Ritz Tours Explores New Territory In 2011

Tour operator offers new destinations, same value
By: Jillian Sweeney
A beach in Dubai // © 2010 Dubai Government’s Department of Tourism 
& Commerce Marketing
A beach in Dubai // © 2010 Dubai Government’s Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing

The Details

Ritz Tours
Ritz Tours has been known throughout its 31 years of operation as an expert on luxury vacation packages to China.

Last year, the Alhambra, Calif.-based tour operator expanded to Europe and it is adding new itineraries for 2011.

Furthermore, starting in January, Ritz Tours will offer new tour packages to Egypt, India and the United Arab Emirates.

Offering value and continuing its growth, despite a challenging economic climate, are Ritz Tours’ goals within the coming year.

“Ritz Tours views 2011 with careful optimism that our economy is indeed on the path to recovery,” said managing director Evan Chan. “In the current year, we saw a 25 percent growth over last year, and we see ourselves surpassing that number for 2011.”

Offering More Diversity
Ritz Tours’ two new vacation series — the Egypt & Dubai series and the India & Dubai series — offer clients several options of varying itineraries and prices.

The Egypt Discovery package includes 10 days and eight nights of exploring the rich history of Egypt. Clients will spend three nights in the Ramses Hilton in Cairo followed by a flight to Luxor, where they will spend four nights on a Nile river cruise. Some sightseeing highlights of this package include the Great Pyramids and Great Sphinx of Giza; the Temple of Luxor; the West Bank where the infamous Tomb of Tutankhamun lays in the Valley of Kings; the Temple of Horus in Edfu; Aswan, Egypt’s first town; and more. Prices for this tour begin at $2,099 per person.

The Egypt Discovery & Dubai package shares a similar itinerary to the Egyptian Discovery package, with the inclusion of a trip to Dubai, the “City of Gold.” In this 12-day, 10-night itinerary, clients will see the Dubai World Trade Center, tour the Dubai Museum, cruise the Dubai Creek and stay at the five-star Crowne Plaza Dubai. On day five, clients will fly to Cairo and stay in the Ramses Hilton. They will visit Alexandria, Aswan and Edfu. Finally, clients will spend four nights aboard the Wings of Nile river cruise boat before flying back to Cairo. Prices for this tour begin at $2,399 per person.

Clients who choose the 12-day, 10-night Egypt Treasures & Sharm El Sheikh package will spend three days in Cairo at the Ramses Hilton, four days exploring Egypt in a Wings of Nile river cruise boat, two nights in Sharm El Sheikh and an additional night in Cairo. While in Sharm El Sheikh, clients will stay in the beach-front, five-star Coral Sea Resort where they can unwind from their adventures and enjoy views of the Sinai Peninsula. Clients can also opt for a desert safari or glass-bottom boat ride along the Red Sea. Prices for this tour begin at $2,499 per person.

The eight-day, six-night India Discovery package begins in ancient, historically rich Delhi. Clients will spend three nights in The Grand hotel and will see the Presidential Palace and the Parliament House in New Delhi followed by a bike ride to Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India, in Old Delhi. Clients will then visit Agra where they will spend the day at the Taj Mahal and one night at the ITC Mughal. They will then travel to Jaipur, the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the “Pink City,” where they will tour Amber Fort, the City Palace and more. Prices for this tour begin at $1,799 per person.

The India Discovery & Dubai package follows the same itinerary as the India Discovery package, except with an added two days for clients to spend exploring Dubai and staying at the five-star Crowne Plaza Dubai. Clients will tour Dubai stopping at major sites such as the Jumeirah Mosque, the Dubai World Trade Center, the Palace of Sheikh Mohammad, the Al Fahidi Fort Museum and the Rashid Palace. After a flight to Delhi, clients will start their India Discovery itinerary. Prices for this tour begin at $2,599 per person.

Clients who choose the Enchanting India package will spend 12 days and 10 nights touring the diverse country beginning in Delhi. After exploring Delhi, clients will visit Varanasi and Sarnath, two holy Buddhist towns, tour the Archaeological Museum and Mahabodhi Buddha Temple and cruise along the River Ganges. Other highlights include visiting the temples of Khajuraho; Orchha; the Taj Mahal in Agra and the City Palace in Jaipur. Prices for this tour begin at $3,199 per person.

On the 15-day, 13-night India Adventure itinerary, clients will visit Delhi, Jaipur, Agra, Khajuraho, Bandhavgarh, Kanha, Nagpur and Mumbai. Some highlights include visiting two wildlife reserves — Bandhavgarh National Park and Kanha National Park — both of which are home to Royal Bengal tigers, the temples of Khajuraho and Elephanta Island Caves off the coast of Mumbai. Prices for this tour begin at $4,399 per person.

The Rajasthan Treasures package includes 16 days and 14 nights exploring the landmarks and culture in Rajasthan, India’s largest state. Clients will travel to Delhi, Mandawa, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Pushkar, Jaipur and Agra. Some highlights include camel riding in the sand dunes of the Thar Desert; the Jain temples at Ranakpur; an evening boat ride along Lake Pichola in Udaipur; the Gold Fort in Jaisalmer and more. Prices for this tour begin at $3,399 per person.

All tour packages include international airfare, accommodations, most meals, sightseeing tours led by experienced, local guides, optional excursions and travel insurance. Ritz Tour’s new itineraries also include a Ritz Tours Tour Manager throughout the duration of each trip.

More Value and Flexibility
In an effort to be more flexible for all kinds of clients, Ritz Tours is also now offering land-only packages that include tours and accommodations for clients who wish to provide their own airfare.

“Instead of the gimmicks that we’re seeing out there in the market, such as ‘buy one, get one free,’ we’ve chosen to be up front with our pricing, knowing that at the end of the day, clients know how to add and compare,” said Chan.

“Ritz Tours is, and always will be, about giving our clients the best value in a vacation. That’s why we expect and encourage comparison shopping … We have no doubt that the Ritz Tours product will rise to the top as the best value.”

Perks for Clients and Agents Alike
Ritz Tours’ Early Booking Offer includes trips scheduled between March and December 2011 and offers clients anywhere from $100 and $500 off their trip, depending on their preferred itinerary. Ritz Tours is offering $100 off per person on its new portfolio of Egypt, India and Dubai itineraries. For every tour booked and deposited by Dec. 17, travel agents will receive a 12 percent commission.

“We are extremely grateful to our agents for their continued support,” said Chan. “With the help of our agents, we are confident that we will achieve our growth goals for 2011.”

Ritz Tours won TravelAge West’s WAVE Award for Best Tour Operator, Asia, in 2010. The company is also a member of U.S. Tour Operators Association (USTOA), the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) and the International Airlines Travel Agents Network (IATAN).
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