Viator Tour Agency

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grtwallchina75
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Viator Tour Agency

Post by grtwallchina75 »

Hello,

Any has any experience with the Viator Tour agency ? Are they reliable ?

We are thinking of using Viator for couple London and Paris tours.

City Guided Walking Tour - 3-5 hr

https://www.viator.com/tours/London/Lon ... nkQAvD_BwE

Thames Hop on and Hop off

https://www.viator.com/tours/London/Tha ... 4kQAvD_BwE

If you know any tour company in London or Paris, I'd appreciate it and/or any thoughts on Viator. thank you.
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ResearchMed
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by ResearchMed »

grtwallchina75 wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 2:16 pm Any has any experience with the Viator Tour agency ? Are they reliable ?

We are thinking of using Viator for couple London and Paris tours.

Viator is sort of an aggregator for various guides/tour services to list on. They don't "do" the tours.

And apparently TripAdvisor acquired them a few years ago, so it's probably all the same, or very similar, but under different labels.

https://www.google.com/search?client=sa ... 8&oe=UTF-8
"Is TripAdvisor and Viator the same company?
Viator (one of the largest tour and activity online sellers) was acquired by TripAdvisor in 2014 and was recently rebranded as TripAdvisor Experiences. That name change is likely due to the success of Booking Experiences and Airbnb Experiences.
"


We have had good luck using Google to start a search, and then interact directly with the guides, or perhaps the small tour company, themselves.

First "screening" is if they respond, and if so, how.
And then, do they seem responsive to our request about what we want to see/do, or if we ask for other suggestions "given what we've already mentioned", etc.

We've never gone "through" TripAdvisor (or Viator), although we may have used them to find the names of some guides. We'd much rather deal directly with the person/people who will be showing us around. That way we know they got the "right information" about our inquiry, and weren't just told, "Here is a group who want to see the museums for 4 hours", or such.

It takes a bit more work, but it's led to some really wonderful excursions.

RM
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obgraham
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by obgraham »

I've used Viatours -- Lisbon and Rome most recently, almost them in Kuala Lumpur until I found a better choice.
I had no issues with them. Their guides were quite good.
They were not very cheap, but they were upfront with the costs, and no hidden fees.
Grasshopper
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by Grasshopper »

We have used a Viator guide for walking food tours in Athens and Naples, we were pleased with both tours.
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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. »

we've used them on a few tours and found them to be good.
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teCh0010
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by teCh0010 »

We used “Get your Guide” which is a similar aggregator to book tours in Paris.

The tours we booked in Paris were both operated by City Wonders. We had a good experience on our tours, the guides were great and knowledgeable, and I would have no hesitation booking directly with city wonders.
ZinCO
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by ZinCO »

As ResearchMed stated, they are not a tour company but an aggregator. Makes it easier to pick out the tour you want in popular locations, and also for spur-of-the-moment bookings (and airport limo service when overseas). We've booked probably 15 activities through them, most recently in New Zealand, including having to change our booking last-minute due to a change in the number of participants. Never had a problem with them (or with Klook, which is a similar but cheaper service more common in Asia... but at this point I'd probably spend a bit more for Viator worldwide).
deserat
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by deserat »

As many have said, Viator is a tour aggregator - I have used them many times for research. I see who the tour company is and then try to book directly with them. Viator can be very good for the port calls of cruises - they have tailored tours that meet the stringent time guidelines and do get the group back on time to get back on the boat. I used them for walking tours, bike tours, hiking and park tours, etc.

By using the tour company directly, you may get a discount and/or they will get more of the tour fees.
autolycus
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by autolycus »

Pricing through Viator is interesting sometimes. A lot of the time you can figure out the same of the actual tour company/person. I have found that some charge less if you book directly with them and others actually charge more. I assume Viator gets some sort of referral fee.

I've also used toursbylocals.com but it's been years since the last time, so I don't know the quality of that site lately.

Oh, and for "nerdy" in-depth tours, Context Travel is amazing. It's more expensive than a lot of tour companies, but their guides (they call them "docents") are highly educated experts in the relevant field. We used them for some tours in Rome that provided much more depth than a typical tour.
GuyInFL
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by GuyInFL »

grtwallchina75 wrote: Sun Mar 31, 2024 2:16 pm
We are thinking of using Viator for couple London and Paris tours.

City Guided Walking Tour - 3-5 hr

[url]https://www.viator.com/tours/London/Lon ... -Tour/d737

If you know any tour company in London or Paris, I'd appreciate it and/or any thoughts on Viator. thank you.
Check out
https://freetoursbyfoot.com/

You just tip the guide at the end. We've had great success around the world with these.
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CardinalRule
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by CardinalRule »

autolycus wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 11:09 am Pricing through Viator is interesting sometimes. A lot of the time you can figure out the same of the actual tour company/person. I have found that some charge less if you book directly with them and others actually charge more. I assume Viator gets some sort of referral fee.

I've also used toursbylocals.com but it's been years since the last time, so I don't know the quality of that site lately.

Oh, and for "nerdy" in-depth tours, Context Travel is amazing. It's more expensive than a lot of tour companies, but their guides (they call them "docents") are highly educated experts in the relevant field. We used them for some tours in Rome that provided much more depth than a typical tour.
We have had good experiences with Viator in Europe. Similar to what Amazon does with its sellers, Viator does charge the tour operator a commission - 25% or so, I think - which will be baked into the tour price you pay. For our last trip in London, our credit card was offering 10% back (IIRC) on Viator purchases.

We had to cancel a booking (with enough advance notice per the states rules) and Viator processed it efficiently.

If we were returning to an area (i.e., we are now more familiar with it), I would probably be more inclined to book directly with a tour operator.
02nz
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by 02nz »

Look at the user reviews for each operator. Some are very good, some not so much. I usually look for an average of 4.5 stars or higher.

I just booked several activities with them and used a $40 off $200 offer that Amex is running for Viator purchases, so look check your offers if you have an Amex card. I last used Viator several years ago and had a good experience.
crefwatch
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by crefwatch »

Viator is often denigrated on newsboards (not talking about this thread) for being a reseller. But although I prefer to deal with the actual provider (and sometimes save a few bucks) the tour I wanted in Poland was not listed on the actual provider's purchasing website. When I told them that, they said, "Yeah, we know about that." I guess the Viator exposure is so important it's not worth the web-development labor ...

I was very happy with that particular Viator purchase. I was also able to easily change the day (months in advance) when I found I'd made a mistake. On a recent trip to Taiwan, I went with the provider itself, and everything went fine. I think I saved $50 on $250 (full day with car), but that wasn't the point. I wanted the provider to get all the money.
DatWayMon
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by DatWayMon »

My wife and I recently used Viator to book four tours in Thailand; two in Chiang Mai, one in Bangkok and one in Koh Samui. All of them lived up to or exceeded our expectations.

They also have a price match guarantee on some tours that I put to the test. Within four hours of my email showing them where I got the better price for the exact same tour they had issued a refund for the difference.

I too prefer to deal directly with the actual tour operator but it's not always possible. If the tour I wanted was only offered through Viator I wouldn't hesitate booking.
Topic Author
grtwallchina75
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by grtwallchina75 »

teCh0010 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 9:26 am We used “Get your Guide” which is a similar aggregator to book tours in Paris.

The tours we booked in Paris were both operated by City Wonders. We had a good experience on our tours, the guides were great and knowledgeable, and I would have no hesitation booking directly with city wonders.
Thank you, we are going to Paris and I will check out City Wonders. Which tours did you take, if I may ask please ?
teCh0010
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by teCh0010 »

grtwallchina75 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:47 pm
teCh0010 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 9:26 am We used “Get your Guide” which is a similar aggregator to book tours in Paris.

The tours we booked in Paris were both operated by City Wonders. We had a good experience on our tours, the guides were great and knowledgeable, and I would have no hesitation booking directly with city wonders.
Thank you, we are going to Paris and I will check out City Wonders. Which tours did you take, if I may ask please ?
We did a guided skip the line of the Louvre, and an all day tour of Normandy from Paris. We went to Utah beach, a DDay museum, Point du hoc, lunch, a cider tasting, and the American cemetery at Omaha beach.
vinhodoporto
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by vinhodoporto »

We’ve had good experiences with the tours we’ve found through Viator in a number of countries. Have also gone direct with operators we found through Viator, and with ones we’ve found on our own elsewhere.

Looking through the reviews of the actual tour / operator has been key to find the good ones.
Eazyndn
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by Eazyndn »

I have used Viator to book tours in Australia, New Zealand, and Japan, and had a great experience.

Check out the reviews and research before booking, the wonderful thing is that you can cancel most tours within 24 hours of your trip date.

Best of travels.
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HipCoyote
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by HipCoyote »

We travel quite a bit and often use Viator for tours. Most often, we do food tours. We found the tours to be fun, affordable and informative. Very often, the guides will introduce you to eateries that you would not have likely been able to find on your own without some local knowledge. The food tours also expose you to the culture of the place. For instance, in Krakow, we ended up in a coffee shop, that was below ground, that was a locale for resistance activity when the communists were in charge. Kinda cool.

We did one in Egypt where we ate at place no tourist would have ever found. As a photographer, I got some great photos as well and met some nice folks.

For the price we find them worth it.
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David Jay
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by David Jay »

I have used them 2-3 times, all associated with cruises. I was typically booking tours that were not available through the cruise operator (i.e. Nelson’s Dockyard on Antigua).
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Greywolf
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by Greywolf »

I often use Viator as a reference for tours. If you're willing to work at it you can usually find out who the actual tour operator is by reading reviews and descriptions. Often, booking with the actual tour operator is cheaper for the same tour.
If the price is similar, check the cancellation policies. Viator generally has liberal cancellation policies compared to the actual operator and will refund your money quickly (at least in our experiences) if you needed to cancel.
Topic Author
grtwallchina75
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by grtwallchina75 »

teCh0010 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 6:07 am
grtwallchina75 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:47 pm
teCh0010 wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 9:26 am We used “Get your Guide” which is a similar aggregator to book tours in Paris.

The tours we booked in Paris were both operated by City Wonders. We had a good experience on our tours, the guides were great and knowledgeable, and I would have no hesitation booking directly with city wonders.
Thank you, we are going to Paris and I will check out City Wonders. Which tours did you take, if I may ask please ?
We did a guided skip the line of the Louvre, and an all day tour of Normandy from Paris. We went to Utah beach, a DDay museum, Point du hoc, lunch, a cider tasting, and the American cemetery at Omaha beach.
Great, I will book directly with City Wonders, thank you.

Is this the tour and company you went with ?

https://citywonders.com/paris-tours/lou ... p-the-line

Please let me know!

Have you been to Mont Saint Michel ?

asking wondering if you enjoyed it, I'm split btwn Normandy vs Mont Saint M.

https://www.francetourisme.fr/en/tours- ... -tour.html
jlawrence01
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by jlawrence01 »

We have used both Viator and Get Your Guideand were happy with the results. they tend to be 15-20% cheaper than the cruise line's own tours.

We have had great experience with Get Your Guide in Roatan, Honduras. They arranged a driver for the two of us for $50 total for four hours. We were picked up in a Hyundai Elantra and he took us all over the island to see what ever we wanted to see.
Last edited by jlawrence01 on Sat Apr 06, 2024 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Planner01
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Re: Viator Tour Agency

Post by Planner01 »

I’ve used Viator for at least seven years. Never had a bad tour. Yes, there’s an extra upcharge for using them as a third party vendor with guides but I like the fact that many of those tours require a deposit or full payment if you book directly with them. Viator has an option of reserving a paying three days before. This works well because I often plan at least eight months in advance.
So far, so good.
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