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Lisey Mar 5th, 2005 06:24 AM

Globus or Trafalgar?
My husband and I want to visit Australia/New Zealand with a reputable tour operator. Has anyone used Globus, Trafalgar or Swain Tours (Tauck is too expensive)? Any comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Lisey

LN Mar 5th, 2005 07:41 AM

All three are quite reputable but I'm not sure why you'd want to take a tour in Australia. They speak English and the country is extremely friendly. You can select your own tour and probably save a good bit too - we did!

Captb Mar 5th, 2005 08:08 AM

We just returned from a 22 day tour of OZ, NZ and Fiji with Smartours. Quite pleased with their itinerary, hotels and guides. Check them out - could save you $

LN - we took the Organized Tour for an introduction to these countries. We will now return and tour independently. We find Organized tours and cruises a good way to scout out the locations. If we like what we see then we usually will return and do our own thing.

prue Mar 5th, 2005 05:23 PM

I would also suggest you investigate Australian Pacific Tours (APT) they are Australian based and have tours in both Australia and New Zealand.
We have been on four of their tours and found them to be extremely well organised and affordable.

Lisey Mar 5th, 2005 06:21 PM

Thanks for all your suggestions. We're interested in tours because we're not comfortable driving on the "other side" of the road. I just picked up an APT brochure and will also get one of Smartours. Thanks again. Lisey

rheamarie Mar 8th, 2005 05:43 PM

We booked an independant tour through the Quantas website (this maybe APT tours) -- check out their specials. They also offer fully escorted tours. It was really nice that they arranged for us to be picked up at the airport and then dropped off at our hotels. My husband did not want us to drive over there -- so we did take a couple of day tours -- they all pickup from your hotel. Our hotels had great locations -- easy central touring with time to come back to the room to recharge your batteries.

KWP Mar 11th, 2005 10:04 AM

Lisey...I know Tauck is expensive, but I can highly recommend this company. My husband and I have been on 4 of their tours. We consider them a great value. Their tour guides are excellent. They don't "nickel and dime" you to death like Globus and other companies do. The Globus tour kept selling optional tours after we arrrived (on a Europe trip). This was very frustrating, because the tour guide kept taking so much time selling optional tours. Tauck has all touring included in the price prior to you departing home. Tauck uses great hotels that are centrally located. They don't make you go out to less expensive restaurants after a full day of touring. This is exhausting. You eat in the nice hotel you are staying in, at the time you want to. You have the choice of the menu instead of the normal two choices of many tour companies. We liked the "less groupy" meals. Tauck also is the most efficient company we have been with. The air flights are the best, your luggage is in the room upon arrival, etc. No wasted time with this company. They also have a policy of no commissions allowed from shops to their tour no wasted time in shops you aren't interested in. So many tour companies allow tour guides to get a commission for taking their guests in stores. I remember being in China with a less expensive tour company. There was a man in our group who was kicking himself for not taking a Tauck China tour instead. He had been on the Australian/New Zealand Tauck tour and loved it. He couldn't get over the difference. You get what you pay for.

wlzmatilida Mar 11th, 2005 04:59 PM


KWP is absolutely correct. I have never ever heard of ANYONE complaining about a Tauck tour - it simply doesn't happen. (and I network daily with an electronic board with over 3,000 travel agents on it). That's extremely rare for any company! Yes, they are expensive, but as KWP said, you get what you pay for.

Swain is a wholesaler based on the East Coast, and is a very good company, but they are contracting tours out, they don't actually operate them.

APT is a very good company that's been around for years, but I believe they're using Sunlover cruises as their operator for the Great Barrier Reef - you might want to verify that, as I've checked that tour out and now would not put any clients on them; otherwise APT is usually great.

Hope this is helpful!

Certified Aussie Specialist

NGail Aug 8th, 2005 08:24 AM

Are you still planning your Oz/NZ trip?
We went several years ago and used Swain. They were terrific- the agent at that time was David Thomas. He booked hotels (some that we specifically asked for - all were well located and reasonable)and flights, several day-trips with local outfits - we wanted small groups and he gave us that such as an overnight from Darwin to Kakadu.
Booked us a tour/dinner/show package at the Sydney Opera(even read us the reviews of the very off-beat production.)
Booked us hot-air ballooning in Alice Springs, snorkling at GBR and several days on Heron Island. In NZ, where we both travelled by bus and drove ourselves, he got us a 2- night hike along Abel Tasmim (beautiful!).
And more and more!
A lot of the time we were on our own which was what we wanted.
We were in Oz for 19 days, NZ for 17. We had friends who were in Oz the same time for 2 1/2 weeks, went the high-end route and spent as much $ as we did for our whole trip.
If you haven't gone yet, look into them--if you have, hope you had a great time.

pineapplelady Aug 8th, 2005 04:36 PM

We have used Globus to travel Africa and England. Loved them. Try for discounts on Globus.

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