Land tours on Bangkok.Beiing cruise

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#1
Stockton, CA
5,240 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
We're doing the above mentioned cruise and I had heard that there is a luggage restrictions for the land tours? Is anyone familiar with this practice or did I misread something? Thanks for any feedback!
#2
Calgary, Canada
594 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
We have been on several land tours in Asia. The general rule is one suitcase per person. The tour guide and/or group leader counts the suitcases in and out of the bus every time to ensure all luggage is accounted for. Depending on the size of the group, the group leader might assign a number for each tourist because there may be several Bobs in the group and the last names might not be easily regconized. He also asked the tourist to mark his number on suitcase.

If you need to fly between cities, the one suitcase per person rule is enforced by the airline for tour group because we pay a special airfare.

You may take a small carry-on bag that fits in the overhead storage on bus. The tour bus are nice but the overhead storage basket is very narrow. A small flattened backpack or a notebook bag may fit into the slot.
#4
chatsworth, ca
2,414 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
I am also doing this tour. (going Nov 11th) all total I will be gone 25 days (pre and post cruise 16 day cruise). Is there a place in Beijing to leave a bag when we go to Xian?
#5
Stockton, CA
5,240 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
I think since we are checking back into the same hotel in Beijing as we were in prior to the trip, the hotel will most like store the luggage in a secure area. It'll probably work the same with you - we check out and back into the Crown Plaza. I am so excited and see the warriors has been a dream of my husband's since he saw a reproduction of them in the 80's (on Maui of all places). Are you doing the Yangtze cruise as well? We figured we'd better before it's gone!

There is no duty so much underrated as the duty of being happy
#6
chatsworth, ca
2,414 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Since I'm spending a week in Thialand prior to the cruise, I don't have enough time to do the river cruise as well.
Do you know if we need visa's?
#7
Stockton, CA
5,240 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
You will need a visa if you are getting off at any of the China stops. Princess assures us that we can do it all through them, but we are going to drive to the Chinese embassy in SF. I've been told it will take two visits about a week apart, so we may try to handle the first one by mail. Are you doing any special tours in Thailand? We were booked on a couple by our TA - am hoping we're not too wasted from the (gasp) 20- hour flight to do anything. Will you be staying at the Four Season? Friends who have been there before tell me it's a good jumping off spot. Email me at ckirby@deltacollege.edu if you want to chat more!

Cheers!

Charlie
#8
Calgary, Canada
594 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Originally posted by Spikesgirl
I think since we are checking back into the same hotel in Beijing as we were in prior to the trip, the hotel will most like store the luggage in a secure area.
I think this is the best way to store your luggage as I don’t think you can store the luggage at any airports in China except Hong Kong. Since you combine cruise and land tour together, you have a big dilemma. They don’t share the same clothing.

Originally posted by Spikesgirl
Are you doing the Yangtze cruise as well? We figured we'd better before it's gone!
I think the dam was closed in the fall/winter of 2002. We went to the Yangtze River Cruise in April 2002. At that time, the river was at the lowest point. We saw workers trying to move artifacts to higher ground. The cruise director said that many art works, temples, statutes, caves, rock paintings, would be buried under water as they don’t have enough time to move everything. We saw many deserted villages. Some taller buildings were dynamited so that they would not create hazards for the ships when the water level rises. Eventually, the water will rise to 175 meters. Since it has been more than 3 years after the dam closing, most of the artifacts are gone.


I also understand there is a weight limit on luggages in most of the Chinese airlines (domestic flights). Here is an example from Air China web page:
http://www.airchina.com.cn/en/lk/3_1.htm
China Southern has the similar regulation:
http://www.cs-air.com/en/wnfw/04/index.htm
However, they might not enforce the rules diligently if the luggage is not too obviously over the limit. Did you buy the land tours from Princess? They should tell you the luggage limitation. Perhaps you can phone the Chinese tour operators in SFO or LAX pretending that you are thinking to join their tours. They have a lot of experience organizing China tours. Good luck on your land tours.
#9
Boston, MA, USA
538 Posts
Joined Oct 2002
Originally posted by lois1112
Is there a place in Beijing to leave a bag when we go to Xian?
We did independent tour of Xi'an from Beijing (which by the way was VERY easy and much less costly--even with the best hotels and tour guides). There is a place to leave your luggage at the airport for minimal $$$. We packed all luggage for Beijing/Xi'an (4 days) separately and planned on leaving the remainder at the airport. As luck (?) would have it, our luggage didn't make it to Beijing the same time we did. Since we had a flight out from Beijing the same day we landed we ended up going without our luggage...and picking it up on the way back into Beijing. The carry-on change of clothes came in VERY handy.

Have fun!
#10
Stockton, CA
5,240 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
Hi, Stag - thanks for all your tips. Sadly, yes, much of the Yangtze is gone, but there's still some and I'm glad we're getting to see that before it's gone entirely! I wish we could see the Temple of the Seven Ghosts, but I fear that has long since disappeared - darn, I could have used that good luck!

We did buy the land tour from Princess, just because of the ease of the arrangements. We have friends who are doing nearly the same land exercusion, but they booked with another company. We are planning some serious note taking when they get back (two weeks before we leave)

It is going to take some clever packing, but we pretty much wear the same clothes on and off ship, so it (hopefully) won't be too bad. I pack pretty light, it's my hubby who's the clothes horse. We're going over with one 'empty' suitcase, so hopefully we won't be flying back with seven new cases, but with him, it's hard to tell!

Also, thanks for the hint about the airport. If we were changing hotels, that would definitely be the key.

Thanks to everyone who's posted - all sorts of great tips!

Happy Sails,

Charlie
#12
Stockton, CA
5,240 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
What a great site - (travelchinaguide.com)! Passed it along to a couple other people I know that are going to be in the area this summer. China food was especially interesting, as were the Xian photos. THANKS!
#13
Calgary, Canada
594 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Hi Spikesgirl, you've tickled my travel nerve. I am now itchy to go for another Yangtze this fall. I would appreciate it if you could send me a trip report about your future Yantze cruise. My e-mail is stag88@hotmail.com
This forum scrolls very fast and I don't often get on this forum. Thank you very much.