Why Austin Adventures?

Why Austin Adventures? Here’s Why.

Our responses are rooted deeply in our ethos — in the mission we’ve honed and honored for decades — which is to create meticulously curated, ultra-personalized adventures that allow our guests to experience a destination in the most immersive, energizing, and inspiring way possible.
At Austin Adventures we believe that travel has the power to change us. To let us see the world, and our role in it, through a new lens. To leave us feeling fulfilled, invigorated, transformed. Our #1 job is to lay the groundwork for this kind of life-changing, expectation-exceeding travel. Your job is simply to soak it all in.

group size

#1 Just-Right Group Sizes

While many tour operators consider 28-36 (a busload) a small group, we find smaller is so much better. We’ve capped our trips at an average of 12 guests, and our 6:1 guest-to-guide ratio is the lowest in the industry. Our small groups and personalized service allow you to enjoy the beauty, culture, flavor, and excitement of a new land from the perspective of an insider, not from the well-trodden tourist track.

guides

#2 Top-Rated Guides

Our guides are a part of the Austin Adventures family. They are the lifeblood of our business and many have worked for us for decades. While others may sub-contract or outsource their guides, we hand-select ours and take pride in the fact they’re consistently rated as the best in the industry. Even as we stretch our wings internationally, we work closely with our partners to find the best local guides — each of whom is coached extensively in the Austin Adventures way.

MEET OUR GUIDES
details

#3 Uncanny Attention to Detail

Our trips take you off the grid and deep into some of the most beautiful places on the planet. Every detail of your experience with us has been carefully considered. We’ve done our job well when all of the fine-tuning (e.g., the equipment, the transfers, the lodging, the meals) melts into your periphery and you’re left with the simple joy of the experience itself. With our focus firmly on the details and logistics, you can unwind, unplug, and truly connect — with friends, with family, with the local culture, with nature.

value

#4 Exceptional Value, Without Compromise

Every year, we take a close look at how we stack up value-wise with our competitors, and then we adjust our rates, terms, conditions, and inclusions to secure ourselves as the leader of the pack. Book with us and rest assured, there will be no extra transfer fees or equipment rental fees, no last-minute expenses. Everything is included in your trip rate and is clearly spelled out from the get-go. Note that we never sacrifice quality for value — you won’t find yourself looking out over the parking lot from your hotel room, or choosing from a “tour only” menu at the local bistro.

wow

#5 The Wow Moments

At Austin Adventures, the extra mile is never extra, it’s a way of life. We realized a long time ago how incredibly powerful it can be to anchor a special moment of a trip with an additional “Wow Moment.” Now, we won’t go telling you what they are and when to expect them as the surprise is often just as special as the thoughtful touch itself. As pioneers of the WOW Moment, we’ll happily continue to deliver these thoughtful extra touches and delight guests every chance we get.

safety v2

#6 Strict Standards for your Safety

At Austin Adventures, your safety is paramount. Our guides are hired on this principle and trained not only to keep you safe on your adventure, but to be ready for the unexpected — a flash flood, a lightning storm, civil unrest — those off-the-itinerary events you couldn’t have predicted. Our policy on safety extends to our partners, too — from rafting outfitters to ranchers and everyone else you meet along the way. Each has been thoroughly vetted and is guaranteed to uphold our strict standards. Our equipment (we use our own whenever possible as a means to protect your safety) is always top-notch and carefully maintained. We know just the right kind of bike, for example, to use on the paved trails in the Tetons, the right-size van for the local terrain in Yellowstone, and so much more.

lodgings

#7 Authentic, Culturally Reflective Lodging & Cuisine

Let’s be honest. Half the fun of a vacation is testing out rooms with a view in amazing locations and treating yourself to the local fare. It really is an important part of the experience — which is why we go to great lengths to find the absolute best properties available, carefully selecting hotels, lodges, auberges, or haciendas that not only meet our standards but also reflect the culture and the energy of the places we visit. When it comes to meals, we understand that authenticity is as important as the food itself. Sometimes it’s a brunch at an out-of-the-way bistro in Barfleur, a lunch in the private home in Costa Rica, or an artfully prepared dinner by the campfire in the Grand Canyon that you’ll remember the most.

relationships

#8 Nearly 40 Years of Building Relationships

What sets us apart isn’t just our nearly 40 years of experience, but the relationships and trust we’ve built along the way. Our relationships enable us to offer the best, most unique experience for our guests. For example, our guests are the only ones Jack and Martin Davis, 4th generation Montana cowboys (the real deal), will allow to saddle up on their horses for a ride through their property in the foothills of the Absaroka Mountains. Our long-term, mutually respectful relationships make all the difference in the world when it comes to offering you an unmatched insider experience.

family

#9 Family Affair

Family is at the core of who we are: a small boutique tour operator out of Billings, Montana. And when you travel with us, you’ll feel right at home. We’ve remained true to our mission throughout, treating our employees and guests as we do each other — like family. We couldn’t be prouder of who we are and what we do.

9

#10 We're Always Listening

We’ve been in the travel game long enough to know it’s not only important to listen to what guests want, it’s mandatory. We’re constantly seeking out feedback from past and present travelers and travel advisors to ensure we’re giving them exactly what they’re looking for. One thing we’ve heard over and over is guests are looking for variety. Maybe one year it’s a family vacation in Yellowstone, but maybe the next year you’re looking for a bucket-list hiking trip New Zealand with your friends. That’s why we merged with Active Adventures in July 2021. We’re expanding our portfolio and our horizons to continue to offer our guests an unforgettable adventure.

READ GUEST REVIEWS
Active Adventure Assurance

Secure Your Spot Now, Pay the Rest Later

As members of the Active Adventures family, Austin Adventures offers booking assurance that allows you to secure your spot with a deposit now and pay the rest later. Plus, if your plans change or you can’t travel, you can transfer your booking or request a refund on any additional funds paid (less deposit) up to 90 days from your original trip start date.  

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Here's what an adventure with us looks like!

Frequently asked questions

How do I book?

You can book directly from the trip pages on our website, or call one of our Adventure Travel Consultants at 1-800-661-9073. You can also use the chat feature in the lower right-hand corner to work with a live agent during business hours.

How far in advance should I book?

The sooner the better! We recommend booking 6-12 months prior to your departure. Popular trips and trips departing during busier times sell out quicker, so it’s best to book as soon as possible to avoid missing out.

How do deposits work?

Please review our booking policies here.

What is the cancellation policy?

Please review our booking policies here.

What's included?

Our trips are mostly all-inclusive and typically include the following:

  • Professional guides
  • Accommodation
  • Meals mentioned in the itinerary (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner)
  • Activities mentioned in the itinerary
  • Any necessary equipment - all safe and well-maintained
  • Transportation from trip start to end
  • Gratuities for hotels, restaurants, and activities
  • Park and other entry fees
  • Access to our online Travel Wallet featuring trip-planning materials

What's not included?

Our trips typically exclude the Following:

  • Air and land transportation to/from trip start/end locations
  • Travel insurance
  • Pre/post-trip accommodation
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Some meals (as mentioned in the itinerary)
  • Gratuities to trip guides

How does rooming work?

Trip prices are based on shared arrangements (typically two guests per room), unless otherwise stated. For solo travellers, we’ll pair you with another person of the same gender to share rooms and if there’s no one suitable to share with, there’s no forced single supplement. However, if you specifically request your own rooms, you can opt to pay the single supplement. Solo travellers who book within 90 days of departure, where there are no other solo travellers willing to share, will be required to pay the single supplement. 

Families consisting of four guests traveling with children aged 17 and under will be automatically assigned one shared room. However, the following alternative rooming allocations are available:

Families consisting of four guests with all children aged 13 and above are welcome to opt for additional rooms as per advertised double occupancy adult rates.

Families consisting of four guests with at least one child aged 12 and under are automatically assigned a shared room. However, families can opt to pay the adult rates for all guests in their family to have an additional room.
The same principles apply for families consisting of more than four guests.
Rooming preferences are subject to availability and must be communicated in writing at time of booking. Automatic assignments as per this policy will be applied in the absence of any specification provided by guests. Any request for additional rooms during trips will be at guests’ own expense and subject to rates made available by the accommodation provider at the time. All minors (guests aged 17 and under) must be accompanied by at least one adult.

How much should I tip my guides?

Our guides work very hard to ensure you have the trip of a lifetime. They’re dedicated, knowledgeable, and their attention to detail truly sets them apart from the rest. If you feel your guides have gone above and beyond, a gratuity may be given at the end of the trip. Depending on your group size, you will have 2-3 guides on your trip. We recommend USD$20 per day, per guest, per guide. Typically gratuities are offered by check (where available) or cash in the local currency on the final morning of the trip and can either be given to each guide individually or to one guide to be equally distributed. Please note ATMs can be a bit difficult to come by in some regions so please plan accordingly.

Will you help with details before or after my trip?

Adventures Tours are what we do best and for this reason, we focus solely on your tour itself. Rest assured you’ll receive helpful communications from our team about your trip – you just need to take care of getting yourself to wherever the trip starts and any pre-trip accommodation you might require, and any onward travel plans from the time we drop you off where your trip ends. If you need some ideas for what to do before or after your trip, check out the local Chamber of Commerce, or speak with a travel agent who’ll also be able to help with flights, pre/post-trip accommodation, and more.

We also recommend chatting with our preferred travel partner – Fuzion Travel.

Do you work with Travel Agents?

We sure do. Travel Agents, You’ll find everything you need to know here.

Do you have reviews from guests who’ve traveled with you previously?

Absolutely! Our guests are some of our best sources of information. You may read a few published testimonials here.

Do you require travel insurance?

We've partnered with Redpoint Travel Protection which offers comprehensive plans and elite service for our kind of trips.

Your insurance plan should include full medical cover, emergency evacuation and emergency repatriation. You should also ensure you’re covered for trip cancelation and have protection for any other issues such as flight cancelations or delays, loss of luggage and personal effects, and theft.

We will not allow you to participate in our trips in the Himalayas, Africa, and Latin and South America without adequate travel insurance.

Do you offer singles-only tours?

We do not offer trips exclusively for singles, but you might be surprised to learn thousands of singles join our trips as solo travelers.

We encourage solo travelers to join our adult trips where you’ll be joined by other solo travelers, couples, and families with older kids who all share a common interest in travel and adventure.

If you’re traveling alone, we’ll simply pair you with another solo guest of the same gender for rooming. Alternatively, you’re welcome to pay the single supplement to have rooms to yourself.

How difficult and flexible are trip activities?

Every trip has an activity level outlining the level of physical ability you’ll need to participate.

For the most part, activities on trips are entirely optional, so if you’re not feeling up to a particular activity on any given day, you’re more than welcome to give it a miss. While the others in your group participate.

Are the hiking and biking distances the same on family trips?

To accommodate our younger guests, family hikes and bike rides are typically shorter and easier. Our guides are happy to keep children entertained while the older guests opt for more challenging hikes, bikes etc.

Distances and levels of difficulty for older guests are easy to adjust.

What is the minimum age and do you offer child discounts?

For adult trips, the minimum age is 16.

For designated family vacations, we accommodate children as young as 6.

Child discounts are available as stated for children 12 and under at time of travel.

How large are your groups?

Most trips carry about 10-12 guests. You’ll find the max group size stated on the trip page. Most trips carry 10 to 12 guests and in some cases we can accommodate up to 20.

Who else will be on the trip?

Our trips attract a wide range of people from different backgrounds, countries and ages, which makes our small group adventures all the more enjoyable. Our guests tend to enjoy active lifestyles, great food, good company and new experiences. If you’re feeling nervous about travelling with strangers, rest assured you’ll be in good company.

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