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Author: porkchop55

Joined: 2/6/2011
Posts: 73
GCT Trips Taken: 6
OAT Trips Taken: 5
Countries Visited:

Vietnam, Cambodia, Great Britain, Israel, Italy, Spain, Turkey, France, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Tunisia, China, Peru, Canada, Japan, Philippines, Thailand, Fiji, American Samoa, Australia, Taiwan, Singapore, South Korea

Traveler Since: 2004

August 30, 2012

After 8 trips with GCT/OAT for the first time I decided to try their Breakaway travel option.  The way it worked was after reserving the trip with the air travel they had the travel section call me a few days later to change the travel arrangement.  The only change I wanted was to arrive in London 5 day earlier than the base trip, so they booked me on the same flight I was on before just 5 days earlier.    The good news was there was no extra charge.   

 

Now for the bad news.  The airport to hotel transfer that’s included in GCT’s price for the flights was not included.   So I’m paying for an transfer that I’m not getting.   When I asked about the transfer they said I could buy it for $50 per person.    I can understand that they must save some on transfers when they have more people to pick up at one time, but shouldn’t there be some credit given for the transfer I didn’t get?

Author: ed watts

Joined: 3/30/2010
Posts: 143
GCT Trips Taken: 1
OAT Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

All seven continents, 113 countries and all states except Idaho.Plus some interesting places that are not countries such as The azores, Antarctica, Falkland Islands, South Georgia, etc.

Traveler Since: 2010

August 30, 2012

I would say "rip off" is al bit strong in this case...you have to remember that you were the one who  made the change and now GCT has to make special arangements for either one person or one couple whereas on the original schedule they will probably be picking up many people at the same time...Perhaps a compromise between you and GCT would be an offer to refund the difference they are charging you per person and the cost, if any, it would be for you to arrange the same transportation on you own.....You can be thankful that they did not charge you to make a change to the air arrangements---the AIRLINE would have sure done it if you had made initial arangements trhough them..

Author: luisa

Joined: 3/13/2010
Posts: 545
GCT Trips Taken: 6
OAT Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Canada, Mexico, Spain, France, Monoco, Croatia, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, Chile, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji. Ireland

Traveler Since: 2006

August 30, 2012

I dont' see it as a rip-off either. When I've done break away, there was a charge, maybe $75 to make the change and I was on my own for the airport transfer.

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 277
GCT Trips Taken: 7
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 1999

August 30, 2012

If they were to reimburse you for the unused transfer, then we could also expect the same for tour activitivies that we choose to skip. For example, I chose not to go on an all-day excursion on my most recent GCT trip but never considered asking for a refund. I was just thankful that the three of us who remained onboard were invited by the hotel manager to have lunch with him in the dining room.

Author: gobuckeyes

Joined: 7/7/2010
Posts: 158
GCT Trips Taken: 4
OAT Trips Taken: 9
Traveler Since: 2005

August 30, 2012

I don't think any travel company, cruise line, airline, and/or tour operator gives a refund for an unused (or missed) transfer, meal, excursion, or any other portion of the travel package.

Author: nancyf

Joined: 4/26/2010
Posts: 155
GCT Trips Taken: 5
OAT Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

43 of the 50 United States, including Hawaii and Alaska, England , France , Italy , Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Africa (Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe. South Africa), Israel, Canada, the Carribbean, Peru, going to Egypt & Jordan in February 2011 ( canceled due to the unrest there, but I will take this trip later!), China, Russia, Kenya, Turkey, Greece, Malta, Sicily.

Traveler Since: 2007

August 30, 2012

I have  not done a Breakaway deal (yet) with GC/OAT, but have thought about it. Don't they charge you something for doing that? If so, what is that charge for? I would think that if they charge something, that they could arrange for your transfer as well (included).

Author: porkchop55

Joined: 2/6/2011
Posts: 73
GCT Trips Taken: 6
OAT Trips Taken: 5
Countries Visited:

Vietnam, Cambodia, Great Britain, Israel, Italy, Spain, Turkey, France, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Tunisia, China, Peru, Canada, Japan, Philippines, Thailand, Fiji, American Samoa, Australia, Taiwan, Singapore, South Korea

Traveler Since: 2004

August 30, 2012

To clarify I asked for the breakaway at the time I booked the trip.  It was GCTs choice to book the air travel and then call me back 4 days later to handle the breakaway.   Also I checked on Expedia and the flights they booked me on were the same price on both days.  

 

I also agree with watsed's comment that "rip off" is a little strong.  I used those words to get attention and encourage discussion.

 

To answer nancyf’s question there is a $100 charge for them making special flight arrangements but they wave the fee for Inner Circle members. 

 

Author: singsling

Joined: 6/23/2010
Posts: 242
GCT Trips Taken: 11
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 1995

August 30, 2012

For all the years I've traveled with GCT (9 trips and booked 1 more), whenever I have read the terms and conditions of Breakaway travel, GCT was clear that transfers for breakaway travel was at traveler's expense.  That goes for the transfer to the breakaway destination, or bus/taxi to the final departure city.

If a person does not have a breakaway, and due to delays in traveling misses the bus transfer to hotel/ship, you most likely must arrange your own transfer to the hotel/ship.  However, upon returning from the trip, you may submit your receipt for such transfer to GCt for reimbursement.  I learned this after several delays in flights, and paid for my transfers to hotel/ship.  I did not know until last year that one could be reimbursed for such transfer due to air delays.  Their terms and conditions do not speak to such reimbursement.  The terms and conditions do say if your flight is delayed or some other circumstance causes you to miss the GCT greet/transport to hotel/ship, the traveler is responsible to get to the final destination.  That is the reason I did not ever ask for reimbursement.  I know better now. 

I used to execute, review, read, and administer contracts for a living, and reading thorough and comprehension was required.  I look for the small details and what could it mean to me.

 

Author: luisa

Joined: 3/13/2010
Posts: 545
GCT Trips Taken: 6
OAT Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Canada, Mexico, Spain, France, Monoco, Croatia, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, Chile, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji. Ireland

Traveler Since: 2006

August 30, 2012

I was Inner Circle when I took breakaway in Turkey in 2009 and they did not waive the change fee. At the time it was $75.00, so now the fee is higher but free for Inner Circle members.You got a good deal.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 973
GCT Trips Taken: 11
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 30, 2012

I have twice missed my connecting flights and had to make my own flight arrangements, once flying to Warsaw right after 9/11 and one flying from Miami to Guatemala City. 

In Warsaw, there was a GCT person, but he wasn't there to meet me.  He was there to meet six people from San Francisco.  I had called the GCT emergency number to give them my new flight, but they never passed it on.  However, we found each other and he took me to the hotel.  I was really nervous about taking a taxi on my own with the language difficulty.  But if would have, if it were necessary.

In Guatemala City, there was also someone there to meet me.  And there would not have been such a language problem.

And I don't think it would have occured to me either to ask for reimbursement if I'd had to take taxis.

When I flew to Shannon a day early, GCT made my flight reservation at my request.  I wasn't charged extra.  Made my own hotel reservation and got myself back to the terminal to meet with the group for the trip to Galway.  The driver had my name, so that worked out fine also.

Author: luisa

Joined: 3/13/2010
Posts: 545
GCT Trips Taken: 6
OAT Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Canada, Mexico, Spain, France, Monoco, Croatia, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, Chile, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji. Ireland

Traveler Since: 2006

September 01, 2012

I wouldn't pay $50 per person ($100 per couple) to get to the airport. When I was last in London, I took a taxi to Paddington and the Heathrow express directly to the airport. Another time I took the bus to the airport from Russell Square, kind of fun and met a lot of people, but slower than the H. Express so would have to allow more time.

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