The Scoop: What to Know About Tauck Tours

Here's how to decide if Tauck is the right fit for you.

Tauck Tours traveler taking a picture in the Sistine Chapel
(Photo: Courtesy of Tauck)

For almost 100 years, Tauck has been helping travelers see the world. The family-owned and -operated luxury tour company has enjoyed plenty of word-of-mouth recommendations from past guests (and needed to do minimal advertising as a result), and many tour participants become repeat clients who often self-identify as “Tauckies”.

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A frequent travel industry award winner, Tauck offers travelers exclusive and behind-the-scenes, authentic experiences in the places it visits.

TourScoop Takeaways: Tauck

Tauck Tour guests on a polar bear watching expedition
Tauck runs tours to seven continents (Photo: Courtesy of Tauck)
  • Continents covered: 7
  • Tour size range: Typical land tours have about 40 guests. River cruises range from 84 to 130 passengers. The company is working to increase its small-group offerings and will offer about 75 small-group land journeys around the world in the coming years, with most of those departures averaging 24 travelers, and many of Tauck’s African safaris featuring as few as 18 guests.
  • Tour types: Land tours, safaris, small-group tours, European river cruises, small-ship cruises, and family travel tours

Credibility Check

Tauck is a member of the United States Tour Operators Association and the European Tourism Association. The company has racked up numerous awards and accolades over the years, including appearances on Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards in each of the last 26 years and recognition as “Best Tour Operator” in Travel Weekly’s annual Readers’ Choice Awards 25 times (in multiple categories) since 2003. More than half of its clients are returning Tauck travelers each year.

Tour Destinations 

Tauck tours travel to more than 100 destinations in more than 70 countries on all seven continents. New tours include six new river cruises in Europe, a safari in Namibia, an exploration of Tuscany, Cinque Terre and the Portofino Coast, and two journeys in North America—one in the American West and one in the Canadian Rockies—that each include a two-day rail journey.

Tour Types

Tauck offers land tourssafarissmall-group toursEuropean river cruises, and small ship cruises. Its Tauck Bridges collection of family travel tours and cruises has been around for 25 years.

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When browsing tours on Tauck’s website, travelers can filter options by departure date, tour type, and destination. Tour descriptions include detailed itineraries, information about accommodations, reviews from past travelers, and information on what to pack and mobility requirements for the tour.

Tour Guides

Group of Tauck tour guides in Jordan
Tauck Directors come from more than 4o countries around the world (Photo: Courtesy of Tauck)

Tour guides—referred to as Tauck Directors by the company—average 10 years of service. The company offers a generous compensation package that helps it attract top-tier candidates who remain loyal to the company and develop a high level of destination expertise over their tenures. Guides come from 41 countries, collectively speak a total of 52 languages, and have diverse backgrounds and past work experience (including a former priest, former college professors, and classical musicians).


Tauck tours include almost everything but airfare. Tauck land journeys include all gratuities (except Tauck Director gratuities), all taxes and fees, all sightseeing and entertainment, most meals, and airport transfers. In some stops, a lunch or dinner may not be included to allow guests to explore the destination at their own pace.

Tauck European river cruises and small-ship ocean cruises include all shore excursions, all gratuities, all taxes and fees, all onboard beverages (adult and otherwise, in most cases), most meals, all sightseeing and entertainment, and airport transfers. Many cruises also include either a pre-cruise or post-cruise hotel stay (or both) accompanied by Tauck-guided sightseeing guides.

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Typical Travelers

Tauck Tours guests on the small group tour Mountain Gorilla Safari: Kenya, Tanzania & Rwanda
Tauck tends to attract family travelers and travelers in their 50s and older (Photo: Courtesy of Tauck)

Many of the company’s travelers tend to be in their 50s and older. Family groups on Tauck Bridges trips tend to fall into one of three categories: conventional family groups (parents traveling with young children), grandparents traveling with grandchildren, or multigenerational groups including grandparents, their adult children, and their grandchildren.


Tauck communicates with guests throughout the entire process, from booking to pre- and post-departure. Guests receive their personal travel documents via email 60 days prior to departure for cruises and 30 days prior to departure for land journeys.

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Documents include information such as necessary pre-trip requirements, packing suggestions, information on local currency and weather, emergency contact information, and a day-by-day itinerary. The company also offers travel protection plans for extra peace of mind.

Private Options

Tauck offers private group departures with a minimum of 10 guests that work well for family reunions or milestone celebrations.

Sustainability Efforts

Tauck has focused on the cultural preservation side of sustainable travel through efforts like a guest-volunteer program in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, and support of nonprofit Tourism Cares.

As European river cruising has become a larger part of the company’s business, Tauck has worked in partnership with Scylla (which owns and operates Tauck’s fleet of European riverboats) on a number of initiatives, including using cleaner-burning GTL fuel on riverboats when available, and limiting single-use plastics.

Health and Safety Practices

The company’s small-ship ocean cruises have a physician aboard each departure. European river cruises do not, but the boats are never far from shore and local medical facilities.

Tauck stays in constant communication with its on-the-ground partners in the regions where it travels and monitors all U.S. government-issued travel advisories and media reports. Its cross-departmental Global Response Team can quickly respond to any situation 24 hours a day.

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Beth Luberecki writes about travel, business, and lifestyle topics. Her work has appeared in publications including The Washington Post, USA TODAY,, and The Indianapolis Star. The Florida-based writer shares her travels on her website and on Instagram at @bethluberecki and @findingfloridafun.