Do most charters begin taking reservations prior to the lottery? If so, how quickly will they fill up? I have strong interest in going, but the others in my group are thinking they won’t commitment until April/May timeframe. I am afraid that might make it difficult lining up services – east west transportation, baggage, and maybe some other extras.
Also curious as to a reasonable amount to budget for a charter. Not request any exact pricing of what you paid in the past….just ball park (e.g at least $250).
Larry, There are many good charters on RAGBRAI but I think Pork Belly Ventures (PBV) is the best!!! I’ve traveled with them for years! They offer a lot of extras that you may not be able to get anywhere else. RAGBRAI will announce the Route for 2013 on January 26, 2013. As soon as the route is announced, PBV will send out their invitation letter. To be added to the list for that invitation, contact Pete: firstname.lastname@example.org or Tammy: email@example.com . You can check out PBV at http://www.pkbelly.com/about_us.php. I’ll meet you under PBV’s big circus tent!!!!
Take a look at what Brancel has to offer. Less money than PBV consequently fewer services with a sterling reputation among those they have served in the past. I have no idea how soon any of the charters have filled in the past but I would not wait until April to make a decision. http://www.brancelcharters.com/select.htm
The charter contacts have to submit their guest lists to Ragbrai either Feb. 15th or Mar. 15th, I believe, so you don’t want to wait that long. Read the info tabs “About Ragbrai, “General Information,” and Charter Services” to get a good gist of things. Remind your friends Ragbrai is a step-process and procrastination tends to disillusion first-timers who underestimate the process…. NOT that it’s that complex. The logistics are all part of the fun! Ur all in this together… to set your two-wheelers sailing down the highway… all day… for 7 days!
I know this, if a bunch of people praise a specific charter, go with it. I went with a charter that I found on-line and only one person recommended. It was cheap, and we got what we paid for. I will NEVER use them again. Larry, PM me if you’re interested in the name of the charter. PBV had a great set up and were easy to find when you got into town (which was a major problem with our charter). They had signs everywhere. They had a lot of great extras too. Live and learn on our part I guess