Smartours to Thailand

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Aug 28th, 2006, 07:18 AM
  #1
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Smartours to Thailand

My husband and I have traveled a lot but never with a tour.
We are considering the 14 day "Amazing Thailand" tour (Bangkok, Ayutthaya/Phitsanulok on to Sukothai/Lampang on to Golden Triangle Chiang Rai on to ChiangRai & Chang Mai back to Bangkok with Smartours

All this in 11 days.
Price is right $1099 per person from NYC and all hotel and in country transport.
It feels like it might be too much but there is lots of free time and optional trips available.
Any expereince with this company?
Any recommendations of things to do if we break away from the group and do our own thing?

Thanks for your expereince and advice
Safe travels to all
womanway is offline  
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Aug 28th, 2006, 07:22 AM
  #2
 
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Thailand is very easy travel on your own. You'll enjoy it most if you go slowly, spending some time in each place you want to visit. This tour covers way too much ground in too little time. I'd dump it and go alone.
Kathie is offline  
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Aug 28th, 2006, 08:02 AM
  #3
pat
 
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Went on a Smart tour and it was great. Only did it because my friend backed out, and I didn`t want to go alone. (It wasn`t to Thailand though) everyone really enjoyed the trip, and yes, you do get a lot of free time, if you don`t do the optionals. If you don`t feel comfortable on your own, do it!
pat is offline  
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Aug 28th, 2006, 10:50 AM
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I would go on the tour. Sure it is fast paced, but you will see and do lots of things that you miss on your own. We did a tour, and now go back on our own.
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Aug 28th, 2006, 02:43 PM
  #5
 
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Althrough you cover a lot of ground, this is a good tour to see the main sites of Thailand excluding the beaches. The price is unbeatable, you could not do it on your own for that. The hotels that you stay in are good ranging from 3 to 4 star. In Bangkok it is a short walk to a skytrain station from the Holiday Inn. Once you get a taste of travelling in Thailand you will discover how easy it is and if you return you can do it on your own.
Scotters is offline  
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Aug 28th, 2006, 06:25 PM
  #6
 
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the price can't be $1100 each including air fare and hotels?????
usually the airfare from nyc is $1100 alone....

while you will be moved quickly from one place to another, if the price is as you quoted it i would go....then i would return another time on my own and see things more slowly and enjoy the wonderful thai life...

holiday inn silom is well situated and a medium grade hotel....it is neither good nor bad (3 star or 3.5), but is in an excellent location...
rhkkmk is offline  
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Aug 28th, 2006, 06:33 PM
  #7
 
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i just looked at it....it is $1100 incl airfare and some meals, plus read the small print ...there is $350 more fees etc from nyc...so $1450....its still cheap....i don't see the list of hotels however
rhkkmk is offline  
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Aug 28th, 2006, 07:07 PM
  #8
 
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Hello.
If u like group tours, or if u are alone and want the comfort of a group, the Smartours trip in Thailand is very good trip and a superb Value!!! It gets rave reiviews from all I know who took it and i have met many....

I have not been on it, But am very familiar with Smartours in other destinations, INDIA SPECIFICALLY!,

I actually lead many Smartours trips in India, as an American who lives in the region. I have met many folks in inDIA who earlier had taken The Thailand trip and loved it! very happy with the trip, the Value and quality!

And by the way, the India Smartours trip is also very good tour, yes, i am partial, but i am also absolutely certain!!..It stays in superb five star hotels, is very comprehensive, most everyt8ing is included and is a good value too, but far more COSTLY than Amazing Thailand....

Also, the India trip does NOT have alot of free time at all!, it moves at a fast pace for two whole weeks thur North India AND COVERS ALOT of ground.. it is full on!

Anyways, any questons, feel free to drop me a line.

Sawadeeka..Namaste..

Bonita is offline  
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Aug 30th, 2006, 06:11 PM
  #9
 
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I went on the Smartour in January. Had a great time. The group is large (40) but people gravitated to smaller groups of 4 to 6. We never felt rushed or herded. Holiday Inn has incredible breakfast buffet, Indian, Chinese, Thai, Western and Japanese. There is time on your own. I booked optional tours with a Thai travel agent as they were 50% cheaper. I went on the Floating Mkt only instead of the full day with Rose Garden. The guide was fantastic and took small groups on outings of interest free in Chaing Mai.
We visited more interesting places than listed in the itinerary. The value for the money is great. Actually, I went to BKK for a consultation at Bumrungrad Hospital but the 12 day tour was cheaper than just an airline ticket.I went alone and never felt left out but when I wanted to be solitary that was possible too. I'm planning on going next year with a friend.
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Aug 30th, 2006, 06:40 PM
  #10
 
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I haven't been on this specific tour, but went on a China Tour with Smartours which is also Friendly Planet. That is who we booked through. Most of our group booked through Smartours. We were impressed with the quality. Several people had done previous tours with this company including a Thailand trip. They were happy obviously since they were back for another tour.
We had a few early mornings for flights, but usually not too rushed.
Nice hotels and food.
All in all a good responsible company.
steffek2 is offline  
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Aug 31st, 2006, 08:29 AM
  #11
 
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I prefer independent travel, and have only taken a tour once. It was through friendlyplanet/smartours, on their Vietnam/Cambodia/BKK tour. It was an outstanding value for the $$. There were people on the trip who had taken 5 or 6 trips with this company - I think that speaks well of them.
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