Globus announced a new line of trips on Tuesday that include more excursion options, offering a more flexible style of touring that the company says has the potential to reshape the future of guided travel.
Called Choice Touring by Globus, the trips -- launched across 13 of the company's most popular itineraries in Europe and North America -- offer two or three excursion options on select stops, including things like a distillery tour and golfing in Scotland, kayaking and trekking in California, cooking classes or truffle hunting in Italy, even sailing off the Portuguese coast.
"For us, this is more than just a product introduction," Born said. "We believe it is going to be a new way to tour and possibly pave the way for the future."
The itineraries were developed in part in response to recent research that Born said shows that flexibility on an escorted tour is as important as any other feature.
It also builds on the success of the company's river cruise line, Avalon Waterways, which a few years ago added Active & Discovery cruises. As the name implies, those sailings offer both active and discovery excursions in addition to classic tours on every stop. It's a model that has grown increasingly popular in the river cruise space.
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While some companies that have introduced more excursion options in the land and river space charge extra for some alternative excursions, Born said there is no upcharge for any of the additional choices in Globus' new product line. The price point, he said, is about 8% more than traditional tours on the same route.
Born said the company sees three key audiences for the new itineraries: those seeking more flexibility in guided travel, repeat guests who want to dig deeper into a destination and family and multigeneration groups.
The new tours will be offered beginning in September in Scotland, Italy, Greece, Portugal, Spain, Canada and the U.S. Born said the line could be expanded in coming years.
"We think that this is something that is more and more what traveler are looking forward to," he said. "We are focusing on primary destinations now but will keep an eye on growth."