Topdeck vs Odysseys Unlimited - Tour Companies Compared

Compare details and see what other travelers are saying.

Rating Breakdown
Overall — 5
Value — 4.6
Guide — 4.6
Activities — 4.6
Lodging — 4.6
Transportation — 4.6
Meals — 4.6
Overall — 5
Value — 5.0
Guide — 5.0
Activities — 5.0
Lodging — 5.0
Transportation — 5.0
Meals — 4.9
Recent Reviews

Fast-Paced Tour of Western Europe that highlighted most Bucket List Sights. Awesome Company. Great Food and Tour Leader

5.0 June 2019
B
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 4.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
I jumped on this tour with very little notice and planning, and I was thoroughly impressed. Our Topdeck trip leader was very knowledgeable, fun, and adjusted the trip to the group (34 people). The meals provided were delicious, and they worked hard to cater to dietary needs. Accommodations were good, typically with 2-6 people in a hostel room. Keep in mind they are hostels, not hotels (bring your own towel).

I loved the itinerary, as it highlighted the must-see places and had variety (ex. Paris, Rome vs. Switzerland). The optionals in each city were all wonderful. However, many were not presented in the Topdeck literature online and were not introduced on the trip more than a day in advance. All are paid for in cash (Euros). Because of how the optionals were presented, it was a bit harder to budget. I would recommend inquiring more about the optionals when booking and at the beginning of your tour via your trip leader. Don't feel pressured to do all of them and remember to keep your own interests in mind.

The solo travelers easily found others with similar interests to explore with. For many on this trip, drinking and going out to bars/clubs was a major component (as alcohol is often cheaper than water). Because of the shortness of this tour along with all the destinations, prepare for lots of driving and to make the most of the time you have in each city.

This trip provided am amazing sampling of Western Europe and opened my eyes to cultures and history I was unfamiliar with. Overall, I would highly recommend this itinerary and touring company, as it provided a good balance between budget and experiences.

P.S. Stay flexible with plans, but some of the popular sights need more pre-planning than expected, like the Eiffel Tower and the Anne Frank House (Amsterdam).
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Overall amazing value. Food, particularly by Topdeck staff, excellent. Spontaneous/flexible; be prepared to pay for lots of extra excursions, on and off your itinerary, in cash.

5.0 June 2019
K
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Food was excellent. Accomodations were better than expected: hostels, but usually with in-suite bathrooms and always only with other members of your tour of the same gender. Don't try to overplan; trip is quite spontaneous and flexible and you won't know much about the schedule/optionals for each city more than a day or so in advance. Optionals will be plentiful and paid in cash. Only do those that are right for you, even if your trip leader really encourages them and most other people are going. These trips are great for solo travelers, but make sure you find people interested in the same things as you...it will probably be easy to find groups to go to bars and clubs with in the evenings, but harder to find people who prefer other evening plans. Driver was excellent and bus was very comfortable and clean, but be prepared to spend a lot of time on it as there is no driving at night. Trip leader extremely knowledgeable, experienced, and helpful. Overall, excellent value and a trip with plenty of time to see the bucket list highlights in each city.
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Winter Spirit around Europe!

5.0 March 2019
A
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
I did the 24 day Winter Spirit around Europe! I would definitely recommend booking a Topdeck tour! It was the best experience ever. Doing my second Topdeck in July around New Zealand!

Tour Topdeck Company Reviews

Nice

5.0 May 2019
C
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
We did the discovering eastern Europe tour as our first tour with odysseys unlimited in September 2017 . The tour Director (Ania) was terrific ,she was organized personal ,friendly , knowledgeable and caring she really tried to do her best to keep on top of everything and to make sure each and everyone of us was attended to. Local expert guides were terrific as well. The hotels were all city center located and everything was walkable because of that. There is a nice blend of tour time and free time.
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Tour Odysseys Unlimited Company Reviews

Patagonia was one of the most beautiful places

5.0 June 2018
M
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Patagonia was one of the most beautiful places I ever visited Oddessy did a superb job of arranging everything.our tour director Alex M was knowledgeable, helpful,caring and made us all his "familia". I look forward to our upcoming trip to Norway with Oddessy.
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Tour Odysseys Unlimited Company Reviews

We all absolutely loved it

5.0 May 2018
U
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
My husband and I along with six close friends recently returned from the Portrait of Italy tour. We all absolutely loved it. The hotels were great and all different--a beautiful hotel on the Amalfi coast, city hotel in Rome, hotel in the clifftop town of Orvieto, Tuscan villa with exquisite views and finally ultramodern luxury on a Venice canal. The itinerary included just enough free time. The small group experience was a lot of fun. Individual tour guides in each city were superb. And then there was Mara, our tour director! She was the BEST! We can't say enough good things about her. I'm positive almost everyone in our group of 24 felt the same way. I would highly recommend Odysseys!
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Tour Odysseys Unlimited Company Reviews

Tours 347 Trips 50 Trips
Average Trip Price Per Day $ 147 $ 338
Operator Type Group Tour Operator Group Tour Operator
Size Global Operator Global Operator
Trip Types
  • Group Tours
  • Group Tours
Service Level Standard Standard
Regions
  • North America
  • Australia & Pacific
  • Africa
  • Middle East & North Africa
  • Europe
  • North America
  • Central America & Caribbean
  • South America
  • Australia & Pacific
  • Asia
  • Africa
  • Middle East & North Africa
  • Europe
Known For
  • 18 - 35
  • Safari
  • Trekking & Camping
  • Adventure
  • 50+
Headquarters Chiswick, London, UK Newton, Massachusetts, United States
Year Established 1973 1989
Solo Friendly Good for singles, No single supplement N/A
Tour Languages English English
Top Trips
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About Topdeck

Founded in 1973, Topdeck has been providing fun, adventurous trips around the world for 18-39 for over 40 years.

What Makes Topdeck Travel Stand Out?

Topdeck tour focuses on providing friendly and authentic guided group tours where like-minded 18-39 year old travelers can have amazing group experiences. There are several trip types to choose from, from camping, to immersive, to multi destination, to sailing.

Who Will Enjoy Traveling with Topdeck?

Sociable, adventurous, budget conscious 18-39 year olds are the kinds of traveler who will gravitate to Topdeck. Though they offer a few different distinct travel styles, there is definitely a sense of an ongoing party, with travel as the conduit and underlying shared interest.

If the idea of being around a group of similarly aged people - many of whom may be exploring internationally for the first or second time - being spontaneous, and meeting locals (often in the environment of bars or clubs) is unappealing, then Topdeck may not be your cup of tea.

Introverted travelers, or those for whom an extensively planned itinerary including many museums and historical sites is ideal, may want to hunt around before choosing a Topdeck tour.

That is not to dissuade the more observational traveler - who may very well find a group they gel with perfectly on a Topdeck tour. Only to caution that you will be surrounded by several extroverted personalities.

The bottom line is if you are game for anything, are traveling on a budget, and don’t mind fairly basic but comfortable accommodations and inexpensive meals - sometimes on the go - then you will enjoy the Topdeck tour experience.

Top Destinations

Topdeck has tours throughout the world, in Europe, Australia & New Zealand, North America, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.

Topdeck Travel Style

The Topdeck travel style is tied quite specifically to their audience. These tours are great for youthful and energetic 18-39 year olds looking for a good time and to make new friends.

In the interest of keeping their tours affordable, travelers with Topdeck will need to make a few allowances. For example, hostels and hotels may be situated quite far away from the city centers. You can also expect some long travel days. The more of a good sense of humor and adventure you have, the more you’ll enjoy the experience.

Why Choose a Tour With Topdeck

Feeling the urge to connect with travelers in your age group, have fun, and make lasting friendships? Topdeck has over 40 years of experience in adventure travel, which has helped them create epic low cost trips for 18-30 somethings.

These tours are certainly not for those who prefer to take things slow. You will be running around, moving between a lot of places - which in some cases means very long bus rides - going out a lot, meeting new people, and staying active throughout your tour.

If your ideal travel experience is more methodical and planned out in nature, Topdeck may not be for you.

But if you are an adventurous and social travelers eager to absorb a new culture and make new friends, then hop on board!

About Odysseys Unlimited

Since 1989 Odysseys International have created custom-designed tours for more than 100 of America’s most prestigious non-profit organizations, including Smithsonian Journeys, as well as many well-known college alumni associations. They now have expanded to offer their tours to the general public as well.

What Makes Odysseys Unlimited Stand Out?

Parthenon in Greece Odysseys Unlimited tour

Their tours are custom-designed specifically for small groups, with a balanced mix of sightseeing, traveling, cultural encounters, and free time. Guests enjoy a personal and authentic travel experience provided by knowledgeable guides. They focus heavily on ensuring a unique, and comfortable small group experience, with flexible itineraries.

Who Will Enjoy Traveling With Odysseys Unlimited?

Odysseys Unlimited is the type of tour for travelers seeking a well organized small group experience - tour attendance is strictly limited to be between 12 to 24 guests. If you’re interested in visiting the top sites, and maybe venturing into the realm of a funky bed and breakfast or two, and local meals vetted by your guide this company could be a good choice.

Older couple enjoying a Nile River Cruise in Egypt on Odysseys Unlimited tour

They present solid, easy itineraries, with an eye towards historic and cultural landmarks. Odysseys Unlimited might not be for you if venturing far off the beaten path is an important facet of your travel experience.

Travelers with Odysseys Unlimited are typically between the ages of 50 and 80 - and this age group is where they focus. Activities are not generally too physically demanding, accommodations are comfortable. Most tours involve a lot of walking, with slight elevation changes. Odyssey's does require that travelers be relatively physically fit and able. Wheelchair access is unfortunately not an option. 

UK Coastline Odysseys Unlimited tour

Free time is readily available for those wanting to explore a bit on their own, going shopping or visiting more local areas.

This is adventure and thrills recalibrated for an older audience. You might not be exploring too far off the beaten path, but that doesn’t mean boring and static. Odysseys is for those older travelers seeking African safaris, for example, that don’t require a 30 year old stamina to be in a jeep 8 hours a day, yet are maybe unwilling or unable to spring for a luxury safari. Odysseys fits comfortably in the middle. Don’t expect full private access everywhere you go, but you can expect a dedicated guide and a fun group of travelers to enjoy the experience with.

Under 50 and families are welcome as well (no children under 15), but the mix in your group will definitely skew older.

Top Destinations

Great wall of china walk tour odysseys unlimited

Odysseys Unlimited tours travel around the world, making seemingly exotic far reaching locations accessible and reachable, both from a cultural standpoint as well as a logistical standpoint. Think small ship cruises in Patagonia, premium history tours in Egypt, and first class hotels in China.

Because their tour directors are often from the destinations, Odysseys can claim destination expertise across the board. The focus is on quality tours rather than quantity, so they can continue to provide travelers with this expertise from their specialized guides.

Tours with Odysseys Unlimited travel to Europe, Asia, South America, Australia & New Zealand, North America, Africa and the Middle East. The largest number of tours are offered in Asia and Europe.

Odysseys Unlimited Travel Style

Amsterdam tour Odysseys Unlimited

The Odysseys Unlimited travel style is one of comfort and ease, but budget friendly. The sheets might not be silk, but you’ll have a comfortable bed and welcoming hosts.

Tours are fully escorted so if you feel like you want to venture beyond your comfort zone - perhaps a language barrier always got in the way, or safety concerns - Odysseys Unlimited is a great way to visit without having to worry. Your tour size will never exceed 24 people, allowing for many friendships to blossom among like minded travelers.

Their tours are around 10-20 days long; an ideal amount of time for getting to know your tour companions, visit tourist spots as well as enjoy more local and cultural activities.

Tanzania safari Odysseys Unlimited

Transportation is in large motorcoaches throughout the destination. During the trip you may experience other modes of transportation, such as ferries, trains, small planes, even motorbikes.

Your tour directors are professional and knowledgeable in the destination, able to provide interesting local and cultural context beyond the tourist sites.   

Why Choose a Tour With Odysseys Unlimited?

Whale breach sighting Odysseys Unlimited cruise tour

If you don’t think small group travel is for you, or you’re unsure about a certain destination whether for safety reasons, language barriers, or other factors - traveling with Odysseys Unlimited is a good place to start.

Their tours are specifically designed to be flexible - a good amount of free time is allotted for the more “independent minded,” yet if you’re more comfortable hanging out with the guide, that’s fine too. Traveling to the next destination is not just a bus ride; you’ll have plenty of opportunities to stop and explore local villages and historical sights.

And if that wasn’t enough, a special perk when traveling with Odysseys Unlimited is the inclusion of international airfare in the trip price!

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