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Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Madrid, Spain
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Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Last June 11th we went to Nepal.-We decided to organize it through a travel agency. That was the first mistake, it is not necessary at all to hire any travel agency to get there.

We went on an eleven-day trip. The first two days we stayed in Katmandhu, that is more than enough to visit all the most interesting places in the city. Besides if you stay in the Moonlight Hotel, you do not want to spend more than two nights there, it is not a really nice hotel to stay in.

Nepali people do not usually have a good level of English, but when you hire a travel agency you expect to get a good tourist guide. That was the first disappointing thing, the guide we had was terrible, it was really a struggle to understand him because of his accent, and what is worsehe did not care at all if we were understanding him or not. In addition, he did not seem to have any passion for his job, he was in a hurry to finish and get us back to the hotel.

The most interesting visiting we did in Katmandhu was the Crematorium Temple sightseeing, which we had to do on our own because it was not included in our tour itinerary. For the visit we got an official guide. That guide was brilliant, totally different from our agency guide. He was really passionate and demonstrated an in depth Knowledge of he was talking about.

After our stay in Katmandhu we went on a two days trekking trip. From that date onwards we had a new guide. His name was Bisnhu. We met him at the hotel just before we left to our starting trekking point. Bisnhu was a shy twenty two years old guy, with a terrible level of English, in fact for a tourist guide he did not have the best skills.

Once we got to the starting trekking point, we realized that there was no Sherpa to carry our bag. We should have had one, because we had paid for that service. Naturally, we got really upset and we asked Bisnhu where the Sherpa was. But the poor guy did not seem to know anything about that issue and he could only offer to carry some load of our bag, but that was not the deal.

When we finished the trek, we spent the second night in the only nice hotel of the whole trip. Once there, we were able to send an email to the travel agency to make a claim for the issue of the Sherpa. Their response was not how we expected them to solve such a huge mistake. They only apologized saying that “they were really sorry” and they asked us if we wanted to get our money back for the no Sherpa service, that it was just thirty dollars. We think it is totally ridiculous to give us back thirty dollars as a kind of compensation for two days of walking carrying our own heavy bag.

We felt totally cheated. But the most incredible thing is that they blamed Bisnhu, one of their own employees, for not hiring the Sherpa. When you pay a travel agency to do a job you expect them to take responsibility for any kind of trouble you might have instead of blaming one of their own employees.

The rest of trip with our guide was even worse. After the trek we went to the Chitwan National Park. We thought we would stay in a kind of lodge in the middle of the jungle, but instead we were taken to a shabby resort inside a village, not a really nice environment.

We stayed in Chitwan for two nights, after that we went to Pokara. We spent three nights there, too much time for such a small city, is not really worth staying for that long there if you just intend to wander around the city. The sightseeing we did with Bisnhu was awful, because that guy was hardly able to explain anything about the history of the places we visited, we were able to learn more reading from our guide book.

Again, the hotel we stayed in Pokara was really ugly, but by that time we did not expect anything better. The stay was for three days. Our schedule was really boring, we just did two hours sightseeing in the morning and we had the rest of the day free. You do not have too much to do in that city apart from hanging around and do some shopping. The most exciting sightseeing we did, again like in Katmandhu, was done on our own. We went up to Sangarot hill to see the sun rise, from where you can see all the Anapurna Mountains; we could not understand why that was not included.

In conclusion I have to say that for almost one thousand euros per person, including hotels, guides and the sightseeing Nepal Social Trek, is a scam. I would not recommend this service to anyone.

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for Nepal, Tibet, Bhutan, Bhaktapur, Kathmandu, Jomsom, Mustang Region, Namche Bazaar, Sagarmatha National Park, Annapurna Region
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1. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Hello Aegido,

Welcome to Nepal forum!

I am really sorry to hear your experiences and thank you for sharing your feelings with us. I analyzed the itinerary, services, hotels etc and seems the price you paid was little high.

#Regarding guides: I did tours with both English speaking guide and French speaking guides. The tour guides I had were amazing. Between them, the French speaking was advanced with everything in his mind. I must say both of them were great. It seems that you didn't get tour guide but the company sent you trekking guide. I think tour guides [assuming only] have better knowledge and are more qualified than trekking guide. I am not saying that all trekking guides are poor communicating but comparing to tour guides [real tour guides] trekking guides are little poor in communicating. On my treks, I talked with few trekking guides and most of them have basic broken English [my is terrible too but I think it's OK for a French]. But you seem to got a terrible one, which is pity.

#Hotels: Never heard about any hotels you mentioned. They seem to be basic guest houses but I have no idea about them at all. May be at the time of booking or exchanging emails the company might told you about the hotel category. If they didn't mention anything then the services you got is not reasonable for what you paid.

#Chitwan Accommodation: The hotels / lodges inside the national park are not closed if I am not wrong. You only have option to stay outside the national park but there are good lodges to select from.

I feel so sorry about your experiences and I am sure that it will help other travelers to read about it.

Good Luck next time!

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Bangkok, Thailand
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2. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Aegido - please list the name of this agency in TTF and VT so other people are aware. verry sorry to hear about your experience. the reason they paid you back $30 for porter probably was becasue that is how much they would paid to a porter - $15/day is the going rate more or less. but then not sure if they had promissed one porter or two porter or decided to skip it thinking it was a short trek.

not all agencies are like that - but you get some rotten apples for sure.

nepal is a trekking and mountaineering destination (ABC, EBC, Langtang etc) first and foremost and then other things like KTM, Chitwan, PKR etc are fillers!!!!!

Denmark
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3. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Sorry to hear that you have had such a bad experience with your chosen Agency, but I can't help thinking it is a pity, you didn't join TA a little sooner. You could have found lots of info in this forum about what to be aware of, when planning a tour in Nepal, and book directly at a Nepal based Agency.

Also I think you must take in consideration, that Nepal is one of the poorest countries in the World, so standards can not be expected to be as high as in more rich countries. Everything just is more primitive and locals are - in my opinion -in generel doing a great job to serve tourists.

I am not saying that the Agency have done a good job; I am just saying that you can't expect Things to be like in Europe!

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Sheffield, United...
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for Nepal
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4. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Aegido - bad luck, thanks for the report.

Augido has already posted on TT and a very experienced, regular trekker has added his experience and to the poor service and incompetence described above, can be added an attempted scam:

www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/thread.jspa…

scoodly

Madrid, Spain
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5. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Hi Lisbeth_Friis,

First of all thanks for reading my post.

I want to make just a remark about what you told me. I am used to travel around poor contries such as Kenia, Tanzania, etc. That's for sure that is totally different from Europe. I agree with you about my huge mistake in hiring the TA so sooner, I deeply regret about that. Even so, the service we got was a scam, with the money we paid, even in Nepal, you can get a really niece places to stay in.

I just want to advise people not to hire Nepal Social Trek Agency.

As I said before, I really appreciate your post, If I came back there I 'd do it in a different way.

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Kathmandu, Nepal
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21 posts
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6. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Hello Everyone

I just read through Aegido having a terrible experience with some TA. I am really sorry that you had such experience in Nepal but mate, com'on, you are saying that Nepali people usually do not have a good level of English, those are your exact words, i am deeply offended by that because i am a Nepali too. Please do remember that English is our second language, just as yours and Nepal's total literacy rate is among the very poor in the world. Our country and lot of other things are very different than yours. So consider yourself lucky that you had someone who you could atleast converse with while on your trek. I am quite sure that the poor guide (BISHNU) must have done all he could to make your trip better - he even carried some of your load even though that was not part of his job. I don't see any gratitude for that guy here.

And you don't even seem to know what Sherpa is - for your kind information - Sherpa are indigenous people of Nepal- and making a remark like that about them sounds racist to me. Some one who carries your load is called a PORTER not SHERPA.

It's sad that you had a awful experience but for me, you sound like a someone very obnoxious and grumpy.

Sorry guys that's how i feel about his story and also, who are we to make judgement - we are only reading one side of the story!

Adios Amigo!

Edited: 11:32 am, July 12, 2013
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Madrid, Spain
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5 posts
3 reviews
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7. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Hi,

I am really sorry about offending you, that was not my porpouse. My objective of this post it is to advise people not to hire with Nepal Social Trek agency. I only tell the story just how it was.

I am really upset with that TA. I feel totally cheated. I have been to a very poor contries such as Kenia, Morrocco, etc. I'd ever had any issue, and I've always enjoyed a lot. So please do not try to judge me because you don't know anything about me.

I Knew in advance about the level of English from Nepali people, but the thing is that I paid a huge amount of money for a service that I did not receive. In fact I met some really niece Nepali people who spoke a good english, so I expected a better english for a tourist guide.

Sorry again about the sherpa name, I already knew where the word comes from, I did not have any intention to be racist at all. I know that in Nepal you call them Porter, but I have to say that for foreign people, especially for english speakers, they are more used to call them sherpa than porter.

Kind regards!!

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Cumbria
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8. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

I am also sorry to hear of your poor experiences with Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

My own views are that you shouldn’t sign up to anything before arriving in Nepal and therefore tie yourself into something by paying a hefty deposit before meeting your trekking staff.

I also advocate the use of Google to check out both the Good and the Bad feedback that is usually available somewhere on the net.

Also – In the case of Nepal Social Treks, I would be especially cautious because of all the, well lets just say suspicious posts written by one time posters singing their praises, often on inappropriate sections here on TA

tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowUserReviews-g293890-d2…

If a company has to stoop to tactics like this to gain business, then it’s hardly surprising that complains such as yours happen – Come on, 109 reviews with 104 of them graded “Excellent !!!!!!!!

Good Luck for your future trips

Rob

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Kathmandu, Nepal
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227 posts
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9. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Thanks for the your Trip report. it will be help full for other new travelers, But sorry to hear this all what happened to you.

hope next time you will get good guide and company,

sali

Kathmandu, Nepal
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3 posts
7 reviews
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10. Re: Nepal Social Trek Travel Agency

Regarding Albertoe reviews on his trip to Nepal.

First of all, we are deeply sorry that despite all our efforts this trip did not fulfill Alberto’s expectations. The aim of our company is always to do our best to make our clients trip a wonderful experience. In this particular case, we have tried our best to fix the unexpected, asked what else we could do to make things better.

About the itinerary: this was a tailored itinerary made exactly as the premises specified by Alberto. The agent he spoke with changed the original itinerary literally 8 times upon Alberto’s requests which for us that is great as it ensures that the client knows exactly what he/she is paying for and gets exactly what he/she wants. We love to work this way and don’t mind make all the changes required before or during the travel. We gave advice as how much time was necessary in each city and what to see. Alberto, though insisted that they wanted more time for themselves in each cityand changed the sightseeing plan after he had studied a lonely planet guide and decided what to see with us and what to do on their own.

There were two things changed in this itinerary:

Upon their arrival the airline they flew in to Kathmandu lost their luggage, so instead of having their free time and sightseeing as planed it was changed for them to come to our office, make international calls from our lines to their insurances and we arrange a service to monitor their luggage to make sure it arrived on time and managed their transportation to/from the airport to collect the luggage next day. All this with no additional cost to their package. We saw our client with a problem and who best than us to help them solve it? Our pay was their problem solved and them being able to continue their journey well.

The day spent in Nagarkot had a departure delay. There was a National General Strike in the country, that in Nepal means that literally can’t be any transportation whatsoever, shops must remain closed, etc, literally the entire country stops. This is not chosen by the people is enforced. Even though is clear that we are not responsible for political disturbances, we managed throughout contacts to pick up Alberto group and other clients that were also stuck. That way none of our clients would have to miss a day in their journeys.

About the guide: Bishnu is a well experienced guide and porter. He holds a mid-level degree in Spanish and an Advance degree. Along with his education records on English all our clients, British, American and Australian have certified his well level of the language, as shown in This review: tripadvisor.co.uk/…REVIEWS We know that for a Spanish citizen can be difficult to understand as per accent difficulties. For that, the agency asked several times if the group was ok with him, if they were happy with his services and the answers received were that he was wonderful. That also happened with the city guide in kathmandu, with whom the group congratulate us for his work and even suggested to have all the trip with him. Due to that guide only being city guide that was not a possibility for the trek days. So it was agreed to continue the trip with Bishnu.

About the porter issue: The trek was a two days trek. It isn’t common to hire an extra porter with the guide for a 2 days trek ususally the same guide will do both jobs. Because of that, in his eagerness to help, Bishnu thought that he would be capable of carrying most of the luggage for the two people in the group and save them that money as he understood also that was the most appropriate. We understand that they hired a service for an extra porter to not have to carry a thing. But as Alberto told us when reported the problem, Bishnu carried most of the weight. Though still we deeply apologised and tried to refund the money of the porter and make things up to them for any trouble with the load.

About the Hotels: All the hotels were 3 standard stars hotels. Exactly what was asked for. The hotels were included in the itinerary given to Alberto so in case those were not liked there was the possibility to change to other hotels. The hotel Club Himalaya in Nagarkot is actually the best hotel there, a 5star hotel that we included for the same price as the 3star hotels. In chitwan, the Parkland Hotel is one of the best hotels near the national park. There is not higher quality hotels in that area and none in the reservation area of the jungle. The hotel in Kathmandu, the Moonlight, is located one street from Thamel area, ensuring the client is still in the centre but without the noise. This is the oldest of the hotels where they staid at but has been renovated recently. Regarding the hotel in Pokhara, the Lake Star hotel, is a one y.o hotel so all beds and accommodations are new.

To ensure there were no problems during the tour, we keept in touch through whatsup, viber and email asking how was the trip going and the answers given were: “everything is going good. Only, we had rain in chitwan so couldn’t do much, but that is not your fault, so don’t worry”.

Once back in Kathmandu, we wanted to make sure that despite the problem with the porter they were happy and had a good trip, which for us is what matters the most. Hence, we invite them to have lunch with our office management so they could openly talk to us and give us their feed back of the trip. The lunch went well and no complaints were made. That can also be seen at Alberto’s Own Review: tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g293890-d4… in Trip Advisor at the restaurant we took them to.

Once they were back home under our surprise we received this long email about how awful the trip was and how unhappy they were. These news devastated us. Again, we are deeply sorry and apologise for not being enough. We understand your free will of reviewing but we don’t understand why the harmful writing. At this point we have ran out of ideas of how to make it up to you, so Please, tell us how. As we have already asked you through email, what is what you need or want from us? What is what we missed in all this situation? We will continue on working towards the best of us as a team being one of the best tour and trekking companies in Nepal and all suggestions to be better are more than welcome. Also if anyone needs further explanations you can write us back and we will give proof of whatever is required.

Thank you all for your patience, help and support.

Kind regards,

Nepal social treks.

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