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Glesee Pascual

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76 trips
2 reviews

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Aditi Malvi

April 14, 2018

I opted for the trip of 28-31March’18 as it was the cheapest option I could find to travel to Buscalan for my kalinga tattoo. The journey from Manila is long with multiple transport changes at odd hours. This, however, was the MOST DISORGANISED & UNPROFESSIONAL TOUR & ORGANISER ever! If you’re a non-native who doesn’t speak (tagalog) filipino, I wouldn’t recommend it unless your only purpose is to get the tattoo. Most communication was in local language but my fellow tour members were sweet enough to translate for me. Glesee (organiser) was no help at all! Clarity: I had asked a few questions regarding itinerary on FB messenger group she created but Glesee didn’t answer all. Later I found out a lot of tour members wanted same answers. Throughout the tour we were not kept in the loop about what we were going to do next. We had to keep asking & Glesee would tell one of the tour members who would then share it with rest of us!! It was clear we were not sticking to the itinerary or timelines. We definitely didn’t go for Sagada weaving, Sagada pottery, Sagada brew, Lake danum, strawberry farm etc. Not sure if the group saw Banaue rice terraces properly either. Cost: Apart from the pending 1400 PHP tour cost, Glesee collected 150 PHP from each member for lunch to be served at Buscalan. She collected 40 PHP each for Registration fee at Sagada plus 20 PHP each for the guide at the hanging coffins. The rest of the meals we paid for on our own. Caution: We were also apparently told if the police stopped us we were to say we were a bunch of friends on a trip as there were some license/fee issues. I wasn’t clear on it due to the language barrier & was told later. Luckily we didn’t get stopped. Scary situation for a foreigner as you’d clearly be the odd one out and easily noticed. Start: Meeting point was changed from McDonalds near Centris stn to the one near Greenfield Shaw Blvd. We did not start at 8pm as per itinerary but at 10pm. We were 13 of us plus the driver n his companion in the van. We were later joined by her sister n friends! We reached Bontoc by 9-10am. Post breakfast we reached the jump off point at 11am & village at 12pm instead of 7:30am mentioned in the itinerary. Buscalan: The stay was comfortable. Glesee wasn’t there with us. we had CJ take over as organiser. luckily everyone managed to get their tattoo the same day as it was a weekday with less tourists. Lunch n breakfast was served as we had paid. It’s local fare. Sagada: Again we were late to leave hence late to arrive by 12:30pm. CJ stayed back with another group that Glesee brought and she joined us now with another extra person. We were told hanging coffins is closed due to Holy week so we would do waterfalls but last minute it was changed when we found out it was open!! We were told to rest till 2:30pm then we would go for sightseeing. I had to make some reservations so I skipped the last part of ‘caving’. Due to some misunderstanding I got lost that night & found it very hard to contact Glesee for help as her number was out of range & even after it had range my tour members were quicker to respond & collect me from town than her. Glesee was not even staying at the same homestay as us (but with her sister) - that combined with network issues made communication extremely difficult. She had confirmed to us we could order dinner at the homestay but when enquired the homestay didn’t seem to be prepared & had only eggs n rice to offer. group finally decided to eat in town. Also, despite repeated requests the guide at the hanging coffins kept speaking in filipino. When I complained to Glesee she simply said we’ll translate later, which never happened. Finally my tour members translated. I still had to pay for the guide nonetheless!! We went for sunrise at 5am next day which we were not told anything about. It turned out to be a huge crowd of people come to see clouds over a cliff and multiple stalls serving very expensive breakfast. No place to see anything. Avoidable. Departure: Glesee was running multiple groups at the same time. Apparently we were to go to Bontoc again to wait for the other group (with CJ) & then the convoy would travel together to Manila which wasn’t in the itinerary!! Some tour members wanted to go to the waterfalls. As usual late start. I had to get back to Manila for my hotel checkin on time. Glesee first confirmed they’ll try to get back by 12pm however later confirmed on FB messenger to inform my hotel we’ll reach only by 2am. By 11:30am it looked certain that she wouldn’t return anytime soon so I booked a direct bus to Manila at 1:30pm & reached in time for my checkin. I later found out the group reached early morning 5am!! They even had issues with seating as her sister & friends again joined the van! I had messaged Glesee letting her know I had kept all fees with fellow travellers & was leaving. Despite reading the message she responded really late! I would expect an organiser to be more concerned about their guest who paid for their services, is a non-local & solo female traveller! Summary: This doesn’t seem like an officially licensed organiser. Infact the drivers mentioned they were not even informed about the tour including Buscalan! Very unprofessional and extremely poor service. If it’s cheap travel n accommodation you want, fitting your budget (my spend wasn’t more than 5000 PHP), but with the safety of a group rather than travel solo then go ahead otherwise please avoid & travel on your own! It would cost less travelling solo. I would DEFINITELY NOT RECOMMEND THIS TOUR OR ORGANISER.

Lhen Bulaon

February 12, 2018

Great Great Great

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