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Do I really need guide service?

As a Trip Planner at Adventure Life, I get this question frequently.  "Do I really need someone to hold my hand?"  As an independent traveler looking back on her trip, I can tell you that guide service took my experience to the next level and put my mind at ease.  Like so many of our busy travelers, I was working right up until the last minute before this trip and really didn't have the time to pore over books and blogs for an endless stream of inspiration and recommendations.  I made sure that my suitcase was filled appropriately, but outside of that I left the day-by-day details and logistics to the experts, and boy was it worth it!  Since my guides were all locals, they knew these sites and customs like the back of their hand, and it truly felt like I was on a whirlwind tour of their most favorite things to do in their home town. 

My guide Nong was such a great host for the day! (and barely broke a sweat)
My guide Nong was such a great host for the day! (and barely broke a sweat) (Jenna Fedyschyn)

They helped me interact with market vendors, eat at the best hole-in-the-wall spots, and avoid the typical tourist faux pas.  Since someone else was worried about getting me from point A to B and had my safety in mind, I was able to truly take it all in and focus on the experience.  There's certainly a time & place for the "DIY vacation," but I'm a true convert when it comes to using guide service, particularly when your planning time is limited, and especially when the culture and language seems so foreign!

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