Tasting fees at the wineries are not included.
The reason we do it this way is to keep the up-front cost of the tour down for you. I don’t want to charge you for tasting fees up front because often times, they get waived anyways. Some wineries waive or discount tasting fees for Backcountry Tours, and almost all wineries waive tasting fees if you simply make a wine purchase. If you would prefer to just have tasting fees included so that you don’t have to think about it, I can offer that option to you for $50/head. Although Backcountry Wine Tours is well-known and well-respected across the Valley, you can trust that we do not have any “back-door arrangements” with particular wineries. We do not receive kickbacks, or a percentage of sales. We do not pressure you to make purchases, and we choose wineries based solely on what we think you will LOVE – not what is going to make us money. We are here to be your friend and advocate – not a to give you the “hard sell.”
We have implemented a flat 18% structure to cover gratuity which is added to your tour fee at the time of booking. I was hesitant to do it this way at first because I feel a tip should be earned – however, the convenience for both us and yourself takes precedence. We have learned that many people like to just have all considerations taken care of prior to the tour so that you do not need to think about it again. Please know that we do not take your gratitude for granted and even though a standard tip is applied, we will still strive to offer you the utmost in customer service. In fact, if after your tour you feel you did not receive a level of service on par with our 18% gratuity, please follow up with us and we will be happy to refund whatever portion you feel is fair.