AITO: The Association of Independent Tour Operators
Experience Travel Group

Experience Travel Group Traveller Reviews

Reviews of Experience Travel Group

Overall Company Rating
99%
Excellent 561
Good 29
Average 2
Poor 3
Terrible 0
Reviews Submitted: 595
Reviews Accepted: 595
Reviews Rejected: 0
595 reviews
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Experience Travel Group by Kenwyn Pirate, 25 Aug 2019
Holiday Rating:

Tropical Paradise!

Review: We enjoyed Bandos very much. First time in the Maldives, it seemed the perfect tropical island! Quite a large resort, but it never seemed crowded and there was always plenty of sun beds to spare! Our accommodation was excellent, though standard, was roomy and comfortable with a wonderful outlook over a palm tree lined white sanded beach, literally a few yards away. The food and drink was excellent. We went half-board, so could ...

Review: We enjoyed Bandos very much. First time in the Maldives, it seemed the perfect tropical island! Quite a large resort, but it never seemed crowded and there was always plenty of sun beds to spare! Our accommodation was excellent, though standard, was roomy and comfortable with a wonderful outlook over a palm tree lined white sanded beach, literally a few yards away. The food and drink was excellent. We went half-board, so could only use the buffet restaurant rather than the several other a la carte ones on the resort. However this was no problem since the buffet was one of the best we’ve had, with plenty of variety each day and good quality. Drinks, though very expensive (three times the cost of U.K. - probably true across the Maldives) we’re always interesting and well prepared. Staff always were friendly and gave excellent service. We had our 31st Anniversary here, and they decorated our dinner table with wonderful flowers and baked us a special cake! Also gave us some special decoration on our last day, which our four (late) teenage young ladies were most impressed with (as they were with the resort in general!). So thank you, Bandos! We all had a great time. Week two out of three was something different - a week in the Northern island of Hanimaadhoo, where there is an airfield, Maldivian village and the Barefoot Eco Hotel situated at the end of the island, set in a forest inhabited by Flying Foxes (fruit bats) and no alcohol! The rooms were good, we had Ocean View rooms, which were on the upper floor and overlooked the wide beach and turquoise waters. The beach was a wide sweep of glorious tropical, palm tree fronded white sand, with plenty of sun beds and waiter service for a very wide range of (non alcoholic) cocktails. The only adverse comment about the beach is that it was too far to swim out to the reef (unless you were an extraordinarily strong swimmer) so we didn’t get our expected dose of fish watching. The food, buffet style, was good quality, perhaps slightly less choice than in some we’ve had, but that is probably due to the smallish size of this intimate resort. My only complaint here is that some of the meat dishes had a lot of bone and/or gristle. I think that is a big no - no for a top restaurant! There is also a nice little swimming pool, a boules Court, complimentary bike hire (so you can visit the village, or go to the airfield to visit the island’s only ATM) and a complimentary kayak hire (the weather was against us for that!). Those alcoholics amongst you shouldn’t despair though! There is a bar boat that the hotel have arranged - you summon the free minibus to take you to the harbour (any time from 6-11pm) and then a complimentary speed boat takes you out to the bar! We only had two days where we had to stay dry, due to stormy weather! You get friendly service there, though the choice is a bit limited - they should be able to boost the number of interesting cocktails without too much difficulty! A final mention should go to a village souvenir shop - Starting Point - found in the Main Street just off the harbour. They did us a tremendous all day, snorkeling, turtles, four island, all inclusive food and drink, sunbathing, visiting Maldivian houses and mosques tour for $40 each (seven of us). A real highlight, seeing the real Maldives. So all in all, a great time was had! We visited Adaaran Club on Rannalhi island on the third week of our three week stay in the Maldives, with four teenage young ladies! We felt that we couldn’t stay in the Maldives without sampling the famous Water Villas, so we pushed the boat out for this final week and booked three of them for our group! We were not disappointed. The Water Villas are superb. Very well fitted inside (also with the most comfortable beds of our holiday), with a glass window in the floor for fish viewing, and a gorgeous outlook across the ocean. Our private sea balcony had its own sun-beds from which we had the perfect view of the evening sunsets. You could then get in to the sea from the balcony and are then within a few metres from the main reef. And that was another highlight of the week - the fish! On the reef you could be guaranteed to see a multitude of brightly coloured fish, big and small. Often like swimming in an aquarium! The depth of the sea plunges after the reef, so if you lack stamina it is advisable to use the provided life jackets to help you remain buoyant for longer. In the evening, our villa tended to be visited by even more exotic creatures - we saw several rays, and even a sizeable shark (well over 1 metre in length) a couple of times. One morning we were visited on the balcony by one of the incredibly tame herons of the island, complete with a large freshly caught wiggling fish in its beak, which it then managed to swallow whole in front of us. It then stayed on our balcony for at least ten minutes whilst it’s meal settled. Food in the resort was good - the buffet restaurant always had a good range of various dishes, cooked to a high standard. The service was always good, though we felt it a little less personal than in some of our other resorts. The girls used the Spa a few times, and enjoyed various massages. Three of us also went on an Island Hopping trip that visited a local island village on a different island, and then two other island resorts where we were able to sample some different beaches. Such a trip, taking in Maldivian culture (and allowing you to purchase souvenirs far more cheaply than on the resort) is well worth it! Final mention must go to the staff of the Cocktail Bar who were always very friendly and willing. The girls had several very enjoyable evenings there, joining in with the various musical activities on offer there and sampling the (free - all inclusive) cocktails and mocktails. Again the outlook from the bar across the ocean is amazing. So in all a wonderful final week for our exceptional holiday. Thank you the Maldives and Adaaran Club. We have all lots of memories to take home with us!

Rating for tour operator:

Gave us a great holiday!

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 27 Aug 2019:

Dear Hugh & Family,

Great to hear you enjoyed your experience. What a trip! We think Barefoot Eco Lodge and other even more 'out there' options, in which you actually stay on a 'real' Maldivian islands, really add to the experience on all sides and we'd encourage others to consider the same. I think your comprehensive review will be great for others in deciding whether it is for them or not!

Best,

Sam
Co-founder & MD

Sri Lanka Laid Back - Deluxe by Dr Mark, 22 Aug 2019
Holiday Rating:

Fantastic Holiday in Sri Lanka organised by Experience Travel

Fabulous 2 week trip travelling around Sri Lanka, seeing famous sites and genuinely getting to know the ‘real’ Sri Lanka. Excellent choice to hotels and location and activities

Fabulous 2 week trip travelling around Sri Lanka, seeing famous sites and genuinely getting to know the ‘real’ Sri Lanka. Excellent choice to hotels and location and activities

Rating for tour operator:

Awesome team. Extremely knowledgeable, excellent personalised service to create a truly bespoke and memorable trip. Fantastic service throughout. I would thoroughly recommend this team. We will definitely use them again

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 23 Aug 2019:

Dear Mark,

That's great to hear. Thank you for taking the time to write this - much appreciated. We are looking forward to planning a future trip in the future with you too.

All the best,

Sam
Co-founder & MD

Classic Vietnam Explorer by Simon, 20 Aug 2019
Holiday Rating:

Wow

A fantastic experience especially with the kids - a most welcoming country and stunning scenery. So much to do and enjoy .

A fantastic experience especially with the kids - a most welcoming country and stunning scenery. So much to do and enjoy .

Rating for tour operator:

Extremely helpful and diligent . Very knowledgable about the country and sorted some great itineraries.

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 22 Aug 2019:

Hi Guys

Delighted to hear you had such a great family trip.

We'd love to hear from you guys again.

All the best

James & ETG

Classic Vietnam Explorer by Paulo , 4 Aug 2019
Holiday Rating:

2.5 week family holiday travelling around Vietnam

We visited Saigon, the Mekong River, Hoi An, Hue, Halong Bay and Hanoi. We are 2 adults and 2 teenage children. Experience Travel organised flights, hotels, transfers, guides and various activities during our stay

We visited Saigon, the Mekong River, Hoi An, Hue, Halong Bay and Hanoi. We are 2 adults and 2 teenage children. Experience Travel organised flights, hotels, transfers, guides and various activities during our stay

Rating for tour operator:

Experience Travel were superb in every respect. Our travel consultant, James, was very knowledgeable about the destination, hotels etc and took great care to understand our family and what we like to do in order to deliver a fantastic holiday for us. From the moment we arrived in Saigon, until the moment we arrived at the airport in Hanoi to fly home, everything ran like clockwork. Our holiday was absolutely amazing. Experience Travel were recommended to us by a friend and it was a fantastic recommendation. We would definitely use them again and would have no hesitation in recommending them to others.

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 07 Aug 2019:

Dear Paul

Thanks so much for this lovely review - delighted to hear you and your family had such a great experience of Vietnam.

Look forward to hearing from you again in the future.

Many thanks

James

Experience Travel Group by CC, 30 Jul 2019
Holiday Rating:

ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC

Our first visit to Asia. Did not know what to expect but the holiday exceeded out expectations :))) It all went smooth and to plan, the destinations, excursions, transport means, guides, restaurants etc recommended were fabulous and we felt taken care of during the whole time.

Our first visit to Asia. Did not know what to expect but the holiday exceeded out expectations :))) It all went smooth and to plan, the destinations, excursions, transport means, guides, restaurants etc recommended were fabulous and we felt taken care of during the whole time.

Rating for tour operator:

I have had tailor made holidays in the past but never did the agent call me and spent so much time on the phone and emailing me to get to know me and my family and find out what we like, what our expectations were. Really impressed with the follow up and the way they responded when we had an issue. Absolutely fantastic

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 30 Jul 2019:

Hi Cayetana,

Thank you for such glowing feedback following your Vietnam holiday. I'm so pleased to hear that (after the initial culture shock!) you embraced the holiday and the whole family had an enjoyable experience.

We'd be delighted to help plan you next holiday to either Malaysia or Indonesia!

Best wishes
Holly

Experience Travel Group by Mrs P, 27 Jul 2019
Holiday Rating:

Family Borneo Adventure with Experience Travel Group

We went to Malaysian Borneo for just over 2 weeks travelling with 2 teenagers. We had an amazing time with an itinerary that had been well put together to ensure that there was something for all of us. Packed with adventure but enough time to relax too. Wildlife, culture and food amazing.

We went to Malaysian Borneo for just over 2 weeks travelling with 2 teenagers. We had an amazing time with an itinerary that had been well put together to ensure that there was something for all of us. Packed with adventure but enough time to relax too. Wildlife, culture and food amazing.

Rating for tour operator:

We booked with Experience Travel Group. We had originally booked with them to go to Sri Lanka but after the Easter Sunday bombings and Foreign Office advice not to travel there ETG kept us well informed at all times and changed our holiday at short notice for the same dates and same budget to Borneo- the efficiency and speed in which this was done was impressive and as much care was taken with our new itinerary.

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 29 Jul 2019:

Dear Heidi,

Thank you very much for taking the time to post this review. We are delighted you had such a good holiday. We very much appreciated your patience and flexibility in what was a difficult situation too.

So pleased!

We are hoping that you will be keen to visit Sri Lanka sometime in the future as well!

Best,

Sam
Co-founder & MD

Essential Java and Bali Deluxe by Rogersol, 12 Jul 2019
Holiday Rating:

Temples, Volcanoes and Dragons of Indonesia

A 16 night family holiday with 2 teenage boys. We did enough cultural visits to keep mum happy but with volcano visit, swimming pools, Komodo dragons, snorkelling and seeing Manta rays the boys had a fantastically diverse holiday.

A 16 night family holiday with 2 teenage boys. We did enough cultural visits to keep mum happy but with volcano visit, swimming pools, Komodo dragons, snorkelling and seeing Manta rays the boys had a fantastically diverse holiday.

Rating for tour operator:

I have used Experience travel 3 times now and would highly recommend them. With a named personal holiday advisor to build the trip and advise on different activities, linking flights and locations, flexibility on accommodation options, excellent guides everything runs like clockwork

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 12 Jul 2019:

Hi Lynne,

Thank you so much for your wonderful feedback! Indonesia is just such a brilliant destination for families as it is so diverse, so everyone can find something to interest them.

If we can make any suggestions for holiday number 4 please just let us know.

Many thanks,

Becky

Cambodia Explorer by Graham, 26 Jun 2019
Holiday Rating:

Exploring Cambodia - ancient and modern

We believe we received a full experience of Cambodia, from the spectacle of the ancient history and temples, through the horrors of the Kymer Rouge, to the current wonderful people, their culture and their delicious food!

We believe we received a full experience of Cambodia, from the spectacle of the ancient history and temples, through the horrors of the Kymer Rouge, to the current wonderful people, their culture and their delicious food!

Rating for tour operator:

This is the second time that we have used Experience Travel Group (ETG) and the second fabulous holiday we have had with them. Initially, ETG allowed us to bespoke our holiday to incorporate one or two specific requirements, and then the arrangements were all meticulously made and the whole experience ran like clockwork. On our flight home, my wife and I were already discussing where we would like to go with ETG next!

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 08 Jul 2019:



Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 08 Jul 2019:

Dear Graham,

That's so great - we are trying to encourage travellers to look at Cambodia as a destination in its own right - it's such a great place as you say. Also, so good of you to say such kind things about us - very much looking forward to helping you with your next ETG holiday!

Best,

Sam
Co-founder & MD - Experoence Travel Group

Essential Cambodia by Nnenns, 15 Jun 2019
Holiday Rating:

Amazing week in Cambodia

A week in Siem reap visiting temples and a day and night in Phnom Penh visiting the key historical sites.

A week in Siem reap visiting temples and a day and night in Phnom Penh visiting the key historical sites.

Rating for tour operator:

Experience Travel Group - Great personalised tours, in depth knowledge of the countries, personal selection of appropriate hotels and experiences.

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 18 Jun 2019:

Hi Nnenna

Thank you for the review, I am delighted to hear that you had another good holiday with us. Hopefully we will help you with holiday number 4 soon!

Regards

Nick

Laos to Thailand via The Mekong by Kokovanilla, 7 Jun 2019
Holiday Rating:

Amazing and memorable experience of exciting places, genuine cultures and wonderful people.

We are well travelled and I can honestly say this holiday was one of the best trips we have had. My initial impression of our Tour Operator David was extremely favourable in view of his friendliness, knowledge, experience and listening skills. He didn’t fail to impress and created an itinerary which was perfect for us and his enthusiasm added to our excitement. We had excellent channels of communication either by telephone or e-mail which made ...

We are well travelled and I can honestly say this holiday was one of the best trips we have had. My initial impression of our Tour Operator David was extremely favourable in view of his friendliness, knowledge, experience and listening skills. He didn’t fail to impress and created an itinerary which was perfect for us and his enthusiasm added to our excitement. We had excellent channels of communication either by telephone or e-mail which made planning our ETG holiday a worry free, pleasurable experience. Our guides were friendly, helpful and very knowledgeable ensuring we had a “happy time” and experienced genuine cultures. We met lots of lovely people, joined in activities, including milking and washing a buffalo and enjoying a game of pétanque. We enjoyed lots of different food and Laos beer is highly recommended. All of the Hotels provided excellent service and I would stay in them again. We were especially spoilt at Zazen Boutique Resort a beautifully located hotel in Koh Samui. We took lots of photos and have many happy memories of a wonderful holiday. Thank you so much.

Rating for tour operator:

Excellent attention to detail and have already and will continue to recommend.

Experience Travel Group responded to this review on 11 Jun 2019:

Hi Angela
I'm thrilled that you both had such a wonderful holiday with great experiences and I look forward to seeing some of the photos. I agree that Beer Lao is one of the best beers in the region! I'd be delighted to discuss ideas for another holiday when you are ready.
Best wishes
David