Just returned from a 2 week BVI flotilla. Fantastic sailing, excellent lead boat/ team. Very professional sailing lead skipper and helpful engineer. Helpful engineer needed as there were significant unsorted boat maintenance issues. Tui additionally, need to sort out 1 significant aspect of their "holiday experience" for me to return any time soon:
Need to organise better flights to and from Tortola. They offer one flight only from Gatwick with Virgin Atlantic. Any other flights need to be booked independently and they explicitly will not guarantee arrivals etc if not booked through themselves. As I live in Manchester and Tui aka Thomson offer a direct Manchester - Barbados flight, I cannot understand why this was not forthcoming? Instead, their only option was: get from Manchester to London Gatwick on your own, fly London Gatwick to Antigua ( worst airport I have ever travelled through and I have travelled extensively. Had to go through Immigration and then immediately exit through Emigration, where four separate families (some with infants) were sent to the back of a very long queue, in the steamy heat for missing one line of a repetitive entry and then exit document!). then it was a Liat flight to Tortola. Wait for the return nightmare: Tortola to Antigua. Same ridiculous form filling in duplicate, surly, rude immigration/ emigration staff, followed by a Virgin flight that left Antigua, to touch down in Barbados ( 3 hours extra added, collecting more passengers and refueling, changed to this deviation after booking!) and then on to Gatwick etc. For a holiday costing, on average £6000 per couple, Tui and Virgin this is just not good enough. the BVI however is filled with charming, polite people, happy to be alive and very welcoming. the sailing was great as was the company. Tui, in future, please sort: Thomson Manchester - Barbados, Liat Barbados - Tortola or we'll be choosing Greece and Turkey for sailing in future.
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