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Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

rochester
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2 posts
15 reviews
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Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

Keen to book with this agent but I would like to pay deposit by credit card, as then it is protected if they go bankrupt/don't exist. Solo Sicily have said, however, that I have to pay by bank transfer, under Italian Law. Is this correct ?

I have tried to contact previous 2 post-ers about whether solo sicly are reliable, but neither has answered PM.

Can anyone help ?

Here & There
Destination Expert
for Sicily, Taormina
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96,160 posts
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1. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

Best of Sicily is about all things Sicilian.

Their site accepts bank wire transfer or major credit card.

Conditions and Terms:

bestofsicily.com/sicilytours2005.htm#profits

Vagabonda

Here & There
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for Sicily, Taormina
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2. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

Tour of Sicily is a very repuatble company.

You should find their information interesting.

How Can I Pay?

http://www.tourofsicily.com/how_can_i_pay.htm

Vagabonda

Here & There
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for Sicily, Taormina
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3. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

Even more interesting...

thinkSicily is a very repuatble company and similar to soloSicily in that it too rents villas.

They accept credit cards.

www.thinksicily.com/sicily/showpage.asp?n=314

Vagabonda

rochester
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2 posts
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4. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

thanks Vagabonds; it is interesting that other co.s have no problems with credit cards. We have looked at Think Sicily - though they are expensive - and I think we may go with them to be on the safe side.

(Solo sicily also have no price increase for 2009 from 2008, which is unusual too!)

Here & There
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for Sicily, Taormina
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5. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

soloSicily could be completely reputable, but you are right to be cautious, especially when similar companies don't appear to operate in the same mode.

Makes one wonder how tight finances are within the company, and apparently they aren't eager to pay credit card commissions.

You would do them a service to direct them to this thread.

thinkSicily offers outstanding villas – enjoy!!

Best Wishes!

Vagabonda

pa
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1 post
72 reviews
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6. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

Hi,

I am traveling to Palermo from the US on October 22 and will be there from October 23-November 3rd. I am flying out of Newarek. I booked a tour of Sicily with a company called City Discovery. The tour is for 8 days/7 nights. It is called the Jolly Sicily Tour leaving October 25th from the Jolly Hotel in Palermo. They will discount their rate to $1530. for a single person. It is all inclusive for BLD and stays at the Jolly Hotels. It looks to be faced paced with a day or so in each location. I will return to Palermo and extend my stay a little longer to tour, etc. If there is anything I can do to help you, please reply. I have been working on my trip for over a month and it has just finally come together.

Terri

Here & There
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7. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

I have been in contact with soloSicily – actually three times since this thread first posted.

Gioacchino (CEO at soloSicily) has been very gracious with his time and has responded twice to my many questions.

I am quite satisfied with the responses.

soloSicily is a young company (2006), but very professional with a passionate team consisting of DOC Sicilians with very good knowledge of our native land.

They offer a full support on the grounds with a 24 hour call centre and local managers who personally welcome customers at the villa and are always ready to get in their cars to reach the client for any issue that may occur.

Worth to mention is their relationship with the property owners - both working together to satisfy clients for repeat visits to Sicily.

soloSicily has decided not to increase prices this year - because of global financial issues, a benefit to travellers.

I have been assured that bank transfers are the most secured way to pay for a product on the internet.

soloSicily is a property service agency. In Italy, if you are not a hotel or travel agent, you can't accept credit card payment over the phone. Therefore, bank transfers are accepted since only hotels can accept credit card payment over the phone.

Credit card payments online result in a 4% commission to the bank – that would significantly increase the cost of the villa rental.

thinkSicily’s villas probably cost so much more because the credit card commission is probably already included in the final price.

soloSicily’s villas cost less, not because their villas are cheaper in terms of quality, but because there aren’t any extra costs added, like the commissions.

soloSiicly is working very hard to obtain a full tour operator license but since they decided to register in Palermo to maintain their roots, the bureaucracy in Italy has taken time and they are still waiting for the full license to arrive.

Even with the issue of credit card commissions, soloSicily is working hard in order to obtain the full TO license that will allow them to take credit cards over the phone so that clients will have two payment method options.

I have checked the villas - they are outstanding.

If you have interest in any of soloSicily's villas, you should not hesitate to book - there is a risk with any company, but not more here than anywhere else.

Vagabonda

London
1 post
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8. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

Hi

I booked last summer the accommodation in Sicily with SoloSicily. I strongly recommed you go with a different agent.

When we arrived there the property did not have the requirements that we have requested before making the booking. We asked for a fully fenced property suitable for dogs and children. The property was not fully fenced at all.

Several issues arised during our stay: ari conditioning not working, every day some workers were there to fix something, the owner of the property was basically there checking everything every day.

When complaining about several issues with SoloSicily we did not receive any satisfactory answer. The only offer was 5% discount on our future booking that anyway ThinkSicily offers to every repeater customers.

There is no law in Italy stopping them to accept credit cards. The only reason why they want a bank transfer is to do not pay the fees to the credit card company.

Here & There
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for Sicily, Taormina
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9. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

I agree that the commissions to the credit card companies are a huge issue and a major factor in not accepting credit card payment.

Travellers will just have to decide for themselves between companies offering lower rates who don’t accept credit cards, and those companies who do accept credit cards, but charge higher rates.

Vagabonda

London
2 posts
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10. Re: Sicily Travel Agent - Solo Sicily

We booked last July with solosicily and I have to say we had the most wonderful holiday in Sicily. We thought the villa was fantastic and, despite our initial concerns, the domestic arrangements worked perfectly. Rather worryingly, we've now very comfortable with the idea of having someone clear up after our meals and aren't sure how we're going to manage now we're back home again! we truly appreciated the staff at the villa - all of whom simply couldn't have done more to help.

The booking procedure couldn't go more smoothly and local support from soloSicily just impeccable. They even arranged a birthcake surprise for one of ours...simply superb!

We had a great experince with this agent... and the villa, some clients write reviews that just aren't fair.

regarding the credit card payment I strongly agree with vagabonda: it's up to the client choosing what is more convenient, I can only say we prefered to spend less money paying via bank transfer as secured just like c. card payment.

see ya!