Yes, reservations are necessary but no advanced payment is required.
We would advise that you call in or email your tour request at least 72 hours in advance of your requested date. We do consider "last minute" requests but we cannot guarantee choice nor availability of tours with fewer than 72 hours notice.
We heartily encourage disabled visitors to join us. We are perfectly comfortable accommodating the disabled and we are sincere in our solicitation of those with physical impairments. Let us discuss with you those tours that we know present fewer accessibility obstacles. If necessary, we will devise combinations of accessible tours and customize an itinerary that satisfies your interests…no extra cost.
There are no tours on national holidays, nor certain religious holidays. The reason is practical. Many key establishments are not open thereby limiting the opportunities our tours ordinarily offer. There are tours on Sundays.
Yes, the minimum number is two. The minimum cost for a group of just two visitors is $40 per person.
No...there is no limit to the number of members you may include in your group. It is completely your choice. However, keep in mind that it is always our intention to maintain our trademark personal approach. When a group's size affects the quality or the safety of a specific tour, we may suggest an additional guide at a reasonably adjusted cost.
Yes, we are always open to customizing large group tours and will scale down per person costs outside of our regular pricing schedule in order to meet your group's budget constraints. We are highly recommended for educational field trips. Most of our guides are former high school and college teachers. We know how to engage students at all levels. We also very frequently serve corporate groups, alumni associations, family and school reunions, wedding parties and fundraising gatherings.
Yes, we can provide step-on or ride-along guides. While we are recognized for our "walking narratives", we have a good deal of experience providing the same engaging narrative approach while accompanying you on the vehicle of your choice (bus, Limo, etc...). We do not contract for vehicle usage.
If your children are inquisitive and want to go, we encourage you to include them. We are convinced that our tours are substantial educational experiences. They are walks through history, architecture, biography, geography and legend. At the least, they have the equivalent educational value of a school field trip. Children under fourteen are included at half price.
All of our tours are priced for budget minded visitors. We do not increase fees based upon the number of members in the group. Depending upon the tour and the expected duration of the tour, our tours range in price from $25 per person to $35 per person. However, the minimum fee for a group with just two members begins at $40 per person. Children under sixteen are included at half price. Payment is made in cash directly to the tour guide at the end of the day. We cannot accept credit cards or travelers checks.
We do not accept personal checks. However, we do accept checks for corporate, institutional, organizational, or large group tours.
The choice of tour time is the choice of the visitors. However, tours cannot begin before 8:30am, nor after 4pm. Daylight, traffic rush hours and opening times for venues along the tour route are all limiting factors. But once again, tour times are the choice of the visitors from those times available in the daily schedule. Walk Chicago Tours recommends morning start times.
If you are staying in a downtown Loop area hotel, we will come to get you. There will be no need to worry about finding us. If you are staying outside of the Loop area, you will meet your guide at the Chicago Cultural Center at the corner of Michigan and Randolph. USE THE RANDOLPH STREET ENTRANCE ONLY. Your guide will be waiting for you in the Randolph Street lobby. Your guide will approach you upon entry.
We will proceed unless you express that the weather conditions are not acceptable. However, if the weather services issue "hazardous warnings", we reserve the right to suggest cancellation. Should you decide to cancel due to unacceptable weather conditions, call the WALK CHICAGO TOURS HOTLINE at 1-708-557-5400 at least three hours before tour time. There is no cancellation fee for adverse weather situations. However, if weather causes cancellation after the tour is underway, full payment will be requested.
Again, please try to give us at least three hours notice. Situations do occur, but they should be reconciled with the least amount of inconvenience to all involved. Call the WALK CHICAGO TOURS HOTLINE at 1-708-557-5400. A guide on call will answer between the hours of 9 am and 10 pm CST. During other time periods, a voice mail prompt will be available.
On the average, our walks cover about a mile to one and a half miles. (Two kilometers on the metric scale) The pace is very casual and non-athletic. We stop as often as you might care to do so. Restrooms are always within reach. Refreshment stops need only be requested.
On walks that last three or four hours, requests to stop for lunch are considered reasonable and are always honored. Lunch at various cafes, delis and bistros can actually enhance the tour experience. However, keep in mind that the guide may have to adjust the tour in order to accomodate the time spent at lunch, especially on tours returning on public transportation.
The choice of point of return is completely up to you. However, if you have a secondary destination for the day, we can instruct you as to how to get there. Under any circumstances, our guides will have the intention of traveling back to the Loop. But even then they may be able to accompany you for at least part of the way toward your chosen alternative destination.
Tipping is allowed but never expected.
Gratuities are earned.