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My own disappointment with Min Thu (Bagan)

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We have recently returned from Burma, and I wanted to post a follow-up about my own disappointment with Minthu.

As I posted in losaltos's thread, I had booked Minthu for 3 days in mid-March. Minthu emailed me on March 8th -- the day of our flight from the US to Burma and 7 days before our arrival in Bagan -- to bail on us because he was allegedly going to be in guide school. Minthu sent this email 5 days after losaltos's March 3rd post (that Minthu had stood them up that day because he was in guide school). Thus, it is very likely that several days before Minthu contacted me to bail because he was allegedly going to guide school, Minthu knew that he may have to bail on us.

Due to the last minute cancellation, I figured it would be best to ask Minthu if he could book us with another horse cart driver, and he said he could send his friend. We accepted, and ended up spending 2.5 very good days with Ko That (see my review and his contact info in my trip report). In the interest of objectivity, I must give credit to Minthu for booking us with a good horse cart driver with whom we were happy.

Nevertheless, I independently asked both our horse cart driver and Minthu's brother/cousin (who picked us up from the airport by car) if Minthu was in guide school. Each of them -- independently -- answered that Minthu was NOT in guide school and was in Bagan taking around other tourists. Additionally, I saw empty horse car No. 54 (what I understand to be Minthu's horse cart) parked outside one of the temples we visited. An innocent explanation is possible (e.g., that Minthu was going to guide school on our dates and didn't end up going, and then took another customer at the last minute), but Minthu's conduct -- on its face -- appears to be highly sleazy at worst and a poor understanding of customer service at best.

***

The bottom line, in my opinion, is that there's no compelling reason to bother with Minthu. At least three posters have complained about questionable tactics by Minthu within the last couple weeks, and there are probably a dozens of other perfectly capable horse cart drivers in Bagan. Indeed, we had a perfectly good experience with another one (I'd encourage anyone to book with Ko That). Minthu just feels a bit like the Wizard of Oz: so much hype, only to be a disappointment in reality.

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