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Strawberry world Madeira

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Birmingham
posts: 1
Strawberry world Madeira

Well what a waste of €42 euro of my holiday. I stayed at the monumnetal Lido hotel with Thomson Holidays and we had a great Holiday rep John who looked after us during our holiday... however the tours with Thomson we're a bit expensive so myself and my wife went to Strawberry world to get them a bit cheaper.... Low and behold we had been warned by John that the tours was a bit rubbish with anyone else, and to be honest he was right. We went on 2 of the excursions with strawberry world who left us standing for over 2 hours in a place in the north west without anywhere to get something to eat. we went to a restaurant where we paid €25 each for a meal and another €15 euros for a bottle of wine. The guide on the coach was so boring and not interesting at all and talked mainly about cristiano Ronaldo on the trip. After we came back we went to ask for a refund which we was declined to get so we lost our money. We went back to John at Thomsons and told him about what happened and we enjoyed our tours with Thomson Holidays which were first class, with a guide and professional service. we really enjoyed the East tour and Nuns Valley and will in future listen to what our rep says and take their advice.

Please avoid Strawberry World Madeira their tours are an utter waste of money. They are poor quality and should not be allowed to guide in Madeira

89 replies to this topic
funchal
posts: 1,196
reviews: 2
1. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

Its normal to pay more for a better service.

The low cost companies they have to exist because there is some persons who just care about the price and everything depends of your needs.

Low cost hotels = ????????

Low cost Fligth = ????????

Low cost tours = ????????

Low cost cars =????????

madeira
Destination Expert
for Funchal, Madeira, Madeira Islands
posts: 5,126
reviews: 32
2. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

I only ever went once with S.W, they told us that we would be able to find a restaurant for lunch, as we did not want the inclusive. Well we stopped near to Ribiera Frio, only one restaurant in sigjht and - what a surprise - set for the exact number of people on the trip.

We all refused a meal and the guide was mmost annoyed, complained to S.W. but treated with contempt.

I always prefer the Company's who use mini buses, for a couple of reasons - they will usually pick up from your hotel and the service is more personilsed and usually cost around the same price. Madeira Seekers has lots of reasonable priced mini bus tours with a good Company.

Glasgow, United...
posts: 2,240
reviews: 100
3. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

Have never used strawberry world usually go jeep tours but have used blandys a good company and there are other good companies arround.

Wrexham, United...
posts: 10
reviews: 1
4. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

I went on both their south-east and north-wast tour and had the opposite experience you did with strawberry world. The longest we stayed for lunch was 1.5 hours and there were a few places to choose from that were not very expensive. We didn't have any wine but our meals with drinks in the North-west was £16 total.

Each full day tour cost £16 compared to Thompson who were charging £44 and for me, I just wanted to get to the sights and gleam interesting info from the guide which I did. Granted they were a bit repetitive but there was no mention of Ronaldo and we had two lovely female guides.

The only irritating thing about it was some tourists who would get a good spot to take photos and then just stand there yapping while the rest of us were trying to get a nice photo for ourselves on the photo stops. Overall, I thought some of the other tourists were rude and the guides to be very helpful. But I guess that was just my experience!

Hamilton
posts: 312
reviews: 25
5. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

My wife and I also used Strawberry World last year taking the East tour. Both of us found the guides, coach and the tour very interesting with adequate time to have a look around at the various stops. We intend to use Strawberry World again when we visit this year.

On our first visit to Maderia in 2007 we used a local taxi driver call Carlos Abreu who took three of us on a west tour for 90 euros for the full day and a half day tour of the Nuns valley for 45 euros. Carlos spoke good English and took us to some places that a coach/bus could not reach. Carlos would give us an insight into the local culture, places of interest and recommend places to have a meal and a drink. I would use him again if there were three or more people but with just two it is more economical to use a tour operator.

There is also the local/island bus service that I found to be very punctual and good value for money. We travel to Santa Cruz, Cameros de Lobos and all around Funchal and had no problems with any of the journeys. I intend to use them again this year to visit more towns and villages.

Dublin
posts: 12
reviews: 2
6. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

We used Strawberry world in 2008 and we loved the way we were advised in the shop by a young man called Marco. He answered all our questions and recommended we take a mini-bus as the big coaches are more like Ryan air flights. Cheap and crowded and noisy. We had an excellent trip along the north coast of Madeira.

This year we returned to Madeira in April for the flower fetivals and low and behold - Marco was no longer in the shop of the Strawberry world. An irish gentlemen told us Marco had left the island. We were also given other details we thought were very uncalled for. We didn't really like the attitude and decided to wait a day or two before thinking about a tour. We were told we should book now or we probably wouldn't get any seats. We didn't.

Amazingly, the very next day we ran into Marco at the Monumental lido shopping complex. He very pleased to see us and we found out that he had set up his own company called Madeira Happy Tours almost next door to Strawberry world. We received the same friendly service and we had no hesitation in taking a wonderful tour to the east of the island. We had an truly amazing guide (no mention of Ronaldo) with a very comfortable mini coach.

Obviously, some companies are only as good as their staff. Strawberry World was very good for us 2 years ago but now the good service seems to have moved on to Madeira Happy Tours.

We were very happy to see the island has overcome the disasterous floods they had in March and Funchal was absolutely beautiful just 2 months later.

The Madeira Flower Festival was absolutely wonderful and the children looked adorable in their costumes. Thank you Madeira. We have every intention of visiting again soon.

Funchal, Madeira
posts: 273
reviews: 6
7. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

I have to say that this post has a certain bad smell about it. It seems to me that either Happy Tours or a Thompson rep is trying to put people off taking tours with Strawberry World. Happy tours opened up only recently, in a small shopping center right next door to Strawberry World. It seems to me that from the very favorable comment made by kimilyat, who by coincidence only joined up to make this comment, that the owner of happy tours is an ex employee of Strawberry World. He decided to offer the same tours for € 1 less which sparked off a price war and made Strawberry World drop their price to € 16 for a full day tour of either the East or West. Needless to say that for that price which is about half the price Strawberry where charging 3 years ago, something has to give!

I also have a problem with Dave Sanders comment that he wasted € 42 with Strawberry World, who by coincedence also joined just to make this post, when he would of only paid €32 for two people. Also if he ended up paying € 65 for lunch, then that was his choice because I can assure you that where Strawberry World stops for lunch on the West tour there is literary dozens of small restaurants and snack bars that will charge you half if not a third of that price.

To say that Thompsons over priced tours are more proffessional and that one should always listen to their rep, also makes me raise an eyebrow. I meet dozens of unsatisfied tourists every week that have booked and paid their tours in meetings with the reps, before they have had the chance to venture out and get a better idea of the real value of tours.

Glasgow, United...
posts: 2,240
reviews: 100
8. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

I am inclined to agree with madmara re tour ops trips they are overpriced.when in madeira i allways book through my hotel the cliff bay.i look at leaflets provided by the various local companies and make my choice.these are usually jeep or boat trips several years ago i booked a boat trip throgh the hotel and talking to other people on the trip they had booked through a tour rep i found i was paying about five euros or so less than them' i believe tour reps are paid commission on the trips they sell with the big companies so they have an incentive to plug their trips.i have found to be fair the reps i have had at the cliff bay nice trying to sell trips but no hard sell it may be just that i have been fortunate or perhaps when you stay at the cliff bay reps are more gentle in their approach i dont know. as for strawberry world i dont know i have not used them but they seem to have a good reputation.one company i have used is blandys some might say closely allinged to the cliff bay but i found them good i know there are good local companies but some bad ones as well others like flower city and madmara can advise better than me.

uk
posts: 43
reviews: 1
9. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

We have just returned from Madeira and used Strawberry World for both the East and West tours. We thought that the West tour was particularly good but both tours were excellent value for money. We were not directed to any particular restaurant at lunch time- we tended to buy sandwiches and wander around to see the sights. Overall- a day trip for £16- fantastic value.

The only niggle was the fact that very few tourists bothered to leave a tip for the driver and guide at the end of the trip.

Wrexham, United...
posts: 10
reviews: 1
10. Re: Strawberry world Madeira

Although I too am a new member, I have to say I had the same feeling madmara did. The sticking point being that they tell you where they stop for lunch in the brochure and judging from the menu I saw, there wasn't anything on there that was anywhere near 25 euros let alone spending 65 euros in total for 2 people. Only on the east tour did they ask if people wanted to pre-book lunch and that was 8 euros for soup/dessert/drink or 11 euros for fish/dessert/drink. The guide wasn't bothered at all when people didn't want to book and pointed out other places that we might want to have a snack. In fact, our meal for the east tour was 2x ham and cheese sandwiches with cappuccinos which totalled 9 euros. And the Thomson tour price isn't just a bit expensive...it's practically 3 x the price of SW.

I also find it hard to believe the Thomson tours are that good considering I could barely stand the 30 min drive to the airport on that bus, let alone a full day. But then the Thomson buses we did see were fairly empty on the tours.

I also agree with dolby about people that didn't tip. Quite a few people on the buses we went on didn't bother which is a bit of a shame.

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