While my tour of Yosemite was amazing, out tour guide Aoka was awesome, the tour company was not. I paid a premium to leave from downtown San Jose instead of San Francisco. The morning of the tour I was waiting at the hotel at 6:30sm as instructed. Instead of a bus, coach or van an Uber driver pulled up, asked me my name and told me to come with him. Tour company called while this was happening and confirmed that I should get into the Uber. The driver then drove me for a ways out of town, pulled into a strip mall parking lot and told me we were here. I asked where I was supposed to go and he said he wasnt sure, and left me in the middle of the parking lot, I had zero idea what was going on. I called the number from the tour company and she told me to go hang out in the Starbucks and a van should be there in about 20 minutes. Sometime later I get another call saying that my driver has been waiting for me at the 7-11. I now board a full bus. We drive for about an hour, pull into a grocery store and we are told to shop for all the food we will need for the day, bus is locked for 1/2 hr so youre forced to walk aimlessly around the store. Great, amazing day touring Yosemite. Our driver was great, informative albeit a bit cheesy, but really put the effort into a nice day. Time to go home, once again after our mandatory 1/2 hour grocery store stop this time on our way home, I get dropped off in the middle of a parking lot, its DARK, Starbucks is closed, my phone battery is on fumes only half the buss charging ports worked after a 13hr day and Im suppose to wait there alone until a third party Uber driver is called and arrives. I had a dude in pickup truck harassing me while I waited for the Uber to arrive. Unsafe, unprofessional and NOT what I signed up for. What a disappointing ending to an otherwise beautiful day.
The tour was very good, nice stops and the tour guide Denise was friendly and informative. A few things though, I booked the trip departing from San Jose paying a premium over the tour departing from San Fransisco, the tour company wanted me to make my own way to San Fran for pickup anyway. I had to send quiet a few emails to explain I'd be departing from San Jose as the tour website described. Also we happened to book the tour on Martin Luther King Day a holiday in America, this means entrance to National Parks is free for the day, we however still paid for the price of park entrance in our tour cost. Basically the tour company had us pay the price of park entrance when there was no need to do so which I felt was dishonest.