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Hands On Travel originated out of the passion to travel and experience new things in life. Our founder, Terry Giansanti, had dreamt about living in Europe after graduating from Gallaudet University. In 1999, he moved to Rome to work for the Italian Deaf Olympic Committee. Once he arrived in the Eternal City, he found it very hard to leave. During the 2001 Deaflympics which were held in Rome, he was disappointed that many deaf tourists had negative comments on their experiences in Rome. Terry believed Rome was impossible to hate, and wanted to ensure that all future deaf travelers to Rome and to Italy would be able to enjoy it to the maximum, by having an insider to be a sign language guide.In 2002, with thanks to the support of Roberto Wirth of Hotel Hassler and Peter Crawford of Girosole, Terry established Hands On Italia. The demands for these kind of tours increased steadily and many people remarked how they wanted to replicate that travel experience (small groups, deaf guides, deaf-centric itineraries) to other countries. Hence, in 2005, Hands On Italia became Hands On Travel to signal a new era where we began providing tours outside of Italy. Now, with an ever-expanding team, we are able to provide tours in over 60 countries worldwide.
Ever since our inception in 2002, our core tenets have remained the same. We truly believe that exceptional travel experiences come from three sources: sign language guides, small groups, and unique experiences. We are proud to have provided so many great memories to all of our participants.
Our founder, Terry Giansanti, moved to Rome from the United States in 1999 to work for the Deaf Olympic Committee. Rome stole his heart.  After the Deaf Olympics ended in 2001, he was disappointed to learn negative comments on tourists’ experiences in Rome.  Terry believed Rome was impossible to hate, and wanted to ensure that all future deaf travelers to Rome and to Italy would be able to enjoy it to the maximum, along with an insider as guide. So, in 2002, with thanks to the support of Roberto Wirth of Hotel Hassler and Peter Crawford of Girosole, Terry established Hands On Italia.

The demands for our tours increased steadily and many people remarked how they wanted to replicate that travel experience (small groups, deaf guides, deaf-centric itineraries) for other countries. Hence, in 2005, Hands On Italia became Hands On Travel to signal a new era where we provide tours outside of Italy.

Ever since our inception in 2002, our core tenets have remained the same. We are proud to have provided so many great memories to all of our participants.

Be the leader in providing sign language tours around the world. Hands On Travel aims to bring the essence of travel to you through our wide range of specialty travel programs, all done in the beauty of sign language. Choose amongst our guided tours, customized tours, and other specialty travel services such as itinerary assistance. Our dedicated focus on you from your first contact with us until the day your trip ends will make sure that your trip goes exactly the way you want it to. One thing is guaranteed: your satisfaction.

We believe that travel should not only be to see new places, but to really understand them. Our guides, whom all know sign language and have a profound knowledge of the place they are guiding you in, will bring to life all the stories behind the buildings, piazzas, museums, and people you encounter during your travels.

What makes us unique? We provide guiding services exclusively in sign language. That means we do not use interpreters at all. All communication will happen directly and naturally, between the guide and the participants. That, in addition to our small group sizes, ensure intimate involvement for everyone. This level of attention and care are what our clientele appreciates about us the most.

In an increasingly touristy world, there are more and more “packaged experiences” available. It is our aim to go away from the mainstream, and to take our groups where other tourists do not go… in other words, to see real people, understand their culture and their real way of living!

We established this company because we noticed a lack of choices for the sign language-using traveler. Most of their choices were limited to package tours (traveling in large groups). We felt that there was an unexplored niche that needed to be covered — unique tours in small groups.

We believe that travel should bring you as close to the destination as possible. Our small group sizes allow us to travel by public transportation at times and eat at small restaurants and sleep in traditional accommodations that do not cater to large-scale tour groups. We have the opportunity to blend in and really get intimate with our surroundings. In addition, the ability of our guides to communicate in sign language mean that they will be fully aware of your needs and will give plenty of pauses for you to savor the sights with your eyes instead of overloading you with information.

We have gradually increased our tour offerings and continue to grow, thanks to your support and belief in our philosophy. We hope you enjoy navigating this website and we also hope to have you on one of our future tours, so that we can show you how beautiful travel can be!

To provide small and unique tours around the world for people using sign language.

We are dedicated to providing travelers using sign language with the best that this world has to offer. We are opposed to the idea of mass tourism, which means bunching up a group of people in a big tour bus and wheeling them around to all the major sights with obligatory stops at mediocre restaurants and tourist-trap souvenir shops. We believe that travel shouldn’t be like this. Instead, we provide an experience which allows travelers to get “hands on”, delighting every one of their senses in fascinating and interactive programs that give them deeper appreciations of the place they are visiting.

This service is entirely run by deaf people using sign language who love travel and aim to make your trip as fun, pleasant, and accessible in all areas. Our core tenets are:

*Provides private, customized and educational tours for school groups.
*Ensures that all communication during guided tours is accessible in sign language exclusively, 24/7.
*Customizes each tour to fit the characteristics and needs of the people who make up each group.
*Provides consultation for individual(s) who wish to travel independently but do not have the time to dedicate to necessary logistic preparations.