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Coach Holiday Meals – What to Ask Before You Book a Trip

Are you planning on taking a coach holiday?

Coach holiday meals vary. Sometimes it’s just breakfast that is included, sometimes it’s all evening meals as well.

Meals can often be a source of frustration for guests. This is often because they assume what is included rather than checking.

With around 5 million people taking coach holidays each year in the UK – that’s a lot of meals to organise!

Here are my top tips to ensure you know what you need to ask in advance. Asking these questions will ensure your coach holiday meals are exactly what you were expecting leaving you to enjoy dining and making some new friends.

Links You Might Find Helpful:
Huge Selection of Escorted Tours from Tour Radar
10 Must Know Things Before Booking a Coach Holiday
Coach Holidays – Everything You Need to Know

Coach Holiday Meals – Check Exactly What’s Included

What Do You Need to Know About Coach Holiday Meals?

Each coach holiday has a different policy when it comes to meals. You should check how many meals are included, what type of meals (buffet, set menu, limited choice) are included. You should also check what drinks are included. Don’t assume!

The website or brochure that you see before you make your booking should have details of how many meals are included in your coach holiday.

Most companies give a breakdown of how many and what type of meals are included. For example, an 8-night tour of Andalucia I looked at includes 8 breakfasts and 8 evening meals. That means any meals in between these times are at your own expense.

What is included depends on the type of coach holiday, and where you are visiting.

Some coach holidays provide all-inclusive options which include all meals and drinks, some just include breakfast.

Given how much it varies from holiday to holiday it’s always best to check – meals are such a big part of the holiday experience.

I have had several guests over the years who have been disappointed that the meals on the tour they were on were different from their previous tour – they assumed that it would be the same meal arrangements because it was the same holiday company.

PT Note

Even if all your meals are included it doesn’t mean you have to eat them all. Sometimes guests like to take a night to try a local restaurant on their own, or they aren’t used to eating such large meals. I once had a guest who didn’t eat any of his included evening meals as he liked to eat before 3 pm each day.

coach holiday meals post picture

Coach Holiday Meals

Every Coach Holiday Company is Different

Each holiday company has a different approach to coach holiday meals. Some companies require a set menu with 3 choices per course for their guests, some require a buffet with a minimum number of choices and some have a set menu with no choices.

Again it varies greatly so it is always worth checking you know what the meal arrangements are rather than being disappointed.

One holiday company I worked with provided buffets for evening meals in one country, and all set menus with no choices in another country.

As above it’s best not to assume but to check and know for sure rather than being disappointed.

Here’s what to ask;

  • How many meals are included?
  • What type of meals are they?
  • Are meals a buffet, a set menu, a limited menu or a’ la carte?
  • Do you have to dine as a group or on your own?
  • For breakfast is it a full cooked breakfast or continental only?
  • Do you have to dine as a group for breakfast?
  • What drinks are included with your meals?

Coach Holiday Meals

What Drinks Are Included?

There can often be confusion about drinks on coach holidays. One of the most common issues is that guests might have taken a coach holiday to Spain or Portugal for example and had wine included with their meals. Then they take a coach holiday to another country and find that wine is not included and they are disappointed.

This varies from country to country and company to company. Wine may be included in countries where it is very cheap, but generally, it’s not included in countries where it is more expensive such as the UK.

Water is sometimes included, as is tea or coffee at the end of the meal but again this varies from country to country and also company to company.

Some coach holiday companies do offer the option to include a drinks package. This may include local drinks and not premium brands. For example, a local vodka may be included in the drinks package but not Smirnoff.

Coach Holiday Meals – Summary

  • Check in advance exactly what type of meals are included with your coach holiday.
  • Check whether there are choices for evening meals, whether it’s a fixed menu or buffet.
  • Double-check what drinks are included – if none are included then you know you need to budget extra for these.
  • Check whether water and tea or coffee are included.

Links You Might Find Helpful:
Huge Selection of Escorted Tours from Tour Radar
10 Must Know Things Before Booking a Coach Holiday
Coach Holidays – Everything You Need to Know

Itinerary Review Service

  • I’ve spent 36 years working as a coach holiday Tour Manager for Travelsphere, Titan, Saga and Newmarket Holidays
  • Let me do a review of the holiday you are interested in, giving you much more detail on what to expect alongwith things you might want to check before booking
  • Don’t risk spending all that money on a holiday that might not be right for you.
  • Want to see an example? Check out my review of a Douro River Cruise, Lake Garda Holiday, Highlands of Scotland Railway Tour, Azores Holiday
itinerary review

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10 Things to Know About Coach Holidays before you book

11 Coach Holiday Hacks – for an even better coach holiday

Find all my resources, guides, and information on my Coach Holidays page

Further Reading

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