We’re so glad you’re thinking of booking a trip with us at Fruitful Vine! We’ve compiled a list here of the most Frequently Asked Questions we get when our customers book their tours.
If you have further questions not listed here, please reach out by sending us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling us at 269.978.8777.
We hope you never need to cancel! If you do, a refund will be given up until 30 days from your tour. No refunds will be given if a tour is canceled within 30 days of your scheduled tour date. The tour is only canceled in dangerous weather, in which case you will receive a full refund. Rain does not stop us! Read more: Payment & Cancellation Policies
Each tour includes:
- Pick up locations throughout New Buffalo and St. Joseph.
- A stress-free day—no maps, GPS, or arguments.
- Transportation to and from your hotel/pick up location to wine country on a comfortable coach bus.
- An awesome tour guide who will teach you all about viticulture and winemaking.
- We tour three wineries, pay all tasting fees, and pay for your lunch!
Extra costs may include the following:
- All of the wineries sell wine by the bottle or glass, and you are more than welcome to purchase some to take home with you.
- Drivers gratuity is not included but appreciated! (Industry standard is 15- 20%)
We use Gift Cards! Anywhere that you can book a ticket you’ll also see a green button that allows you to buy a Gift Card. Gift Cards can be purchased in any denomination, but we recommend keeping in mind that tickets are either $190 or $197, depending on which tour you want to gift (and there are variable prices for private tours, you may want to call us at 269-978-8777 to discuss details before purchasing a gift card for a private tour.).
Our goal is to deliver fun, informative, and safe tours. Over the years, we have learned that this is best accomplished if alcohol consumption is reserved for your time at the wineries. Therefore, no open alcohol will be allowed on any of the vehicles. There will be plenty of wine at the wineries, we promise!
NO OPEN CONTAINERS ALLOWED ON THE VINO COACH OR WINE-O-WAGON.
Yes. We have designed the best tours possible based on years of experience and thousands of customers. All of the wineries have been notified of our arrival time and the number of people we are bringing so that they can make special arrangements to accommodate our groups.
Tours start between 11:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Eastern Time (exact pickup time will be based on your pickup location and listed in your confirmation email) and we usually return between 5:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. depending on the size of the group and how busy the wineries are on a particular day.
Every tour will visit three wineries and have a lunch stop. You will join others who are looking to have a good time as well, so be prepared to socialize! We normally limit tours to a maximum of 14 people. You will have time for wine tasting, gift shopping, and to sit down and relax a bit. You will be outside most of the day, so dress accordingly! Do not expect a “booze cruise.”
Yes! Please see the following points:
- Please drink responsibly. Those little ounces add up!
- As you enter the tasting room, head to the tasting bar. A host will greet you and get you started with wine glasses and explain what wines are available for tasting.
- White wines are tasted first, followed by red wines, and then dessert wines.
- Normally you would not ask for a second taste of one particular wine unless you indicate that you are interested in purchasing that wine.
- You do not have to drink all the wine in your glass. There is a dump bucket provided for unwanted wine.
- Sometimes a neutral food, such as crackers, is provided to clear the palate after each wine tasting.
- Have patience with the wine pourer.
- If you like a particular wine—purchase it! On many occasions the winery may be the only place the wine is sold.
The short answer is no unless your “kid” is over 21. Although children are allowed at the wineries, we have made the decision to keep our tours adult only. Therefore, no one under the age of 21 is allowed on a Fruitful Vine Tour.
All wine tasting fees and souvenir wine glasses are included in the price of the tour.
Our Vino Coach tours and Wine-o-Wagon tours are proud to feature beautiful boxed lunches provided by local restaurant, Full Circle Cafe and Espresso Bar. They are known for fresh and delicious comfort food made with an eye on seasonality, sustainability, and local sourcing. Each guest gets to choose a sandwich OR a salad option from the menu options here.
We never cancel the Vino Coach due to rain. The Wine-O-Wagon will also run as scheduled unless there is a dangerous thunderstorm with lightning, in which case we will cancel the tour and refund your full purchase price.
Sometimes we deem the weather too dangerous to run a tour and it will be canceled. This happens only about once each winter. You will receive a full refund if we cancel the tour. If you decide not to come even though we are still running the tour, our normal cancellation policy applies.
All of our tours can accommodate up to 14 people, which is the legal capacity of our vehicles. Under no circumstances can we take more than 14 people on a single vehicle. In addition, most of the wineries prefer groups 14 or less in order to deliver the best service possible. We do have multiple vehicles and on rare occasions will allow two vehicles to travel together in order to keep a larger group together. This can only be done on weekdays and with the special permission of all wineries involved, with Fruitful Vine reserving the final decision. If you want to take a group larger than 14 people, please call us at 269.978.8777 or e-mail us at email@example.com.
Fruitful Vine is NOT responsible for any items left on bus. It is guest responsibility to retrieve all items upon departure. This includes purchased wine.
We are located in Southwest Michigan. We are 90 minutes from downtown Chicago, 30 minutes from South Bend, Indiana, one hour from Kalamazoo, and 90 minutes from Grand Rapids. Towns to stay in include New Buffalo, St. Joseph, Benton Harbor, South Haven, and all other beach towns that are part of, or very close to, the Lake Michigan Shore Wine Trail.
We have a great partnership with the Harbor Country Chamber of Commerce, and their recommendations page is a wonderful resource for all the best places to book and make reservations for during your stay in Southwest Michigan! Start here: https://www.harborcountry.org/