Tauck confirms even smaller group program

As flagged by LATTE in November, the new series cater for an average of 15 guests

Tauck says it is leaning into its ‘small groups’ success with the introduction of its new ‘Smaller Group’ tours and departures. Whilst Tauck’s Small Group trips, which now account for more than half of the company’s non-cruise business each year and will continue to average 24 guests per departure, the new Smaller Group journeys will average just 15 guests. By comparison, Tauck’s classic land journeys host an average of 35 – 44 guests.

The smaller group tours were flagged exclusively by LATTE last November, when speaking with Steve Spivak, Tauck’s VP Global Sales and Reservations.

Tauck is piloting the new program in 2024 with 26 Smaller Group departures spanning seven itineraries in North America and Europe. All Smaller Group tours in 2024 will be special departures of existing Tauck itineraries, with the first Smaller Group departures of three tours having operated in recent weeks, including “America’s Canyonlands,” “A Week In… Spain” and “A Week In… Ireland”.

Tauck Smaller Groups in Canyonlands, Utah

Subscribe to LATTE’s free eNewsletter to keep up to date with everything in the luxury travel industry.

The program’s official launch is slated for Tauck’s 100th anniversary in 2025, when the company will expand its Smaller Group offerings to include 124 departures across 12 itineraries in North America, Europe and Africa. The 2025 Smaller Groups will feature special departures of existing Tauck itineraries, along with three African safaris where all departures are Smaller Group offerings.

Dan Mahar, CEO of Tauck says interest for smaller group trips has increased in recent years.

“Although a large segment of our guests remain devoted to our classic group size, we’ve also seen incredible growth in our Small Group departures over the past several years. More recently, some of our guests have shown increasing interest in even smaller group sizes.”

“Our market research has zeroed in on an optimal group size of 12-20 among those interested in smaller groups, so our average group size of 15 travellers is right in the centre of that sweet spot,” Mahar said.

According to Mahar, Tauck’s market research also identified the attributes of smaller group travel that held particular appeal to the company’s guests.

Tauck Smaller Groups will hit the Canadian Rockies

“Our guests want to experience deeper connections with the places they visit, and they want more time, freedom and flexibility. They also want to forge deeper connections with their Tauck Director, and with their local guides and fellow travellers, and all of that is easier to accomplish within a smaller group setting,”

“And of course, smaller groups have access to places and experiences that simply aren’t available to larger groups. On our African safaris, for example, our Smaller Groups stay in cozy lodges and tented camps with limited capacity, minimising disruptions to the wildlife and environment, and providing a more authentic experience,” said Mahar.

Tauck’s introduction of Smaller Groups is just the latest example of its “Small is Big” philosophy, which has reshaped the company’s product offerings over the last several years and extends beyond the Small Group and new Smaller Group departures of its land journeys to include how the company operates its European river cruises and small ship ocean cruises.

Smaller Groups in Kenya | Image courtesy of Tauck

On Europe’s rivers, Tauck’s newest ship, ms Andorinha, carries just 84 guests – fewer than any other riverboat in the company’s fleet. That’s also fewer passengers than on other similarly sized ships sailing Portugal’s Douro River, where the Andorinha operates.

In 2017 and 2018, Tauck reconfigured its four 110-metre ships to decrease their capacity, reducing the number of guests hosted on each ship from 118 to 98 per vessel. Tauck’s four 135-metre ships have a capacity of just 130 guests each, far less than the 190 passengers (or 46% more) routinely carried aboard competitors’ ships of the same size.

On its small ship ocean cruises, Tauck’s primary partner is the luxury French line PONANT, with Tauck employing Ponant’s Explorer ships (capacity: 184 guests) on numerous itineraries. Overall, ten of Tauck’s small ship ocean cruises sail aboard ships carrying fewer than 200 guests, including three vessels that carry 100 passengers or less. By contrast, the average cruise ship carries approximately 3,000 guests, with the world’s largest vessel accommodating more than 7,500 travellers.

Tauck’s European river cruises and small ship ocean cruises also feature a choice of sightseeing options in many ports, with guests able to choose the option that aligns best with their interests and, in some cases, their preferred activity level.

Tauck utilises small ships such as Ponant's Le Dumont D'Urville

Tauck’s 2024 Smaller Group Departures consist of:

North America:

Best of the Canadian Rockies
America’s Canyonlands
Canada’s Capital Cities plus Niagara Falls

Europe:

Northern Spain, the Rioja Valley and Madrid
A Week In… Spain
Switzerland: Europe’s Crown Jewel
A Week In… Ireland

Tauck’s 2025 Smaller Group Departures include:

North America:

Best of the Canadian Rockies
America’s Canyonlands
Canada’s Capital Cities plus Niagara Falls
The Best of Hawaii

Europe:

A Week In… Spain
Switzerland: Europe’s Crown Jewel
A Week In… Ireland
The Best of Ireland, Small Groups
Paris, Dordogne & Bordeaux

Africa:

Great Migration: Tanzania & Kenya
Namibia: Epic Safari
Wildlife Odyssey: South Africa, Botswana & Zimbabwe

Tauck’s 2025 Smaller Group tours are posted online at: tauck.com.au/guest-travel/smaller-groups

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.

WP to LinkedIn Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com