Our trip was great, and went off with very few hitches (except some bad weather!). Planning was a collaborative effort with the agency and they were responsive to our likes and dislikes, adjusting as we requested. Hotels overall ranged from outstanding to adequate (plain, but clean) (this was very dependent on location, but all were responsive to our preferences of convenience). Drivers and guides were on time and reliable, and all provided an excellent experience. One hotel did have us departing one day later than scheduled, but it did not cause a problem for us and the next hotel did have us arriving as we expected.
The one thing that I would improve with the agency's response would be to receive documentation earlier prior to departure. We did not receive all the specifics until a bit less than 2 weeks before departure even though we had requested it earlier due to our "nervous nellie" experience of usually planning everything ourselves. Indeed, when we got the boarding pass for an internal-Italy flight, one of our names did not align with our passport, and we had to request the agency to quickly correct our record and boarding pass, which they did. They could also have provided better information on the checked baggage allowances (see below).
The Excelsior Vittoria in Sorrento was simply lovely and the service impeccable.
We also really enjoyed Venice and St. Mark's Square by moonlight, and exploring a few new facets of Rome. We thoroughly enjoyed all the tours arranged by the agency (Underground Colosseum and Vatican in Rome, Paestum from Amalfi.
We stumbled onto the Good Friday procession in Positano, which we found fascinating.
Despite the hassles of Naples, we found the Naples Archeological Museum to be mind-boggling and wish we had had more time in it.
As far as the agency, we appreciated having many of the arrangements (hotel, drivers, trains) coordinated, pre-arranged, and scheduled for us. Drivers and guides were always on time and reliable. It was a pleasure not to have to worry about that next step!
We would have scheduled longer in each place, allowing for more relaxation and a more leisurely pace. It also provides a cushion for when the weather does not cooperate. We tried to do too much too quickly! We encourage people to schedule at least a day or two more than they think they want.
We would not fly with EasyJet internal in Italy (Venice to Naples). We had a bad experience with them. The agency did not provide us with accurate detail on the weight allowance for checked bags (they told us 50lbs per person). Luckily, we looked it up on the EasyJet website and got the correct information (you are only allowed 20kg/person or 44 lbs). Even with the written documentation from the EAsyJet website in hand to give them, we had to argue with the bag check staff that we did not owe more money for our ONE bag (for the two of us) that weighed only about 23kg, which was allowable under their rules by "pooling" our weight allowances. They also allowed any number of people to board with 2 carry-ons, but made Elaine cram her purse and contents into her backpack. In general, they were quite unpleasant and unprofessional, with two of the flight attendants getting into an argument during our flight. I would recommend NOT flying on EasyJet and we never will again.
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