Worst Tour Ever
My family of 5 signed on for the 7 day Yellowstone/Mt. Rushmore Tour from Denver, Colorado ( Tours4Fun). The day before we were told that we would join another tour group (Seagull). The meeting place at the airport was changed 3 times. It was confusing. We arrived before 11:30am as stated in the itinerary or else miss the city tour. We left at 12:45pm. People ate and waited for others. Time wasted. I could have 1) arrived that day of the tour and 2) save on one night hotel bill for 5 of us.
My itinerary stated a Coors Brewery Tour. I spoke to the guide. The Coors Brewery does not allow bus tours for the last 5+ years. I chose to start at Denver because of the brewery. I should have started at Salt Lake City. It is still on the Tours4Fun website for the following tours-85-2936, 85-2944, 85-3103. I called the operator for Tours4Fun at the airport and complained. No results.
We are Chinese Americans and were treated as second class citizens. The tour guide did not translate all the information to English and vice versa .The bus drivers spoke English on the microphone and ask everyone to make sure to clean your area before leaving the bus daily. We were in the front seats and hear the driver asking the guide to translate. He refused. After a couple of day, the bus was a mess. The guide announces the same information and I yelled out, Translate and he did.
The tour guide would speak very lengthy in Mandarin and short in English. More information was given to the Mandarin speaking travelers. We do understand Cantonese/English and a little Mandarin. We knew it was multi- language tour, but did not know it would be so unbalance.
The tour guide had religious comments that were not appropriate. Religion and Politics should not be on the tour agenda.
The guide had no control on the bus. The groups of Mandarin speakers were so loud. I asked them to quiet down especially when he was speaking. I could not hear him. He moved us away from them. I finally spoke up at one point and said I can not hear you because too many people are talking. After a couple of complaints, he finally spoke to the group. I told him I would take more action if it continues.
Due to his choices, we had a very limited visiting at Jackson Hole. One place I was looking forward to. We were suppose to eat lunch at Jackson Hole, but landed up at one of Yellowstones cafeteria. We were 2 hours behind as we left. We were always in a rush and would arrive at the hotels so late that most of us did not eat / ate at 9-10 pm. Most of the food concession closed at 10pm or earlier. We could not enjoy the hotel facilities/town. Some of the hotels were very shabby. Limited hot water, sheets were worn out, and the rooms did smell. Two hotels did not have any elevators. Ramada Inn and Holiday Inn were excellent.
We had a great opportunity to tour the Mormon Temple. According to the Seagull Tour, the sister of missionaries would give a tour of the ground, but of course this was not taken advantage of. We were there so early (8:25 am- 9:05 am) that nothing was opened. Even the visiting center was closed (opened at 9:00 am). As we left at 9:05 the sister of the missionaries were all lined up on the sidewalk welcoming the tour buses. This is one of the major attractions in SLC.
Important information was not given during the tour (eg. Deadwood- Midnight Saloon (Kevin Costners Casino/Restaurant, History of Wild Bill Hick, (Casino he played in and this is were he died) & Calamity Jane, Glenwood Springs- Doc Holiday died here, grave within walking distant as some travelers went to the hot spring (1 hours), Denver- Buffalo Bill grave/museum, US Mint, Going through the Eisenhower Tunnel, Did not mention Famous ski resort- (Aspen/Vale- we drove by the slopes and town)
Food was bad... Chinese buffets- BK, Subway, Wendy, Supermarket, McDonalds, we were able to have 2-3 decent dinners.
Good- 4 breakfasts were included, except many early risers ate their share and bagged food to go. Not much for the later eaters.
$40.00 for 4 tours was not worth it... The tour collected $40 x 58 passengers= $2,320.00. I believe that the 4 tours would cost only about of the collection.
One can do better on your own- Tour guide gave a very brief introduction and uses the CD for visual. At the site, he gives you 30-40 min. This tour was mainly a self guided tour. Not enough time given to see the presentations (film/rangers tour) and free tours at the sites.
**** The driver, Chris was excellent. He drove very well, supplied water, kept the bus clean, spoke to everyone, and took care of our luggage. He worked harder than the tour guide.
*WORD TO THE WISE & BE WARNED:
DO NOT BOOK WITH TOURS4FUN/SEAGULL TOURS.
SPEND A LITTLE MORE MONEY AND DO YOUR RESEARCH
THERE ARE TRAVEL COMPANIES THAT ARE WORTH THE MONEY, HONEST, FAIR, HAVE EXCELLENT TOUR GUIDES THAT KNOW THE
INFORMATION, AND DECENT FOOD AND LODGING