smarTours China trip

Mar 23rd, 2006, 04:33 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 147
smarTours China trip

Since my friend isn't going to China I have to change my plans IMMEDIATELY. I just called smarTours and found their two May China trips are filled but that they have added another May date. The trip is 17 days and includes a Yangtze River trip as well as the usual sightseeing destinations. There are just a few openings left and I have to give them my answer before Monday. The price, including the single supplement and the insurance, is incredibly low.
Is there anyone who has traveled to China with smarTours recently and would be willing to share impressions and hints with me? As I said before I really need the info right away.

JudySue is offline  
Mar 23rd, 2006, 08:44 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,443
Smart tours is a great company. Went to Croatia with them, since a friend backed out, and I didn`t really want to go alone. They have good food, nice accomodations but they add fees for optional trips. I think all the tour companies do that anyway. You do quite a few meals on your own, which we liked. We did get quite a bit of free time, which was nice also. All the people we went with were pleased with Smart Tours/Friendly planet and most had been on multiple tours with them. My friend who has been on 6 or 7, went to Bejing and Shaighai with them, and had a good time. I don`t think you can beat them for price, for what you get. Besides, when you are on the ship, you will get the same treatment as everyone else, who went through a different company and paid more. Go!
pat is offline  
Mar 23rd, 2006, 11:19 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 671
I have a friend who did their beijing/shanghai trip last november and loved it
dperry is offline  
Mar 23rd, 2006, 05:03 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 147
Firmed up the May 10th China tour today because I was afraid I would lose my reservation, which was one of the few left on the added tour.
I am mailing my check tonight which I feel is better than paying the $100 extra to use the credit card. I don't think the milage is worth it.
If there is anyone who has taken this tour with smarTours please write me.
JudySue is offline  
Mar 24th, 2006, 08:03 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,937
Loved the Smartours China trip in almost every way. Only disliked the shopping but understand that is part of every China tour no matter the tour company. We have traveled a great deal and are kinda upscale travellers so we were worried about Smartours but found they were just fine and the accomodations and arrangements including meals very acceptable. Met very nice people in our group. You will have a great time.
Elainee is offline  
Mar 24th, 2006, 08:05 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,937
On more thing...most meals included in China which made for a very cohesive group. Not much free time since this is busy tour.
Elainee is offline  
Mar 25th, 2006, 01:45 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 474
We looked at Smartours for a relative who was looking for a trip to China as a solo. Their single supplement is much higher than other comparable companies. Does anyone know why?
WinterTravel is offline  
Mar 29th, 2006, 05:22 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 147
Winter Travel
On the contrary, the single supplement fee is MUCH LOWER than the other tour groups. They ran $1100, $1200, or $1300 and smarTours is only $699.00! I just booked it. I don't know how they do it!
JudySue is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 04:06 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 72
You will not be disappointed with SmarTours. I went with them alone to Japan last summer after my friend cancelled. It was an incredible trip and a number of people on that trip had travelled with them to China. I am planning on their South Africa and India and Nepal trips in the near future.
braidsL is offline  

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