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“Good idea, total lack of trolleys”
Review of The Vancouver Trolley Company - CLOSED

The Vancouver Trolley Company
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: The Vancouver Trolley Company's Hop-On, Hop-Off City Attractions Tour is the easiest way for visitors to enjoy Vancouver's most popular areas, including: Stanley Park, Chinatown, Gastown and Granville Island. The tour features a live and informative commentary and 35 stops so you have the opportunity to learn what makes Vancouver such a spectacular and special city.
Reviewed July 8, 2017

When they sell you the tickets they tell you there is live commentary - as opposed to the other hop-on/hop-off company which has recorded commentary - and they claim the trolleys run every 20 minutes. When we got on the trolley we were told the trolleys actually leave every 30 minutes "or so" and that they actually do not get to the designated stops for about every 40 minutes, because of traffic. What they do not tell you is that even if a trolley shows up at a stop, you may not be able to get on because there are no seats (you cannot stand on a moving trolley) and you will have to wait for the next trolley - where there may or not be seats.

This trolley company has two routes - the city and the park - which are both included in the (expensive) ticket price. We decided to take the entire city loop first to get the full tour, then stay on and get off at Granville Island at the market. When we returned to the starting point - Canada Center - we had to get off the trolley and wait for another one because it was time for the driver's break. We got off at Granville Island, visited the market and had lunch. We returned to the trolley stop to take a trolley back to Canada Center. When we got to the trolley stop, there was a large group of very angry passengers. They said they had been waiting for 1 1/2 hours to catch a trolley and that every trolley which stopped was full and they could not get on. They called the trolley company and were told an "overflow trolley" was on its way. That was nearly an hour ago. A group of 4 people finally gave up and took a taxi back downtown. We waited 45 minutes. A trolley finally arrived and there were enough seats for everyone to get on.

We returned to Canada Center and got on the park trolley, which went to Stanley Park. We did not hop on or off. The narration was quite good (as opposed to the city tour which was not very informative). Stanley Park is huge and quite beautiful - well worth a visit. It was a Canadian holiday the day we visited (July 3) and it was very crowded.

I would not recommend this company. You waste a lot of time waiting for trolleys and there is no guarantee you can get on when one finally arrives. If you hop on and hope off, it will make for a very long day. If you stay on the trolley for the entire journey, it will give you an idea of the layout of Vancouver and give you ideas of where to return to visit - but not on the trolley.

The competing hop/on - hop/off company runs its buses much more frequently and its buses seat more people. Even though their commentary is recorded, it would be a better option if you actually want to hop/on and hop/off and visit Vancouver's sights.

2  Thank luvroma2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (949)
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in 9 reviews
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in 14 reviews
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"grouse mountain"
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"overview"
in 60 reviews
"commentaries"
in 10 reviews
"gastown"
in 45 reviews
"aquarium"
in 37 reviews
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Reviewed July 7, 2017 via mobile

Paid too much for this hop on / off tour. Paid an agent at the stop in front of our hotel and after we paid she told us the schedule is every 30 min not 20 today. We walked 20 min to the main stop to fight for a spot on the next bus. We didn't dare get off since our bus was full and people were turned away at the first 5-6 stops so we just rode the whole loop. We took a second loop to Granville island and Made the mistake of getting off. Coming back we waited 45 min and never saw a bus, but saw 3 green & blue buses from their competitor. Ended up walking the last 30 min. back to our hotel. They refunded our tickets but still a very disappointing & needlessly tiring day.

Thank lizmA9428MJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2017

We spent our first full day in Vancouver on this tour. The Green Tour provides a great look at Stanley Park. The narration is very helpful. Take a look inside the excellent Aquatic Center before you go to Granville Island by the False Creek Ferry. The Public Market is an equal to Seattle and not to be missed. The Red Tour provides a look at the city in more detail.
One area to improve is the amount of time spent picking up passengers at the hotels. Fewer stops there would be nice. Also some stops had too many people wanting to board.

Thank casaahha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 5, 2017 via mobile

There's a lot to be said about Vancouver such as: Stanley Park, The Aquarium and _____________. But don't ask us what, because we couldn't hop off to experience any of the stops on the Greenline (Park) tour. This tour company claimed an unexpected mechanical issue with a trolley and because of it had to depart a Green Line bus ahead of schedule from Canada Place. This caused bus overload and departure delays, cancelled stops and we got on what happened to be the last trolley of the day (there should have been 2 after the one we were on).

For starters, the buses left every 40 minutes as opposed to 20 minutes as scheduled on the map and confirmed by an employee at the office prior to pick up. We got on at Granville Island and at one of our first stops, the 4 customers who got on mentioned they had to wait an hour because the trolleys ahead of ours were full (odd for a trolly that operates every 20 minutes or so ...).

Before we explored Canada Place (the originating stop of both the red and green line), my husband and I confirmed with a VTC employee that we had time to experience Fly Over Canada before we hopped on the 4:00 Greenline bus to complete the loop of the city.
He was right, we did and got out in plenty of time to catch the 4:00. After waiting for about 5 minutes on the green-painted bus, the driver boarded and announced he is completing the city tour (which according to the map is the red line bus and is supposed to depart at 4:30, not 4:00). The rest of the stops from then on out picked up customers who were waiting for 45+ minutes and as a result got on a full bus and could not get dropped at their next hop off stop as expected. In the end, our driver was very thoughtful and diligent in dropping everyone off at their hotel or the nearest trolley stop to their hotel.

VTC employees at Canada Place were clearly uncomfortable and evasive with the story they had to tell when questioned on the bus schedule and why this change was not communicated to those of us waiting. Not very helpful at all. Long story short, the buses are running on 40 minute shifts and the 4:40 is the last bus of the day which doesn't allow us a hop on opportunity to get back to our hotel on the ticket we purchased for the round trip experience. The drivers deserve 5-stars, however I wish they worked for a more responsible organization that values communication with their customers- there were many opportunities for the standing employees to notify waiting customers on buses (they were also shocked about the change in schedule as it ruined their plans as well).

Our tour guide from Canada Place-on was very entertaining and knowledgeable! We truly enjoyed the actual tour and insight, but will never use a trolley company without a backup plan for these situations, proper communication and an apology for the major inconvenience their customers received. If we wanted to stay on a bus for 2 hours, we would have booked a different tour all together.

Thank Natalie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 5, 2017

There are two Hop-On, Hop-Off services in Vancouver. Use the other, it has busses every 5-10 minutes. Trolleys, on the other hand, are scheduled for every half hour on both routes in the summer. We took both routes, and had the same experiences on both - - the trolley half an hour later was full, and an hour later was full. Each driver said another trolley would follow in 5-10 minutes, but he must have meant the other company. Next trolley was uniformly a half hour later, so you could spend more than an hour waiting for one not full.

Also, many of the stops on both routes are for hotels. If that is what you want to visit.

Thank JamesM12497
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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