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Background:Back in August 2008, with much enthusiasm and excitement we (my wife and I) made a reservation for a sight seeing tour to Egypt, from March 16 to 25 , 2009, with GATE1 Travel (10 Day Egypt For Less with 4 Day Nile Cruise). We decided to make an early reservation to make sure that there is ample time for GATE 1 people to provide us with a smooth and seamless itinerary. We planned to enjoy our vacation. We were taking our 10 year old daughter with us. She was very exited to make the overseas journey to the ancient land of Egypt. We trusted GATE1 with our travel arrangement. Having Leona with us we wanted to show her a good time so, we chose GATE 1, based on our successful experience last year to Italy, to make it happen. We gave our hard earned dollars to GATE 1 and trusted GATE 1 with our vacation plans.

In and around February 24, 2009 we received our itinerary by e-mail, we were exited.

Nightmare BeginsOn March 16 2009, we flew out of San Francisco to Frankfurt , upon landing at around 9:15 am local time we rushed to the gate to make our connecting flight to Cairo that was supposed to be at 10:05 am. To our dismay and shock the airline clerk at the gate counter told us that we are not on the morning flight, but our reservation is for the night flight leaving Frankfurt at 10:48 pm to Cairo. I could not believe it, I showed her the itinerary I had with me she checked her computer screen and said we are not on this flight, sorry, and stated that even if she wanted to board us on this flight, she could not, because the flight is full.

Here we are at around 9:50 am on March 17, 2009 in Frankfurt, after a long flight (about 11 hours) from San Francisco, we are told that our connecting flight to Cairo is 13 hours later. What a shock. What do we do in Frankfurt Airport for 13 hours with a child ?? There is no lodging and food arrangement from GATE 1 either. We are on our own, we felt betrayed after trusting GATE1 with our travel arrangement. We had no choice but to rough it out and wait 13 hours.

During the layover period in Frankfurt Airport I went over the itinerary. There were three parts . The first part containing six pages was clear we were supposed to be on the morning flight (UA 9106) out of Frankfurt. The second part contained all the vouchers and other information consisted of 18 pages, on page 2 it showed that we were supposed to fly to Cairo on the night flight (UA 8910). There was the discrepancy. The third part, containing only one page, agreed with the first part. Someone at GATE1 switched us to the night flight without giving us advanced warning without thinking about its ramifications to the rest of the itinerary without providing accommodation in Frankfurt for food and lodging. Someone at GATE 1 was negligent, and because of his/her negligence we were suffering in Frankfurt.

I thought to myself , while consoling Leona who had not gotten over the shock yet , that this long layover means that we would miss the domestic flight from Cairo to Aswan to join the rest of the tour group for the 4 day Nile Cruise starting on March 17, 2009. While the rest of the group was in Cairo, and later in Aswan, we were stranded in Frankfurt Airport. No one in GATE 1 thought it through or made any arrangement that if they put us on the night flight how would the rest of the trip schedule be affected. No one in their right mind would do this to a trusting client. I am appalled by the way GATE 1 handled this reservation.

Around 5 pm local time, I used my cell phone to call GATE 1 in the U.S from Frankfurt. I wanted to know if there would be someone to meet us in Cairo Airport and how would we get to Aswan from Cairo after this 13 hour delay in the schedule. After talking to two clerks and not getting any response (they put me on long holds while trying to find an answer) the last clerk came through and said that she had called Cairo and someone will be there and they will put us on the morning flight to Aswan from Cairo. Good thing I called because no one knew we were behind the schedule until I called, no arrangements were made for us until I called. This is outrageous, irresponsible on the part of GATE 1 and borderline criminal behavior, it is also the right material for Mike Finney, Channel 7 News, or other similar networks.

Nightmare continuesFinally the 13 hour wait was over and we boarded our flight to Cairo. On March 18 , 2009 at around 4:00 am local time we arrived in Cairo. A GATE 1 representative greeted us at the gate, I tried to maintain my composure. He said to us that he had made arrangements to put us on the early flight (around 6:00 am) out of Cairo to Aswan. After retrieving our luggage we were handed over to a second GATE 1 representative and the first person disappeared. Representative no.2 put us in a van to take us to the domestic airport from the international airport. There, a third representative showed up to help representative no.2. They took us to a glass walled office in the domestic airport where the domestic reservations were being made. Representative no.2 seemed to have seniority over representative no.3. After a lengthy cell phone conversation with his boss no.2 told me that his boss is telling him that it is our fault that we missed our flight and we have to pay for our airfare to Aswan. I could not believe what I was hearing. I said in a calm voice, your boss thinks we missed our flight? I showed him our itinerary and pointed to the mix-up and the mess created by GATE 1, all on paper in black and white in front of him. I said to him calmly, your boss is wrong we did not miss our flight GATE1 booked us the night flight instead of the morning flight out of Frankfurt to Cairo. This mess is not ours it is yours it is GATE 1's .

It is now around 5:00 am in Cairo, some 30 hours since we left San Francisco, stranded in the Cairo domestic airport with two insensitive morons representing GATE 1, who are demanding money in order to book us a flight that we have already paid for. I said how much is it anyway he said for all three it is around 300 Egyptian pounds. I said what Airlines, he said Egypt Air. I was shocked again. I looked at my papers it showed that we paid an extra $789 for Not flying Egypt Air. I said we are not supposed to fly Egypt Air. He said there is no other Airline that flies to Aswan. So, what had we paid $789 extra for, I asked ? The two morons had no explanation for this.

Representative no.2 said to me, talk to my boss. He handed over a sweaty and dirty cell phone. His boss said the same things, that we missed our flight, it is our fault and we must pay our air fare to Aswan. I lashed out at the boss over the phone and handed over the sweaty phone to representative no.2. After talking to his boss he turns to me and says if you do not pay you will stay in Cairo Airport. Now he is resorting to threats. We did not give in and got up to leave. They finally caved in and said ok we will pay. Finally, he came to his senses. After almost an hour of haggling, back and forth with his boss on the cell phone, making our blood boil, he decided to do the right thing. This is the trip to *** I said to myself.

After paying the 300 Egyptian pounds he gave us a computer print out from an old dot matrix printer stating that we are on stand-by for the morning flight. We waited another hour or so to see if there is room in the morning flight. To our dismay the flight was full, no room for standbys. At this point Leona was crying, she wanted to go home. We were tired, exhausted and could not believe this is happening to us. We were still waiting in the airport. The two GATE1 clowns who were supposed to help us kept disappearing in the dense crowd. As soon as we thought we were being abandoned they reappeared and disappeared again all this time their cell phone was glued to their ear. As if they were playing the game of how- frustrated- can- I- make- you-before ""you snap.

Finally they approached us and said that they booked us for the night flight out of Cairo to Aswan (exhibit 4). Meanwhile they are going to put us up in a nearby hotel. We had no other choice, we complied. I gathered my family and asked Leona to be strong and not to cry everything hopefully will be alright with these two clowns. As we were leaving the airport representative no.2 disappeared and representative no.3 remained with us. He turned to me and said that his boss had told him that we are responsible for the hotel expenses. Here we go again, he hands over the dirty sweaty cell phone to me again, I lash out at his boss again and this time using my cell phone called GATE 1 in the US and left a message complaining about the way we were being treated. It is now around 7:30 am on April 18 more than 36 hours since we left home. We were tired, frustrated, exhausted , disgusted, appalled.

Representative no.3 after keeping us in the cold outside air for 30 minutes waiting for the hotel shuttle that never showed up, took my advise and called a cab to drive us to the nearby hotel. Once there we had to wait another 45 minutes in the lobby while clown no.3 was making arrangements with his boss on how to pay for our stay. Finally they give us a room. As soon as we entered the room we all crashed into the beds from exhaustion, lack of sleep, jet lag and dealing with GATE1 morons. Making a long story short , we checked out of our hotel at around 8:30 pm. We ended up paying for our meal . Only breakfast was included with the room not lunch or dinner. A new GATE 1 representative took us to the airport.

Flight to AswanOur flight to Aswan was around 11:00 pm. We flew Egypt Air to In Aswan Airport we were picked up by yet another representative. He drove us to the cruise ship. We checked into our cabin. It is now around 2:00 am on Thursday April 19. We were supposed to be in the cruise ship Tuesday evening April 17, 2009.

What we missed:We missed two days of the 10 days tour. Specifically we missed day 2 Cairo tour and day 3 the Aswan high dam unfinished obelisk and other sight seeing.

Emotional distress: The two days that we missed we were stranded in airports and hotels waiting for our flights that should have been coordinated right from the beginning to avoid this ordeal. But it was not. GATE 1 is clearly negligent in that regard. As a result, we were emotionally distressed at a time that we should have had a good time, it was our vacation time . We had booked this vacation way in advance and we were anticipating on having a good time but instead we were thrown into the turbulence of anguish, uncertainty, long waits and harassment by GATE 1 representatives in Frankfurt and Cairo . Leona was hurt, she was crying and wanted to go home. Alexis was disgusted and hurt. I was furious and felt betrayed.

Overcharge:A person in GATE 1 talks my wife into paying extra for Not flying Egypt Air domestically We paid the $789 but all the inter-Egypt flights were with Egypt Air.

Product or Service Mentioned: Gate1travel Cruise Booking.

Monetary Loss: $5000.

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Anonymous
#1660526

It's an old review but I am suspect of how culpable the travelers are for not clearly studying their travel documents. I have not traveled with Gate 1, but I am thinking about it.

They are still in business 9 years post this travel experience. I am not naïve enough to trust reviews on Gate 1 web-site, but in my research all other review sites give Gate 1 great reviews. This entire book of bad experiences, particularly expressing how poor little Leona was so distressed in Frankfort, sounds like people looking to sue.

I know those people, call them professional sewers - always looking for a few bucks somewhere from someone for any little thing. I put not substance in this review.

Anonymous
#1567959

beware of gate 1 travel. For an international travel company they don't seem to know that newark is in new jersey and not in new york.

They offered a groupon for travel from new york airport and when we called to reserve they charged us $100 ,more if we didn't want to fly out of newark. idiots need a geography lesson.

Cancelled my trip and will not travel with them ever. I saved several hundred dollars booking it myself!

Anonymous
#1534621

There is a lot wrong with what this person is writing. First, look at your paperwork when you get it.

Second there is only Egypt Air flying from Cairo domestically. Third, he should have never accepted such a close connection on an international flight. It doesn't matter which airline - delays happen all the time and a missed connection is programmed with such a short time. Fourth and last, only because there is so much wrong with this complaint, I could go on and on.

He is standing out in the cold in Egypt? Having lived there for 2 years - it does not get cold!

Anonymous
to Rosie Cavin #1594086

It looks like you either didn`t take your time to read the review, or you don`t have a good understanding of English, or you get paid by Travel 1. SMH...

Anonymous
to Rosie Cavin #1624490

Also, note that he begins his trip talk on March 16 and by the end of the rant for his 10 day trip, the date is April 19! Sounds like more than 10 days to me.

Maybe Gate1 wasn't as on top of it as they should have, but the traveler has an obligation to check his itinerary to make sure it is correct. I have never used Gate1, but several friends who travel constantly swear by them, not only for the value, but for the consistency of the trips providing what they say the will do. This review would not stop me from trying them at least once.

At this great value, you have little to lose. Let the buyer beware!

Anonymous
#1490433

Have done 5 Gate 1 tours and have been pleased with all of them. I’ll continue to deal with them.

I sorry you had such a bad experience, but we received a email prior to leaving advising us to review our documents prior to travel. Gate 1 even reworded my flights going home in order a Luftanza strike.

Anonymous
#1475771

Gate 1 really knows how to "screw up" the flight segments . I scanned my documents with a fine tooth comb because I knew about this type of thing happening.

Our travel agent had many a phone call to them to get it all straightened out! Their customer service SUCKS! They use shitty airlines as well. On our trip to Peru and Ecuador the flights were never on time, one was 4 hour delay and another 7 hour delay.

Ridiculous! Never again.

Anonymous
to Anonymous #1660527

Why are you blaming Gate 1 for poor airline scheduling. They have no control over that.

Get real. Airline travel long ago became a cattle call faster bus trip and when you are travelling in a foreign country you have to expect these types of delays may happen.

Get over yourself. Spend money for executive club and make your long delays more palatable.

Anonymous
to Anonymous #1661761

You also have an option to pick your flights through Gate1, so if you didn't like the layovers or connections, you could have just picked something else.

Anonymous
#1385731

I am a Balkans Tour Operator with 20+ years of experience and this is what I can say:

1. Gate 1 is at fault and fully responsible.

2.

We never buy services from other parties. In this case Gate 1 uses cheap fuk local monkies!

3. Buy a service, tour, package from a local company.

We make our own packages/tours and never buy from other parties, so we know what we are doing with our resources and you know what you are buying with your money.

4. We cant imagine gate1 is still operating!!

Anonymous
to Drin #1594092

I booked two tours with Gate 1 for next year God willing and I`m kind of worried reading the reviews. However, if they mess up my itinerary in any way, it`ll be their last time operating because I`m getting myself ready for any type of negligence on their part.

Anonymous
#1381168

It looks to me like the Egyptians were trying to swindle you..not saying gate 1 is not at fault for rebooking,

Anonymous
#1332902

Sounds like you had the itinerary for up to a month prior to traveling and you only decided to take a look at it once something went wrong?

I understand you pay money for a service but in life, mistakes happen.

Could have been avoided had you looked over it prior to traveling....

I've been on several gate 1 trips and never had an issue...

But I also go over everything prior to leaving...but that's just me. I guess some people just trust everything to work out perfectly.

Anonymous
to Anonymous #1400134

I agree with anonymous. I go over my itinerary/papers before I go. I have found a discrepancy only once

Anonymous
#1325849

I would like to see how Gate 1 Travel resolved this issue with the original passenger and the family who were treated so badly. Such a horrible experience!

Anonymous
to Anonymous #1660534

This poor book review condemning Gate 1 for their travel troubles to Egypt was written in 2010. The way the writer cried over the distress of their 10 year old Leona was so over exaggerated and all of their other complaints were a setup for a lawsuit.

As you can see, Gate 1 is still in business in 2019 so apparently those travelers didn't get a big settlement and there are a lot of people who have provided glowing reviews of their travel experiences with Gate 1. People have to do their due diligence - they must, without exception, review every word in their travel documents, whether it is 1 page or 20 pages and they can't wait until they are on their outgoing flight to do that. This must be done as soon as the documents are received AND, everyone has to have patience when travelling, particularly foreign travel. Once I saw the reviewer's poor attempt at legalese I got bored about their exaggerated complaints and only perused the rest of their complaint review, noting that most of their complaints were airlines.

Yes, Gate 1 did make mistakes, but they have no responsibility or control for airline schedules. Particularly in a foreign country you need to be prepared for delays and even missed flights. People buy Gate 1 packages because they offer very good deals and there are people who, no matter what, will always find things to complain about and make that the issue ending up missing out of an adventure they were looking forward to. Too bad for them.

We can all focus on these negative reviews, but if you check all review sites (not relying Gate 1's as of course their reviews will be the good ones) you will see the majority of reviews contain names of people and are good and excellent reviews. Do your homework and make the best decision for yourself on who you choose to book a European vacation with.

If budget is a huge deal and Europe or other areas of the world are your dream, you may have to look to a company like Gate 1 for that dream vacation. I would bet you will find negative reviews from every travel group out there and that the favorable reviews about Gate 1 far outweigh the negative reviews.

Anonymous
Cumming, Georgia, United States #1325823

Just wondering, was it in March or April? You start off saying March and you finished trip in April?

Did they reimburse you? It did sound like they tried to fix the problem.

Anonymous
Atlanta, Georgia, United States #1317662

I have traveled with Gate 1 successfully many times. If everything goes smoothly, you are fine.

If something should happen, Gate 1 is quick to tell you that they are not responsible. I will never use them again.

You book with a travel tour company to help guide you through the process. They take your money, but if you should miss a flight or something get delayed you better have travel insurance.

Anonymous
Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States #1314470

This happened 9 years ago now. We have taken two trips with Gate1Travel.

One in Thailand last year and one this year in central Europe. Both were extremely affordable and well coordinated. We loved them both. We will be traveling with them each and every year from here on out.

Next...

Iceland.

Drew Armstrong in Utah.

Anonymous
Charlotte, North Carolina, United States #1299497

I am so sorry for your experience. I am glad you took the time to post this as it is preventing me from ever booking with Gate 1. Thank you!!

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