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Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

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Tampa, Florida
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Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

We booked a 5-day vacation package to Punta Cana through Travelocity in mid-September. Travelocity only gives you the option of booking your airport/hotel transfer through Prieto Tours and no one else. Upon our arrival at PC airport, we proceeded to the ground transportation counter. We were given our airport/hotel voucher but were told our return voucher we would get the next day at the hotel lobby once we met with one of their reps. I smelled scam already. We did just that but the rep was more interested in getting us to sign up for tours, none of which we had an interest in. When we inquired about certain tours, he steered us away from those and wanted to ram those he felt were the ones we should take down our throats. Do I smell “commission”? By this time I had had enough, told him we would think about it and asked him for our return vouchers. He said fine but we would need to come back again the next day and obtain our return voucher. I asked why? He said the flight back was an “odd” flight number and he needed to re-confirm. I then responded “wasn’t that the whole point of meeting with you today?” I said fine, we’ll come back tomorrow. When I met him the next day, I explained that my travel companion had taken ill and thus the tours were now off the table. He then gave me our return vouchers and asked that we come down to the lobby at 1:50PM on the day of departure. This is exactly what we did but the bus driver was 45 minutes late. This was odd since we were the only pick-up and wondered what held him up. Upon arrival at PC airport, we proceeded to exit the bus to which the driver reacted, “please wait one moment”. Bewildered, I watched as an airport baggage handler took our luggage out of the bus and then the driver cleared us to exit. The handler asked which airline we were taking to which I responded “no thank you; we’ll take our own bags from here”. He was not happy. We each had carry-on sized roller bags. Neither one of us needed the extra help. This was simply another scam to get a tip and both drive and handler were in on it. Although the bus was comfortable and air-conditioned to and fro; I was disappointed with the whole process because it just seemed like we were being scammed and toyed with. I would not use Prieto Tours in the future if given a choice. Travelers be forewarned…

Punta Cana...
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1. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

On arrival at Punta Cana Airport all transfers stop at the departure area and it is the job of the porters to off load the luggage wheather it be a mini van or a large bus, it is not a scam..................they are doing their jobs if you do not want any help you just have to say no...............

I can comment on your other comments..............

Cornwall, Canada
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2. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

It's too bad to hear you were not comfortable with the transport company, but I was going to say too, that for the most part, what you experienced is the "norm" (for lack of a better word). We too had to meet with our rep from VIP Travel Services the day after we arrived - we were shown tours, but in our experience, it was really low, low pressure - he just let us know what he had available and to call him if we were interested and to us, this was just part of his job. Return times were confirmed and off I went.

As for the airport, the luggage porters are doing their job and of course you can refuse the assistance. To me, the driver just wanted to make sure your bags were out and ready for you so you didn't have to do it - service. We appreciated the porters' help and whizzing us through to check in - that's just us of course. Not a scam in my opinion either...but again, sorry you felt that way.

York, Pennsylvania
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3. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

While we use private transfers now we have been on Prieto transfers many times and never had any issues. As stated, sounds like a normal transfer. Nothing unsavory about it....

Worcester...
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4. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

I'm sorry you had a bad experience...that's why I'm thankful for this forum (I get a lot of great information/recommendations/advise). Even though airport transfer is included (a shared van) with the cost of my resort/vacation; after reading some great suggestions, I decided to book my own private transfer.

Tampa, Florida
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5. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

Thank you for our comment/reply but my point was that the bus driver prevented us from exiting the bus while our bags were unloaded by a baggage handler. Under whose authority are your replying anyway? Do you represent the tour operator or is this simply your opinion?

Tampa, Florida
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6. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

Smart choice...

York, Pennsylvania
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7. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

This is a public forum...no one needs "authority " to post....lighten up

Punta Cana...
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8. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

Yes i do work for a Tour op, not the one you used and yes we always ask clients to wait on the transfers while the luggage is being off loaded...............Especially if its a large bus with say 56pax on board can you imagine the amount of people waiting around for a bus to be empited of all the luggage its easier for everyone to ask the clients to wait on board the transfer while all the luggage is being taken off and then when off the bus you/porter can collect the cases and go over to check inn.........................

Cornwall, Canada
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9. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

Not sure who you're talking to, but as for me, I am replying under my own authority, just offering my own opinion, based on our experience and what I've heard from many other travelers :)

Of course to each his/her own and you felt how you felt about the situation with the driver, and I understand. All I was saying that was it's possible that the driver was simply being thoughtful - maybe he thought that it's hot out, it may take a minute or two to get the luggage out, and that you would be more comfortable waiting in the air conditioned van..? Again, I was not there and only you know exactly how it happened. Was just offering a different perspective. When we arrived at the airport for departure, our driver got out of the van, walked around to open the door for the luggage porter and then opened the side door for us to get out. At that point, our luggage was there and we could've chosen to use the assistance of the porter or not, which we did.

I wish you well regardless, and hope that you enjoyed your trip nonetheless :)

Edited: 23 September 2013, 04:47
muskoka ON
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10. Re: Prieto Tours Airport/Hotel Transfers - Avoid at all cost.

It has happened to us each time we've travelled to the DR - both POP and PC - you wait on the bus until the luggage is unloaded. If you do not wish the porter to take you to the appropriate line, you simply say no gracias. Having said that, if you have upgraded your seats and are flying business/elite/preferred or whatever your airline of choice calls it, that porter will move mountains (and sometimes people) to get you to the short line LOL.

Did you enjoy your resort flaudlatinhunk??