“Rainforest to Reef Down Under”

March 29- April 7, 2023       Small group 

Price is listed below the daily itinerary

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If you are a radical Nature Lover, join us in northern Queensland to witness nature at her most outlandish with koalas and kangaroos to crocs and wombats. We packed a ton of fun in 9 incredible days with lodging in luxury treehouses, walkabout jungle treks with aboriginals, river cruising under starry nights, private catamaran cruise to the Great Barrier Reef, koala visits and so much more!  We’ve sent dozens of AFS groups to the Land of Oz – Down Under to all regions of this humongous country, but nothing can top our new vacation creation! Come explore Sydney’s iconic sites. Then we fly up to Cairns and Port Douglas, home to Daintree National Park. End with a flight to Brisbane, a bucket list city with a thriving cultural scene and gateway to countless adventures. So many highlights on this, your head will spin.

UNESCO World Heritage Site of Daintree Rainforest is the “land of giants” with its towering flora (3400 plants species) and is the world’s oldest living rainforest on earth. Our home is the new Silky Oaks Lodge – just voted in “Top 10 Best Hotels in the World” by both Condé Nast Traveler and Afar magazines. Set along the mighty flowing Mossman River is an eco-resort like no other. Our elevated, open-sided Treehouses are enveloped in ancient cedars with private balconies, hammocks and stone tubs for moonlit soaks. The dining room sits high in the forest canopy serving signature gourmet cuisines. Enjoy the lauded “Healing Waters spa”, hiking trails, river kayaks, bikes, moon fishing, yoga and more activities included on land and sea here. You’ll love our sunset River Cruise among mangroves alive with osprey, kingfishers, colossal crocs and bioluminescent fungi. Experience a Walkabout Cultural Adventure into Mossman gorge with the Kuku Yalanji guides to learn about plants and survival here. Then enjoy a full-day luxury catamaran cruise to UNESCO’s Great Barrier Reef for snorkeling and diving in the world’s largest call reef system!

More fun continues in Brisbane with our unique Koala Cruise to Lone Pine Sanctuary to play with Australia’s cuddliest creatures as well as kangaroos, emu, platypus and more. On your free day, you can visit the Erwin’s famous Australia Zoo for one-on-one animal experiences, hike Kangaroo Point, hot air ballooning, wine tours, llama walks and countless other options.

It’s Sydney, Cairns, Daintree, Cape Tribulation and Brisbane at a price that can’t be beat and April is the perfect time to visit. Small group limited to only 20 travelers and will fill fast. If you want, you can even arrange your own independent extensions to the Outback or New Zealand if you have time. If you want the best of Australia, this adventure is off the charts for variety and one-of-a-kind activities. We love Aussie slang… Crickey! C’mon blokes and sheilas, giddy-up for some woop woop on a vacay like no other!

 

Our Glorious AFS Itinerary
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Click for printable PDF itinerary (Australia)

29 Mar  –  Depart USA to Sydney Australia. In crossing the international date line, you lose a day but gain it back at the end. Air details to come in trip tips.

31 Mar – Arrive Sydney               (Land begins)

Welcome to wonderful Sydney, Australia’s cosmopolitan premier city.   Check into our fabulous hotel located in the best part of Sydney for two fun nights.  This capital city of New South Wales is draped around its breathtaking harbor, beaches and national parks. It’s a laid-back city with so much to explore both by day and after dark. Check out hundreds of options found at www.sydney.com.  Later in the afternoon, attend an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager on the exciting journey that lies ahead, followed by a Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant or Aussie cuisine.

Overnight:  Novotel Sydney Central (2 nights)    D

01  April – Tour of Sydney and its surroundings.  

Experience the beauty of Sydney with this Full Day Tour with our driver & guide.

Tick off iconic landmarks like Sydney Opera House & Harbour Bridge. Stroll around vibrant districts like Bondi Beach, Kings Cross and explore the beauty of Mrs Macquarie’s Chair (gives the best view of Sydney Opera House & Harbour Bridge) & The Paddington.

Later visit Milson Point, a suburb of lower North Shore of Sydney, & the other Northern Beaches.  In the end, visit The Rocks, a place with some of the city’s oldest pubs and many of upscale restaurants. We can drop you off here to play into the night and you can make your way back to the hotel on own.

Overnight:  Novotel Sydney Central    B

02 April –  Fly to Cairns and Transfer to Silky Oaks Lodge

Depart on a flight to Cairns, the tourist capital of tropical North Queensland and gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. Then it’s a short drive through Port Douglas to our incredible one of a kind experiences as we journey into the treetops. Immerse your sales in nature surrounded by ancient plants, exotic birds, reptiles and wildlife.

Check into Silky Oaks Lodge.  Welcome to the jungle! Silky Oaks is the ultimate luxury resort, rated in the top 10 of the world. Please read all about the adventure here at www.silkyoakslodge.com.   Set among the World Heritage-listed wilderness of the Daintree Rainforest and along the banks of the gently flowing Mossman River, Silky Oaks Lodge offers a stylish tropical rainforest escape.

Enjoy an evening meal together. Dining at Silky celebrating the abundance of fresh ingredients harvested here in Queensland. The open canopy restaurant sits 50 feet high in the tree tops. Before dark, head to the Jungle Perch or Silky Bar for designer drinks at sunset. So many magical moments here.

Overnight in Silky Oaks Lodge        B/D

03 April –  Cape Tribulation and Daintree Rainforest Tour

After a gourmet breakfast beyond your dreams, we head out on a day tour to gain a greater understanding of the Mossman Gorge ecosystem from top to bottom on this excursion to capture your best photos imaginable.  Stroll through the ancient Daintree Rainforest, cruise down the Daintree River, walk along the beach at Cape Tribulation and enjoy stunning views of the region from popular lookout points.

We travel to the Mossman Gorge Centre for morning tea before boarding the shuttle bus into the Gorge. Follow your informative guide into the Daintree Rainforest, breath in the fresh air, and soak up the enchanting woodland setting.

After exploring the Gorge, we make our way to the Daintree River for a 1-hour river cruise; marvel at the abundant wildlife species that call its calm water home including the estuarine crocodile.

Next stop is the private access rainforest of Noah Valley. Enjoy a walk through the creekside rainforest before a delicious BBQ lunch. Laid out under the sky-high forest canopy, this mid-day meal features fresh fish and tropical fruit, followed by a steaming cup of regional Daintree Tea produced from one of the world’s oldest rainforests.  We then venture to remote Cape Tribulation on the coast. Amble along the beach and take in views of the stretching coastline and captivating coral reefs from the Kulki Lookout. Time for an afternoon refreshment at the Daintree Ice Cream Company. Here you will enjoy a delicious cup of fruit ice cream made from exotic fruits grown on their own on-site orchard.

Our final stop is at Alexandra Lookout. Situated over the Daintree River estuary, this breathtaking ledge offers expansive views of Snapper Island, the Alexandra Range and the glimmering Coral Sea. Now sit back and relax on the journey home after exploring the World Heritage Rainforest.  Return to the lodge

Overnight at Silky Oaks Lodge           B/D

04 April – Great Barrier Reef Day Tour 

Guided yoga classes each morning take a gentle pace and suit all fitness and experience levels. Held in the open-air Marrdja Pavilion, cares slip away with the soothing sound of the Mossman River. There’s also self-guided walks for explorers. Follow the properties in nature trails to Fig Tree Rapids.

Today, we head to Cairns for a day of snorkeling and sightseeing at 2 spectacular destinations in the Outer Great Barrier Reef. A modern boat carries you to exclusive, protected locations far away from the crowds, where the spectacle of nature is waiting. Our past AFS groups loved it but sailed with the masses.  Each day, your captain chooses from 12 exclusive moorings at 6 reef locations based on the water and weather conditions, making sure you get the best experience here.  Seasoned dive masters are on hand to provide an in-depth briefing on your gear and what to expect at each site. As we leave the Australian coast behind and get your gear ready for some quality time in the sea. With outer reef locations chosen for their variety and the striking contours of the ocean floor, you’re in for an outstanding experience when you plunge into the water. Once you’ve had a chance to mingle with the amazing sea life of beautiful corals and tropical fish, kick back aboard the vessel as we sail back to Cairnes.

Overnight in Silky Oaks Lodge           B/D

 

05 April – Fly to Brisbane

Transfer to airport and depart Cairns on a flight to Brisbane. Upon arrival guide will greet us and transfer us to our hotel in the heart of the city for 3 nights.  The property is the best in Brisbane for dollar value and ideal location within walking distance to major sites.  Our guide will brief us on all the fun to be had here.

Welcome to Australia’s sunny capital with laid-back charm and urban energy with a dash of adventure.  Blessed with sunshine nearly 340 days a year, Brisbane focuses on the outdoors – picnic by the river, alfresco dining, island hopping and national parks. Add to this abundant wildlife and a dynamic cultural scene, you can see why this is a favorite city for visitors!

Overnight Novotel Brisbane       B

 

06 April – Koala Cruise & Wildlife 

After breakfast, join us on Brisbane’s most popular tour of all on the Koala Cruise. Enjoy informative commentary as we sail out to Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary to get up close to Australia’s cutest creatures. This is the worlds first and largest koala sanctuary. On arrival, enjoy ample time to meet the animals – 134 koalas, joeys, emus, exotic birds and more.  Keep an eye out for the wild lorikeets (Australian parrot) that come to feed here. Then glimpse the elusive platypus that lives at the Platypus House. Get your photo with dingos and raptors and then go hug a koala!

Brisbane has a fabulous night life. The most popular hangouts are Eat Street Market and the riverside bars at The Wharves right on the harbor.

Overnight Novotel       B

 07 April – Free day Brisbane!

So much to do here, we had to include leisure time. Your guide can offer ideas like; Scenic River Dairy where cows are milked by robots, Camel Land, Ottaba llamas, Walkabout Creek Wildlife Center or a dolphin cruise to Tangalooma Island. There are wine tours, hot air ballooning, brewery hopping tours, nature trails and more.  But if you’ve come this far, a must-visit is the Australia Zoo, home of the crocodile hunter and still owned by the Irwin family. See Tasmanian devils to wombats (my fave) as well as cheetahs, rhino, pandas, and tigers. Here you can book a range of one-on-one animal experiences you’ll never forget. Another favorite for visitors is to gear up and climb the famous Storey Bridge anytime from sunrise to sunset.

Overnight Novotel       B

08 April –  Breakfast and morning free followed by a transfer to Brisbane airport for all flights back to USA.

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Land Price –  $4295 + $140 internal air  ($75 gratuities prepaid for national guides and drives.) Price based on per person twin share and minimum 18 participants.

Tree Retreat Suite Upgrade –  2 twin suites.   The highlight of the trip is our stay at Silky Oaks resort. It’s all sold out but we were able to secure 2 twin upgraded treehouse retreat suites.  (Larger 50 ft.², outside bath and more.)  Special price of  $495 per person additional.

Deposit $750 (Due to global popularity now and extreme demand for treehouses at Silky Oaks Resort, they require an $800 per person nonrefundable deposit after November 1st, 2022.  I know this is strict, please be sure you plan to go on this trip and buy travel insurance to protect your investment. If there is a waitlist, we can do a name change for you.)

AFS AUSTRALIA Trip Tips 

G’day mates and sheilas prepare to be thrilled on our spectacular adventure Down Under! We’ve sent dozens of groups to Australia in all regions of this giant country, but our new trip transcends them all. We added so many joy bombs through throughout, it’s an explorers dream. You’ll see an eyeful in Sydney, Port Douglas, Cairns, Brisbane, Great Barrier Reef and more. Cape Tribulation and Daintree have been on my bucket list for years, so I am thrilled to lead you. You are the lucky ones to book as this as the trip is now full with our small group of 21 people. Connect now on your private Facebook page to get to know each other. Good tips below. I’m still awaiting group air quotes to come in. The world is open. If any Covid rules change, will email you all the details but we expected to remain wide-open.

Trip Tips are designed to answer trip-related questions. It’s your responsibility to read this information. Updates and addendums will be posted here. Check back from time to time.

• FINAL PAYMENT DUE  DEC 29.   Only five months to go! We wired 20 K to Silky Oaks to grab your tree houses now nearly fall into 2024. The resort terms are strict and differ from our normal AFS terms. As stated on itineraries, $700 deposit is nonrefundable. Silky may require a second non-refundable deposit, we’ll advise.
Wetravel is our new data management company, it allows you to pay by check electronically without a fee. Simply follow the instructions. Credit cards will be assessed a processing fee at time of purchase. As a small business, this helps mitigate costs and allows us to give you the very best price. If you prefer to use the mail, make your payment to AFS or Adventures For Solo Travelers, 1907 Daniel Green Ct., Smyrna GA 30080

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Heading Abroad with AFS, especially if you are new to AFS.
• Ensure your passport is valid 6 months after return date with two blank pages. We recommend renewing your passport well ahead of any planned international travel. Take a photo of your passport to store in the cloud or bring a copy. If you lose your passport, US embassies now except a digital copy from your email. Also good to scan any docs, Covid test, trip tips, etc.
• To speed through US Customs download Mobile Passport. Look in your App Store for details.
• Notify bank and cc company of travel dates so they don’t block charges.
• Vaccines – Bring your vaccine card. Don’t laminate vaccine card as some countries won’t accept it. You can take photo of both sides and store on phone.
• All airline rules differ. It is imperative to read your airline rules on their website to ensure a smooth departure! Airlines are in the process of making routing and scheduling changes now. Always check your flight before departure.
• VISA – US citizens need an ETA visa. Done online. Two-day turn-around. Wait until we advise you with all details a month out to get this. At present, cost is $95 USD, this is reciprocity visa, that’s what we charge Australians to visit USA. (Visa can change)

Fitness level – 2 (No trouble walking.)

Air challenges today –  Consider flying in early to ensure you’ll be there once trip begins. (Watch for new DOT rules to protect you. Soon airlines will be required to refund or issue a credit good forever if there’s a significant change to your flight). They are required to notify you of changes. Ask airline to rebook you and cover expenses or get full refund even on non-refundable ticket. Always download and use your airlines app! Use app to track your booking, delays, bags, to show boarding pass and to contact them. If you have a flight problem go to the airline’s website “contact us” page or reach them by text, social media, Skype or call their international number. Also, premium credit cards often offer many air perks, assistance, insurance, lounge passes, global entry and more. Read more at www.tpg.com for best cards.
AirLand portion starts March 31 and ends on April 8. You will lose a day crossing the international date line so you must depart USA March 28 or 29. With Australia being close nearly 3 years, flights are getting full as the demand soars. If you find a deal, grab it.

Air dates - March 28/29 to April 8 round trip to Sidney then add Brisbane to Sydney to match your air or fly home directly from Brisbane. Cheapest flights depart from LAX. Airlines include Qantas, Fiji Airways, ANA, Philippines, Virgin Australia, American, Air New Zealand, United, Delta, Qatar and more. Consider adding a stopover.
Group Air with Airport Hotel Transfers - It’s easy and hassle-free to travel together. We need a minimum of 14 people for the airline to consider this a group so we may not get enough.
AIR SCHEDULE ON QUANTAS (QF).
Mar 29 LAX – SYD 10:25PM – 7:30AM (Mar 31)
Apr 8 BNE – LAX 9:25PM – 6PM Same day
$1760 + 95 taxes

Doing Own Air– We find few people book group air now and may find better rates on own direct from hometown. This provides you better flexibility to go early or extend at trip end. We recommend you now book flexible air tickets that can be refunded or changed. (For decades, AFS presented group air to make your trip totally hassle-free. Guides greet you on airport arrival and if any flight changes, we had your back. Sadly now, only around 10% want group air and often meet can’t minimum.) We like Google Flights, Kayak or Momondo. 3rd-party booking engines like Expedia, make it near impossible to handle air problems. Buy direct from airline or pay a travel agent to ticket you. Buy travel insurance and have a flight backup plan. If you can afford to splurge on business class, contact our guy: ali@business-class.com Phone is 305-676-2314. For economy seats call our friend Raj who’s an air expert at (281) 912-9173 raj8travel@gmail.com Give him your exact airdates, destination, passport name and details with birthdate.
Airport Transfers- With travelers arriving and departing on different days and times, it is insurmountable to manage. Group air airport transfers are based on set time. Without group air, there can no longer be any pick-up or drop-offs without group air. Unfortunately now like other tour companies, transfers are your responsibility. (We’ve spent weeks each trip making spreadsheets of each persons air to send to the supplier and then flights change. We then hire a guide, driver and pay parking fees. 2022 groups, only half showed up as guides waited hours looking for others. Sometimes no AFSers showed up without informing us.) Transfers are not expensive. We will give you transfer ideas later. First google your arrival airport website to see transfer tab. Suggestions to appear like airport bus, taxi details, Uber and more. Then connect on group Facebook page to set up sharing transfer cost if you like. If you go early and check-in AFS hotel before group arrives, it’s your responsibility to change rooms with your roommate if necessary day one when trip begins.
Meet Up With Group- March 31,  a time will be set to meet the group at the hotel for a briefing. More on this later.

Baggage– Think light to ease your burden, not like you’re fleeing your homeland. You change hotel properties several times. 1 carry-on bag& 1 medium suitcase not to exceed 45lb checked bag – weigh on a bathroom scale. If you overpack by adding pre-or post-trip luggage, make prior plans as to where to stow the excess luggage. You may be responsible for any overage charges. Apple AirTags works great to track checked bags when the airline cannot, also good for carry-on. The new hard cases are difficult to fit in safari vehicles. Leave space for great souvenirs. Be sure to attach ID to carry-on and bag to assure your bag never gets left behind.

Packing – this trip is easy to pack for. Google weather a week out. April is fall and a great time to go. Sydney averages 65 to 70°. Warmer in the tropical north around 80°. Read Packing 101 in Heading Abroad with AFS
Simply pack spring/fall clothing with a light jacket for nights and long flights. Think umbrella, daypack, wide-brim hat, sunscreen, comfy sneakers (no hiking boots), swimsuit, beach gear, wet shoes, sun protection.

Electric– Don’t forget a portable backup charger, cords, gadgets, etc. Cell phones and tablets do not need a converter; you onlyneed an adapter plug. AFSers often leave charger cords in room, so be sure to double-check your room before check out. All properties have hairdryers.

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Money Matters – Always bring some cash! You will need some cash for personal tipping, meals, and shopping. $300 to $500 cash should suffice. Change currency arrival at airport, bank, or hotels or withdraw local currency from an ATM. Note -independent ATMs are risky due to skimmer scams. Safest ATMs are at airport and banks. Always shield your pin number when entering. Avoid using unless it’s an emergency. Master Card and Visa widely accepted. Amex rarely accepted. Be sure you bring New Bills (dates after 2016) as countries may not accept older bills when changing money. Credit cards are far safer than using your debit card. I convert half of it upon entry. I use my credit card for most purchases. Many cards now offer no foreign transaction fees. (Some countries in Africa and Asia require new bills dated after 2016. Older bills not accepted when changing money.)
• Currency Exchange Rate $1= 1.55 AUD
• Follow the link below to create a conversion cheat sheet
https://www.oanda.com/currency/travel-exchange-rates

Gratuities – (Prepaid) There is a lot of confusion on tipping in Australia. Slowly, the US tipping culture is now the norm here. It’s protocol to tip our local guides, assistants, porters, wait staff, drivers and ground staff.   A $50 total is added to your invoice to cover basic tips for guides and drivers. Please understand this is only the suggested minimum. For ease of distribution, your GTL will tip the different ground services for the entire group each day.

Tipping on own – If service is stellar, feel free to give more directly. All we tourists leave behind is our reputation. I carry a stash of US ones in an envelope to draw from as needed. Porters – AFSers roll bags to their room. If you use a porter, please tip. For group lunches or dinners included, please leave $2 for waitstaff!

Communication– Internet is available. With smartphones, be sure to check with your provider for rates and coverage for international phone plans before departure. Data Roaming rates can be expensive. To reach home – Texting, iMessage, WhatsApp, and Facebook messaging when using WIFI. Be cautious using public Wi-Fi without using VPN. Without VPN never open attachments or view financial or personal accounts on the Internet while abroad. Phone calls, text messages, and data usage of all kinds, it is crucial to understand that, unless you are connected to Wi-Fi, every use of your phone incurs a data toll. That means that viewing and downloading email, browsing the web, viewing social media, and mapping all incur data charges, as do applications that we sometimes assume to be “free,” such as Skype and WhatsApp. Unless you are connected to Wi-Fi, however, WhatsApp is using cellular data, so you are getting charged at your provider’s international roaming data rate. Facebook Messenger Phone is an easy free way to make calls.
Get Smart: Avoiding Hackers on Vacation. Thieves not only want your money but also your data. Change passwords often. Check device security settings before you leave for your trip. Back up, update, and encrypt your devices and data using a virtual VPN.
• In hotel rooms, hide iPods or laptops to avoid “evil maids” that want to clone your tech.
• Bottled water is always best abroad, as our gut isn’t accustomed to local tap water.
• Pickpockets are everywhere now, especially at night. Never carry your passport outside of the room.
• It’s wise to grab a business card from the desk before heading out on own. To get back just show the card to a taxi driver- no memory or English needed.

Travel health – Drink bottled water. Avoid street foods. Bring Imodium. Need meds or shots? Book a Tele-chat with a travel doctor for shots and meds at runwayhealth.com. Load up on antioxidants like vitamin C to zinc.

Photography – Before taking pictures of locals, know it is polite to ask. Your AFS Private Facebook Group Page is a great way to share your best shots with each other. AFS loves photos with group participants (not typical churches, monuments, or any shot that looks like you pulled it off of the net, etc.) for our website. The best photos are ones that include a group member with a local, children, animals, or at iconic sites in the same frame!

Retail Therapy – kangaroo leather goods, UGG boots, awesome Akruba hats, emu oil, tea tree products, boomerangs, aboriginal paintings and art, didgeridoo, opal and pearl jewelry, and cool souvenirs.
Websites of Interest: so much detailed information with fun tips at these sites – www.silkyoakslodge.com.au, www.australia.com, www.sydney.com, www.visitbrisbane.com and www.australiatravel.online.com

Accommodations – Our itinerary has links to each hotel. Hotels can change, but it’s rare.

Roommates – Single supplements have significantly increased in price– if available at all. Save money and buy yourself an awesome local gift. We all live alone, but save money when traveling by rooming together. Suzy spends a lot of time on roommate matching. 99% of our clients are wonderful and you’re only in your room to sleep at night. (The best option is to invite a friend. We be able to give you a $100 discount.). Note, kindness begets kindness. How many of our season travelers bring headsets to drown out any excess noise. We share rooms only to sleep at night. If AFS room list ends up with unbalance gender, and forces a single room we will offer it to all in group or share in the added cost. If none want it, if you were the last to book we may have to remove you from the trip.

Leisure Time – For your free time, it’s best to arrive and ask our local expert guides for suggestions. We notice many newer clients pre-plan many activities on the AFS trip well before they arrive, often with disappointing results. Our daily itineraries are pretty full, but there will be some free time. Expert travelers revel in the element of surprise in a new destination and allow the wind to blow them where it will. Use Google Maps on your phone to find everything nearby.

Amending tour pre-or post-trip. We honor your independent spirit, but encourage you to extend more days at the trip’s end when you’re acclimated well to the destination. Arranging private tours during free time. We often see many AFSers on Facebook urging others to join them to countries before/after our trip. Stopovers are great to add, but understand AFS has no responsibility for the quality of your trip.

Private Facebook Group Page – The benefit of the Private FB Group Page is that you have an opportunity to introduce yourself to your fellow travelers before departure and share trip photos during and after the tour. The link can be found in your Wetravel welcome letter after your initial deposit. (We found that some never read the Trip Tips jumping right to the Private FB Group Page assuming they will get all trip info needed. Often, they only receive rumors or misinformation. All important information is ALWAYS emailed to each participant and posted in Trip Tips under UPDATES. Nobody misses a thing.)

Emergency Contact – AFS phone or text 770-432-8225, or email us at https://www.afstravelers.com/contact-us/ More contacts will be provided with your Final Docs email 2 to 3 weeks before departure. Your guide can handle a call home for a true emergency. Do not expect to use your trip leader’s cell phone; you’ll need to use your own.
Cancellation Penalty – At booking, we sent you our terms and conditions. Click here for our Terms & Conditions Briefly, on land packages we’ll refund your deposit less 50% until 6 weeks prior trip’s final payment due date. Any cancellation after this date will result in full forfeiture of your deposit. AFS reserves the right to resell or otherwise use the canceled space at our discretion.

Travel Insurance– While travel insurance is optional, in today’s world we highly encourage you to get standard coverage to cover trip interruption and cancellation. Best source for all is www.insuremytrip.com. CFAR or cancel for any reason covers Covid but is expensive. Note that no company covers for fear.
Preexisting conditions – If you would like the security of travel insurance and have a pre-existing condition (elderly parent, medical, etc.), you must purchase insurance within 15 days from your initial trip deposit in order to assure full coverage. The trip cost can be amended or adjusted as needed after your initial purchase (eg. like adding an air ticket cost later). You can buy travel insurance at any time, just know that there may be some possible limitations if purchased outside the 15 day period. We like TravelSafe, Allianz or Seven Corners.
Click here to Purchase Travel Insurance online

Travel Psychology 101 – Prepare for your departure joyfully with no contempt before investigation upon arrival. Please understand that with travel, things are not like at home and changes may occur. Great trips work best for those with an open mind, flexible attitude and adventuresome spirit. If changes occur, embrace them with serendipity. Who knows?… The unexpected may prove to be a better experience. Adapt and go with the flow with a laid-back attitude. Be spontaneous. Be tolerant of foreign cultures in respecting their centuries of traditions. Embrace the differences. Be curious, not shy. Smile – locals will sense your energy of kindness and kindness always begets kindness. Our common goal is to experience different cultures, make new friends, get great photos, have large fun, and return home safely with memories worthy of recollection.
The best spirit of an Explorer requires the openness of a child – Suzy
“When traveling, remember that a foreign country isn’t designed to make you comfortable. It’s designed to make its own people comfortable.” – Clinton Fadiman

Please note that AFS is non-partisan – With our homogeneous groups, we all want to focus on the common denominator – our love of travel. In today’s divisive world, we suggest members

Cairnes, Brisbaine, Sydney
Cairnes, Brisbaine, Sydney

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