To summarise - your service and promptness of reply has been excellent. I was a little worried about dealing with (...)
a travel company I had not dealt with before, but the many reviews I saw had already put me at my ease. This was confirmed with all of the help you gave during the process.
On arrival at Quito the driver was waiting as promised and the pick up from the hotel was just as smooth. The person who picked us up at the hotel was very helpful and checked us in our flight (after talking us through the Galápagos search area).
Our 5 night cruise was excellent - our guide, Hansel was very knowledgable and really made the trip (along with the crew).
I would not hesitate to recommend Columbus Travel (and have done so on Tripadvisor). Thank you for all of your help - it was a fantastic trip.
We all would like to thank you for your help with our Galapagos vacation on the Seaman II. It was truly the trip of a lifetime and the best trip we could imagine. The arrangements all went well (...)
and your associates were helpful, prompt, and very pleasant. And the Seaman II was the PERFECT cruise for our group--adventure after adventure, lots of snorkeling, a great naturalist, delicious food, and comfortable accommodations.
I'm attaching a photo of us all on the cruise.
Thank you again. Hope you are enjoying the New Year.
We did get back safely a few days ago. We did have a wonderful time on our adventures.
The only negative comments I have are about the mix-up by the partner travel agency about the flight (...)
numbers and times. I am very grateful that I was given your personal cell number, and was able to reach you in the evening the night before Julie’s flight. That was a nice touch! Gabriela, you also answered every single question I asked you throughout the past several months. I really appreciate your help in allowing me to customize our trip, with different flights in and out for our daughters. You are excellent!
Although we usually travel independently, we did appreciate being met by representatives at the airport, at the Hilton and the Macaw in the mornings, and being taken through the airport tasks in such an efficient way. It made us feel comfortable in the middle of the night, when we were so tired, especially for our daughter Marie. I also appreciate that she was able to stay in the very nice Hostal Macaw, without an extra charge.
We probably did not have to arrive at the Baltra airport exactly when the flight arrived, since we still had to wait while all of the other passengers had to go through the lines inside the airport. Also, Mauricio, in charge of the guided activities, could have been more welcoming when I identified myself and my family to him. He was very personable later on in the trip, so I am guessing that he was tired that morning.
The boat, our first cruise ship, was really nice. We were surprised at how spacious and comfortable our cabin was. Loved the bed and pillows! We liked the common spaces, including the library. Having the ship be recently refurbished, with clean and new surfaces and furniture, made it especially nice. The welcome cocktails and other special events to get everyone together were well done. The servers in the dining room took excellent care of us all, saved us our table, remembered our favorite drinks. The food was good, there was the right amount of food. The only complaint I heard was that the delicious Ecuadorian special desserts for lunch on the last day ran out, and not everyone got to have some.
We had been warned that, on a larger ship, the time wasted waiting while others went out on the pangas would be annoying. We thought that it was well organized, though. We loved Indie, our guide, and the others, as well. We learned so much, and felt well taken care of. We were pleased to be in a group with other young people who got along well with our daughters (and us, too!) We liked how active every day was, with morning and afternoon activities to keep us busy and engaged. The wetsuits and fins and snorkel gear and everything else was washed and cleaned, which I noticed, and was pleased to see.
It was a good idea to allow the passengers to tip by credit card on the last evening, and to suggest typical amounts. We had not done this before, so that was quite helpful.
Thanks to everyone, for making this trip so memorable! I will be happy to recommend Columbus Travel, and I will write a review on TripAdvisor.
Thank you for your e-mail - very happy to provide feedback.
Columbus Travel were superb: we were greeted from our hotel by a very punctual, friendly driver who helped us load our cases into (...)
his clean car. We had a very enjoyable journey to the airport where the driver told us all about the recent volcanic activity and even showed us pictures from his mobile phone. When we arrived at the airport we were met by two other Columbus members of staff who took our cars from us, carried them to check in for us and dealt with all of our check-in needs. It was literally the most painless and efficient check-in we have ever experienced. And the trip itself (to the Galápagos Islands), was amazing.
In truth our impression of Columbus was favourable right from the outset. Francisco Vela was attentive to each and every one of our queries - and was exceptionally patient with us. We had dozens of questions and went back-and-forth numerous times (the trip was for our honeymoon so we wanted to make sure it was just right) and Francisco responded to each and every e-mail promptly and with ample detail. He really was a pleasure to deal with.
We would definitely recommend Columbus to anyone else and would use them again ourselves without hesitation.
At last, I am getting around to reply to your email!
I made it back home safe and sound, and full of wonderful memories of your fascinating country for which I have to thank you in (...)
the first place since you made them possible! So, muchos gracias again!
I already filled in the feedback form Oscar gave me before I left for the Galapagos, but am happy to tell you here again that I was utterly pleased with your service, that the organisation of my tour was perfect, that everything went absolutely to plan and there were no bad experiences at all.
The stay in the Cuayabeno lodge was pleasant. The place is indeed eco friendly and thus offering accommodation with basic amenities, but I got all I needed and the food was excellent, varied and freshly prepared! The Amazon experience itself was great and highly interesting also thanks to the guide who provided lots of information in a very relaxed and unobtrusive way.
Travelling with Oscar and Elvis was fun, too. Both were not only very friendly, but also really good at their jobs. Oscar’s knowledgeable guidance allowed me to learn quite lot about the places we visited and the country in general, and with Elvis at the wheel I always felt safe during our long rides.
The Galapagos cruise finally, fully met my expectations too. The boat was comfortable, the crew friendly and helpful, and the guide, Hansel, very professional and highly experienced. The daily programmes were packed, but truly enjoyable, and there was always enough time to relax and to “recover” from the tougher walks and the (for beginners!) a bit challenging snorkelling tours starting from the dingy.
I also would like to mention that I found the way you and your colleagues dealt with the earthquake and the resulting uncertainties very professional and reassuring although I was lucky enough not to need any further assistance.
Well, I guess this is about all I had to say about my Ecuador Experience with Columbus Travel which turned out to be a great and highly rewarding adventure I would certainly recommend to anybody asking me about travelling in Ecuador and the Galapagos.
I hope this feedback is useful for you and the company, and also proves that you are an agent who does her job not only in a very friendly, but also highly professional and satisfying way. Thanks again!!
We had a great trip and I wanted to thank you for how well coordinated it was. We enjoyed each component and having someone there at every point to meet us and transfer us to our next place made (...)
it so easy to just relax and appreciate your wonderful country.
The Galapagos cruise exceeded our expectations and Mauricio and Pato were great companions on our mainland tour. Although it wasn't the best time to visit the Amazon region, we enjoyed the Napo Wildlife Center and our activities there.The only thing I would change is to exclude dinners from the mainland tour. We would have preferred making our own choices for meals.
We especially appreciated how quickly and smoothly you made the itinerary changes necessary after the earthquake. We would highly recommend your services to anyone wishing to experience the wonders of Ecuador.
Lindsay and John
Tip Top III, Napo Wildlife & 10 days Ecuador Land Tours.
We recently booked a cruise for the Galápagos through Columbus Travel for April, and Francisco Vela was our contact. He is very professional and helpful and speaks very good English.
He got (...)
us exactly what we were looking for and our communication via email was fast, accurate and easy.
I highly recommend Francisco for travel arrangements and would have no hesitation in returning to him in the future. They also have emergency contact 24\7, which is very valuable when you travel.
They are very reliable. Everything went smooth. We were picked up a few times and they were very punctual.
The Galapagos Islands is an area definitely worth traveling to. We’ve had such a wonderful cruise experience; truly a unique vacation! We went to Ecuador to our two daughters .
We picked an 8 days cruise on the TipTop II. It was truly magical, we had a wonderful time. The Tiptop II was brand new- that was the first cruise on that ship!!!, the meals were very good. The staff was very nice and tried their best to give us a good time. Angelica our Naturalist and Guide was amazing, she made the trip so interesting, educational and magical. We hiked, kayaked, snorkeled, took many dighy trips, and saw the Blue Footed boobies, sea lions, tortoises, sea turtles, frigate birds, sharks. The islands are quite beautiful. I highly recommend it to anyone regarless of age. There were 15 fellow travelers on the boat and we got along very well with everyone and became friends with some of them.My daughters were very happy to find out there were young people on board .We played games together and chattered. It was a Great Trip.
Jim and I want to say how much we enjoyed your country. The tours were great and Byron is just the best tour guide ever. He was always concerned about us and was polite, informative and helpful in (...)
all ways possible. One day we would love to come back again and see the other parts of Ecuador.
Thank you again for all your help in planning this trip.
I had a wonderful time. It's a trip that I have wanted to make for the last 45 years. I wasn't sure what to expect -- but that is why I went.
The Hotel Mainao is a unique place to stay in a (...)
unique corner of the world. The location was perfect and the service was wonderful. I would have liked another pillow but I was too tired to ask for one -- I'm sure one would have been provided, or there might have been one in the room somewhere already.
The Darwin cruise was challenging, but enjoyable. Sarah was a wonderful guide. The books say that the better guides work on the bigger ships, but I can imagine Sarah doing well on even the big cruise ships. The rest of the crew did their jobs well, also.
I am in good condition for my age but some of the activities were more strenuous than I could handle. I knew that, before booking the trip. I stayed on the boat for the climb to the top of the hill, and I skipped one of the snorkeling activities. But there was a Canadian couple on the boat, same age as I am, and they kept up with the group.
Everywhere else in the world where I have snorkeled, the boat stays in one place and the snorkelers stay near it. I was surprised that the panga dropped us off and then motored to a different location. I am a good swimmer but on the last day my mask broke twice, and the flippers were too small for me (there were none left in a bigger size, when I rented them). I was not in the water as long as the others, but it was enough time for me and I saw more fish than I expected. Americans don't think of the Galapagos as a place to snorkel, but I enjoyed it.
I usually get sick on trips to other countries, but I ate everything that was offered on the boat and my stomach stayed normal.
My only bad memory is waiting in line at the Guayaquil airport for the government permit, and missing the flight because there were only three officials and twice as many passengers because the second flight of the day had been canceled. But perhaps the flight cancellation was caused by needing the aircraft for earthquake relief. It cost quite a lot to change the flight to San Cristobal, then fly from there to Baltra, but another island and another small airplane added to the experience. I think next time I would look for a cruise that left from and returned to San Cristobal.
Thank you very much. You have done a fantastic job arranging a wonderful trip for us! Thank you very much. Everything has been fantastic!
Yes, i know i wrote you that e-mail, but the next day (...)
you explained why it was important to have the transfers. So, over the phone you told me you would do it for us. This is why I knew you were arranging everything, including the transfers. We were very grateful!! Thank you.
We were not upset about it, I just wanted you to know what happened, in case you had paid them. When we arrived on Isabella the taxi was not there, so we took our own cab, on arrival. The cab came at the end of our stay, as planned.
Today we had a great trip to Otavalo. Juan was wonderful. We were embarrassed because we ran out of money, so were unable to give him a tip. Please tell him we had so much fun!
Thank you for everything. We will recommend you to our friends and everyone. I hope we can return to Ecuador to go to the Jungle and highlands and more. Maybe you can help us again in the future.
Treasure of Galapagos & Galapagos Legend
My husband and I had a fabulous time in Galapagos and Ecuador!. All transfers were very smooth and there were no problems whatsoever. Every driver we had was on time and very professional. We (...)
enjoyed our Quito city tour with Oscar, and the transition to the Santa Cruz II was problem free. We loved the cruise boat and would recommend it to others, as well as your services. Thank you very much in helping us plan the trip. We could not have done it by ourselves. Working with you and Columbus was a great experience!
Santa Cruz & Ecuador Mainland
I apologize for the delayed response. The trip was fantastic. Thank you so much for arranging everything and for working with my specific requests. I would like to call out our tour guides in (...)
Quito/Otavalo (Juan) and Milton in Cuenca. They were fantastic. Highly knowledgeable, accommodating, and very interesting people. We were also very happy with the Galapagos cruise. I was glad to see we were joining Intrepid Travel. I have traveled with them in different parts of the world and they are fantastic. All transfers went very well.
I will highly recommend Columbus Travel and your professional services.
Ecuador es un encanto!