Unfortunately, the scheduled arrival time at the airport for this transfer is 2 hours before departure. As everyone who flies international, 2 hours is usually the recommended time to check luggage. Fortunately, we did arrive at the stated arrival time as the traffic wasn't too bad.
Good: The driver was able to locate the hotel.
Bad: He was 30min late. When I called 13min after the scheduled pickup time, I was told he was only 5min away. He arrived another 12 minutes after that.
The tour was not as expected. Here is how it is different from the "inclusions" listed on voucher.
- Food tasting (8 samples)
Actual: A goodie bag with 3-4 pieces of chocolate were given at the second location. At another location, 2 pieces of turrón were given. At the final location, 2 pieces of our choosing (either chocolate and/or macaroon) were given.
- 1 hot chocolate with churros
Actual: 1 hot chocolate with churros was provided at the first location.
- 1 small cake
Actual: No small cake was given at any locations.
- 1 glass of cava
Actual: Given at final location
As mentioned in an earlier review, the voucher states the meeting point is an address and leaves the impression one is to wait outside. In reality, the address is the location of the tour company and folks are supposed to enter inside the building.
I would not recommend spending the money or time on this tour until the description is revised accordingly. You will not be getting the inclusions as stated in the voucher.
I greatly enjoyed the tour. Alicia was very knowledgeable about the city. As I am an amateur/tourist photographer, her skills as a photography tutor was also exceptional. She showed me how to take more interesting and better shots with my compact camera and the camera on my smartphone.
The description should mention that scheduling the tour on Mondays is not recommended. The tour included several museums but all of them were closed on Mondays. I was advised to visit them during the remainder of my stay.
As other reviews mentioned, I had to take the shuttle bus to Terminal 2B although my confirmation document specifically stated pickup would be available at Terminal 1.
As warned in the confirmation, there was another set of passengers who shared my ride. Fortunately, the wait for the driver to pick us up wasn't too long. Unfortunately, it took about 90-120 minutes to be dropped off.
The confirmation did not warn that the driver would pick up additional passengers in the city. After the first set of passengers was dropped off, the driver went to pick up passengers at their hotel who would be catching a flight. Thank goodness he didn't plan on returning to the airport until he dropped me off.
When we got near my dropoff, it appeared the driver had no idea where my hotel was located even though he had a dedicated navigation unit on his windshield. He stopped at a crossroad and told me he couldn't go any further. He pointed toward a direction and told me to walk that way. As I was walking in that direction, I didn't think I was heading to my hotel. I decided to turn around and walk in the other direction. Eventually, I did find the hotel.
It turns out the hotel was in the opposite direction that the driver instructed me to walk. If he had known where the hotel was located, he could have actually parked in front of the hotel. At the very least, parked closer so I wouldn't had to go as far.
Simpson Bay, St Maarten
Unfortunately, early December is not the optimal time to go on the open seas. The ride to Saba in the morning was a bit rough. The waves were too rough for one passenger who made use of the abundant sickness bags. Unfortunately, the ride in the afternoon was even worse. Dramamine was a blessing.
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