We booked 'The Wonders of Turkey' tour with Voyage-Prive, which we have to say was well below what we think we paid for.
Below are a few of the problems.
a) Although we had booked the tour 6 weeks before it started we did not receive a list of hotels and a full itinerary until 5 days before departure, in spite of sending several e-mails requesting same.
b) The main reason for taking this holiday was that we wanted to do a hot air balloon flight over Cappadocia. Voyage-Prive were not at all interested in offering us an option to book the flight through them and said we would need to book it ourselves, but without a confirmed date for being in Cappadocia and the hotel details, we were no able to book the flight.
c) It said that we would have an English speaking guide throughout.
We have been on many tours with an English speaking guide throughout and all the persons on the tour understood English.
On this tour, a third of the people didn't understand English so the Guide had to say everything in both English and French, which meant that on the coach while we were travelling along, whatever Ediz was pointing out was gone by the time he repeated it in the other language and then when we got off the coach to visit the various places it took twice as long to explain things, as everything had to be said in English and French.
d) Hotels : The holiday was described as 7 nights in 5* hotels. This was far from true. We have had had many holidays in Turkey and stayed in 3* 4* and 5* hotels and have to say that with the exception of the Radisson Blu hotel, which was an acceptable 5* standard, the other hotels were far from 5* although they advertise themselves as 5* but in reality were no where near 5*.
Istanbul – Hotel Dedeman - Double bed was small and not the usual 5ft 6ins generally found in 5* hotels and general condition of the hotel and facilities were only 3*
Cappadocia – Hotel Suhan - The general condition of the hotel and facilities were only 3* The bathroom was very small with a tiny shower, which was filthy and long overdue to be replaced.
Pamukkale – Hotel Colossae - The general condition of the hotel and facilities were only 3* The room had a kettle but no complimentary water, coffee, tea, milk, etc. and the bathroom was completely void of the usual small shampoos, etc. We rang reception to report that our room hadn't been serviced, but were informed that they didn't provide any water, coffee, tea, shampoo, etc. Definitely not 5*
Izmir – Hotel Kaya Thermal - The bedroom was small and the double bed was uncomfortable with rubber filled pillows, but the general condition of the hotel and facilities were just about 4*
e) The guide, Ediz Ozdemir, came over as a school teacher rather than a tour guide and had a strange way of treating the customers. For example : During the tour of Istanbul Ediz asked how many wished to take the optional River Cruise, which was 25 Euros and lasted 1.5 hours. About 25% of the tour wished to participate. He then informed us that anyone who didn't take the cruise would have to wait 1.5 hours while the cruise was taking place. The non-cruisers complained and asked to be taken to the hotel, but Ediz stood firm and insisted that we wait. This had the effect that a few of the persons who didn't initially wish to do the cruise, decided to pay the 25 Euros rather than wait on the bank, so it ended up with about 50% taking the cruise. Eight people decided not to wait and went off to get a taxi. We had no intention of paying for a taxi so just sat on the benches and waited, with the others. We have to point out that there were no facilities to purchase refreshments or shelter while the option cruise was taking place, and if it had rained we would have all got soaked, but fortunately, the weather was fine.
There were quite a few of these strange episodes, the most outrageous one being that on Day 5 during the 634 km drive from Cappadicia to Pamukkale via Konya, Ediz informed us that he had decided to do the visit to Pamukkale on the way to the hotel rather than the following morning. He then asked who would like to do a Balloon trip over Pamukkale in the morning. (This was never an option but the Balloon trip over Cappadicia was cancelled due to bad weather, so we assume that his the commission money was lost) Well quite a few of the tour party voiced their opinion because as it was we weren't due to get to the hotel until 7pm and we had set off at 6am so to visit Pamukkale on the way to the hotel would have meant extending the day by at least 2 hours and seeing Pamukkale in poor light, plus we were all tired.
Ediz tried to insist on his revised schedule and at one stage it got quite heated and in the end Ediz agreed to stay with the original schedule. (About 8 did the Balloon trip over Pamukkale in the morning which meant that we didn’t set out to visit Pamukkale until at 8am and we were allocated just 2 hours to swim in the Pamukkale pools and to see the extensive Roman remains, which was not sufficient.
f) Our contract with Voyage-Prive included all entrance fees, Ediz gave us written notice, from hjis company Intra Tours, that we had to pay 75 Euros for entrance fees, which we refused to pay and showed him our contract with Voyage-Prive, which was eventually accepted. (As a matter of interest, we kept the entrance tickets to all the visits made where a fee was payable and checked the admission charges on the official web site [www.muze.gov.tr] and it totals 310 Tl which is about 48 Euros)
All the English speaking people got on very well and all the French speaking people seemed to get on, so in spite of the very poor quality of four of the supposedly 5* hotels, the strange attitude of the guide Ediz Ozdemir and the unacceptable lack of information from Voyage-Prive until 5 days before setting out, we enjoyed the tour and saw a lot of beautiful things, but would question Voyage-Prive's choice of Turkish partners (Intra Tours) as 5* hotels should be 5* standard not 5* rated but 3* standard.
Based on this tour alone, we would not be using the services of Voyage-Prive again, however some of the other people on the tour have done other tours with your company, or booked hotels, etc. and had good experiences, so subject to an acceptable response to this e-mail, we may consider booking another trip in the future.
The above was e-mailed to Voyage-Prive and 2 weeks later we have not received any response. Very poor unacceptable Customer relations.
It's either: A shop or other that uses SPAM to his promotion (adverts), even famous brands, deemed reliable, do the same now, I've seen public services in any country to use SPAM for their advancement (tourism, trade fairs, shows, festivals, etc..), there is only a small step for hospitals, police, governments, schools, ... will go do the same too. A disaster of modern times now affecting other means of mobile communications (smartphones, tablets, SMS, etc..).
Or if it's either: An address used for SPAM, endless new addresses (even the wacky, with a letter changed, weird word, numbers, .......) are created permanently to bypass filters, updated constantly, that harassed and antispam services put to block this scourge!
Apparently this is the feast of site creations including fake sites for spam, scams, to sell us (legally or illegally) their products or services, and pollute the planet with electric resources wasted, thank you also HOSTS complaisant with the SPAM and the world of profit!
One day, the number of Internet domains used for SPAM extensively exceed the number of useful internet domains, like the number of SPAM received which represents 90% of e-mails that are received in the world!
/!\ A VERY IMPORTANT TIP /!\ :
DON'T CLICK ON ANYLINK IN A SPAM, INCLUDING THE UNSUSCRIBE LINK, BECAUSE YOU WOULD CONFIRM THAT YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS IS VALID, TO BETTER SPAMMING YOU, SPAMS are very contagious with illegal resale data, unofficially legal in corrupt countries!
REPORT DIRECTLY SUSPECTS E-MAIL, SMS OR CALL TO SERVICES PROVIDED FOR THIS PURPOSE THAT THE AUTHORITIES AND ASSOCIATIONS HAVE PUT IN PLACE TO COMBAT THIS PANDEMIC!
Il s'agit soit: Un commerce ou autres qui se sert du SPAM pour faire sa promotion, même des célèbres marques, réputé fiable en font de même maintenant, j'ai vu des services publics de n'importe quel pays utiliser du SPAM pour leur promotion (tourisme, expositions, salons, festivités, etc.), il n'y a qu'un pas à franchir pour que les hôpitaux, la police, les gouvernements, les écoles, ... , s'y mettent aussi. Un véritable désastre des temps modernes qui touche maintenant d'autres moyens de communications mobiles (smartphones, tablettes, SMS, etc.).
Ou il s'agit sinon soit: Une des adresses servant pour le SPAM, une infinité de nouvelles adresses (même les plus farfelus, avec une lettre qui change, un mot bizarre, des chiffres, .......) sont créé en permanence pour contourner les filtres, mis a jour en permanence, que les harcelés et les services antispams mettent pour bloquer ce fléau!
Apparemment c'est la fête des créations de site y compris des faux sites pour du spam, des arnaques, de la publicité pour nous vendre (légalement ou illégalement) leur produits, ou services, et polluer la planète avec des ressources électriques gaspillés, merci aussi les hébergeurs complaisants envers le SPAM et le monde du profit!
Un jour, le nombres de domaines internet servant à du SPAM dépassera largement le nombre de domaines internet utiles, à l'instar du nombre de SPAM reçus qui représente 90% des e-mails qui sont reçus dans le monde!
La preuve ici:
/!\ UN CONSEIL TRÈS IMPORTANT /!\ :
NE CLIQUEZ JAMAIS SUR N'IMPORTE QUEL LIENS DANS UN SPAM, Y COMPRIS LE LIEN DE DÉSABONNEMENT, VOUS NE FERAIS QUE CONFIRMER QUE VOTRE ADRESSE E-MAIL EST VALIDE, POUR MIEUX VOUS SPAMMER, le SPAM est très contagieux avec la revente illégale des données, officieusement légale dans des pays corrompus!
SIGNALEZ DIRECTEMENT LES E-MAILS, LES SMS OU APPELS SUSPECTS VERS DES SERVICES PREVUS A CET EFFET QUE LES AUTORITES ET ASSOCIATIONS ONT MIS EN PLACE POUR LUTTER CONTRE CETTE PANDEMIE!
Spam emails. The email links leads, via engagementplacement.com,to pullsmart.com which has an even worse rating
I certainly have NOT given them permission to send me market marketing materials. They are UK based and ought to know the Data Protection and Electronic Privacy legislation better, and all marketing (including cookies) now has to be granted prior permission. I never explicitly allow 3rd party marketing (and only work related information on the email address they used) so there email list has come from a source that includes hacked sites or where someone has breached the DPA.