10D7N Aurora Chasing In NorwaySiew Hong Tang (3 - 13 Mar 2017)
Tour : 10D/7N Aurora Chasing in Norway
Dep Date : 3/3/2017
Ret Date : 12/3/2017 (Scheduled)
TM : Jeremiah Tan 5*
A person obviously with a passion for Customer Service, responsible and unruffled under duress. Starting with the Trip Briefing, Jeremiah was very detail and provided advice and tips to help those of us unfamiliar with travelling to places with cold winter condition to be better prepared to enjoy the trip. Between the briefing and the departure date, he sent phone messages to update us regarding the trip and several reminders on the things to pack. Throughout the trip, Jeremiah was always making sure everyone is comfortable, coming around to every table during meals and giving careful directions at every location. He also kept the group engaged during bus trips by sharing jokes, his own life stories and experiences. There was never a dull moment with Jeremiah. For our return flights, heavy snowfall caused a delay of our flights from Tromso to Frankfurt and we missed our connecting flights to Singapore. Jeremiah was calm and composed and handled the situation very well. His composure and confidence helped the group to stay calm. Surprisingly it was his first experience with such a disruption but yet I would not have known by the way he managed the situation. He managed to put part of the group on a SQ flight leaving early the next day and stayed with the remaining group for the night flight. He rose up early to accompany the group leaving earlier to the airport and came back for the remaining group to take us to the city. He brought us out for a day tour of Frankfurt city which was not part of the itinerary. Accompanying us to the city, finding out how to take the train and where to go was a responsibility he took upon himself.
On a personal note, he was also very tolerant of my Special Needs son who interrupted him frequently. A special thanks to Jeremiah for volunteering to take care of my son for the optional Husky Sledding. It’s a heavy responsibility that’s well beyond the call of duty.
Itinerary : 4*
Of the itinerary itself, I prefer relaxing holidays and the pace of the programme was just nice for us. There was a change of the itinerary from a cruise to a visit to Harstad. We were not informed of the change until the briefing. EU could do better here to alert the group of the change and the reason for it. On a more positive note, we caught a fantastic display of the Northern Lights at Harstad which was a surprise and a bonus. The transport arrangement up to the hill top could have been better managed by the local management of the facility. Those of us who took the track vehicle had to endure the exhaust from the vehicle and ultimately got stuck near the top because the terrain was too steep for the vehicle. We had to wait to be transferred by snow mobiles. As a consequent some of us missed the earlier part of the Northern Lights display. No fault of EU here. The Northen Lights display that was shared by Jeremiah in another post was a series of time lapsed photos taken here by the photographer who accompanied us.
The visit to Polar Park was interesting for us to get to see some of the animals not seen in our Zoo, only regret is there is no more Polar Bears in the Park. Hearing the wolves howl would have been eerie if not for the fact it was broad daylights and there was a fence protecting us. Surprising fact is that Moose and Musk Ox are more dangerous to human than wolves. The Musk Ox, an animal from the time of the Mammoth, is an awesome looking animal.
The visit to the Reindeer Farm also provided a cultural lesson on the Sami people, indigenous to Norway, Sweden and Finland. We had a fun time hand feeding the reindeers. Had to be careful to avoid their antlers though. Not that the reindeers are aggressive but some of the antlers are large and when the reindeers are eating from our hands, the pointed tips of the antlers were literally in your face and dancing before your eyes.
Then the highlight of the tour was the night we were supposed to have our Aurora chase. Weather forecast was for snow and cloudy sky. Not good. Nevertheless, we set off with our guide and photographer. She brought us to a beach where she felt had a good chance of catching the Northern Lights and she was right. Barely have we set up our tripods and the display started. We had another good display of Northern Lights. Did I mention the freezing cold? I had to have heat pads inserted into my boots and gloves. BUT it was all worth it.
On the last day in Tromso, it was free and easy. It was snowing. Beautiful white blanketing everything in sight. Not so comfortable to venture out with snow being blown at our faces. We did make a visit to the Polaria, an aquarium. An interesting building that looks like falling dominoes, that’s how Jeremiah described it when giving us direction to the place. 2 short but informative films about arctic wildlife and Northern Lights; seal feeding and a collection of other sea creatures. There is a tunnel with glass roof where visitors can see the seals close up. We find it a worthwhile place to visit.
Food & Accomodation : 4*
As for food and accommodation, the hotels were all comfortable, except for the last 2 nights at the Clarion the Edge, Tromso. It is a nice and fairly new hotel overall but the room is a bit too small to accommodate triple sharing. However, the hotel was fully booked and they couldn’t allocate a bigger room to us. The food at Quality Grand, Narvik, is actually not bad but because the food at the other hotels were good, it paled in comparison. 3 of the group members are Muslims and had a bit of difficulty since all the food outlets were not Halal; and a couple of the other group members were also not accustomed to the way some of the main course meat selection were prepared. Would be great for them if EU could have made prior arrangement with the hotels for alternative choices, e.g fish or vegetarian for those 3-course dinners.
Shopping IS EXPENSIVE, unless you chance upon items on sale. VAT is 25%, but tourists can get rebate for 12% at the airport. A couple of ladies found the Timberland boots they bought in Singapore on sale there at half-price. We, ourselves bought 2 winter jackets on sale at about S$30 each, marked down from S$180 and S$82 respectively; and a pair of half-priced Goretex boots at $$132. Do remember to ask for the tax rebate claim form but not every shop has it. No form, no claim because the shop’s stamp is required on the form.
Of the group itself, there were 25 of us. All adults, including 2 elderly ladies who were able to brave the cold. Ladies out number male by 19:6. A nice and cooperative group of people, helping to look out for each other and loading and unloading luggage. When Jeremiah disclosed that there were not enough seats on the earlier replacement return flight for the whole group, there was no scramble for the few available seats. Those of us who were able to wait volunteered to take the later flight and the rest also responded with their appreciation. The group that went to Frankfurt had an enjoyable lunch together with German beer and sharing pork knuckles.
It was an expensive vacation of the once in a life time bucket list category but we enjoyed ourselves tremendously. Thoroughly worth the money spent and the instant noodle meals for the next 6 months.
10D7N Italy Fiesta + 2N DubaiOng Teik Chuan (4 - 15 Mar 2017)
It was our 2nd time joined eu holidays for our Europe trip. It was so fortunate that � Sebastian Mak was our tour leader for �10D Italy Fiesta + 2N Dubai. �He is knowledgeable, patient, responsible and he also a very good time organizer. He tried to squeezed in as much of itinerary as he can and advise the things worth to buy and places to visit. �
Hotels and �meals provided was consider good for this package. (Maybe can improve the Chinese meals�provided). It was very enjoyable trip and hope will join eu holidays again next year.
P.S. Keep it up to offer the valuable service �
10D7N Winter Adventure In Finland + Norway King Crab SafariSijie Angeline (24 Feb - 5 Mar 2017)
It's our first time travelling with EU holidays! And thanks to our awesome tour manager TIM, we enjoyed the finland trip v much! Thanks for making it a memorable honeymoon for us! You successful bond the entire group and your humor has kept us all entertained throughout the long bus journeys! Not forgetting the fun tour group and the great itinerary! :)
10D7N Winter Adventure In Finland + Norway King Crab SafariCrystal Ng (24 Feb - 5 Mar 2017)
Tour package: 10D7N Winter Adventure In Finland + Norway King Crab Safari
Travel date: 24 Feb - 03 Mar 2017
Tour manager: Timothy
Customer service officer: Jeremiah Tan
This isn't my first trip with EU holidays, but I have to say that I enjoyed this trip the most :) had great tour mates and tour manager. I didn't get to see the aurora lights during my last Finland trip. But thanks to Timothy~~ (haha apparently he's lucky in this particular field) we all got to see Aurora Borealis four nights in a row! I thank him for being patient with us and always willing to listen to our suggestion. He constantly tried to find ways to engage with us and ensure our safety. I deeply appreciate his effort to look after my relatives during their desperate times.
I would like to thank Jeremiah Tan for helping me with the tour booking. Looking forward to more trips with EU Holidays.
10D7N Winter Adventure In Finland + Norway King Crab SafariDexter Zhuo (24 Feb - 5 Mar 2017)
Just returned from 24 Feb 2017 Finland trip. I will specially recommend Timothy (Tim) as a Tour Manager. Our family had a few mishaps upon our arrival in Finland, a lot of circumstances were against us, Tim was able to handle the situation professionally and gave strong advise despite the uniqueness of our problem.
On top of that, our scheduled itinerary went off without a glitch and Tim is an excellent atmosphere creator.
11D8N Europe HighlightChristine Lee (20 Feb - 2 Mar 2017)
Just came back from a 11D8N Central Europe trip led by our Tour Manager Jia Fu. It was a joyful trip. Jia Fu is a experienced and knowledgeable tour guide. He will always ensure our safety and remind us to be alert of pickpockets constantly. Humorous at times, he has bring joy to my mum and friends. He is also a thoughtful person, who make extra effort to prepare cake to celebrate teammates' birthday :)
Overall, the trip was fun and kudos to our tour guide!
11D8N Europe HighlightYvonne Chia (20 Feb - 2 Mar 2017)
Along with my family/friends of 11, we went on a 11D8N Central Europe Tour with Jiafu, our dedicated tour manager.
Prior to our trip, he did a very meticulous briefing of what we would be expecting, potential changes to the itinerary (e.g. due to unforeseen weather circumstances) and what we have to be careful of. His briefing was much more clearer and detailed compared to the separate briefing which we attended several weeks in advance before the trip.
During the trip, he kept us updated conscientiously of what we should be doing, and what we will be expecting, both verbally and through a whatsapp group chat. His humour (and at times, self-humour) & candid perspectives (e.g. what we shld be buying vs what we should not; how to identify pickpickets) were extremely insightful and helpful. Being able to speak in multiple languages and dialects also helped my family stay connected and humoured throughout the trip.
Many a times, Jiafu went out of his way to bring lotsa fun and joy to the team, including extra perks like treating the group to free wine, and taking the effort to remember our birthdays and celebrating it. Such sincerity is rare especially in large tour agencies, whose tour agents are often more concerned about making commissions and counting down to the last day of the tour to “get-over and done with”.
Overall, it’s been a very enjoyable trip traveling with such a caring, conscientious, humorous and genuine tour manager. It changed my perspective of what a guided tour can positively be – I have always insisted on travelling free-and-easy, and this is one of my first guided tours.
Thanks Jiafu for the delicate coordination and arrangement ☺ Highly recommended to all.
11D8N Europe HighlightTerine Tay (20 Feb - 2 Mar 2017)
We went on a 11D8N Europe highlight led by a responsible, humorous and Creative tour manager Mr ONG KAH HOO. :) during this whole trip, we felt very safe and all the things were very organised and well prepared. The highlights stated on the list were fulfilled during the trip and we will always remember 'we leave no man behind'. Mr ONG KAH HOO takes care of everyone and make sure everyone is in good hand. Well done EU Holiday, we are looking forward to the next trip with EU Holiday.
10D7N Winter Adventure In Finland + Norway King Crab SafariAnita Belani (10 - 19 Feb 2017)
Tour package: 10D7N Winter Adventure In Finland + Norway King Crab Safari
Travel date: 10 Feb - 19 Feb 2017
Tour manager: Chong Hwee Min
This was the first time I've booked a tour with EU Holidays, and it won't be my last. Kudos to our tour manager Chong, who went out of his way to ensure that we were taken care of. During meal times, he would be the last one to eat as he would be busy ensuring everyone had a proper place to sit and were comfortable. He never rushed us during the tour, allowing us ample time to shop (even though sometimes we were late). He was always helping to take pictures, and helping endlessly with our heavy luggage bags. Chong is also very knowledgeable about the history of the places we were travelling to. He is always reachable and very quick in replies to our queries. We were also very lucky to see the Aurora Borealis on our very last night (and a huge one too), thanks to Chong who had arranged for an additional trip to look for it. Overall, it was a pleasant experience and everyone in the tour group was nice. Looking forward to more trips with EU Holidays.
11D8N Adventure To The BalkansJazle Huiling (26 Jan - 5 Feb 2017)
A leisure visit to Balkans during 26jan to 05feb 2017 with my hubby and we fully enjoyed this tour led by Sebastien Mak. He is very knowledgeable and extremely experienced despite that it was merely his 2nd time taking this route. Sebastien is very helpful and caring to all of us throughout the trip. Many of us enjoyed his entertainment session during long bus enroute. We look forward to joining EU holidays especially tours led by Sebastien and a side note that the Balkan meals could be further improved as well. Nonetheless, most of the hotels we stayed were splendid and exceeded our expectations!
13D10N Italy Switzerland France + 2N DubaiLeo Ju Yu Desmond (28/1/2017 - 12/2/2017)
13D Italy, Switzerland, France + 2N Dubai tour
28 Jan to 12 Feb 17
Managed by Mr. Ong Jiafu
Awesome Sledging Experience by EU Holidays. Glad that had this first time experience at midst of Swiss alps. Thanks EU Holidays!
And not forgetting our tour manager, Mr. Michael Ong Jiafu. A professional and experienced tour manager that always put customers at the utmost priority; during tour; after checked in; and always ensuring information on nearby eateries and supermarket were reached to us.
Great tour manager, Great tour guider, great friend
13D10N Italy Switzerland France + 2N DubaiTan Qing (27/1/2017 - 10/2/2017)
Just came back with my husband from the 15D13N trip to Central Europe!:)
My tour manager for the trip was Kevin:)
He has been a great manager. He manages the activities and especially the unexpected events/circumstances with great coordination & planning. Obviously shown that he's very experienced:)
The trip's overall itinerary was great as well. We didn't regret a bit joining EU for our honeymoon:) Thanks soooo much for the splendid journey & also to Kevin for everything~
Hotel was a mixture but in general was pretty good:)
Food wise, can be better but some was good:)
PS: Kevin even gotten us Yu Sheng to Lao(CNY)!! Hahas.