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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
SPORTS LEISURE VACATIONS
ANNOUNCES CORONA VIRUS PLAN
Realizing our travelers are concerned about the virus and while we know we cannot protect you completely, there are some things we can do to provide less opportunity for the virus to spread among travelers while traveling. Of course, much of this is personal responsibility. Covering your mouth when coughing or sneezing (not with your hands), using alcohol-based wipes and gels where possible, washing your hands, using your arms instead of your hands when opening doors, etc., are all ways of reducing risk. Be smart, stay well.
Corona Virus Measures for the Office
Effective Wednesday, March 4, employees and visitors will be asked to sanitize their hands upon entering the office until further notice. This means before touching any surfaces inside the office, you wash your hands for 15-20 seconds with soap and water or an alcohol-based wipe. Supplies are at each entrance. Please use them each time you enter the office. This applies to staff AND all guests. We thank you for your cooperation/understanding.
For The Bus – Local and Long Distance
We contacted our bus company (Lux) on Monday and asked to have the bus cleaners do a thorough cleaning of our SuperCoach. We have asked the bus cleaners to give extra attention to the rest room and common surfaces.
We will ask all travelers to wet wipe/sanitize their hands prior to boarding the coach in the morning and afternoon. If you decline our wipes, please have some of your own and use them then and there. Tour Directors all wipe down common surfaces mid-trip with alcohol-based wipes.
Coughing, Sneezing on the Coach
If the Tour Director observes someone coughing or sneezing without covering their face, we will offer assistance. “Can I offer you a tissue?” Travelers who refuse to wash their hands or otherwise push back on these modest policies are invited to contact the owner of the company, Mark Hoffmann, by email (Markslt@aol.com) or with a call to the office (M-F, 9am – 4:30pm).
Warning regarding Insurance Fraud
Our insurance underwriters have both communicated with us in recent days to advise us they are aware they will be receiving a large number of claims. They have asked us to remind travelers that FEAR of catching the virus is not a covered reason if you cancel.
Because of the increased number of claims, they will be verifying each claim individually and following up directly with physicians. They have also reminded us to remind our travelers that insurance fraud (falsifying a claim) is a crime and violators will be prosecuted. We have already had one claim completely rejected because the traveler was not being truthful, submitting a doctor’s note which was not valid. Valid claims are paid within 7-10 days when submitted with the required documentation.
If You are Sick, Please Stay Home. Please.
Having said all that, no one wants to travel with sick people on the bus. If you are ill, please stay home, even if it costs you a few bucks. If you are concerned about the virus and don’t want to travel, contact our office. We have devised a cancellation policy for those situations which will keep you from having to absorb all the charges for a late cancellation on longer, multiple day trips.
Quite simply this means we will pick you up and return you to your home on all vacations of three days or longer. This service may involve a sedan, SUV or other special vehicle.
Provided by Baylight Transportation, a privately contracted transportation service in the Sacramento metropolitan area, door-to-door service is included within these boundaries: Davis on the west, Galt on the south, Auburn and Placerville on the east, Woodland to the north. Service is available for an additional charge for travelers living in Stockton, Yuba City/Marysville, Grass Valley, Winters, Vacaville, Fairfield, Pollock Pines and Colfax. When utilizing this service, your pick-up/drop-off location will be considered final 21 days prior to departure. No changes will be permitted after this time.
Nevada door-to-door service is provided by Bell Limousine to anyone living in the Reno/Sparks metropolitan area and south to Carson City, as well as travelers living in the Las Vegas metropolitan area.
A $75 per person credit is available for travelers to whom this service is not available, or for those who wish to opt out of this service and meet us at the point of departure.
Another option for those who live in outlying areas is to overnight in Sacramento. We have negotiated a special reduced rate at the Best Western PLUS Sutter House located downtown at 1100 H Street. You can leave your car in the lot while on vacation and enjoy door-to-door service to and from the hotel. Call (916) 441-1314 or 1-800-830-1314 and ask for Doris Gray (extension 311) to make a reservation. We are happy to make recommendations for our Nevada travelers in need of similar services.
On overnight and daytrips, motorcoaches depart from convenient neighborhood pick-up points throughout the greater Sacramento and Roseville areas where you may leave your vehicle at your own risk. Door-to-door service is available for an additional fee on daytrips and overnighters. Contact the office for details.
If you have mild dietary restrictions or are a vegetarian, it is important you notify our office at the time of registration. As you can certainly understand, it is quite difficult for your Tour Director to accommodate those who wait until they are actually traveling to share their special needs. If you have severe or multiple dietary restrictions, you may find this type of travel is not for you.
In order to get full value from a travel experience, it is important to be in good mental and physical health. Walking and some step-climbing are necessary to participate in the normal activities of our vacations. While we can do almost everything for you on a Sports Leisure vacation, the Tour Director cannot provide sustained attention to individual clients. Please be advised that we visit many cultural sites on tour, not all of which meet A.D.A. requirements due to their historic status.
Let us assure you that people with mobility restrictions are welcome on our vacations. Many of our travelers are over 70 (or even 80 or 90), something we keep in mind when planning our itineraries. In our office, the Tour Planner for each departure knows the itinerary well and would be happy to consult with you personally should you have questions regarding the amount of walking, elevations, etc., on a particular trip.
Each vacation is rated according to our Activity Meter. Look for the code assigned to the trip and if you have additional questions or concerns, consult with the Tour Planner regarding the specific itinerary.
You are invited to make special requests of the airline and hotel(s) serving your vacation at the point of reservation. The more notice we have, the better our ability to accommodate you. Requests might include specific airline seating, the need for wheelchair assistance at airports; and at hotels, a smoking room, king bed and/ or handicap-accessible room. We are not able to guarantee these requests, but are happy to notify the airlines and hotels for you.
Please note: we automatically request a non-smoking room for everyone in the group and a room with two beds for those traveling double occupancy unless you tell us otherwise. As handicap-accessible rooms are limited, we ask you to make this request only if your condition demands it. There could be another traveler who needs the room more than you.
Sports Leisure Vacations recognizes the importance of safe and comfortable seating for all travelers while on tour. Travelers who are unable to sit comfortably within the space provided by your seat when the armrests are in the down position are asked to book the adjacent seat when making reservations. The fee for the additional seat is a variable portion of the tour price and will be calculated at the time of the reservation. In the event the tour is not sold out, the cost of the second seat will be refunded upon the tour’s conclusion. Travel can be denied on the day of departure if the traveler of size is unwilling to purchase an additional seat, cannot fit safely in their assigned seat without infringing on the space of the adjacent traveler, and/or the tour is sold out and no other options are available. Travelers of size are encouraged to notify the office at the point of reservation.
Sports Leisure Vacations’ unique cancellation policy offers you the opportunity for early registration with very little risk. Outside 60 days before departure * all tour deposits and payments are refunded upon cancellation.
*International tours, cruises, and national park tours often have additional restrictions.
Please refer to Special Vacation Notes & Information and your invoice for more specific details.
Both are available on every departure. Either must be purchased at the time you make your initial tour payment. We strongly recommend you consider this optional protection. Please refer to the Special Vacation Notes and Information brochure for details. This coverage may not be available to travelers who have canceled more than two tours in a 12-month period or who make their reservation less than one month prior to the departure date.
The Transportation Security Administration requires that you provide us your date of birth and full name as is appears on your government-issued identification for all vacations involving air travel. Complete passport information is additionally required in advance for international travel. Up-to-date security information can be found on the internet at www.tsa.gov, including details on how you can qualify for TSA Pre-Check. Our staff stays current on the latest regulations in order to provide you timely and accurate assistance.
Beginning October 1, 2020, the Department of Homeland Security requires your driver license (DL) or identification (ID) card be REAL ID compliant if you wish to use it as identification to board a domestic flight or enter military bases and most federal facilities.
To prepare customers, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has created an interactive checklist to provide you with the documents you will need to apply for a California REAL ID driver license or ID card.
Go to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) site for more specific details on the card and how to go about obtaining the new card. https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv/detail/realid/checklist
Passports are required for all travel outside the U.S., including Canada and Mexico. If you are of foreign citizenship, we highly recommend you check with your country’s embassy and follow its instructions to make certain your travel will be legal and seamless. U.S. citizens in need of a passport can pick up an application at any post office or find it online. Please allow 8-10 weeks for processing. Your passport must be valid for at least six months past the end date of your international tour.
Let us know as soon as you book your tour so that we can include this information on your air ticket. These numbers will not be accepted on the day of travel and must be provided early in the booking process.
You may check with us to see if your frequent flyers program matches the airline we are using for the tour–often we are able to provide you with this information in advance.
Please note that TSA Pre-Check travelers and Trusted Traveler members are not guaranteed to receive expedited screening.
Provided from the TSA directly: “TSA uses unpredictable security measures, both seen and unseen, throughout the airport, and no individual is guaranteed expedited screening” (www.tsa.gov/precheck/faq). You can find more information about TSA Pre-Check on the internet at www.tsa.gov, including details on how you can qualify for TSA Pre-Check.
From U.S. Customs and Border Protection: “While Global Entry’s goal is to speed travelers through the process, members may still be selected for further examination when entering the United States” (www.cbp.gov/travel/trusted-traveler-programs/global-entry). Visit www.cbp.gov/travel for more information on how to become a Trusted Traveler.
As each airline has different policies regarding luggage and associated charges, you may expect rules and restrictions (number of bags allowed, weight, etc.) to vary from trip to trip. You have this Sports Leisure promise: You will never pay to check your first bag on any flight on a U.S. airline. Should you wish to bring a second checked bag, please be prepared to pay your Tour Director at check-in. Second bag charges are not limited to airline fees and may include other handlers such as hotel bellmen. The Tour Planner can advise you of additional charges by calling the office in advance of your departure. You might also find the airline’s website helpful.
Each checked bag has a strict weight limit of 40 or 50 pounds (depending on the trip). Bags weighing more will incur additional fees or be rejected. This policy applies throughout the tour. Many “wheelie” bags and oversized carry-ons that fit in airline overhead bins cannot be accommodated within the cabin of the motorcoach. In such cases, you will be asked to check them coachside with your Tour Director. They will be tagged and available coachside at each overnight stop.
Your deposits and final payments are protected in accordance with the State of California Seller of Travel Law (#2011549-40). In addition, Sports Leisure Vacations is a member of the Northeast California Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating.
Absolutely not, though most travelers do elect to join the Sports Leisure Travel Club. Only through club membership will you receive the annual catalog, our bimonthly newsletter The Traveler, and invitations to our special events. Additionally, only members can participate in Travel Club Gold, our bonus rewards program. A complimentary membership is extended to new and potential travelers upon request. After that, it’s only $10 per person, per year. A lifetime membership is available for $30 or $50 for a couple.
Yes! We can arrange travel for friends or relatives to meet our groups from any city in the world. (We currently have over 1,000 Travel Club members who live outside the Sacramento area.) If you have friends or relatives who would like to travel with you, have them call us toll-free at 1-800-951-5556 or visit our Contact Us page. With advance notice, we are also happy to welcome your friends or relatives who may live along the tour route and may wish to join us for a meal or attraction.
We welcome our growing number of Nevada travelers with open arms! Most of you live in residential communities in the Reno/Sparks area. We’re also proud to have been selected as the official travel provider for the Retired Public Employees of Nevada who live state-wide. Our fly-away tours are priced to include air and door-to-door service for those living in the Reno/Sparks, Carson City and Las Vegas metropolitan areas. Those living a distance from the airports in Sacramento, Reno or Las Vegas should consult with our office to determine the options best for you, some of which may add to the advertised tour price. At present, motorcoach tours depart only from the Sacramento area.
Also See: View Upcoming Nevada Vacations
The answer is almost always yes, particularly if you register and make your request at least 60 days prior to departure. There could be additional charges for flight deviations, but generally they are small. Many travelers take advantage of this service to visit friends or relatives, or explore a destination in greater detail on their own.
One or two can ruin a trip for all. Sports Leisure Vacations reserves the right not to accept or retain anyone whose lack of personal hygiene or poor general behavior, in the opinion of the Tour Director, impedes the operation of the tour and/or affects the rights of other travelers. A refund of unused tour services is the limit of our liability if a person is required to leave the tour for the reasons stated above. Said passenger(s) will be responsible for any additional costs to return to the city of origin.
We want to learn, discover and have fun together. Our groups are often complimented on their positive attitude by tourism professionals and other travelers who encounter us on the road. Life is too short for making yourself and others around you miserable due to small challenges that are bound to occur. Travel is by nature an inexact science. Problem travelers will kindly be asked to find another company with whom to travel.
And that’s the Sports Leisure Difference…
If you haven’t been on a bus since school days, you’ll find modern motorcoaches to be a vastly different experience. Whether locally or in fly-away destinations on our continent and beyond, we seek only the best equipment and drivers available with three things in mind: Your pleasure, your comfort and above all your safety. Onboard amenities usually include plush seating, audio and video systems, climate control and a restroom. (Some also have Wi-Fi and electrical outlets for your small electronic devices.) Additionally, your Tour Director is never far away with a bottle of water and other refreshments. Of course, our exclusive SuperCoach IV is used on many day trips and overnighters, as well as selected long-distance trips unless it is unavailable due to maintenance or highway size restrictions.
By the vote of our membership, we do not rotate motorcoach seats as many companies do. You are free to select the seating of your choice at the point of reservation. Single travelers are sometimes required to take available single seats to leave remaining seat pairs for those traveling with a friend or spouse.
While traveling on an extended Sports Leisure tour, often times (because of our smaller groups), we are eating off the menu, giving travelers a wide variety of dining choices. Other times we have a plated meal, served to us at the table. A third common option is a buffet, where the bounty is plentiful.
Some travelers have asked, “When is it appropriate to ask for a box for your leftovers?”
Eating off the Menu – This is an option extended by few tour companies to their travelers. Why? People tend to order 20-30% more when they know they aren’t getting out their credit card at the end of the meal. Other tour operators marvel at our ability to allow “order off the menu.” It works because most Sports Leisure Travelers don’t go hog wild. You are fair. Thankfully, our travelers don’t have a “stick it to the tour company” attitude. That’s the biggest reason we can give you so much freedom when traveling.
Please keep in mind – When you are ordering off the menu, it is not appropriate to order something extra to-go. Unless it’s leftover from your main entrée, to-go is not appropriate.
Plated Meals with limited choices or set menus – In this case, it is always ok to ask your server for a to-go container for any part of your meal.
Buffets – It is never appropriate behavior to take to-go food from a buffet. Buffets are “on-site consumption” only. If you want something from a buffet to-go, ask your server if you can purchase the item. They might be happy to wrap something up for you, especially if you have offered to pay for it.
If you have questions about what's appropriate while on tour, consult your Tour Director.
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