FAQ

Welcome to Encore Tours!

If you’re seeking answers regarding your upcoming performance tour, you’re in the right place. Below, you’ll find answers to our most frequently asked questions, spanning from registration and account access to payment methods, protection plans, travel preparations, and insights into what to anticipate on tour.

Should you not find the information you seek, feel free to utilize our chatbot to connect with a representative for further assistance.


Registration

Encore uses 3- and 4-star hotels located minutes (sometimes steps) from the sights you came to see. Learn more about the importance of centrally located hotels.

On international tours, participants stay in multiple-bedded rooms, usually with two beds depending on destination and tour type. Group leaders will put together a rooming list for all participants prior to departure. Participants have the option to upgrade to a single room, for a supplemental fee. Additionally, in destinations where tour accommodations are based on either triples or quads, a double room supplement will apply to anyone looking to room with only one other person. Group Leaders are guaranteed the comfort and privacy of a single room on tour. On cruises and overnight ferries, rooming may differ. Any rooming upgrades can be made at registration or by contacting accounts@encoretours.com.

Typically, tours include a continental breakfast or hot buffet in the morning, and three-course dinner in the evening. Meals are a mix of authentic and familiar to ensure participants get a taste of local culture and leave satisfied.

A tour manager is the group leader’s partner. Part guide, part educator, part engineer, part mind-reader, part magician—Encore Tour Managers know their stuff. But, more importantly they know directors and performers. They keep all participants engaged, directors relaxed, and the whole group excited to see what will happen next. They provide educational commentary, check you into hotels, recommend the best place for lunch, and so much more!

Inclusions vary from tour to tour, but typically include round-trip flights, breakfasts, dinners, and a mix of other entrances and visits. Our itineraries are thoughtfully designed to include performances at world-class venues while maximizing your time overseas with the best sights built in, along with reserved entrances to avoid long lines.

My Account and Logging In

Once you are registered for an Encore tour, My Account is your portal for everything you need to know. You will find your group’s personalized itinerary and hotel and flight information when it becomes available, you can pay for your trip, enroll for automatic payments and select your protection plan. You can also find information that will help you prepare for your adventure ahead such as packing tips, money matters and more.

Log in to My Account here. If you registered online and therefore already created a username and password, you will need to enter it. If you have not already selected a username and password, or you forget it, don’t worry, we can help. Reset your username and password. Please note that both username and password are case-sensitive.

Don’t worry, we’ll figure this out.

• Please make sure you enter your login and password exactly as you created them as they are case-sensitive. If logging in on a mobile device, double check your device isn’t automatically adding an extra space at the end.
• Make sure you’re logging into the correct trip. Participants need new account information for each trip they are taking with Encore.
• Double check you’ve clicked ‘Login’ and not ‘Register’ in order to avoid creating a duplicate account.

If you’re still having trouble, you can reset your username and password. Unless you are a group leader or assistant group leader, select ‘participant,’ even if your are a parent logging in to your child’s account. To retrieve or reset your account information, please enter the email you used when registering, or if you’re a minor participant, you may choose to enter your parent email. We will send a link to that address for you to reset your username or password. If you do not receive the email within a few minutes, please check your Spam folder.

If you have tried resetting your password and the login still is not working or you did not receive an email, don’t sweat it! Please email accounts@encoretours.com and we’ll sort it out with you.

Yes, you can. Log in to My Account, click My Profile and select Personal Info. Then scroll down the page to Account Information and click the edit button. You must enter your current password before creating a new one.

Payments, Vouchers, and Cancellations

Encore offers two types of payment plans: Automatic Payment Plan and Manual Payment Plan. Many participants choose Encore’s Automatic Payment Plan for its convenience, flexibility, and peace of mind, as it offers more time to pay with no deadlines to remember.

Under the Manual Payment Plan, you’ll make an initial payment of $200 upon registration. If you register within 180 days of departure, your initial payment becomes $500. The total payment of $500 is due 180 days prior to departure. Participants who have not paid $500 by this 180-day mark will be assessed a $50 Deposit Late Fee and may be subject to cancellation.

The full payment of your remaining balance is due 130 days prior to departure.

Yes! Not only do you have more time to pay, no deadlines to remember and flexible payment options to match your family’s needs, you’ll also receive a $50 discount. Learn more.

Encore travel vouchers give you a chance to springboard toward future travel with Encore, ACIS or our parent company AIFS. You can use the voucher on any Encore or ACIS program outside of the USA and Canada including Encore Experiences, our summer fixed-date trips. Vouchers can also be used on college-level programs, namely AIFS’ College Study Abroad and Global Experience’s International internship programs. Study abroad programs are offered in 22 countries, with short-term, semester and academic year options. Internships are available in 13 different locations and cover career fields ranging from business to non-profit to technical fields. Our vouchers are fully transferable, meaning you can sell them to a friend who is interested in any of these programs too. Each new traveler can only use one voucher to pay for part of their trip and vouchers need to be redeemed for travel starting within two years of their issue date.

To redeem a voucher with your name or the name of another traveler who you wish to transfer the voucher to, simply send an email from the email address associated with the account to accounts@encoretours.com and indicate how the voucher should be applied. Be sure to include the voucher ID and the full name and Account ID of the traveler it should be applied to. If you’d prefer, you can also scan and email the completed voucher to accounts@encoretours.com.

Refunds depend on your protection plan. We strongly advise participants to upgrade their coverage to our Ultimate-Plus or Ultimate plans that provide a full refund (less the cost of the protection plan itself) for any reason up to four days prior to departure, and a full refund for a covered reason up to 1 day prior to departure. Participants who do not elect to upgrade have Basic Protection which provides a partial refund up to 30 days prior to departure.

Yes! Both Encore and ACIS have several fixed-date options for that are open to both small groups and individual travelers. We are also excited to announce the arrival of our new music appreciation product, Encore Experiences.

To upgrade your protection plan, log in to My Account and click your plan in the Account Overview section. You may then elect to change your plan up to 130 days prior to departure.

We hope you’ll reconsider, as we’d love to travel with you. Please fill out this Cancellation Form. The requested email address must that of the traveler or for a minor that of the parent or guardian listed on the account. A confirmation email will be sent to that email address immediately, if you do not receive this please email accounts@encoretours.com. We cannot take cancellations over the phone or chat. Your refund will based on your protection plan and the date you fill out the form.

If you upgraded your protection plan to Ultimate-Plus or Ultimate, and cancel for a covered reason up to 24 hours prior to departure, you will receive a full refund in cash, less the cost of the plan itself, when you provide the following documentation to Encore:

• Medical Reason – a letter from your doctor on letterhead with the date of onset and diagnosis.
• Job Loss – A letter from your employer within 7 days of termination.
• Death in the family – Unfortunately, we will need proof such as an obituary or death certificate.

Refunds can take up to 45 days from the date of cancellation.

Refunds are typically returned in the form you paid. If you paid via a checking/savings account you will receive a check, and if you paid with a credit card, the payment will go back on the card. For credit card refunds, equal percentages of the refund will be refunded to each card used.  For example, if you paid 5 payments of $100, and the penalty was 10% you would receive back 90% of each payment transaction. Due to credit card company contracts, we must send refunds back in the form you paid. That being said, if for any reason the credit card refund rejects due to an account being closed or expired, or you’ve paid off the card in full, we will issue you a check as long as proof can be provided to accounts@encoretours.com.

Refund checks are printed under the traveler’s name as we legally have the full name of the traveler upon registration. If a parent/guardian or someone else other than the traveler has paid for the trip, Encore unfortunately, for security purposes, does not have payment information saved to be able to see where it came from. If you’re a parent who paid for your child’s tour and they’re a minor, they should be able to endorse it over to you. If the minor is too young to sign, please send an email to accounts@encoretours.com asking to reissue a check with the correct full name and address.

Encore sends the refund check to the address we have on file; you can see the address on MyAccount on the ‘My Profile’ page.  Please make sure mailing addresses are up to date to avoid any future errors. Any changes or updates can be sent to accounts@encoretours.com

There’s no better gift than a once-in-a-lifetime travel experience. To help facilitate this, Encore offers a Personal Fundraising platform for every participant who has signed up for a tour. We also offer the option of a free trip to London or Paris to every group that travels internationally with Encore to use as a fundraiser.

Getting Ready to Travel

Passports are required for all Encore trips traveling abroad except those to Canada, where a passport is only required if you are flying into the country or if you are aged 19 or over. You are responsible for obtaining your own passport, so please don’t delay! Visit your post office or a local office of the federal government for an application form. Note that some countries require that passports be valid for six months after you return to the United States. Please be sure that yours is up-to-date.

For more information about obtaining a passport and processing times, visit www.travel.state.gov.

No visas are required for U.S. citizens traveling to western or central Europe, Costa Rica or Mexico. Visas are required for U.S. citizens traveling to Australia, Cambodia, China, Cuba, Egypt, Russia, Turkey and Vietnam.* Groups traveling to Australia are responsible for securing their own ETA Tourist Visa. For many of the other destinations, Encore will assist U.S. passport holders to obtain necessary visas or will provide all necessary information for you to get your own visa. In the case where Encore is assisting, your group leader will collect your group’s passports and send them to Encore for visa application processing approximately 120 days prior to departure. Visas are necessary for participants connecting through these countries, even if they are not the final destination.

Non-U.S. citizens are responsible for obtaining all documents needed to enter the countries to be visited or connected through, and for reentry into the U.S. Please consult the consular offices of the countries on your itinerary, as well as the U.S. Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services, for complete information. If traveling to Canada on one of our programs, non-U.S. citizens can consult this website for Canadian visa requirements.

*Visas may be required for other destinations. Please contact your group leader for more information.

Encore needs your passport information at least 2 months prior to departure. Some sites require passport information to book entrances or for different modes of transportation. Not entering this information in a timely manner may result in missing some of the listed activities in the program. To enter your information log in to My Account and click My Profile.

We’ve got lots of packing tips, but the ones we’ll shout again and again are to check the weather shortly before you go, bring layers, and definitely bring comfortable shoes. You are allowed to check a bag, but we encourage you to carry on and avoid the risk of the airline misplacing your luggage. Our trusted rule of thumb is to bring about half of what you think you’ll need!

The amount of spending money you’ll need depends on personal habits, but a good rule of thumb is $50 USD a day. This allows for lunch, snacks, soft drinks, souvenirs, free-time activities, optional excursions not already included in your itinerary and local transportation during your free time. Learn more about money matters.

We encourage groups to bring a small amount of local currency with you. Get together with some friends to save on fees. Once overseas you can use ATMs and they generally offer good rates, but you won’t want to spend your arrival day in line for the ATM with your entire group. Save the time so you can start exploring. Learn more about money matters.

Yes! Encore has an excellent travel app that provides a wealth of information including details on your itinerary, flights and hotels (when they become available), as well as maps and destination information that can be accessed offline. Be sure to download the ACIS/Encore Travel App before departure.

What to Expect on Tour

Encore uses 3- and 4-star hotels located minutes (sometimes steps) from the sights you came to see. Learn more about the importance of centrally located hotels.

On international tours, participants stay in multiple-bedded rooms, usually with two beds depending on destination and tour type. Group leaders will put together a rooming list for all participants prior to departure. Participants have the option to upgrade to a single room, for a supplemental fee. Additionally, in destinations where tour accommodations are based on either triples or quads, a double room supplement will apply to anyone looking to room with only one other person. Group Leaders are guaranteed the comfort and privacy of a single room on tour. On cruises and overnight ferries, rooming may differ. Any rooming upgrades can be made at registration or by contacting accounts@encoretours.com.

Typically, tours include a continental breakfast or hot buffet in the morning, and three-course dinner in the evening. Meals are a mix of authentic and familiar to ensure participants get a taste of local culture and leave satisfied.

A tour manager is the group leader’s partner. Part guide, part educator, part engineer, part mind-reader, part magician—Encore Tour Managers know their stuff. But, more importantly they know directors and performers. They keep all participants engaged, directors relaxed, and the whole group excited to see what will happen next. They provide educational commentary, check you into hotels, recommend the best place for lunch, and so much more!

Inclusions vary from tour to tour, but typically include round-trip flights, breakfasts, dinners, and a mix of other entrances and visits. Our itineraries are thoughtfully designed to include performances at world-class venues while maximizing your time overseas with the best sights built in, along with reserved entrances to avoid long lines.

Flights

Encore books group tickets on commercial scheduled airlines. Although Encore books most flights far in advance your flight details may not visible online until approximately 30 days prior to departure when the contract is finalized with the airlines to ensure the least amount of changes.

Maybe. Sorry we can’t be more specific. Each airline contract is different, and some allow individuals to change a seat or pick an upgraded seat, but some give the group a block of seats and simply assign them alphabetically.

We book on group contracts, and most contracts do not allow upgrades. If you would like us to book you separately, we can try. Please note that there is an additional $175 upgrade charge plus the cost of the seat upgrade. Once the seats have been upgraded normally, the ticket is nonrefundable above and beyond the standard Encore cancellation fees. In order to upgrade, please send an email to accounts@encoretours.com detailing what type of seat upgrade you would like, i.e. business, comfort plus, more legroom. Also, state if a traveling companion will be upgrading and if you want to sit together.

Yes, as long as you inform us no later than 90 days prior to the departure date. In order to do an alternate return, you will need to fill out an Alternate Return Request Form. You will need to detail the flight information and date of the return on the form and any other alternative options in case we are not able to get you the first option. Once alternate return tickets are booked they are nonrefundable. Learn more about the alternate return process.

Yes! Encore Tours offers our passengers flexibility in their flight arrangements. Passengers may choose our “No Air Fare” package price should they choose to arrange flights on their own and join the group at the hotel.

The name on the airline ticket must match the full name on your passport including your middle name. We ticket based on the names in MyAccount, so please triple check that it is correct. If you do realize it is incorrect after it has already been ticketed, please email us immediately at accounts@encoretours.com. Once the account has been ticketed, we will need to contact the airline and additional fees may apply for a name chance or a new ticket may need to be purchased.

Instruments

Traveling with instruments can be difficult, but Encore has the experience necessary to make sure it’s a smooth process. Your group leader will submit your instrument list and we can submit this to the airlines to determine what size of aircraft will suit your needs best. We can then also assess any problems that might come up and avoid them before they happen. Learn more about traveling with instruments.

If you’re a musician and this is your first time traveling, it can sometimes be an overwhelming experience. That’s why we recommend bringing a hard case, insuring your instrument, staying hydrated, and practicing respectful concert etiquette based on your destination’s customs. View more travel tips.

Passengers can contact their group leader who will then coordinate with us to provide rentals for your group. Unless specifically stated, rentals for string and percussion instruments typically do not include mallets or bows, so ask your group leader for more details.

Both our Ultimate Protection (UPP) and Ultimate Protection Plus (UPP+) plans include instrument loss/damage coverage of up to $5,000! However, the basic protection plan offers no instrument damage coverage. If you want to be covered against instrument damage, we would strongly recommend upgrading your protection plan.

Have any additional questions?

If you have any further questions, please contact us or utilize our chat function to speak directly with an Encore Tours representative.