After the tour , I wanted to go to the office to make a formal complaint, but the person who I spoke to on the phone at 7.45pm told me that the office was closing and was not interested in hearing what issue I Wanted to escalate. Before I spoke to the person at the office, the tour guide spoke to the person at the office at great length, so I was not sure what she told them before I spoke, but I did feel that she was prepped to ignore what I wanted to talk about.
I thought that the time spent in each of the locations, along with what was seen very good. The driver was excellent and the bus was in excellent condition. There was nothing wrong with the tour itself.
What let the tour down greatly was the tour guide herself. The tour guide was extremely inexperienced, she did in certain instances not inexperienced we were seeing. For example, we were taken to Pisa and she deposited us at the entrance and told us what time to get back it this spot for departure without explanation of what the tower Pisa is nor any information about the surrounding buildings.
Furthermore, along the way, she was reading from what looked like a script without much regard to what we were going past, for example - she would point out to olive trees and talk about them at length when we were in fact passing hay. Aside from the lack of knowledge and perhaps experience at being a tour guide, she was very unprofessional and could not manage the group in terms of meeting times for departure on the bus.
The tour guide told us many times that she had a problem with counting, a bit strange to tell us this, but this was forewarning for what was to come. The first spot was Pisa, we were delayed 45 mins as supposedly, 2 people from the group were missing. The tour guide did a role call a couple of times and tried to count the group a couple of times. She called the hotel where the company stayed to tried to get hold of them to no avail. After 45 mins, she made the decision that the 2 missing people were not going to turn up. She told the group that if the missing 2 turned up to give them very bad looks for keeping us waiting. When we returned to the bus and she took another roll call and re-counted, I overheard her telling a couple that she got their name wrong, and there was nobody missing after all.
If she could not count and was going to rely on a roll-call, she should have checked everyone's name before leaving the bus. Instead she assumed the names list was correct, which apparently it was not.
She did not tell the rest of the group of her error, instead we were rushed through lunch to make up for the lost time.
As we were heading to the lunch venue, the tour guide asked everyone if there were any dietary requirements. She asked this into the microphone without turning around to check if there were any issues.
As my friend could not get her attention to tell the tour of guide of her dietary requirement, my friend walked up to the front of the bus to tell the tour guide, the tour guide yelled at her to sit back down, disgusting behaviour given she was asking for information, which she then ignored. Another person in the group went to the guide of their dietary requirements and they were also yelled at to sit down, again ignoring their dietary concerna.
I also noted that a group of 4 tourists forgot their hat at the lunch venue, once we got to San Gimignano they asked if they could pick it up on the way back given it was almost 40 degrees celcius. The tour guide said 'no, there is no time', this is without regard to the fact she had wasted 45 minutes of everyone's time due to her poor management of the group. As we left San Gigmignano we actually drove past the lunch venue, so we could have made a quick stop to pick up the tourists hat after all. This in my eyes was extremely poor customer service, especially given the tour guide had wasted so much
of our time without any explanation to the group or apologies.
As we were gathering to leave San Gigmignano, we had another situation of missing 2 people. This was due to the poor lack of information/instruction by the tour guide. She did not make it very clear to everyone what time we had to meet. The tour guide is responsible for ensuring that everyone knows when and were to meet.
When the group were waiting for the missing 2 and the tour guide, my friend went to pick up a drink from the vending maching next to the bus and the bus started to drive away without ensuring everyone was on the bus. As everyone called out for the bus driver to stop, my friend got on board and was yelled at by the tour guide. This was not appropriate given she made us waste 45 minutes of our time in Pisa due to her poor tour management and the fact that 2 other people had wasted another 30 minutes of our time and all my friend did was get a drink next to the bus whilst waiting for the late arrivals.
At the last stop in Siena, I had a chat to the tour guide about the missing 2 tourists from Pisa. She said that she did a roll call and it was not her fault that names on her group list were wrong. I told her that it was her fault for not counting the group, if she did that she would not have a problem, or ask a person in the group to count on her behalf. She became very irate and said it was not her fault. I told her that the group deserved an apology or an explanation for her error at the very least, but she refused and became very agitated and said she didn't care if anyone thought she did anything wrong and that she didn't care if I made a complaint about her. She did not want to take any responsiblity for the time she stole from the group in Pisa and did not care whether a customer was unhappy. This in conjunction what I have outlined above made me extremely unhappy with my experience with your tour company. It is the type of experience you read about in reviews and think that it would never happen to you.
But, unfortunately it did.
I have enjoyed many tours across many continents and I have to say that I have never experienced such an incompetent and rude tour guide
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.