frequently asked questions

Got questions? We have answers! We have created this page to answer the most frequent questions we get asked all the time. But if you have more questions and you don’t find the answer here, go ahead and send us a message and we’ll get back to you (and who knows, if you ask a really cool question, it may even make it into a future version of our FAQ)!

The start and end time for the tours depends on which tour you book. Our full day tours have a pick-up time of approximately 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM and the half day afternoon tours have a pick-up time of approximately 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM. Most of our tours have a drop off time between approximately 4:30 PM – 5:30 PM.

You can either contact us by phone (250-979-1211 or toll free 1-866-979-1211), by email or use the inquiry form on our web site.

The number of wineries/venues that we visit depends on which tour you book. Our Westside, Eastern and Northern Bench Tours visit 4 wineries/venues. Our Summerland Tour, Bead Trail Tour, Okanagan Falls Tour and East Kelowna Tour visit 5 wineries and our South Okanagan and Naramata Bench tours visit 6 wineries.

The wineries for our public tours are set and are listed on our web site. The wineries we visit for our custom tours, for groups of 8 or more guests, are selected based on the wine region our guests prefer to visit.

All of our tours include all the venue fees/tasting fees, transportation in comfortable air conditioned vehicles, accommodation pick up/drop off in Kelowna and West Kelowna, chilled water, snack and a fun and informative tour guide who escorts you throughout the tour. The tour cost does not include applicable taxes or tour guide gratuities.

Established in 2003, Distinctly Kelowna Tours is one of the longest running tour companies in the Okanagan Valley. We have established exceptional relationships with our tourism partners and may be able to offer our guests an experience that the general public may not receive. Our guests are able to sit back and relax and enjoy a memorable experience in the Okanagan, as our guides are committed to providing our guests with top notch service. Our Trip Advisor reviews, are a testament to our commitment to you.

Distinctly Kelowna Tours complies with all tour operator legal requirements: municipal business license, National Safety Code number, Passenger Transportation number (required to be displayed on every vehicle), Liability insurance, proper ICBC vehicle insurance, Commercial Vehicle Inspections every 6 months, all drivers have the appropriate driver’s license (class 4 unrestricted), and we follow all Foodsafe requirements when handling any food.

The vehicle that is used for your tour will depend on the size of the group. We have 3 vehicles that are all very well maintained and clean; a 24 passenger bus with cargo space, an 11 passenger van and an 11 passenger Mercedes Sprinter van with high ceilings and cargo space. We have commercial vehicle inspections completed every 6 months, as required by law.

We pick up/drop off from any accommodations in the Kelowna and West Kelowna area, not just hotels. Your safety is very important to us and we do not want to drop you off at a central location after a day of sipping wine. The BC drinking and driving laws are very strict.

Yes, we have designed several enjoyable wine tours for Bachelorette groups. Many wineries now have strict policies regarding Bachelorette groups, and we are aware of which wineries are best suited for a fun girls’ day out. We have a few sample itineraries, but are able to design a tour to suit your groups’ needs.

Yes, we specialize in designing custom tours for private groups. Our custom tours are typically for groups of 8 or more guests, but please contact us if you have a smaller group and we can discuss arrangements. We will take care of you from the time you contact us until your event is complete.

Yes, a gift certificate for a wine tour makes an excellent gift. Let us know which tour or dollar amount you would like to purchase and the details you would like on the certificate, and we will email you a copy for convenient at home printing.

Children ages 6 – 18 are able to join us on most tours (any exceptions that apply are mentioned on the individual tour pages). The legal drinking age in BC is 19.

Yes, we offer tours all year and are only closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day. The tours we are able to offer year round are our Westside Bench and Eastside Bench Tours. The itineraries may vary slightly during the winter. Many of the wineries/venues that are a part of our other tours are closed in the winter.

Definitely, wine tours can be enjoyed rain or shine. We have complimentary umbrellas in all of our vehicles and the tastings take place inside the wine shops.

Not at all; wine tours are designed for everyone from novice to expert. The friendly staff at the wineries are able to guide you through the wine tasting process, and our tour guides are also able to offer helpful tips.

Yes, and it is encouraged! You will want to take home a few bottles of your favorite vintages.

The number of tastings at each venue will vary, but generally you will receive a minimum of 3 – 4 tastings at each venue, and at many you may receive more.

No, not unless you have an approved service dog. Many guests have allergies and some may have a fear of dogs.

Public tours may be cancelled up to 48 hours before departure without penalty. If tours are cancelled within 48 hours then the full cost of the tour will apply.

The cancellation policy for private tours is different and will generally be:

  • Cancellation of this event may be made up to 30 days prior to the scheduled event; a cancellation penalty of $100 plus tax will apply.
  • If cancellation of this tour is made within 15 – 29 days prior to the scheduled event, a cancellation fee equal to the deposit paid will apply.
  • If cancellation is made within 8 – 14 days prior to the scheduled event, refunds are limited to 50% of the total bill plus tax.
  • Within 7 days of the event, no monies will be refunded.
  • Once the final payment is due, based on the confirmed number of guests, there will be no refund if some guests cancel after this date.

The Okanagan dress code is casual. Please dress for the weather the day of your tour. If it may be cool or rainy please bring a jacket. On a hot sunny day a hat is recommended. As there may be walking involved when on a facility tour comfortable shoes are recommended.

While visiting the wineries you will want to sample the delicious wines available. BC has very strict drinking and driving laws. Stay safe and relax while we do the driving.

Our guides are very informative and provide a commentary throughout the tour. Our guests always comment about how much they learned while on tour.

When the venues are busy our guides are able to enhance our guests’ experience, if there is any waiting time, by showing them the vineyard or other interesting areas at the winery. As we have a wonderful relationship with the wineries, we often get VIP treatment which may augment your experience.

Yes, Distinctly Kelowna Tours complies with all tour operator legal requirements: municipal business license, National Safety Code number, Passenger Transportation number (required to be displayed on every vehicle), Liability insurance, proper ICBC vehicle insurance, Commercial Vehicle Inspections every 6 months, all drivers have the appropriate driver’s license (class 4 unrestricted), and we follow all Foodsafe requirements when handling any food.

Our public tours operate with either a minimum of 2 or 4 guests, depending on which tour you reserve. Our public tours usually have a maximum of 10 -11 guests. The number of guests on a private tour depends on how many guests the organizer wishes to include.

At the time of booking we ask for a credit card number to secure the reservation. The public tours are paid for at the end of the tour either by credit card (Visa, Mastercard, American Express), Interac or cash. The private tours are paid for 14 days in advance either by credit card or cheque.

We do not include the gratuity in the public tours. If you are happy with the service you received a gratuity is appreciated.

If you know that you are going to enjoy a tour while in the Okanagan, the sooner you book the better so as not to be disappointed.

Yes, the restaurants that we have selected for our lunch stops are able to provide options for those guests with dietary preferences or restrictions.

Yes, please bring a camera and take photos for lasting memories of your experience. Our guides are happy to take group photos for you. There may be signs at a venue indicating no photos allowed and we ask that you please respect the venue’s wishes.

No, drinking in the van/bus is against the law. The driver and company could be subject to penalties if any passengers are found to be drinking alcohol in the vehicle.

Yes, cologne or perfume could have an adverse effect on the tasting experience for yourself and others in the wine shop.