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Avoid TNK Travel

Metro Manila
4 posts
1 review
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Avoid TNK Travel

We would like to warn everyone travelling to Vietnam about this travel agency. We had a very bad experience with them. My wife and I have booked with them for a 9-day tour of Vietnam through their website. We really regretted getting them.

1. First is that upon our arrival at Ho Chi Minh airport from Manila, our guide was nowhere to be found. After a few minutes of waiting, we called us their office. The person who answered told us that the guide is on his way. Then we waited for another hour. As we were getting very impatient, we decided to take a cab to go to their office.

2. Upon our arrival to their office, we were assigned to a lady at the counter. Instead of apologizing for standing us up, the blamed us for not paying in full. She added, in a very unprofessional way that, since we did not pay in full online, all the rates have changed. in the end adjustments and hotel changes were made to our itinerary. The worst thing is that their charge went up by more than $300.00 per pax. It is obvious that this lady is overcharging us, so we tried our best to haggle. She was loudly arguing in Vietnamese with her colleage in front of us, as her colleage apparently was scolding her about or mangled itinerary. Since it is our first time in Vietnam, we just accepted their terms in resignation.

3. Our first guide, for the Saigon area leg, was friendly, but very political, speaking bad things about his government, which are way off topic for us.

4. In the Hue area, our guide also short-changed us. On the road from Danang to Hue, were supposed to pass through a scenic mountain pass as part of our itinerary. The guide told us that weather was bad so we should just use the tunnel through the mountain. We found out latter that there weather at the pass was fine. Obviously, he just wanted to save on gas.

5. On the third part of our tour, we landed at Hanoi Airport. Again we could not find the guide until after an hour of waiting. This guide frequently smiled, displaying 2 decaying teeth in front. His driver on the other had seems to be hot-head, frequently exchanging angry looks with other motorists who happen to pass him.

6. One of our biggest disappointments was not seeing Halong Bay due to the bad weather. Of course we cannot do anything about the weather, but the flip-flopping of our guide just added irritation to the disappointment. The evening before, he told us that the authorities gave the go ahead for the Halong Bay cruise. So the following morning we woke up and left the hotel very early with the guide. On the way to halong bay, the guide told us Halong Bay is a no go due to rough seas, we we will just proceed to an alternate destination. In the end this caused us a lot of loast time: 3 hours on the road to Halong plus 2 hours to the alternate location.

7. We had been with 3 guides, each for a different leg of our tour. Invariably our experience with them was that they were friendly and helpful only until the end of their duty for us. After we have filed up their "obligatory" guest opinion form and given them their substatial tip, they would disappear without a "thank you" or "good-bye".

8. Near the end of our tour, we flew back from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh for our next-day flight to Manila. Upon arrival at Ho Chi Minh, again there was no guide waiting for us. (We are seasoned travellers and we now exactly where to stand to meet our guide.) So we called their office again. The lady who answered told us that they have no record of our booking or our names! Since it was already late in the evening, we told her that we will just take a taxi to our hotel, demanding that their ofice reimburse us for the taxi ride (it was a token amount, but we were really irritated with teir service). She also promised that a guide would take us to the airport the next morning.

9. The next morning, upon checking out of our hotel, there was no guide again. So we again took a taxi ourselves to the airport for our return flight to Manila.

All in all, Vietnam is a wonderful country. We still had a great time despite the very bad service we had with TNK Travel. This is one very unreliable and overcharging travel agency you should avoid. We were astounded by the poor quality of their service, considering that it was even their low season.

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1. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

Dear all travellers to Vietnam.I agreed with this couple that we should not use TNK travel for airport "limousine"services or any of their tours.Last year I booked for a limousine airport pick up and paid fully upfront,but we ended up in a taxi after waiting at the airport for 1 hour at >34C degree.They also added $3 US for our room rate for our stay.Luckily,we had visited HCM city before and managed to find a cleaner,better hotel at a cheaper rate.I think the best service for tours around Viet nam is Saigon tourist or Viettravel.All the best for visiting this beautiful country.

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2. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

Despite the above, i found TNK travel ok to use but i only booked internal flights (from Ho chi Minh to Danang and back).

The only problem i had was that once we arrived it took a full day for us to coordinate with the company to deliver the tickets to the hotel.

It is much cheaper to book the tickets on the internet- the flights costs US $60, Aus $135 per person and to book through a travel agent in Australia was approximately $360 for the same flight- a total rip off.

i would use them again because the hassle was worth it to save so much money.

3. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

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TripAdvisor staff removed this post because it did not meet TripAdvisor's forum guideline protecting the personal privacy of our users. We will remove messages that include real names, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, street addresses, Instant Messenger handles and nicknames that are provided without permission from that user.

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Removed on: 2:31 am, October 18, 2007
Victoria, Australia
Level Contributor
619 posts
8 reviews
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4. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

hey, hey, hey. that is NOT cool. Putting peoples names and private emails on a public forum is, I'm pretty sure, against TA rules.

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5. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

1/ I know the 2 customers from Phillipines. They have contacted our company for their trip to Vietnam on Sept 10th 07 with the request of Vietnam highlights tour for 9days/8nights. They request the tour to be organized on Sept 20th 07.

2/ I have sent them the quotation US$1.050/person x 2 pax = US$2.100 for the trip and asked them to process the payment deposit to secure the tour booking. I have asked them to send US$250/person so that we can process their booking as per program. I can attach the tour program and the e-mail which has been sent to them on Sept 10th 07 if Tripadvisor.com requires.

3/ They have not answered to my me mail to tell us whether our quotation is accepted or refused. In fact, they have not replied to us since this e-mail. ( E-mail sent on Sept 10th 07 ).

4/ The tour proposal with 5 star hotel option. As many of you know, the 5 star hotel has their strict booking conditions, we can not reserve their rooms at these hotels until we have received their confirmation for the trip. We have to pay deposit for the htoels in advance since these are urgent bookings and have to pay no show fee if the customers do not travel with TNK Travel as per program. I trust you understand this point.

5/ Since we have not heard back from them nor receive their confirmation therefore we have not sent our staff ( Driver & tour guide ) to the airport to pick them up. Will you send the car & the guide to pick up the customers who have not confirmed the tour & paid for the deposit as required ?!

6/ They arrived to Tan San Nhat airport and called to my cell phone. I was very surprised and even did not know who they are. They said they have tour booked with us but no one picked them up. This is wrong. We have sent them the tour proposal but our tour program has not been accepted. They have not paid the deposit as per required ( US$250/person ). Therefore, the tour is not confirmed by TNK Travel.

7/ If they have paid deposit for the tour, we had to send them the invoice, vouchers, contact persons, instructions to find our people at the airport as we usually do with the other customers.

8/They came to our office and started to shout at my receptions on that day for more than 45 minutes. My staff checked on the confirmed list of tours. They were not found. They showed the ladies at my office the program. My staff asked to the payment deposit receipt. They did not have !

9/ My staff & the couple started to work from the start on the tour program. My staff have helped them to check the hotels as per program. Some hotels have been fully booked with the offered room type in the original tour proposal. They had to upgrade to the better room types. The surcharge of US$300/person has been agreed between the couple and my staff. They have been explained about this and paid for the tour. My question is : What is wrong with the charge of US$300/person ?. They knew exactly what they were paying for. We did not force them to pay the money ! This is an agreement in person ! not through e-mail or internet. Therefore, there is no misunderstanding. it is a pity !

10/ Reference to their point of view of the tour guide in HCMC ( Saigon ), most of Vietnamese are happy with their government. My tour guide speak bad things about his governments with the tourists ! Let me raise a question : What for ?

11/ Reference to their point of view of the tour guide in Hue, I think he did the right job when he did not take them over the Hai Van pass when he read the weather forecast a day before. The weather changed quickly in the centre of Vietnam since we usually have typhoons in this area. Will you take the customers

12/ Reference to their point of view of the tour guide in Hanoi, I wonder why they did not sympothy with him ?Why they were angry with his 2 decaying teeth although this guide frequently smiled as they confessed.

Driving in Vietnam, the driver needs to look at sides, back and front in the ant- traffic. This is normal. This is what they should learn in this trip as well.

13/ Over all, they have started with the angry feelings of not being picked up at the airport because they did not confirm their tour. Therefore, whenever they arrive to the new airports, they started to be worried. I have checked with my people that they were on time in Hanoi.

Please be honest and do not keep complaining on every little thing !

14/ What can we do with the weather in Halong ? The local government will allow the junks to sail only if the weather is fine to protect you. I understand that you are not satisfied when you can not make this trip. I am very sorry but you should think over this.

I would like tripadvisor.com to remove this post since there too many points which have been written are not corrected.

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6. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

1/ We only offer the pick up services free for those who booked the hotels with us. If they do not confirm the hotel bookings with us why do you have to offer them the "limousine"services.

2/ We have the right to make profit for hotel bookings since we are doing travel business not a charity organisations.

3/ No thing to discuss about this post.

Adelaide, Australia
Level Contributor
45 posts
3 reviews
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7. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

We have used TNK travel agent located in the An An hotel and received excellent service.

8. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

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Removed on: 2:13 pm, October 21, 2007
Adelaide, Australia
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13 posts
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9. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

Like alliecb, we use TNK based in the An An in HCMC to book our Train to Sapa, Hotel in Nha Trang and flights and were very happy with the service. Although the tickets weren't forth coming at our hotel in Hanoi. One phone call from Mrs Moon and the tickets were there later that day.

We actually went to the Sinh cafe around the corner first as we had good things about them. But the guy attending to us didn't seem interested, so we went back to our hotel and TNK.

Glasgow, United...
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57 posts
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10. Re: Avoid TNK Travel

Guys, there appears to be two companies operating with similar names.

www.tnktravel.com and www.tnktravelvietnam.com.

I am keen to use the later on a trip later this year for booking internal flights and a couple of side trips (Halong Cruise and Mekong exit to Cambodia).

Can anyone provide feedback.