Why WE're DIFFERENT
As we construct each and every program, we give careful consideration to our clients’ past travel experiences, likes/dislikes while on the road, preferred styles of travel, fitness levels, and budgets so as to deliver a program that we are proud to stand by. It has even been said that the Concierge Team is more difficult to please than its clients! Since we are committed to providing you the most thoughtful and unique programs in Egypt and Jordan, it only makes sense to offer supplemental information on the way Backpacker Concierge works, and why. And since an ethos of responsible and sustainable tourism is transparency, we are committed to providing as much information as possible to effectively manage our clients’ expectations before they embark on their extraordinary journeys.
Responsible and Sustainable Tourism
This is the glue that holds everything together. We approach this topic from two different sides – environmental and cultural. Cultural: It is impossible to express how much we pride ourselves on being sensitive and supportive of the local culture. From simple cultural reminders on your pre-departure information to full- fledged programs like our bio-gas initiative and felucca sailtreks, we incorporate responsible practices not only into your programs, but into our operations, as well. We are continually updating, improving, and adding to our roster of one-off, experiential excursions in Egypt and Jordan and open to recommendations from our clients in regards to new initiatives or better ways of doing things. We would love to speak with you about all of our programs. Environmental: We fully realize that not every client has an infinite amount of time to spend traveling through his/her holiday destination. One must rely on airplanes and trains, not sailboats and camels. While we do offer wind-driven vessels, like Dahabiyas and Feluccas, these experiences are not suitable for everyone and we urge you to explore carbon offsetting before or after your holiday.
This is the document we provide 2-4 weeks prior to the commencement of your customized itinerary. As the majority of our programs are self-led, we carefully plan each and every day with our guides, drivers, felucca captains, and transportation representatives so as to ensure an efficient and orderly program. Your Daily Details document will list the activities for each day, with exact pick-up times and approximate drop-off times at your hotel, or other destination. We also try to include the names and telephone numbers of your guides and drivers should you need to contact them at any time. Hotel names, telephone numbers, and addresses are also listed for your friends/family or should you get lost and need help ‘getting home’.
This is a key component to a stress-free adventure in a foreign land. We endeavor to provide timely pick-ups and drop-offs, as designated on your Daily Details document. All vehicles and drivers are hired through specialized transportation agencies. Drivers are expected to act in a professional manner, drive safely, and know where your hotel or site visit is located. As we do sometimes utilize quite unique and far-removed accommodation or arrange visits to relatively unknown sites, it may take some extra time for your driver to find the particular destination. With over 200 visit-able historical sites and over 1,000 hotels in Egypt alone, we cannot expect our drivers to know everything. While Jordan is a smaller country, the same holds true. Please do not expect your drivers to speak any more than basic English – if you require this service, please notify us prior to booking your holiday. For general road transportation, we will provide air- conditioned vehicles, but for passengers embarking on Jeep Safaris in Bahariya/Siwa/Marsa Alam/Wadi Rum/Wadi Araba we do not guarantee air-conditioned vehicles, unless specified in your program inclusion summary.
Guide can make or break a program. Realizing this, all of our guides have been tried and tested by the Concierge Team in some capacity. Backpacker Concierge routinely works with an extensive network of highly-trained guides, with a minimum of 8 years experience in the field. Our guides know that we have a No-Shopping-Policy, which means we do not permit them to take you to Papyrus Institutes, Alabaster Factories, Perfume Shops, Gold Stores (government, or otherwise), Mosaic Factories, Carpet Schools/Stores, etc. unless they have received your permission first. The majority of our guides in Cairo are female which sets us apart from many specialty operators. The reason why we believe in pairing our clients with female guides is because, quite honestly, you will have very little interaction with females while in Egypt as a result of the culture. These female guides will offer great insight on their lives and their perspectives on life. Please appreciate your guide’s dedication to your satisfaction and respect the cultural norms when expressing thanks (shaking hands with your guide is appropriate, while hugging and kissing them on the cheek is not).
A Backpacker Concierge Mobile Telephone/SIM Card is usually provided to the lead client of our customized programs for free. The telephone is meant for Backpacker Concierge to keep in touch with you and make sure you are okay while on the self-led itinerary. We do also appreciate receiving telephone calls from you just to say, “Hi, we are loving everything” – we do like to hear that you’re having fun!
Everything is done for a reason on each customized program. Timings, guide involvement, and hotel recommendations have all been carefully considered to maximize your enjoyment.