Julie

Guatemala orphange, Guatemala - Mar 24 - Apr 1, 2018

Traveler: Julie L. - Local specialist: Chris Gwinner

Hello there,
My son and I were planning a trip back to his birthplace in Guatemala as well as visiting some orphanages along the way to bring them some donations he had collected. Chris was amazing in helping me out figuring out what was doable and what was not. I truly appreciate all his help which is why I am not giving this a worse review. I also loved our tour guide Ricardo to Rio Dulce Las Canchas and the place he sent us too. However, it really was not a replacement for what I told him my original plan was for that day which was a relaxing day at Semuc Champey. The first tour to Tikal was very good in that Edwardo was able to show me the rules of the road since he drove my car to Tikal. He was also able to speak to the Hertz rental car person when they lost my reservation. That was great!!
As for the other tours not so great. After great discussion with Chris that I thought the tours he was offering were far more expensive than others I found on different tour sites he assured me that they were better in quality. We initiated the early departure to Pacaya Volcano so that we could get back on the road to our next destination. We were not to be picked up at the hotel rather meet at his place in Antigua. We also encouraged him to find more people to go on the trip as it would be cheaper and more entertaining for us. They did find one more for the pacaya trip and apparently they left without us. We were told that his place was next to Central Parque and a map we had said it was on the corner of it. So we went to all 4 corners before we decided to head down a remote street and found it at 7:15. I tried to call Chris and no one attempted to call me as Edwardo did when our plane was delayed for Flores. So I feel that us being the original people for this tour and the fact that we had already paid deserved a call to see if we were having difficulty. If that had happened they would have found us one block away. I am not sure if Chris did not give him the number or he chose not to try it but either way it was unprofessional. At this time I chose to cancel our last trip in Pana as I did not see anyone else joined and I did not want to pay the huge price for a potentially unsatisfactory trip as well. Chris has graciously attempted to return some of the money however, I am not sure if I agree with taking the 25% off of the last trip as we cancelled in plenty of time.
I am not saying I would not recommend this site again but I certainly would have some reservations. I appreciate the return of monies but it would be better if it was a full return especially since the 2nd one was not exactly what we expected either but we were not asking for a return. Sorry this was long, but I guess I wanted to make sure you got all the information.