We promise to do all within our power to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have.
Should any problems arise during your trip you should first contact the emergency number located in your Final Instruction Booklet. Your customized Final Instruction booklet will be provided in your final document package approximately 3 weeks prior to departure.
We pray that your pilgrimage will meet and exceed all of your expectations.
Please share with us your positive and constructive feedback upon your return!
How to Prepare for Your Pilgrimage:
206 Tours would like your Spiritual Journey to be as pleasant and helpful as possible. It is important to note that 206 Tours pilgrimages are packed full of spiritual activities and sightseeing. We do not include much free time for recreation, such as shopping. This is because our desire is to offer you the most comprehensive pilgrimage possible. However, all tours/activities are optional, and if you feel you are unable to keep up with the pace of the tour, manage the terrain, or would like free time for your own interests, you are welcome to refrain from participating in any aspects of the program you desire (of course, no refund can be issued for any aspects of the tour which you choose not to participate in). Simple advise the tour escort the night before of your alternate plans not to join the next day in the group activities.
Thank you for your desire and readiness to visit these places of grace and prayer. May the Almighty God, through the intercession of our Heavenly Mother, reward you for all the efforts you undertake to come!
The amount of walking is significant, and the terrain varies greatly throughout our tours. You will encounter hills, mountains, unpaved streets, cobblestone streets, etc. Please prayerfully consider whether or not you are up to such physical activities prior to registering. For this reason, we would like to offer you some recommendations, and we ask you sincerely to read them carefully.
A couple of weeks before your pilgrimage, one should begin preparing physically as well as spiritually.
1 - If not accustomed to physical activity begin walking "briskly" 1-2 times a day; build up to 2-3 miles with no discomfort.
2 - If possible attend daily Mass or attempt to spend quiet time in church during lunch or after work.
3 - Pray for Jesus and His Blessed Mother to open your heart and mind to be responsive to new perspectives, ideas, their words laid on your heart, etc.
4 - Begin praying the rosary daily (Learn How to Pray the Rosary) or at least the Apostle's Creed, 7 Our Father's, 7 Hail Mary's & 7 Glory Be’s as Our Lady has requested; this takes about 5-7 minutes.
General Info About Your Documents, Flights, Arrival & Travel:
About Your Flights & Foreign Travel
Please visit www.tsa.gov for the most up to date travel restrictions
Electronic Airline Ticket: Your ticket is an electronic ticket (“e-ticket”). When checking in at the airport provide your passport and your e-ticket confirmation to provide to the check-in agent or Kiosk.
Passports and Visas: All U.S. citizens must travel with a valid passport to enter Europe. Your passport MUST be valid at least 3 months upon your scheduled return date to the USA. If you have not yet obtained your passport, or just noticed that it will not be valid 3 months after your return, URGENTLY contact your local passport office and apply for an expedited passport/-or passport renewal.
A visa is not required for U.S. citizens for entry into Europe.
For those who hold a passport from a foreign country, please be advised that it is the passengers responsibility to reconfirm if any visas are required. Below please find embassy information on the country you will be visiting.
French Embassy in USA:
French Embassy, 4101 Reservoir Rd. NW, Washington, DC 20007 (tel. 202/944-6195; www.consulfrance-washington.org, or from the visa section of the French Consulate at 934 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10021 (tel. 212/606-3600; www.consulfrance-newyork.org. International Flights: Your airline reservations are booked according to the airlines rules, regulations and routings . We did our utmost to provide you with the most convenient flight schedule available to us at the time you made your reservation. All participants will be traveling independently on all flights and meet at the airport of arrival.
Code-Share Flights: Many airlines are in special agreements, to share aircrafts in order to ensure the best routings for their passengers. While your ticket may indicate that you are flying with one carrier (i.e. United), you may find that you are actually seated in a plane belonging to another carrier (i.e. Lufthansa). Carefully review your airline itinerary to determine which airline is operating your departure flight to ensure check in for your flight at the correct carrier. When your flight is operated by another carrier your itinerary will state "Flight Operated by (name Airline).
Airport Check-In Please use the following recommendation for check in prior to your scheduled departure time. Check in at least:
2 hours prior to Domestic flight
3 hours prior to International flight
You must personally check in your own luggage at the airline counter. Advise the check in agent of your final destination to ensure that your luggage will be checked all the way through. This will eliminate you having to claim your luggage and have to recheck in once again during a possible flight connection (s).
Airline Connections: The Airlines determine the minimum connection time required to transfer from one gate to another. We are subject to the availability of the airlines carrier we work with, and must ensure that all participants have reservations to arrive / departure similar times for the group transfers to/from the airport.
Flight Delays & Arrival Transfers: If you missed your flight, forgot your passport or if you are re-routed you most likely will miss your group transfer from the airport to your hotel. How to proceed in such circumstances?
• You may take a taxi at your own expense to your hotel.
• You may contact the emergency number in this booklet to advise of the flight delay and 206 Tours may arrange a private transfer at and additional cost to you.
Make sure to obtain a receipt for the taxi or the private transfer provided. Upon return to the U.S.A. you may submit a claim with the insurance company or airlines to seek reimbursement.
Health Precautions: No inoculations are necessary when traveling to Europe from the U.S.A. You may consult with your health care provider before traveling. For the latest overseas travel health information contact:The Center for Disease Control call 1-877-394-8747 or visit www.cdc.gov. For medical information contact: The U.S. Public Health service 1-301-443-2403.
When you get off the plane you will go through customs and proceed to the baggage claim area to pick up your luggage. Exit the baggage claim area into the arrival hall, where you will be greeted by a 206 Tours representative displaying a sign which reads “206 Tours.” You will be transferred to your hotel where you will check-in and have time to refresh before meeting the rest of your group later in the day. Remember to look for the “206 Tours“ sign!
If your luggage is missing proceed to your airline carrier’s baggage office in the airport terminal to complete a missing luggage form, which will include a description of your luggage. Please make sure to save all paper work and tracking information given to you by the Airlines. Upon locating your baggage, the airlines will bring your luggage to your hotel. It is important that you provide them with the correct address and dates that you will be at your hotels. You may also provide the emergency number listed in this booklet.
If your baggage is delayed for over 24 hours you may submit a claim to the insurance company upon your return to the US (only applicable for passengers that purchased TravelEx insurance through 206 Tours).
How to Overcome Jet Lag:
Travel through a time zone may take its toll on your physical and mental well-being. "Jet Lag" is the phrase used to describe the condition when an individual's internal body clock is out of sync with the actual time in the region to which you have traveled. It is important to try to adjust your internal body clock to receive the most out of your tour. Here are some tips on how to adjust your body to local time.
On the day of the departure/arrival:
• Get out of bed earlier than usual on the day of departure
• Drink a lot of water to compensate for the dehydration on long flights
• Shortly after your evening meal on your flight, set your watch to the local time
• Try to rest and/or sleep as soon as possible on your flight
• Try to go to bed around 10:00 PM the night of arrival
Bringing Liquids in your Carry-on Bags
For additional information or clarification please visit: www.faa.gov
3-1-1 Liquids Rule for your Carry-on Bag
You are allowed to bring a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes in your carry-on bag and through the checkpoint. These are limited to travel-sized containers that are 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters) or less per item. Placing these items in the small bag and separating from your carry-on baggage facilitates the screening process. Pack items that are in containers larger than 3.4 ounces or 100 milliliters in checked baggage.
Any liquid, aerosol, gel, cream or paste that alarms during screening will require additional screening.
• Infant and child nourishments
Inbound International Flights:
You may carry duty free liquids in secure, tamper–evident bags, more than 3.4 oz or 100 ml in your carry-on bag if:
• The duty free liquids were purchased internationally and you are traveling to the United States with a connecting flight.
• The liquids are packed in a transparent, secure, tamper-evident bag by the retailer and do not show signs of tampering when presented to TSA for screening.
• The original receipt for the liquids is present and the purchase was made within 48 hours.
*Liquids more than 3.4 oz or 100 ml not in a secure, tamper-evident bag must be packed in checked baggage.
Airline Regulations for Baggage:
For additional information or clarification please visit: www.faa.gov Item Personal Items Carry-on Checked
All Make-up - You are allowed to carry any liquid/gel/cream make-up item provided that the container is up to 3 oz., as per the 3-1-1 rule.
Currency & Money
Currency: The Euro is the currency of France. For most current exchange rates please visit www.xe.com.
Keep in mind that this is the "pure" exchange rate. (bank exchange fees not included)
Please note: we strongly urge you to check the up-to-date exchange rates prior to departure and prior to currency exchange.
Money: Make sure to bring along a credit card for convenience and security.
Visa or MasterCard are the best options. American Express is not accepted in many stores. Please be aware that Discover Card is not accepted in almost all European countries. If you would like to carry cash, we recommend that you exchange USD at your local bank prior to departure in order to obtain the best exchange rate. It is also practical and cost effective to withdraw local currency using your ATM/Debit card during your trip. Be advised that exchanging money at airports, your hotel or local change booths will result in fees that are extremely high.
**It is recommended to contact your local bank/credit card companies prior to your departure to inform them of your travels abroad to avoid your company blocking your account due to an international transaction **
Frequently asked question: “How much money should I bring with me?" Answer: The amount differs per person. We recommend that the minimum spending money to bring with you/budget for, in addition to the suggested tips, is the equivalent of $30.00 per person per day. Keep in mind:
• No lunches are included, the type of lunch you prefer may make a big difference (restaurant vs. cafe).
• Souvenirs: Are you planning on purchasing mementos for yourself or loved ones?
• Remember, you can always spend less, or bring money home!
Credit Cards & ATM Machines: ATM machines can be found just about everywhere in Europe and are accessible 24 hrs a day; most offer English as a language option. Be sure to find out your daily withdrawal limit before you depart.
Keep in mind: Many banks impose a fee when a card is used at a different bank's ATM , this fee may be higher for international transactions (up to $5 or more). For international withdrawal fees please check with your bank prior to departure.
Additionally , the bank from which you withdraw cash may charge its own fee.
U.S. Customs: U.S. citizens who have been in Europe for more than two days may return to the US with up to $800 worth of merchandise duty-free. For those who wish to bring more home, a flat rate of 3% duty is levied on the next $1,000 worth of purchases. It's a good idea to retain the receipts from your purchases should they be requested by a Customs Inspector upon your return to the US. For details visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website: http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel
Value Added Tax (VAT) Refund
Value Added Tax (VAT) Refund: Value Added Tax (VAT) is a form of indirect tax applied to the value added at each stage of production (primary, manufacturing, wholesale and retail). This tax is much like the sales tax in the US. Tourists who purchase goods worth 400 Euro or more are entitled to a discount of at least 5% on the purchase price plus a VAT refund. There is 22% value added tax on most goods and services. At retail stores, this tax is already included in the price. Upon making a purchase of 175 Euro or more at a gift store that has an agreement with VAT authorities, you should fill out a form at the store and have it stamped there. You will be eligible, upon presenting the form and the item, for a 20% refund at the airport prior to departure. Do not pack these gift items in your luggage, but should be kept in your hand luggage. Tourist services, such as hotel accommodations and meals taken in hotels, paid with foreign currency are exempt from VAT tax.
VAT refunds, if applicable, may sometimes take up to three (3) months to process. If you pay with local currency, there will be no VAT refund. In order to acquire a VAT refund, the following procedure must be followed:
• Look for the “tax refund” sticker on the business door or publication
• Ask for a VAT refund invoice from the sales clerk.
• At the airport VAT desk, show the original receipt, the VAT tax form, and the goods you have purchased.
• At the end of the procedure, you will receive a check drawn in your favor which may be cashed that same day
• On each purchase exceeding $200 (including VAT), the VAT will be refunded upon presentation of the invoice at the port of departure
Tips are an important part of earnings for your guides and bus drivers. Although you should tip according to your discretion and satisfaction, we recommend that you bring 76.50 EURO per person and place in tip envelopes (included in your final documents package) as follows:
• Tour escort
EUR 8 per person per day
• Bus driver
EUR 4 per person per day
• Spiritual Director/ Your Priest: Gift or donation to the Spiritual Director is at your own discretion.
• It is suggested to provide the tour escort and the bus driver their tip money the day prior to your return.
• Restaurants, hotel staff, luggage handler and bell boy tips are included in your package price. No additional tips should be given.
Luggage & What to Pack
Your pilgrimage includes one (1) piece of checked luggage, and one (1) carry-on. International air carriers are becoming stricter about the size and weight of baggage and carry-on luggage. please limit the size of your hand luggage to 17x14x8 in. (43x36x20 cm) for easy storage on the motor coach. Porterage for one suitcase on tour is included in the tour price. The checked piece of luggage should have dimensions not exceeding 62 inches in overall (62inches: length+width+height) and weight not exceeding 50 lbs (23 kg).
Carry all documents and money on your person but not all in the same place to limit the inconvenience in case of loss; do not keep money, important documents, medicines or jewelry in your suitcase; We recommend a money belt worn inside your clothes, while touring. On departure from your hotel, remember to double check that you have your money belt with you, and that you have collected any items left in the hotel safe. Please, at all times, be as vigilant as you would be in any major city, especially in crowded places. Never leave your hand luggage unattended or out of sight in public areas, including airports, hotel lobbies or dining rooms.
Be sure to keep ALL medications in your carry-on bag during your trip in case your suit case should be lost. Keep a separate list of important numbers, i.e. passport, traveler’s checks, and credit cards, in your luggage, together with photocopies of relevant pages of your passport/visas. Keep a separate copy i.e. passport, flight schedule, credit cards, in your luggage, The same common-sense rules of safety and security apply here as to anywhere else. Avoid excessive displays of jewelry or cash (only carry sufficient for daily needs). Room Safes may be used at your own discretion. Make certain that any valuables are insured against theft. Avoid exploration on your own of unfamiliar streets or areas Be cautious if people approach you begging.
The more secure your personal items are, the better! TSA suggests you lock your luggage before you embark, and when you are flying home. In order to ensure the safe transportation of travelers, TSA screens all checked, and carry-on, baggage before it is permitted to be brought onboard. You can purchase locks for your bags, however, if they are “screened”, you run the risk of them being cut open and no longer usable. However, there are TSA Recognized Locks – which allow TSA officials to use tools for opening and re-locking your baggage. Below are recommended brands:
Size allowances for Checked Bags:
Length + Width + Height = 158cm./62in.
Economy Class: 1 piece at 23kg. / 50lbs.
Business Class: 2 pieces at 32kg. / 70lbs. each
Size allowances for Carry-on Bags:
Length + Width + Height: 106cm./42in.
Weight: 1 piece at 8 kg./17 lbs.
Additionally you are permitted one personal item to carry onto the plane such as; a purse, laptop, briefcase, etc.
Clothing: The attire during the course of your journey is conservative and comfortable. Ensure to cover your shoulders, chest and your legs at least two inches below your knee’s for entrance at religious sites (which will be visited daily.) and to respect local customs. It is not necessary for women to cover your head or face. There is no need for formal attire for men or woman at any time during the course of the tour. Comfort and adaptability are the most important factors in determining what to pack. Be sure to pack at least one change of clothes, socks and undergarments in your carry-on luggage in case your baggage is delayed or lost!
During your flight you will want to wear loose-fitting clothes and pack a pair of slippers or socks to wear for the flight. Make sure your shoes are lace-up or flexible, as your feet may swell due to the flight.
Footwear: Be sure to have at least one or two good pairs of walking shoes, such as sneakers or hiking boots. If new, make sure you walk in them for a couple of weeks to break them in. It is not practical to wear any footwear with high or narrow heels, as the roads may not be paved or are uneven due to cobblestone.
Outerwear: It is recommended that you bring a light weight jacket for the mornings and evenings in case the temperatures are unseasonably cold.
Recommended Clothing to pack:
Men: Jeans, casual slacks, short / long sleeve shirts, a sweater for layering, socks, under garments, lightweight jacket, and a hat to block the sun.
Women: Jeans, casual slacks, long skirt (if preferred), short / long sleeve shirts, a sweater or cardigan for layering, socks, undergarments, lightweight jacket, and a hat to block the sun.
Other Suggested Items to Bring:
□ Travel Bible and Journal
□ Portable alarm clock
□ Dramamine (for motion sickness)
□ Aspirin/Advil, etc.
□ Laxative and Imodium
□ Pepto Bismol (tablets)
□ Allergy/cold medicine; tablets
□ Deodorant (travel size)
□ Soap bar (travel size) and washcloth
□ Shampoo and Conditioner (travel size)
□ Toothbrush & Toothpaste (travel size)
□ Chap Stick
□ Lotion/Moisturizing cream (travel size)
□ Feminine Items
□ Handi-wipes: for freshening up during the day
□ Travel pack size Kleenex
□ Digital Camera, Charger, Extra Battery & carrying case
□ Adapter and converter if you are bringing any electronic devices
□ Grocery size plastic bags: 1-2 for dirty clothes
□ Travel size poncho (in camping section of Wal-Mart)
□ Inflatable head & neck rest, eye mask, foam earplugs (for flight)
□ Nail file and/or nail clippers
□ Pen (bring with you on the plane to complete customs forms)
Hotels Accommodations: Hotel rooms may be smaller than you are used to based on American standards. All rooms are comfortably appointed with a private bathroom. Mini-bar items and access to paid TV channels are at your own expense. King size beds are rare in Europe, therefore couples should anticipate queen size beds in most hotels. Travelers sharing a room will have two twin beds in their hotel rooms. Many hotels use key cards to operate the room’s lighting system and/or the elevator. All hotels offer a hair dryer in the bathroom. Most hotels provide toiletries (shampoo, soap, lotion), if needed bring a supply of conditioner with you. It is not customary for hotels to provide wash cloths.
Electricity: The voltage used is 220 volts at 50 cycles, twice the voltage of American power systems. Generally you’ll need only an adapter plug; in some cases, a voltage converter /or transformer, too.
Plug Adapter is an interface that attaches between the American two-pronged plug and a specific European socket. The result is that the American appliance will be connected to European 220v 50 cycle electrical power.
Power Converter (or transformer) -converts the European 220v to 110 volts so that American appliances will operate on European Current.
Adapters we recommend:
Weights & Measures: The metric system is used exclusively throughout Europe. A kilometer is a bit over 1/2 mile (.62 miles). A kilogram equals 2.2 pounds.
Telephone Information: Hotel telephones are available and offer convenience, however they tend to cost substantially more than using your cell phone provided that you have a plan.
Cellular Phone: When you bring your cellular phone, make sure to contact your wireless phone provider and inform them that you will be traveling overseas. Most providers offer an "international plan" that you may sign up for. This will allow you to make calls to the United States” while you are out of the country using your wireless phone. Please check with your provider for exact rates in the countries where you'll be traveling. Be extra cautious using your data while abroad. If your cell phone has a data plan, be sure to turn data roaming "OFF" tin the plane o avoid potentially high fees. The rates for data are far more expensive than for roaming voice calls and text messages.
Calling from Europe to the USA: To make a direct international call, first dial “00” and then dial the country code (1 for the US and Canada, just like at home), then the local area code and telephone number.
Calling from the USA to Europe: If your family wishes to call you during the pilgrimage from within the US, you must first dial 011, then then the country code
(Portugal : 351, Spain : 34, France : 33) which is then followed by the local area code and telephone number.
Laptops/Net books: Please be advised that most hotels do offer WIFI service, however they may charge a small fee.
Public Toilets: Known as WC are available at most tourist locations. Be prepared with tissues in your pocket at all times. Be aware that some public toilets have and attendant, who may ask for a small “user fee.”
Terrain: Many streets in Europe are narrow, and due to strict traffic regulations the buses are not always permitted to drop groups off directly in front for their destination. Many areas are pedestrian only and have cobblestones. Please be prepared to walk ! High-heeled shoes are not suitable for cobblestone streets, instead rubber-soled walking shoes are recommended. Europe is based on a myriad of old buildings. There are split-levels and uneven surfaces everywhere; please watch your step! Due to the structure of old buildings, access to some establishments may not be convenient for wheelchair use and facilities for the disabled in general may be limited.
Clients with wheelchair (rental):
Mont Saint Michel: the access to the Abbey of Mont Saint Michel is by stairs. There is no elevator. The pilgrims can get to Mont Saint Michel; the island, however, if the pilgrims cannot walk, he /she cannot visit the Abbey due to the stairs.
Sacre Coeur: To get to the Basilica, no problem, however, if there is a Mass in the crypt, there would be an issue, as the only way to get to the crypt is by steps, there is no elevator.
Photography: If using a digital camera, we recommend you bring an extra memory card (just in case). Be sure to also bring extra batteries for your camera.
Taxis: Be wary of any person approaching you offering unofficial taxi services. If you do not have an airport transfer included and you need transportation, make your way to the official taxi desk or to the regular taxi line outside the terminal. Chose a vehicle with a meter or taxi sign. If there is no meter, we recommend you pre-negotiate and agree on the fare, before you get into the cab.
Local Customs / Social Conventions: A different way of life in some countries may take you by surprise, but if you travel with an open mind and respect local customs, you should find it easy to adapt to and enjoy your new surroundings. Standards of living may not be quite what you are used to, but there are compensations – a closer sense of reality and an authentic feeling of locale. Due to cultural differences you may not be greeted quite as cheerfully as back home; smiling is generally reserved for intimate friends. Be especially wary of people presenting themselves as “instant friends” and never accept food or drink from strangers. Meals: Breakfast will be served in our hotel’s main dining room throughout your journey, and will be buffet style. Unlike in the US, it is frowned upon to take food out of the breakfast room. Dinners will be at a local restaurant or your hotel. Please plan to enjoy your dinners around 7:00-8:00 pm each day. Most dinners will be served "sit down" with a pre-determined 3-4 course meal. Your meals include mineral water and wine. While some restaurants may be able to provide for a special diet, such as vegetarian or sodium-free, 206 Tours cannot guarantee a special meal request. Generally vegetarian and vegan meals tend to lack variety and imagination.
Tap Water: While most local tap water will not hurt you, due to differences in mineral and micro-biotic levels, we recommend that you avoid consuming local tap water, as it may upset your stomach.
Shopping: Stores are open daily Monday to Saturday.
Some observe a "siesta" from 1pm to 4pm, re-opening until 7pm.
Some malls close later in the day and are open Saturdays after sundown.
Ask your tour escort where you are able to purchase regional specialty products which the countries/cities in your itinerary are known for. Small, light items that you can easily carry home make splendid and festive gifts. Don’t forget to buy something nice for yourself too. Whenever traveling abroad, be aware of your personal belongings when shopping in crowded areas. If you purchase a video or DVD, please check very carefully that it is compatible with your home viewing system. Sales tax or VAT (value added tax) is already included on price tags.
Business Hours: Throughout the year, apart from Festivals, businesses are open at the following hours:
Offices: Mondays to Fridays: 08:30am - 1:00pm and 3:00pm - 6:00pm
Banks: Mondays to Fridays: 08:30am - 1:30pm and 2:45pm - 4:15pm
Stores: Mondays to Saturday: 09:00am - 6:30pm
Airline delays: www.fly.faa.gov/flyfaa/plaintext.html
Airline seating: www.seatguru.com
Airline tracker: www.flightarrivals.com
Bus and subway directions: www.hopstop.com
Calendar and holidays: www.thetimenow.com/calendars
Calling codes: www.countrycallingcodes.com
Currency converter: www.xe.com
Customs (USA): www.cbp.gov/
Department of Homeland security: www.dhs.gov
Driving directions: www.maporama.com ; www.maps.google.com
Electric Guide: www.kropla.com
Emergency/Disaster information: www.redcross.org
FAA Air traffic Control: www.faa.gov
Flight delay info: www.fly.faa.gov/flyfaa/usmap.jsp
Flight tracker: www.flightview.com
Foreign Language Basics: www.fodors.com/language/
Frequent flyer programs: www.webflyer.com
Global Entry : https://goes-app.cbp.dhs.gov/main/goes
Health (travel health info) : www.cdc.gov ; www.who.int ; www.tripprep.com
Internet access/hotspots: www.wi-fihotspotlist.com ; www.wififreespot.com
Language translation: www.translate.google.com
Last minute travel preparation: www.dontforgetyourtoothbrush.com
Official Franciscan Website: www.custodia.org
Passports and visas: www.projectvisa.com
Physical disabilities travel: www.access-able.com
Time around the world: www.time.gov
Tourist offices and embassies: www.towd.com
Transportation Security Admin.: www.tsa.gov
Travel planning: www.worldtravelguide.net
Travel planning (religious sites): www.sacred-destinations.com
US State Dept. Travel Warnings: www.travel.state.gov
Weather around the world: www.weather.com
World Health Organization: www.who.int/eha/disasters
SCREENING & SECURITY VISITING LOURDES:
Lourdes is a place of prayer, and peace, that welcomes pilgrims and visitors from all over the world. Security is a priority in accommodating everyone, as well as the Shrine itself, especially with the number of visitors continuing to increase each year. For that reason, the Sanctuary has decided to implement the following measures, to reaffirm their current rules of operation.
Sanctuary Hours: (no longer 24 Hours)
Gates will close at 12:30P
Saint Michael’s Gate: 6:00A – 12:30P
Saint Joseph’s Gate: 5:00A – 12:30P
Below please find a brief “walk through” of what your check-in experience at Tel Aviv Airport is like, so you are informed and prepared. You may notice, throughout your time at the Sanctuary, uniformed and un-uniformed security personnel. Once you arrive at the Sanctuary, there will be a screening process for all. We will arrange for you to arrive at the entrance well in advance.
- Carry Bags are prohibited. Glass bottles, Knives, Scissors, sharp objects etc are strictly prohibited. Pilgrims carrying the following will be denied entry – so please leave them in your rooms.
- Plastic Bottles and Containers will be checked.
- Wheelchairs / Blue Carriages: Special access and attention will be granted upon arrival.
“See Something – Say Something”. Let us work together for the safety of our fellow pilgrims, and to ensure the continuation of Our Lady’s blessings, healings, and prayers to all!
“What If” & Commonly Asked Questions
What should I do if my flight is cancelled or delayed?
If your flight is cancelled or delayed it is imperative that you work DIRECTLY with the airlines at the airport to arrange for alternate flights or protection. Please note that once your tickets has been issued or you have check-in for your flights, 206 Tours can no longer make any changes to your flight itinerary. This can ONLY be done by the airlines. In such case be persistent with the agent, however keep in mind that the situation is not the airline agents fault. Try your best to remain courteous to them, as you may find that you receive more assistance this way. The airlines are not required to offer reimbursement for personal expense or overnights when delays/cancellations occur due to weather. If you find that you have no luck with the airline personnel, please contact your emergency number and we shall do all in our power to assist you.
What should I do if I miss my flight due to late arrival at the airport?
If you should miss your flight, due to your own late arrival at your departure airport, it is imperative that you work DIRECTLY with the airlines at the airport to arrange for alternate flights. You may incur additional costs to exchange your airline ticket (minimum of $300 per person) . Once your alternate arrangements have been confirmed you may You may contact the emergency number in this booklet to advise of the flight delay and 206 Tours may arrange a private transfer at additional cost to you .
What happens if I miss my group transfer upon arrival?
If your plane arrives late, or you are re-routed you will most likely miss your group transfer which is included in your package. You may take a taxi at your own expense to your hotel or you may contact the emergency number in this booklet to advise of the flight delay and 206 Tours may arrange a private transfer at additional cost to you. Make sure to obtain a receipt for the taxi or the private transfer provided. Upon return to the U.S.A. you may submit a claim with the insurance company or airlines to seek reimbursement.
What if I have a problem or complaint during my trip?
If you have any problems, concerns, or complaints during your trip, please communicate directly and IMMEDIATELY with your tour escort. Your tour escort is at your disposal to assist you with all your needs, such as issues with your hotel room, meals, etc. There is very little that can be done to rectify a concern once you have returned home, however most of the time your tour escort can address any concerns you may have swiftly. If the tour escort does not resolve your concern to your satisfaction please contact our office.
What should I do if I want to change my airline ticket?
If you would like to change your airline ticket for any reason once the ticket has been issued and/or you have departed you MUST work DIRECTLY with the airlines. You will incur additional costs (minimum of $300 per person) for such changes.
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