AESU Travel


Since 1977, AESU has created and operated unique, action-packed itineraries designed specifically for 18-35 year-old's looking for adventure. Unlike most group bus tours, AESU trips allow travelers to truly experience Europe, venturing beyond the popular selfie spots to create lasting memories and life-long friendships. What are you waiting for, just go!



Yes, I recommend this program

19-day Euro Focus Review

I went on this trip along with my two best friends and we made a lot of fun memories! Made lots of new friends who I'm still in contact with and saw a lot of cool places. There was a substantial amount of time spent on the bus, but it was worth it for the amount of places we visited. Favorite things included the Seine River cruise in Paris, biking in Dutch countryside, Dachau Memorial, staying in the Austrian alps, and visiting a vineyard in Tuscany. I enjoyed that there was a lot planned by AESU that we didn't have to do, but there was also an equal amount of free time for us to do what we wanted. Some of the stuff that was planned was off the beaten path, and exposed us to things other than the typical touristy stuff. There was also helpful guidance by staff to help us decide what to do in our free time.

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Yes, I recommend this program

First time traveler

Definitely the best 24 days of my life, without a doubt; new friends, amazing experiences and a ton of fun - I am so thankful for this trip. Loved all the variety of locations and how I didn't have to plan practically anything. I loved bonding with everyone and having a tour director that catered to our every need. Don't think I would have had as good a time without the effort of everyone at AESU. This trip was a wake-up call to see the world!

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Yes, I recommend this program

Awesome Experience For A Guy New To Travel

I had the amazing opportunity to go on this trip and travel with AESU this past summer and it was so much more than I ever expected. I'll be honest, I didn't know how I was really going to feel about group travel, but by the end of it I totally changed my mind. The people I met through this trip are some of the coolest people I have ever had the privilege of getting to know. Aside from the great people, our guide was the best. Super informed, confident in getting us from place to place and just a very genuinely fun person. I haven't traveled much and I had never been to these cities before, so if you're new to travel too, all I can say is that this is a great way to get to know these places without stretching your budget and missing out on the important sights. I honestly don't think I could have done all this on my own. I definitely would never have thought to go on a river cruise in Paris and that was easily one of my favorite days of the whole trip. My girlfriend and I had the best time, hands down, made excellent friends, ate the BEST food I have ever had, and I can't wait to get back overseas.

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Yes, I recommend this program

One Of My Favorite Experiences

I has the pleasure of going on this tour in 2010 and to this day it is one of the most memorable experiences I have had in my life. Being someone who has been well traveled much of my life due to having family abroad, this experience was like seeing it all for the first time again. The guide was amazing and was not only incredibly trustworthy and knowledgeable, he was also a great friend to everyone on the tour. The inclusions, the food, everything is planned so you truly get such an excellent taste of every country you visit, enough that it makes you want to come back again as soon as you possibly can, which of course it never soon enough. Despite all the amazing sights and experiences (and delicious, delicious meals) the best part of the whole experience has to be the level at which you become friends with your tour-mates. I went on this trip almost 7 and a half years ago and I keep in contact with a lot of my fellow tour goers, in fact, they set up an annual reunion every year since at Disney. I cannot say it enough, if you have the time and the means to go on this trip, and go all the way through to Greece, do yourself a favor and GO! (And I'm serious, go all the way through to Greece, you will not regret it, in fact if you don't go, but the time you get to Rome you'll be very sad. You have been forewarned. ;-) )


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Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Doris Spiesmeier

Job Title
Tour Manager

A native of Vienna, Austria, Doris holds a Master’s Degree in Tourism and Leisure Management, and has worked as a Tour Manager with AESU for over 15 years.

She has a passion for exploring the world and has traveled multiple times around the globe for both work and play. While all of our tours are offered in several languages, Doris is fluent in five languages and working on a sixth, so she’s always open to teaching people new vocabulary!

In her spare time, Doris enjoys yoga, hiking, and checking new experiences off her travel bucket list!

What is your favorite travel memory?

One evening I took my group of about 30 students out into the town to explore the streets of Rome. As we came down the street, suddenly one of the guys in the group started with some rhyming lyrics - a tune, and then rapping.

Spontaneously, his new friend next to him stepped in with some beat boxing sounds. No sooner had he started his sounds than the 5 girls behind him offered their background singer voices.

The rest of the group came in formation dancing – we certainly drew attention to us on the busy streets of Rome – Flash mobbing a la AESU. Such fun!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Being part of the AESU family for more than 15 years has broadened my horizons and allowed me to learn so much about the industry that I love.

I’ve been able to participate in amazing experiences like a gourmet tour of Southern France, or a Gold Investor’s Expedition to Australia. It’s fascinating to learn more about other people and their many and varied reasons for traveling.

And I’ve learned about more than just new places—I’ve ventured into product design and development, new staff training, and scouting new destinations. All with the aim of creating the most spectacular experience possible for our clients!

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would definitely choose the Great Escape, because it provides such a great intro to some of Europe’s most iconic destinations. You have the fast-paced capitals of London, Paris, and Rome, mixed in with a visit to quaint Heidelberg or a hike in the Alps. And of course, a few days in my favorite place in the world, the islands of Greece.

In only 24 days, participants in this program experience 9 different European countries and get to see some of the world’s most iconic locations.

Plus they get to do all this while enjoying the travel experience with other people in their age group. What a great way to gain the cross-cultural experience that is so valuable in today’s increasingly connected world!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

AESU works hard to combine the excitement and fun of travel with an educational twist—it’s “travel with a purpose!” I love the idea that we offer not just the opportunity to see interesting places, but the chance to experience them with a group of other people who are at similar places in life, and may even become life-long friends!

I am most proud of our team of Tour Managers. They are handpicked and undergo a lengthy training/evaluation process to represent the best of the best. Every year, I am so proud to be part of such a diverse and well-traveled team of professionals.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Consistency! For more than 40 years, we have provided affordable, high-quality travel programs for young people. We accomplish this through a combination of experience, a well-developed network of contacts, and unparalleled attention to detail.

Our staff work tirelessly year after year to provide the experience of a lifetime for each participant. We know that many of our participants will be first-time travelers, so we are committed to making each program both educational and fun.

This quote is my personal motto, but also a perfect way to describe what we want to deliver at AESU: ‘Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.’