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EODs: Introduction- Definition, Share…
The EODs category features ATPs containing word “Everest” in their names and ensuring a glimpse of the lofty mountain. This multi-destination ATP category may / may not cover EBC. Since this category has more than 100 ATPs covering various destinations located within the Everest region, it is divided into fourteen (14) sub-categories.
Based in five countries, twenty-eight (28) ATCs out of total 45-surveyed companies offer 101 EODs ATPs, but none of the companies represents all fourteen subcategories. At the most, the company product mix consists of seven (7) subcategory ATPs. The UK companies sell the highest number of EODs ATPs (30), followed by Nepal-based and US ATCs offering 24 ATPs each and Australian ATCs (22). (Figure: 50)
KE Adventure offers seven different types of EODs ATPs, thereby represents 50% of subcategories. World Expeditions’ product mix represents just four subcategories. However, both the companies offer ten (10) EODs ATPs each.
iExplore with eight (8) packages also represents seven subcategories. (Figure: 51) Adventure Bound, Asia 360, Gap Adventures and Geckos Adventures sell just one EODs ATP each.
In terms of number of ATPs, the top four (4) subcategories are “Everest + ODs within Nepal” (28.71%), “Everest” (12.87%), “Everest + OD within Tibet” (12.87%), “Everest: Panorama, Picture, Views” (10.89%), “Everest Luxury, Style” (5.94%) and “Everest Lodge Trip” (5.94%). (Figure: 52)
Although Everest region can be approached from Nepal and Tibet, about 13% EODs ATPs only cover the Tibetan Everest region. (Figure: 53)
EODs: Package Name
Except eighteen (18) EODs package names, all package names are quite revealing and self-explanatory. For instance, “Fast Everest” implies a glimpse of Everest in short time. The “Everest: Picture, Panorama, Views” packages focus on destinations commanding the view of the Mount Everest. The “Everest for Families” and the “Everest for Teenagers” meet demands of two specific traveler groups.
“Ultimate Everest” and “Everest” subcategory ATPs’ names are ambiguous, as the names tell about neither the itinerary nor the targeted audience. The name “Everest Trails” is also not self-explanatory, as there are scores of trails meandering through the Everest region. The package name suggests neither trail location nor type of the trail.
A number of ATPs’ names also feature words “trek” or “trekking”, indicating the primary adventure activity. However, all ATPs’ names feature word “Everest”, thus primary attraction is still Mount Everest.
EODs: ATP Duration Analysis
Duration of 59.41% EODs ATPs is between 11 and 20 days. Over 34.65% ATPs are 21-30 days long. The share of <=10 days ATPs is 3.96% and that of 31-40 days is 1.98%. (Figure:54)
Average duration of the EODs ATP is 17.61 days, slightly more than half a month. The shortest ATP is of five (5) days, whereas the longest ATP requires thirty-seven (37) days to complete. Intrepid offers both the shortest and the longest ATPs: “Everest in Full Picture” and “Annapurna & Everest”. (Figure: 55)
EODs: ATP Price Analysis
The price information is available for all EODs ATPs except five (5). The pdpp price of twenty-three (23) ATPs is less than USD 100.00, that of twenty-seven (27) ATPs ranges from USD 100.00 to USD 150.00 and that of seventeen (17) ATPs varies from > USD 150.00 to USD 200.00. The price of twenty-one (21) ATPs ranges between > USD 200.00 and USD 250.00. The price of the five (5) ATPs varies from >USD 250 to USD 300.00. The price of the remaining three (3) ATPs is more than USD 300.00. (Figure: 56)
The 21-day “Everest High Pass Circuit Trek” package (Green Lotus Trekking) is the cheapest (USD 47.57 pdpp). The 10-day “Everest Region” package (iExplore) is the costliest (USD 379.80 pdpp). There is a huge variation between duration (52% lower for the latter) and price (698% higher for the latter) of these two ATPs. (Figure: 57)
Both the ATPs start and end at Kathmandu. The price of the two consists of admission fee to the Mount Everest National Park, Kathmandu-Lukla-Kathmandu airfare, TIMS card fee and transfers. Neither of the ATPs price includes visa fee.
The price of “Everest Region” ATP includes all meals and accommodations with private baths, whereas that of “Everest High Pass Circuit Trek” covers 2-night stay at a 3-star hotel on twin sharing basis and four (4) breakfasts only. The former ATP’s price includes basic travel insurance, but that of the latter does not include insurance. The difference in meals offered appears to be the driving factor in pricing. Besides, the price of “Everest High Pass Circuit Trek” covers a trek pack comprising a sleeping bag, down jacket and kit bag.
EODs: Duration vs. Price
EODs ATP price is not proportional to its duration. Moreover, services provided push the price up even if duration is short. If prices of similar ATPs were proportional to both duration and services offered, comparison would be easier and faster. This is what a traveler, especially a modern IT-savvy traveler, wants. Thus, ATCs should at least consider price standardization of same adventure itineraries. Accurate and complete price details displayed on the website will be another big plus for both travelers and ATCs.
EODs: ATP Grade Analysis
All EODs ATPs except four (4) are graded in thirty (30) different categories. Sixteen (16) packages are rated as “Moderate”, whereas thirteen (13) packages are graded as “5”. The number of packages rated as “Strenuous” is also thirteen (13). These three grade categories account for 41.58% of packages.
EODs: Subcategory Analysis
- “Classic Everest” ATPs follow the classical route to the EBC and other destinations within the Everest region. Trekking starts from Jiri. The subcategory features two ATPs, offered by Nepal-based and the UK ATCs. The ATP duration varies from 25-28 days. The longer ATP is cheaper than the shorter one. The 28-day “Classic Everest Trek” is priced at USD 58.95 pdpp, whereas the 25-day “Classic Everest” at USD 70.80 pdpp.
- “Fast Everest” ATPs are short treks winding through the region, offering a glimpse of the Everest Peak. These packages are designed for adventure travelers who do not have enough time but are keen to have a view of the Everest and other Himalayan peaks.
- The ATPs named “Everest Circuit” are clubbed under “Everest Circuit” subcategory.
- “Everest for Families” ATPs are designed to meet requirements of adventure seeking families.
- “Everest for Teenagers” ATPs are created for teenagers traveling with or without their families.
- “Everest Trails” are short, introductory packages with limited coverage of the Everest region.
- Attraction-rich “Ultimate Everest” ATPs include visits to base camps, glaciers, high altitude passes, lakes and relatively low mount peaks besides the EBC. Kala Pathar, Gokyo Ri and Lakes, Ama Dablam base camp, Island Peak base camp, Cho La and Chhugyuma Pass are some of the commonly covered destinations. Hence, the ATPs ensure extensive exploration of the Everest region. The Nepali, UK and US companies offer “Ultimate Everest” packages. All five trips are named as “Ultimate Everest”. All ATPs are more than 20 days long, but less than one month. Average trip length is 23.20 days.
- Barring one, all “Ultimate Everest” ATPs’ price increases with an increase in its duration. For instance, 20-day ATP costs USD 115.00 pdpp, 23-day ATP costs USD 173.70 pdpp. Given the duration of ATPs of Mountain Travel Sobek, pdpp price declines as the group size increases. The ATP price is USD 179.80 for a group of 10-12 people. The price increases to USD 195.80 for a group of 5-9 people.
- Ultimate Everest trek: Mountain Travel Sobek (MTS) vs. Grand Asian Journeys (GAJ)
- Although routes followed by the two ATCs are different, both the itineraries feature some common destinations, such as Namche, Gorak Shep, Kala Pathar, and Gokyo Ri. The MTS itinerary also covers the Chhugyuma Pass, Chhuking Valley and Nyamgawa Valley. Both treks start and end at Lukla. The GAJ itinerary features EBC, while MTS’ does not. However, MTS offers an option to hike up to the EBC. Both the itineraries have two days for acclimatization and rest. GAJ also provides for a contingency day. Both multi-destination itineraries involve strenuous trekking. Difference between altitudes reached during the trips is nominal.
- GAJ’ ATP is the cheapest (USD 99.78 pdpp), while MTS’ ATP is the costliest (USD 179.90 pdpp). Both the ATPs origin and end at Kathmandu, which means price does not include international airfare. Both the ATPs offer accommodations on sharing basis and transfers. Neither of the ATPs includes personal gear and optional tipping.
- The price of MTS ATP does not include local airfare, but that of GAJ ATP includes the fare. The MTS package price increases for small groups (5-9). However, the GAJ package price remains same for 2-12 group-size. GAJ conducts the trip twice a year (Apr-May and Oct-Nov), whereas MTS conducts the trip once a year (Oct-Nov)
- The price of GAJ package covers 4-night stay in 3-star hotels and 18-night stay in lodges. Accommodation arrangement for the MTS package consists of 4-night stay in top-end hotel, 9-night in lodges and 11-day in camps. MTS charges USD 600.00 towards single supplement, whereas GAJ levies USD 200.00, about 66% less.
- There is not much difference in meal structure of the two. The GAJ serves boiled water during trek period, twenty-two (22) breakfasts, twenty (20) lunches and twenty (20) dinners, whereas MTS serves twenty-four (24) breakfasts, twenty (20) lunches and twenty (20) dinners. GAJ offers two days sightseeing in Kathmandu, but MTS offers just one day sightseeing.
- Thus, MTS provides less number of services despite high price, but the ATC offers accommodations in top-end hotel for four (4) days and gives opportunity to camp in the Himalaya that itself is an attraction. The GAJ trip is for budget adventure travelers, whereas rich adventurers can go for MTS trip.
- “Everest: Panoramas, Pictures, Views” (EPPVs) ATPs cover destinations with some of the best Mount Everest viewpoints. The package duration varies from 5-15 days, much shorter than that of other main ATP categories.
- Ten (10) ATCs offer eleven (11) EPPV ATPs. Names of all the ATPs clearly indicate the purpose. All ATPs except one start and end at Kathmandu. Nepal-based companies sell seven (7) ATPs. The UK ATCs- Jagged Globe and KE Adventures, the US-based Mountain Madness and the Australian Intrepid sell one (1) EPPV package each.
- The 11-day “Everest Panorama Trek” (Mountain Hawk Trek) is the cheapest (USD 79.55 pdppp) EPPV package, whereas 5-day “Everest in Full Picture” (Intrepid) is the costliest (USD 246.10 pdpp). Although price of the latter increases by about 209%, its duration decreases by about 55%.
- The “Everest Luxury, Style” subcategory, a combination of adventure and luxury, focuses on high-end plush amenities and facilities. Destinations covered vary from ATP to ATP, but some popular attractions of the region such as Namche Bazaar are always included. Five (5) ATCs, based in two (2) countries, sell six (6) ATPs. Five (5) UK companies, Exodus, Explore, KE Adventures and Mountain Kingdoms, organize one (1) luxury trip each.
- Both the “Everest Private Trips” start and end in Kathmandu. The US-based Wilderness Travel offers these customized ATPs. “Everest Private Trips” are the costliest. The price starts from USD 256.32 pdpp.
- Highlight of “Everest Lodge Trips” is accommodation in lodges only. Camping is not required at all.
- “Everest + ODs within Nepal” ATPs, multi-destination packages, focus on the Nepali Everest region. Sixteen (16) companies from four (4) different countries represent “Everest + ODs within Nepal” category. This subcategory is further divided into seven (7) sub-subcategories.
- “Everest with Ama Dablam” ATPs feature Ama Dablam base camp, monasteries and Everest vantage points.
- “Everest with Annapurna” ATPs covers two popular trekking regions: Annapurna and Everest. These multi-region ATPs involve sightseeing, trekking, elephant safari and / or some other activities. Commonly covered destinations include EBC, Kala Pathar and Thorung La Pass, but all ATPs may not cover these destinations. Five (5) companies offer “Everest with Annapurna” ATPs, but none is based in Nepal.
- “Everest with High Passes” ATPs focus on three high altitude passes, Renjo La, Cho La and Khongma La besides the EBC, Kala Pathar and Gokyo. Some itineraries also have one or two more attractions.
- “Great Himalaya Trail (GHT) & Everest” category coverage is vast. These multi-destination packages cover a large area of Nepal, such as high altitude passes, lakes, base camps of snow-covered peaks besides the EBC.
- “Everest & Chitwan”, “Everest with Makalu” and “Everest, Gokyo, Island Peak, others” sub-subcategory packages feature a number of different destinations located within the region.
- “Everest + ODs within Tibet” subcategory comprises two types of ATPs: “Everest Kangshung Face” and “Everest with Tibet”. “Everest Kangshung Face” ATPs involve traveling by private four-wheel vehicles on rugged terrain and short treks. The primary destination of the ATPs is the Kangshung Face base camp of the Everest. These ATPs account for 76.92% packages of the “Everest + OD within Tibet” subcategory. “Everest with Tibet” ATPs cover famous monasteries located in the Tibetan Everest region and North Face base camp of the peak.
- The “Everest + OD within Tibet” subcategory accounts for 12.87% (13) ATPs of total EODs packages. Eleven (11) companies, based in four (4) countries-Australia, Nepal, UK and USA, sell these ATPs. The UK companies offer the highest number of ATPs (5), followed by Nepal-based ATCs (4) and the US companies (3).
- ATP names containing word “Everest” and ATPs that does not fit in any of the above categories are clubbed under “Everest” subcategory. Eleven (11) companies from four (4) different countries offer 13 “Everest” ATPs (12.87%).
- “Everest” ATPs duration vs. Price
- The ATP price does not change uniformly with a change in its duration. For example, 10-day “Everest Region” (iExplore) is priced at USD 379.80 pdpp, whereas 22-day “Everest Challenging Trek” (Mountain Hawk Trek) is priced at USD 85.23 pdpp, 77.56% less.
- The price of “Everest Adventure” ATP (Peregrine) and “Everest Trek” (World Expeditions) varies substantially despite the same duration (12 days).The “Everest Adventure” is priced at USD 116.25 pdpp, while “Everest Trek” at USD 174.41 pdpp.
- “Everest” ATP Price: Nepal- vs. Other Country-based ATCs
- Nepal-based companies’ ATPs are cheaper than ATPs offered by ATCs-based in other countries. The pdpp price of Nepal-based companies’ ATPs aggregates USD 50-100, whereas that of other countries’ ATPs ranges from USD 110.00 to USD 380.00 except one (1) ATP priced at USD 77.93.
- Subcategory Price Comparison
- The lowest pdpp price of half of subcategories is less than USD 100.00. The remaining subcategories’ lowest pdpp price varies between USD 100.00 and USD 260.00.
- The highest pdpp price of all subcategories except “Classic Everest” (USD 70.80) is more than one hundred American dollars. “Everest” subcategory is the most expensive with the highest pdpp price tag of USD 379.80. However, “Classic Everest” ATPs are longer than “Everest” ATPs. (Figure: 58)
- Subcategory Share Comparison
- “Everest + OD within Nepal” subcategory accounts for the highest number of EODs ATPs (29), more than one fourth. “Everest with High Passes” is the most popular package accounting for 34.48% ATPs of the subcategory. “Everest with Annapurna” and “Everest, Gokyo, Island Peak, others” sub-subcategories contribute 20.69% ATPs each.
- “Everest” and “Everest + OD within Tibet” subcategories, contributing thirteen (13) ATPs each, are the second most popular packages. “Everest: Panorama, Picture, Views” is the third most popular EODs ATP (11). Thus, the top three subcategories offer 65.34% EODs ATPs.
- “Everest” ATPs duration vs. Price
EODs: Traveler to Guide Ratio
This information is not available.
- Slightly more than 62% ATCs surveyed sell EODs ATPs.
- EODs ATPs account for about 45% of total 221 Everest ATPs.
- Although Everest is located in Nepal, the UK companies offer more EODs than Nepal– based ATCs.
- The EODs category has the maximum subcategories (14), ensuring more variety of ATPs.
- More than 82% package names are self-explanatory. Other package names are ambiguous.
- More than 87% EODs explore Nepal-side Everest region. The Tibetan Everest region ATPs account for about 13%.
- The Kangshung Face is the most popular destination in the Tibetan Everest region.
- Thirty (30) categories are used to grade all the 101 ATPs except four trips for which grade information is unavailable.
- There is no uniformity in grading scales used by companies offering EODs ATPs.
- “Everest with Annapurna” ATPs are multi-region and multi-activity itineraries.
- Supply of EODs is maximum (101), followed by EBCTs (64) and EBC + ODs (34).
- The price of ATPs offered by Nepal-based ATCs is generally lower than that of the packages sold by ATCs-based in other countries.