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Story Land & Sea®

16 Guest Tour of Italy

Discover what travel expert Mr. Arthur Frommer (of Frommers.com and Frommer Guidebooks) discovered about QueensLander®, Now Story Land & Sea® small group Italy tours: He says, "It's the perfect way to see Italy!"

America's #1 Leader in Small Group Travel to Italy? We're the Best.
Since our company's inception we have focused on quality, off-the-beaten-path experiences throughout Italy and have often been described by some in the industry as 'the anti-tour Italy tour company.' This is a reflection on our determination to avoid the traditional tour mentality of the mainstream industry such as the use of big buses. Nothing can spoil a lovely itinerary through Italy's countryside faster than seeing a huge bus filled with tourists. Our small group Italy tour focus is what sets Story apart from the rest. We are a family-owned company based in Colorado in the USA. We provide distinctive touring vacations to Italy via our branded small group tours. These true small group Italy tours feature no more than 16 travelers, whom we call guests. Our local Itailan partners work hand in hand with us to provide on each Italy tour vacation a truly remarkable and unique experience.

OUR EXPERIENCES SET YOU APART FROM THE TRADITIONAL TOUR
Imagine having an Italian chef prepare your dinner while you sip on delicious wine, called vino in Italy, in a spacious apartment once used by the late, famous American actor, Marlon Brando, located on Isola Tiberina in the heart of the Tiber River in Rome.

Our small group approach combined with an emphasis on quality and value provide a unique alternative to the mainstream tour companies.

DO THE COMPARISON
Comparing Today's "Small Group Tours of Italy" with Mainstream Italy tour operators:

Size of Group:
Story Land & Sea®: Maximum 16. Always.
Nearest Competitor: "Around 24"
Mainstream Operator: 52 to 75 Tourists
Conclusion: Benefits of a small group, just like small group communication ends when your group is larger than 16 people.

Price per day:
Story Land & Sea®: $359 - 589 Nearest Competitor: $679 - 979
Mainstream Operator: $150 - 300
Conclusion: Enjoy a true value in the small group guided tour industry with QueensLander.

Meals:
Story Land & Sea®: 50 - 75% included
Nearest Competitor: 50% included
Mainstream Operator: 35 - 50% included
Conclusion: Daily breakfast, select lunches and dinners included wth Story.

Dining Style:
Story Land & Sea®: Order from the Menu. Wine & Premium Drinks Flow.
Nearest Competitor: Set Menu
Mainstream Operator: Set Menu
Conclusion: On a Story Land & Sea® small group tour of Italy, stop and listen to the conversation of the table next to you: You'll quickly discover they're speaking in Italian.

Sightseeing:
Story Land & Sea®: All included.
Nearest Competitor: Most cost extra
Mainstream Operator: Most cost extra
Conclusion:
No Upsell with Story —  Vacation the way it was meant to be!

Admissions & Entrances:
Story Land & Sea®: Not just 'skip-the-line,' but Special Access
Nearest Competitor: Skip-the-Line
Mainstream Operator: Large group requires time to process into venues ((and get off the bus!))
Conclusion: Special Access means we have relationships with the venues we visit. The small group will skip lines and enjoy VIP entrance to most locations.

Tips:
Story Land & Sea®: All Included except Tour Captain
Nearest Competitor: All except guide & driver included
Mainstream Operator:
None Included
Conclusion: Enjoy world-class gratuitiy policy with Story.

Hotel Location:
Story Land & Sea®: Heart of City ((Where you want to be!))
Nearest Competitor: "Centrally Located" ((50% Not Centrally Located))
Mainstream Operator:
"Centrally Located" ((Not Centrally Located))
Conclusion: Operators can say "centrally located," but what matters is where your hotel is actually located. Heart of City with Story means you are where you want to be.

Upsell on Tour?
Story Land & Sea®: No. Our Tour Captains will not try to sell you more excursions.
Nearest Competitor: Cruise ship mentality: The more they sell the more they make.
Mainstream Operator: Traditional tour mentality: The more they sell the more they make.
Conclusion: This is a very key characteristic of Story Land & Sea®'s approach to touring: We want your vacation to be unwrapped by our people for you. Have a free afternoon, our Tour Captains will help you with ideas but we're not going to sell you anything.

Tour Directors:
Story Land & Sea®: Personally Trained to work with American Guests ((called Tour Captains))
Nearest Competitor: Foreign Tour Director
Mainstream Operator: Foreign Tour Director
Conclusion: It's simple: American, Canadian and Australian guests prefer tour managers they can relate to and so do we.

Tour Guides:
Story Land & Sea®: Local, salaried Italian Expert Guides ((Tested & True, We know them, they know us))
Nearest Competitor: Hired National Guides paid thru tips & commission.
Mainstream Operator: Hired National Guides paid thru tips & commission.
Conclusion: Your local guide can make or break your experience.

Big Buses?
Story Land & Sea®: No: 22 Seat Vehicles so you have room to move about but we can still get into the small villages
Nearest Competitor: Yes: 52 Passenger Vehicles
Mainstream Operator: Yes: 56 Passenger Vehicles
Conclusion: From "Nearest Competitor" Website: "Yes, you are on a large bus for most of the transportation." Never on a large bus with Story.

Take the plunge and compare our small group tour approach with other larger companies and you'll find out very quickly Story Land & Sea® leads the pack with:

Heart of city hotels - many mainstream companies boast about city center accommodations but what does that mean? Compare the location of our boutique hotels with theirs and you'll find out quickly location really does matter. Imagine Piazza San Marco at night when the cruise and mainstream groups have all left to their "city center" hotels and ships and our small group of travelers have the city to ourselves.

Small Group Tour Dining the Story Way®: Included Unique Dinners Most mainstream tour companies provide you with a set menu and buffet options for dinner at tourist restaurants. Story Land & Sea®'s approach to small group dining is unique: imagine dining at hard-to-find restaurant venues where the only language you'll hear at the table next to you, when you are in Italy, is Italian. Our Italian dinner experiences exude authenticity. A hallmark characteristic of Story Way® dining is that we eat (and drink) from the lands we are traveling through. When we're in Venice, we're eating more seafood, and drinking wine from the region of Valpolicella, which literally means the 'valley of the cellars' which runs from Lake Garda to Venice. We find this approach to dining is not only delicious but it's what our guests have come to expect: authentic cuisine and wine on every Story Land & Sea®  small group tour through Italy.