The University Chorale of Boston College's Performance Tour of Budapest & Vienna

         Traveling to Europe with 100 people is never a simple task, especially when 88 of those people are college students, some of whom are traveling out of the country for the first time.  Never mind the sheer logistical undertaking of such a trip, but in March 2016, we were also faced with an air of global uncertainty and instability related to terrorism and the ongoing European migrant crisis.  Before we left for Budapest, Hungary and Vienna, Austria, there were minor concerns from a few parents and travelers over recent world events and the security situation in our destination countries.  These concerns, though, were completely assuaged by our liaisons at World Cultural Tours, who assured us that they would not send us on our planned trip if it was not safe, and at the very worst, they would reroute us to a new program if it was going to be too unstable in Hungary or Austria.
         During our trip, there was never once a concern over safety due to terrorism or mass migration, and honestly, never even a thought about these issues or safety at all beyond basic common-sense measures that all travelers should keep in mind.  Our tour managers and local guides were fantastic about providing these practical safety tips and giving us the information we needed to enjoy what Budapest and Vienna had to offer.  Our welcome in Hungary was warm, especially during our choral performances, where the audiences were enthusiastic and genuinely a pleasure to perform for.  Our group was dazzled by the history, architecture, and focus on musical tradition that met us in Vienna, and it is sure to be a destination that many of our singers return to in the future.
         On all fronts, our managers and guides handled any issues with ease, flexibility, and approachability, accommodating our large group and all of our needs.  For a trip that seemed daunting—tackling two Central European countries with 100 people and potential apprehension about security—World Cultural Tours accomplished the challenge effortlessly and once again provided the fantastic support that we needed for our trip to run seamlessly.  I know our group looks forward to working with World Cultural for the years to come, and hopefully taking the Chorale back to Budapest and Vienna in the near future!

Julie Orenstein
University Chorale of Boston College

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