How do I reserve my trip?
We try to make your experience as personal as possible. Please call 817-914-8601 or email us with which trip you are interested in and the desire dates and we will take care of the rest.
What if I want the trip customized for me?
No problem! We are happy to customize itineraries based on individual client specifications. We and our partners are well-known for high-quality, one-of-a-kind experiences tailor made for each of our clients. Contact us with your suggestions and we will create the itineraries that you or your family require.
Does Ethaka Travel get better rates than I can find myself?
In many cases, we do get preferred rates in hotels and wineries. More importantly though, our experiences are unmatched elsewhere due to our strong, long-standing relationships with winery owners, hotels, restaurants, guides, and drivers. In several instances, certain activities are available exclusively through Ethaka travel and our partners.
Can the itineraries be customized for solo travelers?
We are happy to work with individual travelers to customize trips. Most itineraries can be adapted, though costs may be affected, with some destinations proving better options for individual travelers than others. We suggest that solo travelers contact us directly and we will provide recommendations to optimize a solo trip.
Are the meals included in the itineraries?
Meals included in the cost of the itinerary will be specified in the finalized itinerary sent to you for approval. All meals not listed on the itinerary are on your own. We are, of course, happy to provide restaurant recommendations. A list of what is included and not included in each tour is available on the trip description.
What if the listed Hotel in the itinerary is not available?
If for some reason the hotel is unavailable, we will confirm a reservation for you in a hotel of equal or greater value.
What is the scheduled winery is not available for a tour?
We make every effort to provide you with the wine tour program as it is presented in the itinerary. However, certain unexpected events at wineries can mean the cancellation of a visit – for example if a large distributor decides to make an unexpected visit. In such a case, we will substitute with a tour at another winery of similar status.
Can I connect different ones of your itineraries?
Not a problem. The degree to which connections between itineraries affects total trip cost often depends on the specific connection. For example, traveling between countries via air is often more expensive than staying within the same country and using ground transport. After you send us your selected itineraries, we will send you an estimated cost before you pay anything, at which point you can approve and move forward or start again.
Can Ethaka make my international flight arrangements?
We are happy to assist in booking your international flights. Please note that while we do not work with your frequent flier miles, we can advise you how to use them.
What if I need to change my itinerary after is confirmed?
Any requested modification to your final itinerary is subject to a $250 change fee change each time a modification is requested plus any additional costs related to the change.
What is Ethaka’s cancelation policy?
Once you choose to purchase your proposed itinerary, a deposit of 50% of the total trip cost is required in order to confirm reservation. You can make that payment via PayPal from each individual trip page or from the contact page. Payment in full is due 60 days prior to departure. If for any reason you need to cancel your trip, the reservation deposit will be returned minus a trip cancellation fee. For this reason, we strongly recommend trip cancellation insurance. Click here for a quote: Travel Guard Chartis, InsureMyTrip.com or Global Rescue. All cancellations must be in writing. The following cancellation fees apply:
Minimum fee: $250
60-41 days prior to departure: 25% of the trip cost
40-31 days prior to departure: 50% of the trip cost
30 days or less prior to departure: 100% of the trip cost
Airline tickets changes and cancellations are subject to the terms and conditions of the airline.
How much should I tip?
While tipping is ultimately at the discretion of the individual, there are certainly cultural guidelines for showing gratitude for services provided. In Chile, Ecuador and Peru it is customary to leave a tip of 10% of the bill in restaurants – usually CLP$1.000 – $2.000 (about US$4-6) is appropriate per person for lunch and CLP$3.000-$4.000 (US$8-10) is appropriate per person for dinner. Hotel porters are usually happy with a CLP$1.000 peso bill (approx. US$2). You do not need to tip taxi drivers, but people often round off the fare in driver’s favor. For tours, a tip of CLP$10.000 (US$20) per day is appropriate for a private guide and CLP$5.000 (about US$10) per day for a private driver. The Spanish word for “tip” is “propina.” Argentina and Uruguay follow very similar tipping guidelines.
Yes, we are offering reduced trip prices for Wine Club Members. Email us and let us know which trip you are interested in and we'll give you final pricing.
Do you offer trip insurance?
We do not offer trip insurance but work with two companies that you can contact for a quote. InsureMyTrip.com for standard trip insurance and Global Rescue for a higher level of coverage for emergencies. Global Rescue is appropriate a great compliment to the typical travel insurance recommended, but provide our members with a greater safety net for their health and safety because of our greater resource and internal capacity for medical and security advice, referrals, and (of course) evacuation.
What type of shoes and other attire should I pack?
Comfortable and casual. This will really depend on your destination. Once you've booked your trip, we will send you a list of things you need for the weather and destination depending on the season.
What kinds of outlets do they have?
Argentina 240V. We suggest a european adapter. Ecuador has 120V outlets, just like the United States.
Should I change currency in my own country or wait until I get to my destination?
Absolutely when you get there. Changing money at home is expensive. The exchange rate is about 3 - 7% depending on market conditions. There will be places at the airport where you can do it. If you have an American Express card you can use it, (also your bank debt/cash) card at cash machines. Let your bank and credit card companies know before go. There are usually cash machines in the airport. Many places will take US dollars and credit cards can be used widely.