Road Scholar Website says, “Road Scholar, the not-for-profit pioneer in educational travel since 1975, offers 5,500 educational tours in all 50 states and 150 countries. Alongside both local and renowned travel experts, you can experience in-depth learning opportunities and behind-the-scenes specialties, from study cruises and cultural tours to biking, walking, and more.”
Though of course Road Scholar is just a tour operator like all the others, it operates with a different concept. In general, the tours are meant to be very instructional, and have top-notch guides. The founders wondered why their counterparts in America didn’t have similar opportunities to remain active after retirement. ( Road Scholar citation ). And, why not give them continuing opportunities to participate in as well?
More meals are provided, and keeping the cost really low is not the most important thing. However, since they are non-profit, they tend to do a good job giving you a great value.
Road Scholar used to go by the name “ElderHostel”. You have to be over 55 to sign up. I surmise they changed the name to get away from the general feeling that it was tours for old folks, though they say it was to convey the idea of learning through travel. I went on a tour to China, and I believe I was the youngest person on the tour, at 55. But most of the people on the Road Scholar trips are in good shape, and have been on other tours before. It is not “for old folks”.
- “I have been on many Road Scholar programs and some of the hotels are great and some not so great! But, never anything that would stop me from going again. The content of their programs is far superior to any other tour.”
- “We highly recommend Road Scholar. I hope to go one trip with them each year.”
- “Bottom line — as long as you are not expecting something fancy like the Ritz and are open to hanging around with strangers, you should have a great experience at a very reasonable rate.”
Road Scholar Italy Tours 2015 website: http://www.roadscholar.org .