed maps of the country and /or region(s). .
      • Proof of insurance and policy description(if included in your package). Flight tickets and/or electronic ticket confirmations (if included in your package).
  7. Your balance must be received 45 days before your departure or in the week following the reception of your Traveller's File if you are booking within 45 days from departure
You are now ready for the adventure !
Is this specific tour recommend for children?
We offer a Practical information sheet for each tour and/or region where we operate tours to. These sheets give answer to this question in detail. In general, our tours are quite recommended for children. However, for children under 11 years of age, please contact us directly and mention your child's age, exact tour and departure date you are interested in. We offer discounts for families travelling with children.
Are your trips indicated for families? Do you offer discounts?
Our guided tours are focused on providing an in-depth immersion in nature and culture to the traveller but also on developing and strengthening the human relations that bind and bring closer the visitors and the locals.

We think our tours are more than indicated for families who wish to re-connect as they provide multiple opportunities for the family members of all ages to grow closer while sharing new experiences punctuated with cheerful exchanges, laughter and discovery as they explore the other cultures' realities and environment accompanied by some of the best tour guides of Latin America and Canada.

Discounts for children* (discounts apply on most regular tours and prices) :
We grant a 50% discount for children aged 11 and under sharing the parents' room.
We grant a 25% discount for teens 12 to 17 sharing the parents' room.

* Conditions / restrictions may apply, please contact us to verify availability. For children under 11 years of age, please contact us to ensure that the program and departure in which you wish to take part with your child are suitable for (opened to) him / her.



NB: Answers to some questions are displayed on other pages of our website.
These pages open in a new window if you click on the question.



Comparing our tours and prices with others, consider...

  • The number of participants in the tour. The SIZE of the group has a major incidence on the quality of the services provided by the tour leader and the driver. Small groups remain personal unlike large groups.
  • What IS and what is NOT included in the tours & services you compare.
  • Our tours respect the principals of ecotourism. Our guides, staff members and providers are meticulously selected to meet our exacting requirements and standards and they are remunerated equitably and considered with great esteem as we much value their participation to our mission.
  • The quality standards of the services and accommodations we provide in our tours are high and our customer service is exceptional. We are committed to offering the very best to our travellers before, during and after their trip.
  • We provide our travellers with the contact information of their tour manager who is available 7 days a week before and during the tour to promptly assist them with any situation or simply answer questions or doubts before the tour starts.


Procedures and deadlines summary:

  1. Upon reception of your booking request we will send you a booking confirmation & invoice (or another offer if the requested services cannot be confirmed).
  2. Upon reception of your invoice, you must send us your initial deposit (30% of the tour price + 100% of flights and/or travel insurance, if these services are booked through us). We accept all major credit cards, checks, wire transfers and cash.
  3. Your final payment must be received 45 days prior to your tour departure.
  4. We send you your travel documents by FedEx courier 30 days prior to your tour departure (or before). We also send you (at the same time) an electronic version (PDF document sent by email) of your documents to keep as a backup copy in your files.
    All payments received are confirmed by our accounting dpt. the next day with an updated account statement sent by email.

General conditions

Feedback from our travellers




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amerikaventure@gmail.com
Toll free North America : 1-866-679-7070

Serving international travellers since 1996
We operate cultural ecotourism small group travel
In Costa Rica, Canada & across Latin America

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Copyright © 1998 - 2012 Amerika Venture
Who we are...
Ecotourism agency & tour operator founded in 1996, based in Costa Rica & Canada (and represented in France), operating small group guided tours and private trips focused on the observation & study of the natural environments and the discovery of the local cultures. [+ read on
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Serving international travellers since 1996
We operate cultural ecotourism small group tours
In Costa Rica, Canada & across Latin America

Tel. Canada  /  Unites States (toll free) :
(+1) 866-679-7070  
Tel. Costa Rica (local call in all regions) : (+506) 4000-1935
Tel. France (local call in all regions) : (+33) 09 75 17 11 30

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Copyright © 1998 - 2014  Amerika Venture S.A.