It was fantastic
My husband and I recently did an Insider Journeys 7 day tour of Cambodia. We were so pleased we did it. Our 2 guides, one in Phnom Penh and the other in Siem Reap were excellent. Both spoke great english and their knowledge of the areas was amazing. My husband pulled a calf muscle in Phnom Penh and Sok our guide was so caring of him, helping him up and down steps and walking of rough ground, he treated my husband as if he would his own father. Our accommodation was excellent , they were always on time and telling us where to go when we had spare time. Would recommend to anyone. An excellent company.
Vietnam Great - not so, Laos
The hotels were great and the tour guide (Loi) was a well educated man with an encyclopaedic knowledge. He was humorous and cared for everyone in the group. We cannot recommend him highly enough. Obviously there was always going to be a degree of bias in regards to the benefits of communism and Ho Chi Min, but we were very well informed and there was enough for time for us to do all the important things like shopping or personal sight seeing! The boat on Halong bay was basic and looked in a very poor state of repair - we had been advised to br...ing soft bags for this trip and others just bought normal suitcases - they were the smart ones! The subsequent tour to Laos was entirely different though not in a good way; the hotels (guesthouse) were very basic - no pool, the tour guide (Tong) was very loose, poor knowledge / communication skills and there was way too much time on our hands in a country with little to do wander around and look at more temples! Overall, we didn't enjoy the experience and wouldn't travel with this company again, despite the best efforts of Loi, who often went the extra yard to meet our various requirements. Not value for money...
Poor itinerary and time management at our expense.
3. Insider journey booking number IN/940786
Flight Centre highly recommended and organized this Insider Journeys provided by Freedom Road Travel tour of Suzhou gardens, Wuzhen and Hangzhou 5 days/ 4 nights.
2 nights in Suzhou were in a (NO Star ) Chinese hotel with no air conditioning and no continental breakfast ( only chinese breakfast made us unwell the first morning.) This was a breach of contract as our itinerary stated that we would be in a 3 or 4 star accommodation.
We complained about the accommodation and breakfast and where taken to a Starbucks and had breakfast at our expense.
...2nd day The day started with a pick up at 9.30am and return to Hotel at 2.30 pm end of tour for that day. When asked why the tour was short, our guide blamed Flight Centre for organizing the tour itinerary. I said that you are on the ground here and we do not know if a park/garden takes 30minutes or half a day to see. The guide did not have an answer and basically we felt we spent 2 days in Suzhou, when all could have been seen in 1 day. This was poor itinerary and time management at our expense. On the 3rd day we were picked up from our hotel at 9am after no sleep from room being hot and humid with no air conditioning. I blasted our guide for the poor accommodation and breakfast and he said his office had not returned his calls from the previous day. We had 2.5 hour drive to our next Wuzhen Water Town attraction which was spectacular but because we left the hotel late at 9am and after having breakfast at Starbucks at our expense, we got caught in a china traffic jam. The 3 to 4 hours that we were to have at Wuzhen Water Town was cut to under 2 hours. We still wanted to walk the shop side of the channel and take in all of what it had to offer, but we ran out of time, again due to poor time management from the guide. We could have easily left our hotel at 8am that day. Day 5. On the last day our guide wanted to leave Hangzhou at 9am to travel the 3 hours back to Shanghai to end the tour. We went AWOL and texted our guide that we would be ready for pickup at 11.30am as we wanted to walk and catch a buggy that travelled around the West Lakes at Hangzhou which time did not permit the previous day. During our journey back to Shanghai in the afternoon we found out that the guide had to pick up another tour group from the Airport at 2.30pm and wanted to cut our tour short. Our itinerary stated end of tour at 4.30pm at our hotel in Shanghai. Concluding comments. We are busy people and wanted a so called professional team (Flight Centre) to organize our China trip. The result was a combination of errors and passing the blame onto others with us coming home disappointed that we did not receive what we paid for and we were put into stressful and unnecessary situations on our so called holiday!. We have given a written review of the tour Suzhou Gardens, Wuzhen and Hangzhou 5 days/ 4 nights tour to our guide which he was to hand to Freedom Road Travel office.. We pointed out the poor time management, food (breakfast) and below par accommodation and stated point blank that we would never tour with them again. Our tour ended 3 weeks ago and we have not heard from Insider Journeys or Freedom Road Travel or Flight Centre – except an email to ask if we had kept our train tickets and would give a refund difference between a non window and window seat which angered us even further as no amount of refund will make up for a 1900 klm train trip with no window. Insider Journey/Freedom Road Travel attention to detail and customer care is non-existent. They can’t even provide 3 or 4 star accommodation as stated in their brochure and Flight Centre are also partly to blame as they associate themselves with these cowboy tour operators and recommend them to trusting customers. We have travelled to China before with Intrepid which was brilliant so we know what a well organised tour can be which makes this Private Tour really disappointing and a total rip off. With this being the second holiday booked through flight Centre after the Bali Trip last year and spending around $8500.00 on this China Escape, we thought your team would have looked after us during our travels, but this did not happen.
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We booked a private tour for 3 people through our travel agent and she used Insider Journeys as the provider in Vietnam. We had 20 days all up in Vietnam and found Insider Journeys guides and drivers to be excellent. We were always picked up on time from our hotels or airports. The guides were very knowledgeable and their English was very good. All our hotels were excellent, the only change we would probably have made was to fly from Ho Chi Min City to Dalat, rather than going by road. I would highly recommend them for private tours.
Great tour of north and central Vietnam
We have just returned from a 16 day tour with a few days in Hanoi, Halong Bay, Sapa, Hue and Hoi An with Insider Journeys which was organised through our local travel agent.
Overall the tour was extremely well organised and the places were all booked and local tour guides were outstanding. Hotel staff at Hanoi hotel were the pick of all our hotel staff with Hue Saigon Morin Hotel the slackest and least helpful.
Insider Journeys guides were both fantastic with intimate local knowledge and plenty of history lessons for both of us. Tam our Sapa guide was especially helpful and patience in his delivery of local people’s and their customs.
More to come when I get to the laptop soon,
Questions & Answers
Hi Off to china for 3 weeks with you guys. in your paperwork you have not given any information on accessing the internet while there. What would you recommend for accessing emails and social media while there?
Hello I am planning on using Insider Journeys for China 14 days. Are they a good company??
John and I found them excellent! They look after everything - 15 days through Vietnam and Cambodia and they have been wonderful . We have learnt so much about these beautiful places - with personal drivers and personal tour guides. We will use them again
I've done ten tours with Insider Journeys (nee Travel Indochina) and all were first class. All transfers to and from the airport went to plan, the guides were reliable, and all the destinations were visited as per the itinerary; I have every intention of travelling with them again. The Chinese trip I did was fantastic - I'm sure you will enjoy going there too!!!
Hi, we are traveling to Japan and using insider journeys when we arrive as our travel company. Does anyone have any feedback on this experiences with this company in Japan?
Don't use Insider Journey. You will have too much free time. I just did 16 days of Vietnam with Insider Journey. For the amount I paid $3220, I did not get my money's worth. You will be better of organizing a trip to Japan on your own. Don't waste your money or time with Insider Journey. Hotels are sub-standard, guides barely speak any English and most of your time will be free time with barely 2 hours of guided sight seeing per day. Rest of the time are free time.
I wouldn't recommend them either. We did a trip through Vietnam and got taken from one commission stop to another by guides who could barely speak English.
We are currently in Japan and have used insider Journeys for 3 of our day tours. We have had great guides and no issue with them. We have arranged a 10 day trip and self touring ourselves so only using them for certain tours. We have arrange personal guides for other tours by doing this we have been able to do our own thing at our own pace. You will love Japan, the people are so helpful.
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