Many people say that nothing "grows your mind" as much as international travel. And if you can travel with people you know, possibly from a shared BILL course, with the guidance of first-rate trip leaders on excellent trips provided at a fair price, and also have easy transport to and from the airport, then things are even better.

The Bucknell Institute for Lifelong Learning is pleased to announce the start of a program of group travel to international and national destinations. We will not plan and run our own trips, but instead we will travel with Grand Circle Travel (GCT) and Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT), two affiliated and highly respected trip operators, traveling as what they call an "affinity group." People who are not BILL members are welcome because this is not a BILL trip. If you have wanted to go on a trip like this but could not think of someone to go with, this trip is for you.

What is the difference between GCT and OAT trips? GCT land trips can have up to 38 travelers, and the pace is somewhat slower, with slightly later daily departures and earlier arrivals. They call walking their "signature mode" that allows access to many sites, but they "balance any lengthy walking tours with plenty of time to refresh and rejuvenate". OAT land adventures, on the other hand, have from 10 to 16 travelers, are somewhat more active, and visit more "adventurous" destinations off the beaten path, occasionally requiring slightly longer walks over uneven surfaces.

Spring 2014 Italy Map

Travel to Italy with BILL

May 7 - May 21, 2014

For BILL's first international trip, our Travel Advisory Group has selected a Grand Circle trip. "Italy: Tuscany, the Alps and the Riviera"

  • Date of departure from Newark Airport: May 7, 2014
  • Date of return to Newark Airport: May 21, 2014
  • Base Trip Cost: $3995, including international airfare.
  • Free single supplements, however single accommodations are limited.

BILL will arrange for a bus to take our group to and from Newark Airport; the additional cost of the bus will be shared by all travelers and paid to BILL. Bus details will come later.

Because our planning has come late in the Grand Circle sign-up cycle, space on this trip is limited, so register as soon as possible. The deposit is modest, and if you pay in full early you can save a bit on the cost.

You will not risk that payment if you take advantage of Grand Circle's Travel Protection Plan (see below). The trip brochure, which you can download here, has most of the information you need to decide if this trip is for you. It includes a detailed itinerary, a list of optional tours, description of Grand Circle's Travel Protection Plan (see note #4 below), and the number to call for reservations and information.

For even more details, consult this Grand Circle website: www.gct.com/nit14. There you will learn about Pre- & Post-Trip Extensions, Featured Accommodations, Know before You Go, Climate Information, and Traveler Reviews.

The BILL office has several Grand Circle catalogs that provide the same trip details.

How to Register

To sign up for this trip, call the number listed on the attached brochure:

  1. Call Grand Circle Travel Reservations at 800-597-2452, option #2 to speak with one of the Grand Circle Travel Counselors. Do not delay because space is limited.
  2. Mention "Service Code" G4-25541
  3. Deposit is $350 per person
  4. You will be asked if you wish to take advantage of Grand Circle's Travel Protection Plan. This plan provides trip cancellation protection and emergency medical coverage outside the country. Trip cancellation coverage allows you to cancel right up to the day of departure and retain the full value of the trip. Otherwise, the amount refundable to you diminishes as you get closer to the departure date, until within 29 days of departure, nothing will be refunded. Check your health care plan to se if you have overseas coverage. Medicare offers no coverage outside the U.S., and some supplement plans do not either. If you sign up for this plan within 14 days of registering for the trip, you will be covered for pre-existing conditions.
  5. You might wish to spend more time in either Rome or Venice by means of the pre-trip and/or post-trip extensions. Note, however, that the BILL bus will transport travelers to and from the airport only for the main trip.

Learn More

Learn more about this trip, including a first-hand account from BILL members who participated in this same trip in the summer of 2013.

We have reserved the Community Hall of the East Buffalo Township Municipal Building at 589 Fairground Road in Lewisburg on Wednesday, December 4, 2013, from 10 a.m. to noon. Directions: From the intersection of U.S. Route 15 and PA Route 45 in Lewisburg, drive west on PA 45 for 0.9 miles to the first traffic light, at Fairground Road. Turn right onto Fairground Road and travel 0.2 miles - the Municipal Building will be on the left. Because Wednesday is market day, parking might be complicated, but the municipal building has its own lot.

Click to download the full details of this exciting trip. (pdf)

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