1. Why do some companies ask a price for device and you ask a price per person for the live zoom tour?
Some virtual Bible tours live on zoom ask a price per device and not per person like us. But they allow the connection of 200 300 or more devices for each virtual tour, we do not do that.
Someone else do tours donation based, with 500, 900 or more devices, and most of the times (not always) are totally tax free.
We prefer to earn much less and to protect the quality and the possibility for everyone connected to participate at the end of the live zoom tour. That's why we allow maximum 60 - 80 connections in each live zoom virtual tour.
2. Why in some countries of North America and Europe, Bible Tours are "free" (often is anyway requested a suggested contribution) and in others like Italy, France or Greece is requested a fix price of a fee as for example in your Virtual tours?
The taxes and laws are different in each country.
In our country from the fee we receive, for any in-person or virtual tour, we must pay:
1. paypal fees for every single transaction, which are quite high
2. Inps italian tax, regardless the tours you do or you do not do, it remains the same: (for each tour guide are 3.500 euro per year)
3. Tax consultant 1000 euro per year
4. And from the money that remains, another 30% of other mandatory taxes. We do a regular tax receipt for any virtual or real Bible tour.
5. Zoom account
6. Copyright every year for our logo and the domain of our website
7. One person who works every day just answering hundreds email.
8. A regular salary for the tour guide who gives the tour.
9. Endless hours of hard work by many different brothers and sisters in doing, preparing, adjusting and costantly reviewing, each real or virtual Bible tour and their references!
Moreover in Italy, France or Greece it is illegal to work as tour guide without having the government license, which is like a university specific degrees. In the countries with a lot of history this job requires many skills and endless training.
You can not guide brothers inside a museum or inside an historical site, just having an informal training from someone and asking a free contribution. Is not allowed by the law! If the city police or someone of the tourism department stops you, you can be fined with a very big price!
That's why all our brothers and sisters of the crew are licensed tour guides and tour leaders! Is not their hobby.
3. Why don't you make your virtual tours free also for the commuters and regular pioneers?
We cannot give all pioneer a discount. We have decided to make an exception for those who did ' vow of poverty' and who cannot work. Those who live on just the small donation they receive from the organization. However, regular pioneers and commuters do work earn money and pay taxes. We deeply appreciate their effort because we too have families and have all been pioneers for many years.
However we would sincerely that all the brothers from abroad can join in the virtual tours. While we are aware that 5 euro could be an important amount for some because of currency exchange, It is also a fact that in most countries it is the price of one or two coffees.
(In case of any dire economic discomfort, let us know at the time of booking and we will evaluate each request.That is regardless of the privileges one has in the congregation)
4. Why don't you make the same discount for the brothers and sisters in the special full time service, also for the in-person tours?
We have given much thought to this, but unfortunately, we incur a lot of extra costs for the in-person tours.
We therefore cannot give discounts.
For one thing, the groups are always small and much working time and costs is put into these.
May each one, when have the possibility to travel abroad, be guided by Luke 14:28.
(However even for the in-person tours, in case of any dire economic discomfort, let us know at the time of booking and we will evaluate each single situation and request.. regardless of the privileges one has in the congregation)
5. By offering these tours, do you not believe that you are using the brotherhood for commercial purposes?
Not at all. We were all Licensed Tour Guides long before we started doing Bible Tours for our brothers and sisters. We did not improvise ourselves as Tour Guides, for example after a training received due to an international convention. In Italy it would not even be possible. We are all registered in the National Register of the Tourism professional workers, and we pay all taxes from this full time job. When we are not busy with Bible Tours, we are happy to offer our services to any kind of customer. We are not exclusive guides for Jehovah's Witnesses. In Italy would be considered a discrimination. However on this website and on our social pages linked here, you will find just the tours that we have prepared for our brothers and sisters. On our personal social pages you will see us working with not only jw tourists, but people from all over the world. We have been doing this from many years. As a company we offer a service to the public at large, whomeover has an option to buy or to refrain from buying, no one is forced to do so.
Thanks again for putting yourselves in our shoes for a short while.
With love and respect
Your brothers from Rome