All frequently asked questions about booking a trip

Here you will find frequently asked questions ranging from taking an option to payment of your booking.

How do I take an option to book?

Each group tour has a tab 'dates & prices'. This is where you can make a booking or take out an option. If you want to take an option, click on take an option.

Option validity

For travellers who are unable to decide immediately, it is possible to take an option for a period of one week on a tour of their choice. We will then reserve your place(s) during that period.
Taking an option gives you more time to think and to avoid the disappointment of a fully booked trip. Please note that an option does not give a price guarantee. The moment you convert the option into a definite booking, the price at that moment applies. From then on, you do not have to worry about price increases anymore!

Unfortunately, you cannot take an option on the last two places of a tour nor within a month of departure. The term of one week will lapse if the option occupies the last places and we receive new bookings for the tour. In this case, we will contact you by telephone or by email and you must decide that same day if you want to convert the option into a booking or not.

Option cancellation

You cannot cancel an option yourself; we can do that for you. Simply let us know and we will delete the option from our system.

Can I book last minute?

Yes, it is possible to book last minute but do keep in mind that when booking within one month of departure, your booking is on a request basis. This means that we have to seek confirmation from our local agent and this may entail extra costs such as a single room supplement (if it is no longer possible to share the room).

What if my tour is not ''guaranteed''?

If your tour has reached the minimum number of participants, it will become a guaranteed departure and show as such, on the website. If the minimum number is not achieved, it will be decided 3 to 4 weeks before departure that the tour will not proceed. If the tour does not take place, there are two options: you can change to another tour or date, or we will refund the amount already paid, to your account. Please note that if you choose another date/tour, you will pay the price that is listed on the website at that time.

Can I cancel my booking?

Yes, you can. If you want/ need to cancel your booking, you will be charged a cancellation fee. All cancellations require written confirmation (e-mail to [email protected] ). We will then issue you with a cancellation invoice. You can then submit this when claiming via your own insurance.

What are the cancellation costs?

The cancellation fees will increase as you get nearer the departure date. They are as follows:

- Up to 42 days before departure: 25% (the deposit will not be reimbursed)
- 41 – 28 days before departure: 60% (of the total tour cost)
- 27 – 7 days before departure: 90% (of the total tour cost)
- Less than 7 days before departure: 100% (of the total tour cost)

Is the flight price included in the booking?

No, the flight price is not included. Shoestring cannot offer you flights. You must arrange your flights separately. We recommend waiting until your trip is guaranteed before booking your flights.

Are the prices based on private or shared accommodation?

The prices are based on shared accommodation. You will always be paired with a fellow traveller of the same sex. If you prefer a single room, if it is possible, there will be a supplement charged.

Are any additional discounts offered?

If you have travelled with Shoestring in the last 3 years and book another trip, then you are a regular client of Shoestring and we wish to reward you for your loyalty! As a loyal traveller you can receive a discount of €50 per (each applicable) person. We of course promise that your new trip will become an unforgettable experience once again.

There will also be promotions throughout the year and offers on certain destinations or trips, keep an eye on the website!

What is included in the price of the booking?

This differs per trip. For each trip, in the left-hand column you will see a list of what is included in the booking price.

What about the payment of my trip?

Find everything you need to know about payment methods, deposit payments and cancellations on this page.

What else should I be thinking about?

  • Book as early as possible, so you can book at the best price!
  • Double-check whether your personal details are correct;
  • Make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months beyond your return;
  • Check if you need a visa;
  • Make sure to arrange your own travel/ cancellation insurance.

As a single traveller, can I also go on a regular tour?

Sure, as a single traveller, you can also join our group tours. With these tours, it does not matter whether you are travelling as a couple or alone or perhaps with your best friend. Many solo travellers join our group tours, so you probably won't be the only one.

Can I book a single tour for two?

Yes, that is allowed! Should you wish to travel with your best friend, brother, sister, colleague, neighbour, mother, etc. then you are very welcome on a single tour; provided you fit with the given age category and you are not a couple. If you travel together with someone who does belong to the targetted group (but you don’t), we often will make an exception for you.

Can I join a single tour as a couple?

It is not possible to travel as a couple on a single tour. Single tours are especially for those people who travel alone. However, you can book our group tours!

How strict are the age categories of the single tours?

All our single tours have age categories: 18 to 45, 25 to 35 and 40 to 65 years. If you fall just outside the age category but would like to join a single tour, we will make an exception to this rule. We will allow travellers who are a maximum of 1 year younger or 1 year older than the indicated age category of the tour. If the age difference is greater then a year then if you travel together with someone who does belong to the targetted group, we often will make an exception for you.

As a single traveller, must I have a single room?

If you travel alone, you are not required to book a single room. You are free to share a room with someone of the same sex and thus save the costs of having a single room.

If I opt to share a room, is it with someone of the same sex?

If you have chosen to share a room with a fellow traveller, you will always do so with someone of the same sex.