Wo are we and what we do?
Why a surprise destination?
We live in the digital age. We tend to live our journey before we even start it. We are no longer surprised when we arrive. Choosing a destination ourselves does not open us up to the outside world, quite the reverse. We will always choose a destination that meets our comfort criteria but, sometimes, the unknown can redefine our criteria and our standards. Our first goal is to send you to a safe destination and, secondly, to make you discover one of the beauties of the world.
Information about the destination?
Even if the information about the destination is hidden to maintain the pleasure and mystery of the trip, the choice of the destination is made according to your answers on our survey. We try to find a destination that suits your tastes but that will surprise you. Nevertheless, rest assured that you will not be left in the middle of anywhere.
Is it likely that I will not like the destination you have chosen?
We hope you enjoy the destination we have chosen for you. We honor openness and encourage our customers to do the same. There are always things to learn from other cultures. Sometimes we also learn about ourselves in the unknown and in the differences we encounter. We will send you a travel guide with information to facilitate your stay.
Do you have an idea of the things I need to pack?
Between one and two weeks before departure, depending on the destination, we will send you the weather forecast and what we recommend you pack according to the activities you can do at the location. We will send you the number of pieces of baggage that you are allowed to take in the hold and information on carry-on baggage and the recommended sizes. In the case of any change, we will send you an email as soon as possible. In addition, if you have any questions or need more information you can always contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It is possible to have an extra bag?
If you wish to register an extra bag, you can do it at the airport on the day of departure. However, you will be responsible for checked baggage fees and incidental or consequential fees. We only cover the luggage that is included in your ticket when booking.
Do you have passenger limits in the group section?
We have no passenger limit. We will submit the submission based on the number of participants. We will be more than happy to organize a trip for people who want to think outside the box. We will send you an additional form for all passenger information.
If I’m alone but want to go on a group trip is this possible?
Yes. We organize group trips where we match travelers. We ask you to specify this in the comments of your questionnaire. We also organize trips with people of the same sex. We ask you to specify your preferences.
Are there any age restrictions on your trips?
The minimum age for unaccompanied persons is 18 years old. An adult must accompany all children under 18 years of age. You will find more information in the regulations section of the site. We do not have an age limit for our trips but a self-assessment form is required for all passengers aged 75 and over.
Can I change the route of my trip before or during the trip?
Please, make sure you are happy with your travel itinerary before making your reservation. If you need to make changes, let us know as soon as possible. We will not be able to make any changes after we have made the reservations and arranged payments.
What information do we need to send you after the submission is approved?
• Full name as it appears on the passport • Passport number and expiry date • Complete mailing address • Birthdate • Occupation • Nationality • Name to contact in case of emergency • Phone number • Details regarding medical or dietary requirements
Will you send me my boarding passes?
For your “go” flight, we will check you in. On the morning of your departure, we will send you your boarding pass by email. For your return flight, you will need to check in. In your envelope, you will find all the flight information (flight ticket, confirmation number, flight number, departure times, etc.) You need to print out your boarding passes.
Do you offer travel insurance?
Yes. We work with an insurance agency to offer travel insurance. Rates vary according to the number of travelers, the total cost of the trip and the place of departure. We can send you a quote once you have registered for the trip.
Is travel insurance really necessary?
In a sense, your vacation is an investment and we highly recommend travel insurance. In most cases, airline tickets are completely non-refundable. Cruises, tours, and resorts all have penalties if you have to cancel your vacation. The amount of the penalty varies according to each cruiser or travel agency and also varies according to the date of cancellation. Travel insurance will protect you before and during your trip. If you have any questions or need more details, you can email us at email@example.com.
How can I be sure that I will get value for money?
It’s a legitimate question! Your budget determines where we send you, how you get there and where you stay. It is difficult for us to say exactly what each price level will bring you because there are many variables involved. The main factors to consider when choosing your budget are your travel dates and your starting point. If you plan to travel over a long weekend, we strongly recommend you choose a higher budget. Note that no matter what your budget is for where we send you, you will not stay in the substandard accommodation. The higher your budget, the more options you have for your trip.
Does my budget include food and activities?
We only guarantee that your budget will cover your trip and accommodation. However, for those who ask us to include travel activities, we will include the activity fees in our submission. Otherwise, we recommend excellent activities and restaurants but we do not cover these expenses with your budget. We cannot guarantee what these additional costs will be as travel prices vary considerably depending on travel dates, places of departure, etc.
Does my budget include transportation to / from the airport or gas for car trips?
No. The coordination of airport transfers becomes a headache for us, for you and for the hotel, with delays and cancellations of flights. When it comes to gas money, we think it’s better to give you a portion of your budget in the form of a prepaid card. It is also difficult to predict the amount of fuel you will use during your trip. Nevertheless, for some more distant destinations, we organize means of transfer. We will indicate the means of transportation from the airport to your accommodation in the welcome letter.
Do you have registration deadlines?
The sooner you book your trip, the better. If we have more time to plan your trip, we can get better deals for you. We accept reservations up to 4 weeks prior to departure date. Why not sooner? This is because we need to plan your trip around the deals that are available for you!
Why is my deposit non-refundable?
Deposits cannot be refunded or transferred because fixed costs are incurred for each tour and we use deposits to compensate for expenses and costs.
How to cancel my reservation?
For legal reasons, we must receive your cancellation in writing or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How long before departure can Hidden Gems cancel my trip?
Up to 8 weeks before departure, but in practice, it is rare that something is canceled less than 3 months before the departure date. We may decide to cancel a trip at any time up to the moment of departure if it proves to be a justifiable risk to the safety of travelers.
Can I travel with my pet?
Unfortunately, no. Animals are not allowed, sorry.
I have children, can they come too?
Yes! We will be more than happy to plan a family vacation. Just answer the family trip questionnaire. We recommend that you discuss your desires and needs together before answering the questionnaire to make sure you are all on the same page.
What if I have a baby?
Babies under 2 years old travel for free! So, no need to integrate them with the number of travelers you select. Please, always provide the name and date of birth. For accommodation, let us know what you prefer. We can be flexible! If you want a crib, extra bed or other special equipment, be sure to include it in your survey and we will work within your budget to make it happen.
What do I need to avoid storing in my carry-on luggage?
You are not allowed to carry weapons or pointy objects that could be used as weapons. It is recommended that you place sharp cuticle scissors in your checked baggage. Lighters, matches, flammable liquids, fireworks, household items such as bleach, drain cleaners, and other toxic butane chemicals are not permitted and will be forfeited.
Can travellers from the same group leave from different cities?
For plane or train, yes! This is one of the main advantages of the travel agency Hidden Gems. If each member of your group leaves from different places, it can be difficult to coordinate a destination – we will do it for you! When you leave, you must indicate the departure address of each traveler, so that we know where everyone comes from and find a place to meet in the middle.
How does payment work? And is there a fee?
At the end of the survey, you will receive a quote. After acceptance, we will send you a request for payment by PayPal or other means of payment. With PayPal, you can either pay immediately or register for PayPal credit and have the option to pay your budget over a period of 6 months. There are no additional charges or taxes, not a penny more. Once we receive your order and payment, we set up a trip in order to use your budget as well as possible.
What does my quote include?
All inclusions and exclusions are described in your quote.
Is my quote per person or for the whole of my group?
The cost of your quote is the total number of people traveling in your group.
Are there any additional fees or hidden costs?
There are no hidden costs.
Do you use a secure payment site?
We use PayPal as a payment method which is a secure site.
What if I do not have a credit card?
Contact us. We will inform you about the different payment methods. We offer several payment options such as direct deposit.
If we are a party of several can we pay separately?
Yes. We will need all traveler’s names and billing methods and we will issue an invoice for each person.
How long are the trips?
We plan the holidays according to the chosen dates.
Can I use my travel points, loyalty cards or hotel points?
In order to keep the trip a surprise, we do not allow travel points, loyalty cards or your hotel points. If we did, you would be able to log in to your account to see your destination and you would receive e-mail notifications about your destination – it would ruin all the fun! The good news is that most airlines and hotels allow you to add your loyalty number after your trip, so you can always get the points of your trip with us.
What if I do not receive my envelope in the mail?
Do not worry! We also send you all the information digitally. You will receive everything by e-mail at the indicated departure time. You will also receive your city guide by e-mail so that you can access it while traveling. Nevertheless, we ask you to inform us a minimum of 72 hours before the trip if you have not received the information.
You have to wonder how we make a living?
We take a small commission from your budget (10% to 15%) but rest assured that the vast majority of your budget will be spent on your trip. If you wish to see the receipts for your bookings after your trip, we will be happy to send them to you.