Cycling in Albania

8 days
from
$1,335 USD
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Traveller ratings
4.8 / 5 from 37 reviews >
Trip code: 
MVA
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Cycling Holidays
Min age:
16
Group size:
4–16

Discover the beauty of this previously isolated country by bike

Some say that visiting Albania is as close as you'll get to travelling back in time. It wasn't until the collapse of the People's Socialist Republic of Albania in 1991 that the world got its first glimpse of the country within. Huge snow-capped mountains, inviting beaches, pretty rural villages, a genuine subsistence culture and an exceptionally friendly welcome is what you will find here. We cycle through the very best of Europe's beautiful unknown, beginning our tour on the border of Macedonia, towards the ancient town of Gjirokastra passing soaring peaks and lush green valleys. From here we begin our descent to the Albanian Riviera passing the UNESCO site of Butrint and Llogara National Park, before relaxing by the sea at our hotel in Vlore.

Highlights

  • Immerse yourself in a previously isolated country
  • Cycle from mountain plateaux to the Albanian Riviera
  • Visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Butrint

Key information

  • 5 nights hotels, 2 nights guesthouses
  • 6 days cycling with 100% vehicle support
  • Group normally 4 to 14, plus local cycling leader and driver. Min age 16 yrs
  • Trip can be combined with MVO
  • E-bike hire available on request

What's included

  • All breakfasts and 2 dinners included
  • All accommodation
  • Transfer for group flights
  • Local bike hire

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visas and vaccinations
  • Single supplement

6

Pace:

Moderate to challenging: 13-16km/8-10miles an hour

Terrain:

100% tarmac, where some sections are in poor condition.

Day by day breakdown
Day 272.0km/44.0miles
Day 360.0km/37.0miles
Day 446.0km/28.0miles
Day 570.0km/43.0miles
Day 654.0km/33.0miles
Day 765.0km/40.0miles

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Pogradec.

    Start Pogradec. Those on the group flight will be met at the airport and transferred to our hotel in Pogradec, situated on the shore of Lake Ohrid (approx. 3hr drive). The afternoon is free to relax and enjoy this lakeside location.
    Comfortable Hotel

  • Day 2

    Transfer to Korce; steady climb through a landscape of barren rock interspersed with wild flowers; cycle towards Grammoz Mountain and over the Barmash Pass (1159m) to Germenj.

    Today is one of the most demanding days of the tour. After a quick transfer to Korce we begin cycling and leave behind the agricultural plateau, climbing steadily into the border mountains through a landscape of barren rock interspersed with wild flowers. Numerous cols and valleys lie ahead, climbing towards Grammoz Mountain and over the Barmash Pass (1159m) to Germenj, lying in its own tranquil valley. Here we relax at our accommodation, Farma Sotira, which is also a working trout farm. Meals here consist of organic produce that is reared or sourced from the farm itself. Once you’ve finished eating your hearty dinner, you can sit and relax by the open roaring fire in the dining area with a glass of homemade wine or a bottle of Korça beer (Albania’s most popular).

    Cycle approx. 72km, total ascent approx. 1150m, total descent approx. 1050m.
    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 3

    Cycle through high grassy plateaus surrounded by soaring peaks before descending to Carshove and on to Benje; ride to thermal springs for a swim.

    In the morning there is a climb out from Germenj to a high grassy plateau close to the Greek border, surrounded by soaring peaks before reaching the source of the River Vjosa and descending through its spectacular gorge to Leskovik. We continue descending to Çarshove and then follow the corniche route high above the river to Benje situated on a ridge above the river. After lunch at the guesthouse we take a short ride to the thermal springs to relax and sooth aching muscles. Both lunch and dinner will be served on the peaceful terrace.

    Cycle approx. 60km, total ascent approx. 687m, total descent approx. 1352m.
    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 4

    Valley ride towards Kelcyra; after lunch at Tepele Waterfalls transfer to Gjirokaster for afternoon city tour.

    Today is one of the easiest days. We continue along the valley towards Kelcyra with its distant shark-tooth peaks, which guard a further gorge. We ride between these gorges until the two rivers meet. After lunch at the waterfalls of Tepelene we drive (approx. 30 mins) through the wide plain toward the town of Gjirokaster (city of 1000 steps). The well-preserved town is perched on the steep side of the Drino Valley, overlooking snow-capped mountains. In the afternoon we take a cultural tour through the city and explore its narrow cobbled alleys and 18th Century Ottoman houses. We also visit the 13th Century castle and learn about the fascinating history of this town, which has seen many rulers and has inspired poets, authors and artists.

    Cycle approx. 46km, total ascent approx. 350m, total descent approx. 520m.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Transfer up the Muzina Pass, long descent to Sarande via coast and the UNESCO site of Butrint.

    After breakfast we load the bikes on to the support vehicle and transfer up to Muzina Pass (approx. 45 minutes), the gateway to southern Albania, for a spectacular downhill ride to Sarande. Located on the Ionian Coast, Sarande is sandwiched between the high mountains and the sea and is close to the ancient remains of Butrint, which we visit on the way. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Butrint is located very close to the Greek border and is one of the country’s most important archaeological sites, tracing its origins back to the Greeks and the Romans. We have lunch at the site and continue along the coast to Sarande.

    Cycle approx. 70km, total ascent approx. 725m, total descent approx. 1285m.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Spectacular coastal ride to the long beach of Himarë Bay.

    Climbing steeply out of Sarande to a rocky plateau we enjoy a spectacular coastal ride over cols into bays and around headlands. Always with the stunning mountain scenery to the right and sea to the left we continue along before descending to Himarë, a small communist era fishing village with a small promenade filled with cafes, restaurants and ice cream stands. There is plenty of time for a swim in the Ionian Sea; our hotel is a short walk to Potam Beach.

    Cycle approx. 54km, total ascent approx. 1064m, total descent approx. 1064m.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Ride towards Vlore; optional 1043m climb to the Llogara Pass; long descent through Llogara N.P. finishing by the coast.

    Today’s route is as challenging as it is spectacular. This day is the most demanding ride of the tour and will show you how strong you have become. In the morning there is a climb out of Himarë, which naturally is rewarded with an enjoyable downhill. We then have another climb before our coffee break. Our break is followed with a nice downhill, but we must climb yet again before we regroup. We then come face to face with the long steady climb to the Llogara pass. At 1043m above sea level, this climb is completely optional, so if you think it is too much then you can jump in the support vehicle. However, if you are looking for an extra challenge this climb comes with a real sense of achievement, and the views are fantastic. At the pass itself (which you will also see if you take the van) it is possible to see across to Italy on a clear day. We recommend taking a warmer layer for reaching the top of the pass. From the top you enter Llogara National Park, home to black pine, Eurasian otter and golden eagles. The park is a scenic expanse of protected woodland that encompasses the forests on the northern side of the Llogora Pass. We begin to descend and have lunch in the National Park. In the afternoon we continue descending towards our hotel in, which is located just before the city. Here we can relax and take a dip in the sea, the perfect reward for a hard days cycle.



    Cycle approx. 65km, total ascent approx. 1630m (including the optional climb), total descent approx. 1630m.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    End Vlore.

    End Vlore. Those on the group flight will be transferred to Tirana airport in the morning (approx. 2.5hr drive).

    Meals included: Breakfast

Essential Info

Visas

Albania

No visa required for most nationalities, including UK passport holders, most other EU nationalities, US, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand.

Vaccinations

Albania

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts and 2 dinners included.

Food in Albania is quite varied thanks to the many influences on the country and particularly Mediterranean combining Turkish, Greek and Italian tastes. Dairy products, especially milk and yoghurt are present in almost every meal, usually locally sourced.

Under the leadership of Enver Hoxha (the communist leader of Albania from 1944-1985), Albania became a self-sustaining country due to its isolation to the world. However due to the lush fertile valleys, fresh mountain springs and Mediterranean climate, they are still very much a subsistence culture and show very little signs of changing. In the countryside expect your food to have been reared/grown not too far from your plate.

Breakfasts are typically eggs, fresh bread, jam, honey and coffee or tea. For lunch and dinner, meat dishes are often goat or lamb, with fish dishes ranging from trout to whitebait. Courses often come in mezze form complimented with a variety of succulent vegetables, salad, freshly baked bread, homemade cheeses, local wines and of course, raki. Your guide will recommend the best options when in the towns.

Weather

Albania has a temperate, Mediterranean climate. March 15th is officially the first day of spring and things really start to hot up toward the end of the month when clear skies and balmy temperatures provide a nice way to ease into the heat of summer. Summer brings sunshine and maximum temperatures of between 20-35 degrees Celsius. Summer days are long with sunrise before 6:00am and sunset after 8:30pm.

Tirana, Albania

Is this trip for you?

This trip is classified Road.

Activity Level: 4 (Moderate/Challenging)

The Activity Level was increased from a 3 (Moderate) to a 4 (Moderate/Challenging) in 2016 following the visit of the Product Manager.

Average daily distance 60km (36 miles).

No. of days cycling: 6

Vehicle Support: 100% (with limited seats)

Terrain and route: 100% tarmac, where some sections are in a poor condition with pot holes and some unsurfaced areas. The terrain is undulating with some long, but gradual climbs. The optional climb on day 7 is the most challenging, although there is always the option of the support vehicle to get you up to the pass. We aim to use quiet roads where possible. On one occasion we need to pass busy sections in order to reach the quiet roads beyond.

Accommodation

Hotels & Guesthouses

On Days 2 and 3, we are deep in the Albanian countryside and we stay in comfortable guesthouses. In Germenj we stay in Sotira Farm that is nestled in a tranquil valley, with fresh water running down from the mountains. It is also a trout farm, so you may find dinner to be fresh from the stream. Here we stay in wooden cabins that contain two rooms with twin beds in each room. Each cabin of two rooms will share their own communal bathroom. In Benje we stay in a guesthouse that is only a few kilometres from the thermal springs and Ottoman bridge. Run by a local family, dinner will often be taken out on the veranda where you will be served their own homegrown produce. Again, rooms here are a little more basic than hotels, each with an ensuite bathroom.

For the remaining nights, we use hotels that are of a comfortable 3 and 4-star standard, all with ensuite rooms.

Single accommodation available on request from GBP120

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed July 2017
    Diana Maynard
    Don't let the fact that you almost certainly know nothing about Albania (and if you do, it's probably wrong) put you off this trip. If you like cycling, embracing the unknown, don't mind a few steep hills, and are prepared to take things as they come, then this is the holiday for you! So many positives about this holiday: fantastic fresh, local food and drink (and outstanding coffee), exploring new cultures, mountains, beaches, and above all a great adventure.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Llogara Pass was definitely challenging (especially in April, when it got very very cold - though apparently it can be just as challenging in mid-summer when it's very very hot) but making it all the way to the top without walking or getting in the bus (even if at the pace of an injured snail) and the support from everyone else was fantastic. We didn't hang around long enough to enjoy the view at the top as it was so cold, but I'm sure it was lovely (the views on the way up were awesome, in between the rain).

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Literally could not fault Junid - he was super organised, friendly, sociable, and always happy to try to find a solution to any problem.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared! Around Easter, the temperature can vary between factor 50 suncream and 4 layers of clothing in the course of a single day (and at night it can get quite chilly, since some of the hotels had no heating). be prepared for things to not work and roll with it (e.g. power cuts, dodgy showers etc.) If that's not your cup of tea, then you may want to reconsider. The trip isn't hard for the grading, but there are a couple of challenging hills in there, so have a practise on a few first, or hit the gym. Packing a few energy gels will help also. Also, get enough money for your trip at the airport, as there are few opportunities to use a cash machine along the way. On the other hand, there's almost no opportunity to buy anything, so you won't spend much.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    For more info, I wrote a couple of blog posts about the trip: https://expandyourlimits.wordpress.com/category/europe/albania/
  • Reviewed July 2017
    Kathy Chellew
    This was our 5th cycling trip with Exodus and the most surprisingly fun. Despite an uncharacteristic heatwave in early July, which meant our first day took us up very challenging hills in 37 degree heat and forced some cyclists to abandon their bikes for the van, we all bonded as a group and had as much fun in the evenings as we did pedalling through the stunning scenery of Albania.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The sense of achievement on reaching the summit of the final day's epic climb towards Vlore.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dhimo was delightful. Coped calmly with all the usual dramas of a cycling holiday despite his youth (26).

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you're hill-fit as it's a very challenging trip, especially in the heat.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Probably best to choose the Spring or Autumn departure dates as July was very hot - although we were unlucky to experience a heat wave so struggled with the heat more than probably usual.
  • Reviewed June 2017
    Shane Brown
    My first Exodus trip and already planning more. A well organised trip to a beautiful, unspoilt country. Yes, the cycling was tough at times with some long climbs but the roads were not busy, the Albanian drivers very considerate of cyclists and my travelling companions very supportive.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing those mountains, villages and coastlines plus of course being able to complete all rides.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dhimi was great, professional, caring and fun.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for some tough climbs, enjoy the downhills but treat with caution, embrace the country and the lovely people

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thanks to my wonderful travelling companions. A mixture of couples and singles of varying ages.
  • Reviewed May 2017
    Dean Goff
    What a fantastic trip! Superb cycling on quiet, scenic roads in beautiful Albania. Three of the days are quite challenging, but none the worse for it.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The hotels and guest houses are all in great locations - waking up in the mountains in Benje and looking forward to another (easier) day of great cycling, good food and sunshine.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dhimi was good fun with a great sense of humour. The whole trip was very well organised and well thought out. We all contributed towards a kitty at the start which worked really well. At every coffee stop Dhimi would organise drinks and snacks, which meant we could sit down straight away and still get served quickly, which can be challenging in a group.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Dhimi took us to a lovely restaurant in Tirana after meeting us at the airport, so don't worry about food on the flight or for the transfer. It's worth mentioning that you'll see a few goat herders on the trip and some of them have dogs that are fond of cyclists. If you go faster, they go faster - the trick is to stop pedalling and slow down and they soon lose interest.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I've been on a number of cycling holidays with Exodus that have all been great, but this one stands out as one of the best. The cycling, scenery, food/drink and accommodation were all fantastic. You won't lose any weight on this trip, but you will come back from it with a fondness for Albania and a sense of satisfaction.
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Stuart Norris
    This was a splendid trip, made all the better by the staggering beauty of the Albanian mountains and countryside and the excellent company of all on the tour. The cycling was immense, challenging all of us on the tour with the long and arduous climbs and then providing thrills and big smiles as we sped down the long, winding descents with endless views stretching ahead of us. The first half of the trip is in the mountains but then descends to the coast for a day or two before climbing once again for more mountain scenery and finishing with a long descent to the final hotel, once more on the coast. A good variety of scenery and culture that provides an excellent taster of life in present day Albania as the country moves from its communist past and trys to adapt to modern day capitalism and all the challenges that this poses.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Undoubtedly the accomplishment of tackling and overcoming the serious climbs on this trip. All of the tour were experienced cyclists, yet none found climbing in the heat anything but a challenge. However, the splendour of the Albanian mountains all around us as we climbed eased the task of reaching the summits on every occasion and the camerarderie of the group was much in evidence throughout. Probably most inspirational were two of our travelling companions, 78 and 79 years old respectively, who tackled the climbs without complaint and earned our utmost respect.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dhimo was a good leader, calm and amusing, and he soon joined in with the generally humourous and irreverent conversation of the group. He organised snacks, group lunches and dinners every day which made everything very convenient and easy. Together with our driver it was a good team and added greatly to our overall enjoyment of the trip.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't rely on credit cards - we did not find any hotel or restaurant that would take them. Exchange a small amount of money in the airport (the exchange rate was 155 Leke to the Pound) to last a few days in the mountains and then use an ATM in one of the larger towns. In practice, our leader paid for everything food related and we reimbursed him at the end of the week, but this may not be the same for every trip or tour leader in Albania. Note that the cycling really does have some challenging climbs and you will definitely benefit if you are cycle fit before arrival. There are three days of very serious climbing (the first day and the final two days - approx 5000, 5200 and 6750 feet respectively) but the views are spectacular and the downhills immense. Very enjoyable but tough. The panniers provided are excellent and our tour (all experienced cyclists) made good use of them, so a rucksack is not needed when cycling.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The quality of the food on this trip was always to a very good standard but, probably as should be expected in a country such as Albania, became quite "samey" - if you don't like most meals consisting mainly of goats cheese, simple salad and bread (this included many breakfasts, but fried eggs were added to this meal) then the cuisine may not be for you. Having said that, this is the staple food of the common man in Albania so we were very accepting of it. At the end of the tour when we reached larger towns, the dinners had greater choices. Our leader provided snacks from the tour kitty, and these supplemented our fuel intake.
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Maxwell Robinson
    Cycling in Albania is not easy, but is rewarding. The views commanded from some of the many climbs were spectacular. We enjoyed staying in some of the more remote parts of the country and then on to the slightly more commercialised coast. The evenings were great fun, with superb food, and an interesting group of cyclists. Despite the mixed ability almost everyone completed every ride including the final climb over Llogara pass.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Undoubtedly the climb up the Llogara pass felt like quite an achievement.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dhimo (Group Leader) and Juli (Driver/Support) were fantastic. A great couple of guys. Attentive to all our needs, sociable and informative.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We travelled late Sept and it was a cooler than expected early morning and in the evenings. Definitely pay attention to the grading and daily ascents in the trip notes. It's not an easy trip. The notes describe it being chilly at the top of the Llogara pass. You soon cool down and then it feels pretty cold. We were all very pleased to take refuge in the bar at the top and glad to be served soup for lunch in the bar a few minutes into the descent. The lunches everywhere are huge and delicious. You won't go hungry.
  • Reviewed July 2016
    Gail Hopper
    Beautiful scenery, interesting country, real contrast between the mountainous interior and scenic coastline, lovely food, great weather and lovely friendly people - both locals and in our group. This was definitely a trip worth taking. Cycling was good and like many other reviewers,we thought this was more challenging than its current grading. We couldn't believe how little we spent over the week - though to be honest there wasn't much to buy, other than the essentials.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I wouldn't say inspirational but waking up on day 1 to find we'd arrived at a stunning lakeside location the night before was a great start to a week that just got better. The guest house stay was a lovely setting at the end of a beautiful but challenging ride on day 1. The final ride over the Llogara pass in temperatures of 33 degrees was - er character building.....

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good, well organized, calm and friendly - looked after us well.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Prepare for the challenges of the riding - I don't remember any days that didn't include climbing ( though not particularly steep), but some had more than others - much more enjoyable if you're prepared for that. If you struggle with high temperatures, then earlier or later in the season might be better - June was very hot.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    We've done a number of Exodus cycling trips and thought this was a little different - the first few days in particular did feel like stepping back in time. Would recommend it.
  • Reviewed July 2016
    Marie Longworth
    Had read the reviews before going and it lived up to expectations! Fab scenery, food and great cycles!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Staying on the bike and not taking the van!!! Was not always on the bike ( especially on the last day)

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Arian ( ? Correct spelling) cycled with us every day. He was initially quiet and reserved but as the trip progressed he was more relaxed and really looked after us very well. Just a lovely guy! Armaund was very organised and everything went smoothly!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I have done about 7 to 8 moderate trips!! In my opinion this was a Challenging trip. Doing 2 cycles (what I did) is not enough preparation for this trip!! PLEASE do HILLS before you go!!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Great cycling!
  • Reviewed June 2016
    Christopher Goodwin
    Started off fraught…but ended up being amazing…!!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So this is how the story goes… One wet and rainy Tuesday morning is was chucking it down in the South East.. so all of the Motorways were bent as usual on the way to Gatwick, I finally got there at 1445 with the flight due to leave at 1615 I thought great I had made it, so queued up with the rest of the passengers to check the Bike and the rest of the Baggage in…and then I checked my Passport and guess what?? – yes it was the wrong one, I had picked my Wife’s up by mistake, there was me the biggest pl!”$ker of the day… It was a pretty bad feeling having arrived to suddenly find out that the Holiday was over even before it started… So decisions had to be made so I rang the Exodus office to see what we could do… I spoke to Marcus Fisher (what an amazing guy), he came up with all of the various options of how I could still join the trip even though it was on day 2, I ended up going back to Derby to fetch the Passport, flew to Istanbul and then Tirana, staying overnight and then a 4 hour Cab ride to join the group…and Exodus sorted it all out for me – so the customer service here was amazing – Thanks to Marcus and the team on the ground in Albania!! – I am in your debt

    What did you think of your group leader?

    So to the holiday itself…everything was absolutely spot on…Unit the leader was one of the best I have ever come across and I have been on a lot of adventures over the years!! The group was great, the scenery amazing and the food was lovely…this was my first cycling holiday with Exodus and will be back for another one next year, I fancy Iceland Albania is a great place and I could not recommend it enough, Exodus have thought of everything so you will love it

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    One word of warning, please do some training for the climbs…you will be glad you did!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    So here endeth the story and once again thanks Exodus for getting me out of the ‘*!”$’
  • Reviewed June 2016
    Lynne Porteous
    I enjoyed this trip even more than I had hoped - the country is so interesting, the scenery glorious and the food wonderful! Our guide was proficient and professional and ensured the whole week provided fun, variety and (optional) challenges!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    For me this trip was more than "moderate" so managing the undulations (!) was a personal achievement...especially the final day. There were so many "wow" moments in terms of the scenery and I stopped often to capture that perfect shot! Day two as we cycled toward lunch provided amazing mountain views and the coastal rides above the sparkling seas were just magnificent. Loved the guesthouse stays and the trip to the geothermal pool

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Junid was an excellent leader - he was very calm and measured and at all times a consummate professional. I liked the fact that he stressed each day that this was a vacation and we should travel at our own speed, enjoy the ride and take photos and stop as we wished. This was perfect for me - I like to travel in that way! Junid's knowledge of his country and its history was impressive and his love for Albania shone through!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Visit Albania - it is well worth it! The people were friendly and welcoming and the countryside unspoiled and beautiful. Spending money goes a long way and the meals that we had were fresh and delicious on every occasion and perfect for vegetarians and pescetarians.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I do think this is a moderate/challenging ride and it would be good to reflect that in the rating? Having the option to spend longer at Butrint for those that want to would be good?

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

Call us on 1 844 227 9087