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Timeframe for Completing Trip Planning with Santa Maria TA

Timeframe for Completing Trip Planning with Santa Maria TA

Apr 18th, 2013, 12:37 PM
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 532
Kathie-Unfortunately I do know about the 28 day limit. Initially we were at 33 days so I had to drop Mrauk U, mainly due to all the uncertainty as to if it would be open to foreigners, when we were to travel. No way of telling that far ahead. Silverswimmer, the destination expert on TA for Myanmar told me I'd be ok with a day or two over with a fine of $3 per day. Right now we are at 28 days with day 29 being the day we leave Myanmar.

The reason I chose the Thande is that there was a big difference in price for the dates I put in. I used the same dates for both hotels, tried to choose similar quality room. I couldn't use our actual dates as too far ahead for the system. If the travel agent comes back with close prices for the two of them then I may opt to go with Tharabar. There was a recent posting on TA from someone who just returned that said out of most of the time they were there the pool at Tharabar was unusable. Pool is a big deal for my husband. We plan to go out early in the morning, return for 3 hr. pool/lunch break, then go out again around 3 pm. I got the following info from booking site agoda.com: Dates I used were 8/4/13-8/10/13-6 nights

Tharabar deluxe room $123.25 per night , price does not include 15% hotel tax, does include free breakfast and free cancelation before 7/28/13.

Thande econmy $56.52 per night, superior $78.26 per night, price does not include 15% hotel tax, does include free breakfast and free cancelation before 7/28/13.

There is a big difference in price-around $45 per night and for 6 nights that's about $270 for us for the Thande superior room. I figured we wouldn't be spending the majority of our time in the room and both places get good reviews so it all comes down to money for us.

If money was no object Id stay at the Bagan Thiripyitsaya Sanctuary!

yestravel-Sorry to hijack your thread. Hang in there with SM. It has a good reputation and is one that we are looking to get feedback/prices. Right now the only firm date we have is that from 1/30/14-2/8/14 we will be with our daughter in Phuket. There is a possibility we may be in Myanmar after that.
chris45ny is offline  
Apr 18th, 2013, 01:21 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,987
Well, the pool issue is new. We used the pool at Tharbar Gate every day! The river front rooms at the Thiripyitsaya Sanctuary were fabulous - but a real splurge. My experience was that the travel agent could get us better prices everywhere. But a couple of years ago there was almost nothing in Burma on agoda, just a few places and agoda's prices weren't good. I'll be interested in your experience. Note that the travel agent price generally includes tax & service and breakfast.

Yes, you can overstay for $3 a day - and silverswimmer is very knowledgable - but people have reported difficulties staying at hotels with an expired visa or getting on flights. If you are flying out on your 29th day it will not be a problem.
Kathie is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 03:17 PM
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 37
Dear Burma Friends:

Well, I've emailed Santa Maria 9 times (I feel like a travel stalker- LOL) I've gotten NO ans. I am using my Google email so I don't think that is the issue.

What to do? I am asking for Jan 2014 -- too early is is that why there is NO ans. What to do?

Anyway, is there another reliable Burmese travel agency? A SANTA MARIA alternative? I am most worried about booking my Yangon (the capitol)---to --- Bagan flt. and Balloon Over Bagan flight.

Thank you and perplexed,

TedStell is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 03:38 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 10,133
I will be in Burma in January also. I began working with Santa Maria in the beginning of March. The email I have been using is [email protected]. There is another psot here that had some other email addresses to try.
yestravel is offline  
Apr 25th, 2013, 07:59 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 371
Here are two that others here have used with good results:

Myanmar Shalom Travels and Tours/ www.myanmarshalom.com

and Shan Yoma Travel and Tours/www.myanmartravelagency.com/greeting.htm

and quite few others have been mentioned in various thread about travels in Burma

Good luck!
520 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2013, 05:18 AM
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 37
thanks 520
TedStell is offline  
Apr 26th, 2013, 06:09 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,987
Ted, do check you spam or bulk mail folder to make sure g mail hasn't marked any responses as spam. Be aware that with the vastly increased numbers of travelers to Burma, many agencies are just swamped.
Kathie is offline  
May 3rd, 2013, 10:00 PM
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 46
I understand your frustration Ted, after about 10 tries (spread over several weeks) I've long given up on Santa Maria.
I have had replies from Kyaw Khaing at One Stop Myanmar and also Myanmar Shalom. However, I have learnt that while we are anxious for replies, it seems the Burmese think several days between communications is just fine. Maybe their blood pressure is better also!!!
natandmiriam is offline  
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