Airlines & Airports
Tauck Enhances its Tauck Bridges Family Travel Portfolio
Photo courtesy of Tauck
The Pulse: Tauck’s Bridges Family Travel portfolio adds holiday departures, small group trips and more for the coming year.
Why It Rates: Families traveling together is a trend that set in hard after 9/11 and has shown no sign of ever abating. Every year the market continues to grow. Traveling together has become institutionalized as a perennial part of family life for a growing number of families.
With more mobility than ever before, American families are scattered and many can only meet as a family during vacation times. For those families, the family trip sometimes becomes a cherished institution.
Tauck caught onto the wave of family travel back in 2003 with the introduction of its Bridges program. It was one of the company’s most successful launches in its 90-year history and Bridges grows in volume every year.
Following is the company’s release of the release of its Bridges product line for 2016, with several enhancements, including special holiday departures, additional small group departures and a swapped vessel in the Galapagos. The essential specifics are included in the release. – David Cogswell, TravelPulse tour operators editor
Tauck has unveiled its 2016 portfolio of Tauck Bridges family travel experiences, and the 90-year-old leader in premium-quality guided tours and cruises has added a number of enhancements to its 19 multi-generational itineraries in Europe, North America, Africa, South America and Central America. The announcement of Tauck’s plans for the coming year comes as the company is enjoying strong growth across its collection of Tauck Bridges trips. Bookings have been up consistently in each of the past several years, and pre-season bookings for the coming year are running well ahead of where they were last year at this time.
According to Tauck CEO Dan Mahar, the continuing success of the Tauck Bridges portfolio reflects the near-universal need among families to reconnect. “Families have really embraced the Tauck Bridges philosophy of ‘shared enrichment;’ the conviction that travel should be an opportunity for families to strengthen and renew the bonds, or bridges, that are stressed by the demands of daily life,” said Mahar. “Every Tauck Bridges trip is crafted from the ground up to emphasize shared enrichment, with experiences and activities that every generation can enjoy doing together as a family, thereby bringing loved ones closer together.”
Tauck’s approach stands in contrast to many family vacation options, from all-inclusive resorts to ocean cruising, that emphasize their “kids-only” facilities and programs, added Mahar.
New Winter Holiday Departure Explores The Swiss, Austrian Alps
Among the enhancements for 2016 is a special winter holiday departure of Tauck’s popular “Alpine Adventure” exploration of Switzerland, Austria and Germany, with the itinerary modified to take full advantage of one of the world’s most sought-after winter sports destinations. The eight-day itinerary (from $4,913 per person, triple occupancy, plus airfare) begins in Zurich on Dec. 19 with a cable car ride to the top of nearby Mount Pilatus.
Over subsequent days, guests will have the opportunity to pursue fun winter activities including sledding and tobogganing, downhill or cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and even ice climbing on the face of a frozen waterfall.
Other special experiences include a rail journey aboard the Glacier Express train to St. Moritz, a visit to an Olympic ski jumping site, a horse-drawn carriage ride to fairytale-like Hohenschwangau Castle, and a five-course gala Christmas dinner. The all-inclusive itinerary includes two nights at Hotel Schweizerhof Luzern, two nights at the Hotel Schweizerhof St. Moritz in Switzerland, two nights at the Aqua Dome Hotel in the heart of Austria’s Otztal Valley, and a final night at the Hotel Bayerischer Hof in Munich, where guests will enjoy a farewell dinner in 15th-century vaults once used to store salt.
Elsewhere in Europe, Tauck has added new small group departures to two popular eight-day Bridges itineraries, “Italia Bella: Rome to Venice” (June 20 and July 12) and “Castles & Kings: London to Paris” (June 24 and July 18). The four departures will average just 24 passengers each for a more intimate travel experience. Tauck has also added additional departures to two of its three Bridges European river cruises, “Blue Danube: Family Riverboat Adventure” and “Castles on the Rhine: Family Riverboat Adventure.”
A popular Tauck Bridges small ship ocean cruise, “Galápagos: Wildlife Wonderland,” is being enhanced for 2016 with a new vessel, the 90-passenger expedition ship Santa Cruz II. The vessel features 36 interconnecting cabins, making it particularly family-friendly, and it boasts a range of amenities (including an observation platform for dolphin and whale watching) that make it perfect for Galápagos exploration.
Also in Latin America, Tauck’s “Costa Rica: Jungles & Rainforests” family itinerary has been enhanced through Tauck’s partnership with the nature documentary filmmakers at BBC Earth. This unique partnership will provide Tauck Bridges guests with a new perspective on Costa Rica’s flora and fauna through the use of filmmaking technologies such as underwater microphones and motion-activated camera traps. Over the course of their journey, Tauck guests will also gain filmmaker insights and a richer understanding of their surroundings as they view a series of short nature documentary films produced by the team at BBC Earth exclusively for Tauck travelers.
Details on the entire portfolio of 2016 Tauck Bridges journeys are contained in a new full-color, 84-page brochure that is currently mailing to past and prospective guests, and in the recently redesigned Tauck Bridges section of Tauck’s website, www.tauckbridges.com. Those interested in learning more may also contact their local travel professional or call Tauck at (800) 468-2825.
SOURCE: Tauck press release
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