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Unparalleled service is at the core of everything we do.

Below is a set of potential questions you may have regarding your impending travel with us.

Mailing Address:

The Explorer’s Passage
P.O. Box 1607
New York, NY 10274

Phone/Fax:

Toll Free Number – 855-208-6800
Phone – 201-523-9900
Fax – 201-523-9901

Web/Email:

Web: explorerspassage.com
Email: info@explorerspassage.com

Welcome to The Explorer’s Passage, a fresh face in the industry and a new, creative approach to adventure travel. By way of introducing ourselves, we thought we’d share the thinking behind our name. We chose it carefully.

First, the Explorer. To explore, by definition, is to travel through an unfamiliar place, with the goal of learning something new. The act of exploration is, in itself, an adventure. We believe that everyone – from history’s greatest adventurers to first-time travelers – is born with the impulse to explore.

Next, the Passage. A passage can be defined as the simple act of moving from one place to another. A route. A journey. It can also be defined as a portion of a book or a speech, something often recited, noteworthy. We like to think of the passage as a combination of the two – a journey born from story.

We are explorers. We are storytellers. Join us as we step back in time and into the boots of the explorers and visionaries who came before us – the men and women whose vision, courage, and dreams left an indelible mark on the people and places we visit.

Our destinations are unique in that they tell a story – one embedded deeply in the land, the history, the people, the culture. By fusing adventure with story, TEP adventures offer a step back in time, the chance to follow in the footsteps of some of the world’s greatest explorers and visionaries. This element of the TEP experience, which we simply call The Story, unfolds seamlessly throughout your travels, offering up newfound perspective, appreciation and understanding. The incorporation of The Story into each adventure provides guests with the most cultural and historically immersive experience in the travel industry.

What does it mean, for TEP to redefine Adventure Travel? It starts with countless hours of research – the process of unearthing The Story behind the adventure. It’s meeting with everyone from anthropologists and park rangers, scientists and historians. It’s walking the aisles of libraries, scouring newspaper archives, watching documentaries. Once we’ve pieced together our storyline, we spend weeks on the road, revisiting the places from which The Story was born. Then it’s meeting with more experts, getting to know the locals, spending hours listening to stories regaled by people with proud ties to the legacy of the land. With our destination chosen, our route prepared and our Story complete, our final task is to weave the remarkable details of The Story into our day-to-day itineraries – so that you, too, can relive a fascinating chapter of history…while fully immersed in what we hope you’ll deem the adventure of a lifetime.

Destinations

Our far-flung destinations are singularly rich in spectacular scenery and opportunity for adventure. From broad river valleys to soaring snow-capped peaks, we’re humbled to let the landscapes speak for themselves as we roam and revel in some of nature’s greatest accomplishments around the planet.

Adventures

Incorporated into each itinerary is an adventure activity that best highlights the terrain and story du jour. Whether we’re hiking, canoeing, or horseback riding, you’re sure to find similar traces of excitement that the explorers of centuries-past endured long before we arrived in these amazing places.

Culture

Each TEP adventure emphasizes the unique cultural aspects, novelties, and beauties of the regions we explore. From sipping wine in Mendoza to making butter tea in the private home of a Nepalese villager, to sifting gold from the streambeds of the Yukon, our leaders introduce you to experiences you won’t find anywhere else.

Service

Impeccable service bookends each TEP adventure from the moment you first speak with one of our Adventure Consultants to the farewell handshake of a local guide. You can expect unparalleled customer service from all TEP staff members, who are each committed to making our name synonymous with excellence.

Please click HERE to learn more about what sets TEP apart.

At TEP, we believe everyone – from renowned adventurers to first-time travelers – is born with an impulse to explore. Our guests vary in age, interests and fitness, but they are all explorers: curious souls, with a passion for the great outdoors. So whether a seasoned globe-trotter or someone just getting your feet wet in the world of adventure travel, The Explorer’s Passage has a trip for you.

TEP guests average 21-65 years old.

Our adventures are specifically designed to accommodate both solo and group travelers. Trips are priced at double occupancy, so for singles who would like their own room and/or tent, there is an additional single supplement charge. If you request a roommate and we are unable to oblige, then there is typically a ‘forced’ single supplement charge of 50% of the customary single supplement cost. TEP will take care of the rest.

Our planned group adventures are limited to 16 people, however we average 10 guests per adventure. In order to provide each guest with the level of service and personal attention they expect from TEP, we maintain a maximum guest-to-guide ratio of 6 to 1 (one of the lowest in the industry).

Small group sizes not only allow us to provide extra support throughout the trip, but also open the door to more intimate and spontaneous experiences. In many adventures, we also provide assistant guides, porters, cooks, and other staff to maximize your experience with TEP.

Please note that we’re happy to accommodate groups greater than 16 on our Private Travel adventures – if that’s of interest to you, we’ll work together to tailor an adventure suitable to your needs.

To join an adventure, call us toll-free at 855-208-6800 or 201-523-9900, or email us at info@explorerspassage.com. To reserve a space, an initial deposit is required, which can be placed through the following payment options:

  • Visa,
  • MasterCard
  • American Express
  • Discover
  • Personal Check

Space fills up quickly on our trips as our small-group adventures accommodate from 9 to 16 guests. For the best selection of itineraries and dates we recommend reserving a spot well in advance. We’ll do our best to accommodate last-minute reservations, however most guests book four to six months before departure. Trips taking place over holiday or summer periods should be booked six to ten months ahead of time. Note that we will occasionally add departure dates for sold-out trips. Also note that we are happy to plan a custom adventure around your dates and interests – see our Private Travel page for more information, and don’t hesitate to CONTACT us for details.

Yes. If you prefer to have your travel agent handle your TEP reservation, please have him or her reach out to us by calling 855-208-6800 or emailing us at info@explorerspassage.com. Pricing is the same whether you book directly with TEP or through your travel agent.

At TEP, hand crafting itineraries around a specific region or a particular event in history is our passion. So if you’re traveling with a group – small or large – and have a dream trip in mind, give us a call – our Adventure Consultants are ready and waiting to work with you to transform that dream to reality. To learn more, please call us toll-free at 855-208-6800.

Our trips are all-inclusive, crafted with the intent of providing you with an unforgettable adventure travel experience. From a detailed Pre-Departure Information Package to a complimentary cocktail upon your arrival, we’ve thought of everything – so all you have to do is show up.

During your trip, our knowledgeable guides and support staff take care of the details of your transportation, lodging, meals, and activities. We’ve even scheduled in a bit of free time for you to explore, relax, shop, or eat on your own.

Though each trip varies, the following mainstays are included:

  • Comprehensive Pre-Departure Information Package that includes trip details, all applicable forms, and packing lists
  • All lodging (hotels in cities, lodges and tented camps in villages, and tented camps when on the trail)
  • Most meals
  • Experienced local trip leaders
  • All support vehicles, ground transportation, and boats (where applicable)
  • Charter and internal airfare (on most trips)
  • Airport transfers
  • All necessary equipment, such as tents and canoes
  • Additional support guides, porters, and cooks when on the trail
  • Private tours of museums, historic and religious sites, and other select attractions as noted in the itinerary
  • Complimentary alcoholic beverages on the first and last day of the trip
  • Drinking Water (Depending on the trip, TEP provides Boiled water, Bottled water, or purification tablets)
  • National Park and other site entry fees
  • All local taxes
  • All dining and housekeeping gratuities and some local expert gratuities

To see specific inclusions for each individual trip, please review your detailed itinerary or CONTACT one of our Adventure Consultants.

  • Air and land transportation to and from host city
  • Airport taxes (if any)
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Pre- and post-trip accommodations
  • Optional activities and spa services
  • Personal items
  • Insurance of any kind (other than basic medical and evacuation insurance)
  • Cost of medical immunizations
  • Most alcoholic beverages
  • Optional gratuities for TEP trip leaders, guides, and local staff

Payment Policy

Standard Adventure Payment Schedule

*The Standard Trip Payment Schedule does not apply to the IAE/ClimateForce: Arctic 2019 expedition. Please click HERE for details.

  • A $500 deposit is due at the time of booking an adventure
  • An additional deposit of 20% of the total trip cost is due 120 days prior to departure.
  • Final payment is due no later than 95 days prior to departure.
  • For reservations received within 95 days, full payment is required.

Custom Adventure Payment Schedule

  • A $750 deposit is due at the time of booking an adventure.
  • An additional deposit of 20% of the total trip cost is due 120 days prior to departure.
  • Final payment is due no later than 95 days prior to departure.
  • For reservations received within 95 days, full payment is required.

Print schedule

Trip prices are in US dollars, and all payments are to be made in US dollars by check or major credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, & American Express). Once we receive your deposit, you will be emailed an Trip Sign-Up Form that must be completed and faxed to us within 48-hours.

We will then send you a detailed Pre-Departure Trip Package highlighting information helpful to you in preparation for your travels. Three weeks prior to your departure, you’ll receive rendezvous instructions and final trip details.

The comprehensive pre-departure information package includes the following:

  • Detailed itinerary
  • Travel insurance information
  • Waiver and medical forms
  • Clothing and equipment packing checklist
  • Reading list to prepare for your trip
  • Invoice
  • Additional hotel night options

Unforeseen circumstances, such as rises in fuel prices or currency fluctuations, may cause the price of your trip to rise. If our costs change dramatically, clients will be billed up to $100 for the increase and The Explorer’s Passage will absorb the rest.

Please note that we strive to be as transparent as possible by revealing expenses, such as internal flight costs, on each itinerary page (on most trips). If you ever have questions about your trip price, please do not hesitate to CONTACT one of our Adventure Consultants for details.

Have fun, make friends, and experience the trip of a lifetime without worrying about unexpected events: this is your main focus while traveling with TEP. However, events outside of both TEP’s and your control might occur so we highly recommend you enroll in travel protection insurance.

We’ve made it easy for you to secure this peace of mind through the convenient services of MH Ross, one of the leading travel-insurance providers. Choose from a number of plan options that include evacuation, medical, and cancellation protection. To learn more, please click HERE, or call one of our adventure consultants at 855-208-6800.

If air travel is necessary during an adventure, then internal air transfers are already included in your trip price. Please note that these airlines vary in degrees of risk, and many carriers have an unknown safety and maintenance record. We are not liable for airline safety, cancellations, service, risk, delays, etc., or incidents that result in injury or death.

Travel visas may be required to enter your trip destination and are not included in the Land Cost of your trip. If a visa is not attainable upon arrival at your destination airport, this process can take up to 90-days or more, so be sure to look into visa requirements immediately upon reservation.

We’ve made it easy for you to obtain assistance with fulfilling your visa requirements through the services of Visa Central. You can conveniently do this by clicking HERE, or call one of our adventure consultants at 855-208-6800 to learn more.

For all trip cancellations, we must receive written notice via email, mail, or fax.  Cancellation is not verified until you receive an email from TEP updating your trip status to canceled. Fees are determined based on the date we receive your cancellation notice and the date of the trip departure.

TEP Cancellation Policy

If you must cancel your reservation, your cancellation fee will be determined according to the policy outlined below. Exceptions to our cancellation policy cannot be made for any reason, including weather, terrorism, civil unrest or personal emergencies. There is no refund for arriving late or leaving a trip early. Private room or tent and internal air charges are considered part of the total trip cost and are subject to cancellation fees. Percentage charges are calculated on total trip cost.

Standard Cancellation Fees for Group Trips:

**The Standard Cancellation Fee Schedule does not apply to the IAE/ClimateForce: Arctic 2019 expedition. Please click HERE for details.

Number of Days Prior to Your Trip

  • 95+ Days – Non-refundable cancellation administration fee: $200 per traveler.
  • 61–95 days prior to departure: 30% of total adventure cost.
  • 31–60 days prior to departure: 60% of total adventure cost.
  • 30 days or less to departure: 100% of total adventure cost. No refund.
  • At or after trip departure: 100% of total adventure cost. No refund.

Standard Cancellation Fees for Custom Trips:

Number of Days Prior to Your Trip

  • 95+ Days – Non-refundable cancellation administration fee: $750 per traveler.
  • 61–95 days prior to departure: 50% of total adventure cost.
  • 31–60 days prior to departure: 75% of total adventure cost.
  • 30 days or less to departure: 100% of total adventure cost. No refund.
  • At or after trip departure: 100% of total adventure cost. No refund.

Standard Cancellation Fees for Extension Options or Adventure Options (including extra hotel nights):

Number of Days Prior to Your Trip

  • 95+ Days – Non-refundable cancellation administration fee: $100 per traveler.
  • 61–95 days prior to departure: 25% of total adventure cost.
  • 31–60 days prior to departure: 50% of total adventure cost.
  • 30 days or less to departure: 100% of total adventure cost. No refund.
  • At or after trip departure: 100% of total adventure cost. No refund.

If I decide that I would like to participate in a different trip than the one I initially signed up for, can I transfer my payments to another trip?

Up to 90-days prior to departure, you may transfer without penalty to another trip. However, should you transfer from one trip to another within 89-days or less of a departure, you are subject to the cancellation fee appropriate to the date you notify us.

Please contact us for additional information on transferring payments.

To avoid penalties, we highly recommend you purchase a travel insurance package to protect yourself. Depending on the plan, you could be protected from some or all cancellation fees.

Up to 90-days prior to departure, you may transfer without penalty to another trip. However, should you transfer from one trip to another within 89-days or less of a departure, you are subject to the cancellation fee appropriate to the date you notify us.

Please contact us for additional information on transferring payments.

To avoid penalties, we highly recommend you purchase a travel insurance package to protect yourself. Depending on the plan, you could be protected from some or all cancellation fees.

TEP reserves the right to cancel any trip due to inadequate sign-up or other causes that make the trip unfeasible for us to operate. Should this happen, we will inform you at least 60-days prior to departure, and you will receive a full refund of your Land Cost. However, TEP is not responsible for additional expenses incurred by members preparing for the trip (e.g. nonrefundable “Advance Purchase” air tickets, visa fees, clothing, equipment, or medical expenses).

To avoid major losses, we recommend that you confirm a trip status with one of our Adventure Consultants before purchasing your air tickets.

If you are someone with a medical condition, it is vital that you make that known to us well before departure. Upon booking, you will receive a Medical Form to be completed and returned to us. Please provide us with accurate and comprehensive medical information history as well as any special dietary needs.

If you are required to have physician approval to participate on one of our adventures and your doctor does not approve the Medical Form, normal cancellation fees apply. Avoid this by requesting a form prior to making your reservation so your doctor can pre-approve your status.

Please note that once the trip has begun, hospital facilities for serious problems are often unavailable and evacuation can be prolonged, difficult, and expensive. TEP assumes no liability regarding provision of medical care.

Photographs and/or video might be taken during a TEP adventure. By participating on a TEP trip, you are acknowledging and granting permission that TEP may use these materials for promotional or commercial use without payment or compensation.

The TEP website contains the most detailed, up-to-date information on each of our adventures. We continually post new adventures, additional trip dates, and other details that may not be found in our printed brochure. We welcome you to explore our site!

Great question. As a TEP guest, you have a responsibility to TEP and to your fellow travelers. First, you’re responsible for selecting a trip that fits both your interests and your abilities. Second, we ask that all guests please study the details and implied conditions of the itinerary so as to arrive properly prepared for an amazing, shared experience.

In the unlikely event that a TEP guest should show up to an adventure unfit and/or unruly, our trip leaders reserve the right to determine that physical or mental behavior detrimental to the group, and to ask that guest to leave. Refunds are not permitted under such circumstances.

Our trips are generally catered to individuals looking for an outdoor challenge, which requires a certain level of physical conditioning prior to travel. To accommodate differing fitness levels, a variety of itineraries are available for each destination. Please study the activity ratings and detailed descriptions that accompany each itinerary to determine the right trip for you.

You will most certainly enjoy your trip more if you are in good physical shape and are properly prepared for the activities. Consult with a fitness professional regarding your preparation for the trip, and remember to check with your doctor before undertaking any new fitness program.

Please click HERE for our Trip Activity Level Guide, and don’t hesitate to call or email us to receive a comprehensive itinerary.

Then by all means, be our guest. Through our Private Travel options we could craft you the perfect pre or post adventure itinerary. We are also happy to book you additional rooms at either one of our destination hotels, or you can choose from other lodging options in the host city.

Please CONTACT one of our Adventure Consultants to learn more about your options.

At TEP, our goal is to take care of everything – the guides, the hotels, the restaurants, the day-to-day activities – so all you have to do is sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride. We simply ask that you bring an open-mind and a thirst for adventure.

Regarding personal gear, please refer to the detailed clothing and equipment checklist found in the Pre-Departure Information Package you’ll receive upon booking. As always, if you have further questions, please CONTACT one of our Adventure Consultants for helpful packing tips and advice. 

Yes. If you desire to travel light, we’re happy to arrange rental equipment, such as packs, sleeping bags, and trekking poles at an additional charge. In some locations, you can also choose to purchase activity items upon arrival. Please CONTACT one of our Adventure Consultants to learn more about these options.

All items of value, including jewelry, electronics, sentimental trinkets, etc., should be left at home, unless they’re absolutely necessary for the adventure. Hotel safes, storage rooms, and TEP transportation vehicles do not guarantee their safety. Please note that neither hotels nor TEP are responsible for lost or stolen items. Cell phones (if you bring one) and passports should be kept with you at all times.

Whether hiking a tricky trail below the highest mountains in the world or canoeing the mighty Yukon River, we strive to make you as comfortable as possible. From portaging equipment, to setting up tents, to preparing meals, we provide the support you need so you can relax and simply enjoy the activities at hand.

We maintain a guest to guide ratio of six to one (one of the lowest in the industry) but make adjustments at times where it is fitting. For example, on our challenging Chilkoot Trail hike, you can expect a guest to guide ratio of three to one. In most remote destinations, we also have assistant guides, porters, and cooks to help us along the way.

There are guests who prefer to help guides and support staff with some of the more laborious activities. We leave that option up to you.

It is our goal on each of our adventures to keep our guests well fed, and to introduce them to the exotic flavors found in the destinations we visit. Get a taste below of how we split our food experiences into three categories:

1) On-the-Trail: healthy and local authentic cuisine that provides our guests with the necessary energy for the day’s activities is our focus. Roasted salmon or fresh apple pie over an open fire are just two examples of the elaborate attention to detail our guides and cooks display while ensuring guests are adequately fed and their palate blissfully satisfied.

2) Intimate Dining Establishments: big cities offer the advantage of providing an array of cuisine that best represents the local culture. From a traditional Argentine feast at a vineyard in Mendoza to a spirited dinner sampling Nepalese fare while live dancers and music animate the room, we’ve got the pulse on the finest establishments in each of the destinations we visit.

3) Off-the-Beaten-Path: instead of selecting the “fanciest” restaurants, our guides pride themselves on finding the hidden gems – the untouristed places they’ve discovered over the last 20 years of exploring not only the dusty trails but also the culinary delights of the region. Guests often share tables with the locals at these unique and memorable establishments.

*Note that we are happy to accommodate any special dietary requests (e.g., vegetarian) you may have, but ask that we are informed of these restrictions before signing up for a trip.

*Also please note that while most food on TEP adventures is included in the trip price, we provide a window for spontaneity and exclude some meals to allow guests to explore on their own.

Keep in mind that on the first and last day of the adventure, we’re pleased to serve complimentary local wine and beer. Cheers!

When you travel with us, you’ll wake up well rested and refreshed after a good nights’ sleep in the best quarters each region has to offer. See our three lodging categories below:

Category 1 – Cities – Hotels

In the city, we seek out exquisite artisan boutique hotels but opt for four- or five-stars when the novelty isn’t available. Room quality, an intimate feel, and easy location are top of our list when it comes to selecting accommodations, which vary from city to city and trip by trip, as there are certain destinations where comfortable yet lower-rated establishments are the only option.

Category 2 – Remote Locations – Lodges

Finding lodging in remote locations can be a challenge and usually presents us with only one or two alternatives. We choose the best option available. While these lodges may not be luxurious, they are perfectly clean and comfortable and offer what you’ll appreciate most after a day on the trail: a hot shower and authentic local ambiance.

Category 3 – Remote Locations – Tented Camps

We offer two types of tented camps: Moving Villages and Campsite Tents.

Moving Villages are exactly as they sound: camps that move with you as you go. Full adventure teams support these impressive temporary accommodations and can consist of up to 30 porters, cooks, guides, and animal support for a 16-person trip. Dining tables, fresh food, beverages, your extra bags, and roomy, two-person tents will await your arrival. Other luxuries, such as shower and toilet tents, accompany on most remote adventures when local law permits.

Where human porter and animal support are not allowed due to park and government restrictions, we incorporate additional guides to provide extra hands in Campsite Tent duties without compromising the level of service you expect on a TEP adventure. On these adventures, we often stay at park-regulated campsites, which typically have bathroom facilities and other amenities.

Further details of your accommodations are listed on your trip itinerary.

Yes. Bad weather, road or trail conditions, river levels, transportation delays, government intervention, sickness, or other contingencies over which TEP has no control are possible. Cost of these delays is not included in the trip price.

The goal for each adventure is for you to experience every activity on the itinerary to its fullest potential. However, weather, internal flight delays, and the remote nature of our adventures may require us to exclude certain site visits to ensure we stick to the time schedule. On the flip side, we like to allow for spontaneity – if the group decides it would rather spend more time on a particular activity, or if we come across something unexpected but of interest, we will adjust our schedule to accommodate. Know that our goal is to treat you to the best possible travel experience – and that we appreciate your flexibility.

It is important to note that the trip cost is quoted as a package, and no refunds or credits will be given for unused hotel rooms or skipped meals, sightseeing trips, or adventure activities.

A TEP guide does more than just lead the group down the trail; he or she ensures every detail is attended to so that the trip runs flawlessly. Our guides wear many hats while on an adventure: from cook to equipment manager to safety instructor and – let’s not forget – Storyteller. While tips are not obligatory and the decision is based entirely on your discretion, our guides gratefully accept your generous tokens at the conclusion of a trip.

As a general practice in the adventure travel industry, 10% of the trip cost is the common gratuity for guides. Should you have multiple assistant guides, cooks, and porters, tips would be given to the lead guide at the conclusion of a trip who, would then make certain to distribute it fairly amongst the trip staff.