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Has anyone every used a company called Portugal Trails

Has anyone every used a company called Portugal Trails

Sep 3rd, 2012, 05:24 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 3
Has anyone every used a company called Portugal Trails

I've been communicating with this tour company - so far, the experience has been exceptional. They are asking for 100% payment, prior to the trip which always makes me a bit anxious when I've never used, or met them. Has anyone used this tour company before?
mishka1964 is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2012, 05:55 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 11,212
All tour companies want payment before the trip. That's nothing unusual.

This isn't an escorted tour - all they do is make hotel reservations and give you an itinerary. Why can't you do this yourself? I hope you're not paying too much for this service but I expect you are.

Whatever you book do not do the top to bottom tour in 2 weeks - way too much plus you don't get Sintra - IMHO the gem of Portugal.
adrienne is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2012, 10:16 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 8,827
Portugal Trails is an incoming service/tour operator specializing in organizing Self-Guided Tours (trip planning/itineraries). I hate to disagree with anyone, but unless you are fairly familiar with Portugal and know what you want to see and do, working with a trip planner can be advantageous. The price should depend on the level of service they are providing, but if they can give you want you want, then the price will be irrelevant.

If they are asking for full payment in advance, it simply means that they are offering you a package in which they take care of everything for you. The option would be for you to have them prepare a custom itinerary (were you pay a fee). Then you can take care of making all of the arrangements; hotels, transfers and transportation, guided visits, etc., and be on your own once you arrive in Portugal. It will save you some money, but cost you time.
Robert2533 is offline  
Sep 6th, 2012, 04:31 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 202
Hi Mishka
I am using Portugal Tours for the first time and I had the same questions. They are a fairly new company, I think three years old, but I found great reviews on the web. I just paid my final payment and will be leaving in about a week. Did you notice that you can cancel five days before you arrive and get a full refund? This type of promise and the excellent communications I am having with my contact reassure me.
I believe I am getting excellent value for money. After I got the estimate I figured out how much I could save by doing all the work myself, as I normally do, but it didn't seem to be worth it.
My husband and I speak no Portugese, and we didn't want to book a tour. This tour company gives us the type of itinerary and hotel I would choose for myself, plus the greatest thing of all - a pre-programmed GPS for the itinerary.
I liked the itinerary very much, but I asked for some additions and specific suggestions for our interests, and now these are included.
I will write a review when I get back, but I have every confidence that we will be pleased.
Try looking up some reviews - I think you will feel more secure.
Baz
Bazonia is offline  
Sep 8th, 2012, 01:34 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 4
My wife and I used Portugal Trails during our recent visit to Portugal. The company representative who looked after us is Ines Leitao. From the time of our initial contact with them, their response to our questions was prompt. At our request, they arranged a nine day self-drive tour of Northern Portugal. A suggested itinerary, a list of recommended hotels, was provided. We opted for either four or five star hotels, which were exceptional. The company provided us with a detailed colour brochure of our trip, a pre-programmed GPS with places to visit each day, and directions to each of these places, plus the hotels. A company representative met us at Lisbon Airport, and helped us with the rental car, and provided us with hotel vouchers, GPS, colour brochure, and information about each place we should visit. Our experience with this company has been exceptional, and we have no hesitation in using them again. We travelled from August 13 to August 21, and just returned home after a two week cruise of the Mediterranean which followed our road trip.
Rathne is offline  
Sep 8th, 2012, 01:52 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 4
Hello Mishka,
I just posted a response to your note about Portugal Trails. My wife and I are fairly seasoned travellers, and have toured most parts of the world, either on our own, or based on a tailor made tour by a tour company. The odd time, we have taken group tours as well. When we decided to tour Portugal, first I started doing my own planning, and decided that in nine days we could not possibly see the whole country. We concentrated on Northen Portugal. I came across Portugal Trails quite by chance, and I am glad I did. I am not sure how much we would have saved by doing our own planning, but by the time I put down the cost of the car rental, the quality of hotels we stayed in, the advice regarding places off the beaten path we visited, my wife and I are glad that we used this company. We believe we got value for our money. The restaurant recommendations which include fancy ones, as well as the "hole in the wall" ones were wonderful. We wish we had a few extra days in Portugal as there is so much to see and do.
Rathne is offline  
Mar 8th, 2015, 10:47 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 2
I am about 6 weeks from flying out to Portugal. Airfare done on our own and like others, I stumbled on Portugal Trails via the internet. I am thinking of wiring them the money which is a bit nerve racking. Most of these Posts are from 2012 so seems like company is not a tour scam and legit. Looking for recent Posts about this company before I wire money to them.
billybap is offline  
May 11th, 2015, 08:58 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 158
I too usually book all my own travel. I'm going to Portugal after 9 days in Paris and Belgium with my daughter. I've struggled with my itinerary for my 9 days in Portugal. I found Portugal Trails and am considering going with them. When you travel solo, it can be exhausting to doing it all yourself. Like billybap I would love to hear from someone who has used them recently especially from any other solo travelers.
lisakinnear is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2015, 01:17 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 11
is there any update on this? I looked at the website and there's a lot that's appealing (booking arranged, car delivered, general convenience) that seems worth a small amount of money to me, but I'd love to hear a more recent review.
eleanor174 is offline  
Oct 20th, 2016, 01:45 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 1
My wife and I used Portugal Trails and like most, pushing the button to send payment gives you cause for thought. I emailed all the pousada's we were planning to visit to confirm our reservation. It was by far one of the best trips we have ever taken. 12 day's with car rental for 9. No need for car in Lisbon where our trip began. Wonderful and easy public transportation. Dealing directly with PT owner, Donna, was the best. We agreed on agenda beforehand and with pre-programmed GPS for rental car we never got lost. We choice to stay three day's in each region and we're pleased with this decision. Donna programmed under favorites places to go in each area. We threw a curve ball day 4-5 and asked for agenda change. No problem and everything worked out. Driver at airport picking us up even with 5 hour delay and also picking us up last day was perfect. Highly recommend Donna and Portugal Trails. I may be a bit more but well worth it. You will not go wrong doing business with this company.
jfqueenan is offline  

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