about THE USA HOLIDAY CO

So, who are the USA Holiday Company and why should you trust us with your dream holiday to America?

Well, firstly we are part of ItsSo Travel & The Global Travel Group who have been established for 25 years and have been providing expertly crafted holidays worldwide for all this time. All the holidays that we sell to the USA are fully ATOL Protected so you can travel with confidence and know that you are in safe hands.

Our team of USA holiday experts have travelled extensively in America so are experienced and can offer the best advice to make your specific holiday the most memorable that it can be. We are passionate about the USA and the diverse range of holiday experiences that it offers to our customers, from Orlando to California and New York to Yellowstone National Park. We know what works!

We offer both package holidays to America and tailor made itineraries so you get exactly what you want and experience the USA in the way that you want to. Lets get this clear though, tailor made does not mean expensive, it simply means attention to every detail by experts at great value for money. We do not charge any fees for our services!

We are a truly independent USA holiday travel agent so have the widest choice of holidays at the very best prices. All we ask is that you try us, ask for a quote and see what we can do.

Lifeguad tower on Miami Beach

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

If you are looking for information on booking a holiday to the USA, travel tips, or general information about holidays to America please read our Frequently Asked Questions below... We are usually available on 'live chat' as well for any questions you have.

How do I make a booking?


Call us on 01480 270370 between 9am - 5.30pm, Monday to Saturday.
Email sales@itssotravel.com
Chat to us on 'Live Chat'




Do you offer financial protection


Yes, absolutely! All the holidays to the USA that we sell are fully ATOL Protected so you are 100% financially safe when booking with us




What happens after I've booked


All 'holidaymakers' receive a confirmation/invoice & an ATOL certificate together with general information to assist in planning your holiday, within 2 days. Tickets and travel documents including maps and directions to your accommodation will be sent to you approximately 3 weeks prior to departure. Will the price be cheaper if I book nearer the time? 'Late bookings' rarely save money, particularly as availability will be more limited for example cheaper apex flight seats and standard rooms in Inns and hotels book first, leaving only the more expensive options.




How far in advance should I book


We are able to make reservations 11 months ahead for flights and further ahead for accommodation. Many of our properties fill up well in advance, particularly our individual villas in Orlando, so it is advisable to secure these properties early. However, booking at any time up to a few days before travel is always a possibility, so do not hesitate to call us. The earlier you can book the better the price in most cases




USA Visa & ESTA Requirements


In most circumstances, no visa is required for travel to the USA for any British Citizen passport holder, and many other European passport holders who intend to travel for up to 90 days within the USA. We are allowed to enter the USA as part of the ‘Visa Waiver’ scheme, which is now known as an ‘ESTA’. This is an electronic process filled out online by you, the traveller, and MUST be completed at least 72 hours prior to departure. Please note that a separate one is needed for each person, you cannot travel as a group/family on one Visa Waiver application number. Further details along with the relevant website where you can obtain an ESTA form part of your ‘Confirmation invoice’ document as emailed to you by your USA Holiday consultant.




How Do I Apply for an ESTA


ESTA stands for Electronic System for Travel Authorisation. For those of you who have been lucky enough to travel to America before may recall completing green forms on the aircraft just prior to landing! Effectively these green forms have been replaced by an online process. Every passenger has to apply/obtain ESTA authorisation at least 72 hours prior to UK departure. For every new ESTA application a $15.00 fee is applicable. Payments can be made by credit card directly when you complete your application. Your application will not be submitted for processing until all payment information is received. Usually the ESTA is approved immediately so you get instant confirmation. Once granted the ESTA is valid for 2 years. For more information/authorisation please visit the official US government site: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov Please note there are various other websites that will try to charge a handling fee that is considerably more than the $15.00 fee, so please ensure you visit the official website above.




What are 'Advanced Passenger Information' or API's?


For security reasons, most countries now require airlines to provide details about their passengers before they travel. This is known as Advance Passenger Information (APIS). This usually consists of your full name as per your passport, your date of birth, gender, where you are flying to and your emergency contact details. This information needs to be provided by you and given directly to the airline via their website. Please log into your flight booking using the reference number that we detail on your booking confirmation document and provide this detail at least 72 hours prior to your departure. Providing your APIS should not be confused with applying for your visa waiver/ESTA. You will still need to follow the entry rules for the United States as well as any customs and passport control regulations ~ please see our ESTA/Visa Waiver FAQ section for more details.




Tipping in America


A real hot potato for us Brits – in America it’s part of the culture and ultimately it encourages some of the best customer service in the world. So what do you tip? The most common times you will need to offer a tip (Gratuity) are the following and these are a general guideline: Dining: Between 15% – 20% is considered normal. Luggage assistance (Hotel Bellman): If you accept help with you luggage on arrival at hotels $1 or $2 per bag is normal, this would be the same if they collect your luggage from the room and load your car up for you on departure. Hotel concierge: Tricky one this, we would tip $5-$10 depending on what they did for you. If they arrange the most fabulous table at a wonderful restaurant and the chef comes to say hello you can always go back to the concierge at the hotel, thank them and offer them a further small tip. Parking: If you valet park pay $1 each time the parking attendant fetches your car from the parking lot for you (Your valet parking charge will be billed separately to your room).




Can I choose my seats on my flights


The simple answer is yes you can. Unfortunately most airlines charge a fee to select your seats in advance these days so if you want extra leg room seats or prefer an asile or a window seat be prepared to pay for it! Most airlines offer free seats selection when you check in online but this is usually only between 24-48 hours prior to departure. In order to select your seats in adavnce the flights have to have been 'ticketed' which means being paid for in full. Once ticketed our USA holiday team will provide you with the flight PNR number which is used to manage your booking with direct on the airlines website. You are free then to manage your seat selection and pay the airline direct for this. Some airlines do offer free selction after ticketing and please ask our consultants for more information on which airlines do this.




Who am I booking with?


Good question... The USA Holiday Company is a trading name of ItsSo Travel who are part of the Global Travel Group. If you book with the USA Holiday Company your contract will be with ItsSo Travel & The Global Travel Group who have been creating memorable holidays for 25 years! Any monies paid to the USA Holiday Company (ItsSo Travel) go into a 'client account' and are held in trust under the ATOL scheme administered by The Global Travel Group. So essentially you have full financial protection and full trust when making a booking with the USA Holiday Co.




Who Do You Work With


As an independant travel agent we have the flexibility to work with all the major tour operators and holiday companies as well as many bespoke, individual companies. We work with the likes of Thomas Cook, Kuoni, Go Collette, US Airtours & many more. Working with a range of suppliers means that we are not tied to handful so you will always get the holiday that is right for you and not what is right for us.




Do the National Parks charge any fees?


If you are looking for an outdoor experience the National Parks have it in spades in the USA and each one offers something different. Please note though that they all charge an entrance fee which is around $30 a day and is payable on arrival. This is a fee for the vehicle and all its passengers though. Most of ouyr itineraries include 3 or 4 national parks on though so you may be better to purchase an annual pass at the 1st park you enter. The annual pass will cost around $80 but gives you unlimited access across the USA. This will not only save you money but also time queing for tickets at each location.




What are 'Resort Fees'


Many hotels in the USA, especially resort style accommodation charge a resort fee over and above the room rate. This resort fee has to be paid locally and we cannot add it into your holiday cost unfortunately. The fee varies from hotel to hotel but usually includes things like internet access, access to gym or fitness facilities, use of beach loungers etc. This is standard across America. We will always tell you in our quotes and confirmations what the resort fees are (if applicable) for your specific holiday so you can be prepared to pay on arrival.





We act as an agent on behalf of The Global Travel Group Ltd in connection with the sale of travel products. Unless specified as the operator, The Global Travel Group Ltd is the agent on behalf of ATOL Protected Tour Operators and other principals.

Talk to your USA expert today for a personal tailor-made itinerary (lines open Mon-Sat 9.00am-5.30pm).

c/o ItsSo Travel, 12 The Broadway, St Ives, Cambs, PE27 5BN

EMAIL US HERE

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