Best of Kathmandu and Surrounding Areas - Mar 13 - Mar 24, 2019
My friend booked this trip and I joined last minute, the communication with Erin in the booking process was really difficult, which she blamed on the time difference but that was just an excuse. My time difference with Erin was only 2 hrs and 45 min as I'm not located in the US and apart from that, she could go more than 24 hrs to reply. She never even apologised for this.
Once I confirmed the trip I never even got a confirmation that my money arrived until we followed up, which was unprofessional.
Upon arrival in Kathmandu I had two guys waiting for me at the arrivals. Once I got to the car I realised one guy was a scam as he just asked me for money. The representative told me to just give it to him otherwise he would fight him. This isn't directly the fault of KimKim, but the representative at the airport should have definitely stepped up.
The next morning Erin came to meet us at our hotel for a briefing, now working myself in the travel industry, I might have had high hopes as I've briefed many clients myself but this was just disappointing. There wasn't any clear information we got. She went through the program, but all she said was, today you will go for sightseeing, on the day you arrive back from Bhutan you will go for sightseeing.. No further details regarding the sightseeings.. We also had to confirm a couple of other details with her and when we asked her a question she seemed a bit annoyed answering it and that everything was just supposed to be obvious. I felt uncomfortable asking her any further questions from there. She also was a bit unclear with her program as she thought on the last day we were staying in Kathmandu and I had to make it clear that this wasn't the program.
I also asked her during the booking process if I could get a discount as I won't be doing any activities on the last day as I had an early flight out of Kathmandu and my friends only left late evening. She said that was calculated properly but once I asked during the briefing she didn't even remember my friends had any sightseeings that day. So I even doubted whether or not I paid too much for my trip.
At the end of the first day of sightseeing we received a rather cold message from her regarding tipping. I believe that our guide complained we didn't tip her, which is understanding but we thought we tip at the end of service and we knew we had the guide again for the last two days during our trip so we knew we had to tip her at that time, not at the end of each day.. Again something that should have been made clear from Erin's side during the briefing not writing us a vague and cold message about it later onwards. Apart from that, I believe tipping is based on how satisfied you are with the service, so if we weren't satisfied I think asking for a tip from Erin's side onwards the guide isn't the right way to go about it.
Now regarding the hotels, we stayed at the Patan Inn and Millas Guesthouse, both places were super lovely and amazing food, would definitely stay there again if I would return to Kathmandu.
Our guides name was Pratikshya and she was a super lovely and knowledgeable woman. I enjoyed every minute spent with her. She was very polite, explained in nice details but didn't overdo it and she was always on time and very professional. If I was to ever return to Kathmandu I would also use her again as a guide.
So to sum it all up, the guide and the hotels were really nice and a great pick for us but Erin's services were very disappointing. However to be honest, we already had a feeling that our interaction with Erin wasn't going to be so great as we noticed during the booking process.