Deposits for private excursions?

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Greece Ports
Athens, Corfu, Crete, Katakolon, Limassol, Mykonos, Rhodes, Santorini, Volos
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#1
43 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
I am trying to book an excursion for Santorini and all the tours I have contacted require deposits of 100 euros. All the other excursions I have booked in other ports have not asked for a deposit. Any thoughts? Should I trust?

Please provide me with your experience or thoughts

Thanks
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#2
94 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
I too am a bit concerned, same reason and about security of paying deposit in advance... hopefully folks will help us out with their experiences.
#3
Oakville, ON
829 Posts
Joined Sep 2005
We've done dozens of private tours over the years, and have never paid (or even been asked) for a deposit. The only exception was when a group of 35 of us booked a bus for transport from Rome to Civitavecchia, to embark.

I would not feel comfortable sending a deposit under circumstances such as these.
#4
Charleston, SC
1,074 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
We do not send a deposit and would not if asked. However..I do remember doing it once, for a small amount (50EU) and it was in this port. Never again even though that went fine and the driver was there etc.
If we get a group together from 6-16 there is NO way we won't pay them..
we do this ALL the time on Cruise Critic. Also, if they thought about it
they would realize that on the VERY remote chance that we were NOT there to go with them they could EASILY get a group from whoever just got off the Cable Car. We pay at the end and tip nicely. Every now and then a driver will ask you to pay up front..but then you have him captive!!!
Sherry

Some large companies have asked for a credit card guarantee..but I would
only do it with a large well known company.
Sherry
#5
East Coast US
1,509 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
I have read that all last week, tenders from all ships could not get to Santorini. If that happens on your cruise, you would be out the money. One time we did give a credit card number, knowing I could cancel with the credit card company if we didn't get to go.
#6
Corpus Christi Texas
9,535 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
You need to check and see what their cancellation policy is. I always print it out for clarification also.

I say this because MOST companies will refund your deposit IF the ship does not dock OR if they cannot tender.

There is a reason that tour companies ask for a deposit. You would be surprised how many people book a tour, tying up a guide and or a driver for the day, and then JUST DON'T SHOW UP. These companies are just trying to protect themselves from those circumstances as they are not in business to lose money. As for getting a group together at the cable car exit....... there are tons of others "hawking" tours and the chance is slim of success at this. Most people who plan to take a tour - do so with a booked ahead tour.

I have been asked for deposits many times, never had a problem. I always put the deposit on a credit card (I have never been asked to send cash/euros in the mail) and if there EVER were a problem I can deal with the credit card company with their cancellation policy in hand.
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#7
Wisconsin
370 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
Another important thing to always checkis to make sure there is a secure website....you would not want to give out credit card info unless secure. . I have just booked 6 private tours France, Italy, Greece and Turkey and no deposit was required. Generally they require payment in euros at the end of the tour. In Italy they took credit card info in case there is a no show but it was a secure site and will not be charged unless someone doesn't show.
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#8
94 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
these tours I've been looking into provide a paypal request email, which I can use to transmit the deposit to them... is that secure enough if I use a credit card through paypal to them? Safety first...
#9
Charleston, SC
1,074 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
I agree with Texan Cruiser and PamIam....I would not do PayPal as then the
money is gone just as sure as sending cash. I did that one time and it turned out
OK but never again..too scary..Sherry
#10
94 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
Thanks, everyone -- just get such conflicting responses (from trusted folks here, which takes priority! ...to tour operators who all seem to require a deposit in Santorini)... so it's strange, but then again, I've always been one to trust the skeptic in me! Safety first. Thanks again. - Deanna
#11
43 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
So what do I do? I haven't found santorini tour that doesn't require deposit. Any suggestions


Thanks to all for sharing your experiences
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#12
Corpus Christi Texas
9,535 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
Originally posted by miasail
So what do I do? I haven't found santorini tour that doesn't require deposit. Any suggestions


Thanks to all for sharing your experiences
AGAIN, as I posted above, ask for their cancellation policy in writing. Make sure that if the ship does not stop in Santorini or it cannot tender that you get your deposit back. Then pay the deposit with a credit card.......... if there is a problem then you can take it up with the credit card company...... or .......

don't do a private tour.
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#13
Nova Scotia Canada
4,720 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
I had several two companies ask for a deposit, one in Turkey and the other in Cyprus. I wrote back saying I would not be willing to do this and they changed their minds. It does not hurt to try. Explain why you do not want to do this and assure them that you will be turning up (assuming the ship makes the port.)
#14
USA
8,951 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
I did deposits a few years ago for several tours operators. They had a long track record, "years" and I did it with CC so fraud and failure to deliver goods were less my problem if the worst of worst to happen.

I can fully appreciate why operators may want this. Show up a ship docks waiting and nobody shows up, that is a problem too from their side of the business.
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#15
1,142 Posts
Joined Jun 2011
Originally posted by chipmaster
I did deposits a few years ago for several tours operators. They had a long track record, "years" and I did it with CC so fraud and failure to deliver goods were less my problem if the worst of worst to happen.

I can fully appreciate why operators may want this. Show up a ship docks waiting and nobody shows up, that is a problem too from their side of the business.

I agree! We did private excursions throughout South America Cruise in 2008 and put deposit on most of them without any problems. If you do your homework and check them out you shouldn't have any problems.
We have rarely used ship excursions over the years.

And if I do get burned on one I will still be far ahead of the game.

These tour operators have to put food on their table and can't afford to run the risk of no show. Remember it's a two way street
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#16
Corpus Christi Texas
9,535 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
Originally posted by Pokeraddict
I agree! We did private excursions throughout South America Cruise in 2008 and put deposit on most of them without any problems. If you do your homework and check them out you shouldn't have any problems.
We have rarely used ship excursions over the years.

And if I do get burned on one I will still be far ahead of the game.

These tour operators have to put food on their table and can't afford to run the risk of no show. Remember it's a two way street

Well said.
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NEXT UP: 9/3/16 SILHOUETTE Amsterdam to Rome - 12 nights

So far: 11 cruises - 5 Royal Caribbean, 4 Celebrity, 1 Princess & 1 Holland America

Life is short ..forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably... and never regret anything that made you smile
#17
Seattle, WA USA
314 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Santorini is best seen on foot. Take the tram, or a donkey ride, from the tender landing and voila, you're there. The winding streets are wonderful to wind your way through on foot. When you get to the end of the main street, catch a cab out to the far town, where you can get the "photo opportunity," then catch a cab back. Should be around 50 euro round trip.
We have also used local tour companies throughout Greece & Croatia, never had a problem with using a credit card for deposit. Funny, the only problem I've ever had with stolen credit card info was in Ireland, and I use my cards everywhere we travel.
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Cruise 4 Sunshine
Seattle, WA

"We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us."
#18
1,142 Posts
Joined Jun 2011
We have had three issues with credit cards, twice in Mexico with Visa and once with Amex but all were purchases. Of course they have always reversed the charges.
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