We thoroughly enjoyed our trip to Peru through this travel agency. Our trip planner was accessible and responsive during the planning of the trip. His suggestions for hotels and itinerary were excellent. He connected us with a tour company in Peru who provided knowledgeable, professional guides and drivers in each stop. They were exceptional in every way. This would be a five star review except for two problems. We arrived in Lima on a cruise. We were told that the guides could not come to the pier to pick us up and so we had to take a bus and a taxi to meet our guide. Other passengers with private tours were picked up right outside the pier. In addition, we paid for a transfer to the airport as part of our itinerary with this company. After payment was made, our agent told us to get a transfer to the airport from the cruise line as it would be more direct. We did this with a fee from the cruise ship. I emailed our agent asking for a refund of his transfer cost and he ignored our email. As a result we paid twice for the transfer.
We enjoyed the sacred valley and Cusco very much. The highlight of the trip, however, was Machu Picchu. Our guide was extraordinary. Machu Picchu is a spiritual experience.
I would make sure that the company I worked with was more concerned with our convenience and expense than that of the tour provider company.
TRAVEL COMPANY COMMENTS
Thank you for your response, and I am happy to hear that you thoroughly enjoyed your trip to Peru with our travel company. I want to address the couple of issues that you mentioned in your review, as it is disappointing to hear that you weren't fully satisfied with our services.
The Port of Callao in Lima is a controlled area, and to collect clients from incoming cruise arrivals a paid permit is required along with a special insurance for each vehicle entering the port. In addition the vehicle and driver cannot be changed, once approved, which can be a little challenging from a logistical and planning standpoint. The permit and insurance required to enter the port for a one off collection cost is about US$ 200. As this is quite expensive, we discussed the options with the client, and the client agreed to take the shuttle bus transport provided by the cruise operator. Most shuttle buses operating from the port will shuttle passengers to Plaza San Miguel, which is about a 10 - 15 minutes ride from the port. We asked the client for confirmation that this was indeed the drop-off point for the shuttle-bus throughout our correspondence in planning the trip, but we never received that information. It was only upon the day that the clients arrived that we were informed that the drop-off point was in fact LarcoMar shopping complex, some 30 minutes further away. We re-arranged the day to accommodate the new collection / drop-off point for the client, without extra cost.
Regarding the second point. Now that we understood the new drop-off point for the shuttle (LarcoMar), we informed the client the it would make more sense for them to go directly from the port to the airport, as this was just a 10 minute journey. If the client had taken the shuttle to LarcoMar and then back to the airport, the journey would have been around 1h30m. We wanted the client to have the least inconvenience, so we suggested that the clients take a taxi from the port to the airport. Although we cancelled our airport transfer we still incurred costs for that transfer.
Obviously with advance knowledge of the correct drop-off point, this would have avoided any issues that the client faced on the day. Our first priority with any travelling client is their comfort and security. From a business perspective it doesn't really make any sense to save a few dollars here or there on a trip which costs thousands of dollars, as this just leads to bad feeling and ultimately the loss of satisfaction for the client. In fact, often when our clients face unexpected delays (especially flights) we will routinely reschedule and pay out for additional transfers without requesting any additional money from the client.
I am unaware of any communication from the client requesting a refund for the transfer cost to the airport, and I certainly would have not ignored any emails. If I have overlooked an email, or not understood the clients intention in their email, I offer my sincerely apologies. Although I feel that any additional costs associated with these port transfers could have been avoided if we had advance knowledge of the correct drop-off point, out of goodwill we have refunded US$ 200 to the client, which is more than double the price of the actual transfer).
My team and I here at our travel company work tirelessly to achieve the best travel experiences possible for our clients. We truly hope that overall you had a memorable time here in Peru and that you found our services to be overall of a high standard.
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