The past few weeks have been some of the most challenging times that any of us will remember. As well as the obvious difficulties of living in lockdown, many of our clients have had the added disappointment of having to postpone or cancel their holidays. In response to this huge challenge our teams have worked tirelessly to personally contact each client who has been affected and as a result we've had some incredible feedback that has truly humbled us and that we'd love to share.
Getting our clients home safely
From the 13th March onwards, we saw governments across Latin America begin to impose entry restrictions and introduce quarantine measures. A few days later the UK government issued a warning for all citizens advising against any foreign travel at this time. Our team responded immediately and worked round the clock to ensure we were able to bring all our clients home, safely and promptly. We repatriated hundreds of travellers from across the continent, with all our clients back home by the 31st March. Following are some of the amazing accolades we received from affected passengers:
"We would like to say that Antonio at JLA did such an amazing job of keeping us calm as our honeymoon plans shattered. He organised everything brilliantly whilst we were trapped behind enemy lines! We really don't think we would have got out of Guatemala without all his efforts."
"Antonio we would again like to thank you for the speedy and efficient way in which you got us out of a tricky situation and safely home in such a short time. Annerys has informed us that you still have some people stuck in Guatemala, so we feel very fortunate to be here – even if there is nothing in the supermarkets!"
"I wish you and all the team very best wishes in this crazy situation. Can I just say that Max Wood our tour leader was absolutely amazing...he seems to love problem solving and excelled at every turn...incredible support in difficult times and always putting his clients first...a true hero."
CR, Milton Keynes
"First of all I must say that Max was exceptionally helpful in arranging my departure. I felt safe at all times and was never alone or anxious. He is also a brilliant guide, very knowledgeable and whenever I got over excited and stopped listening to him he called me to order just as my mum did.Susan !! He would say !!Brilliant guy. Incidentally I am 73 so needed keeping in order."
"We are grateful to Mary for telling us that if we booked the flights through you, although more expensive, this would mean you would have to get us home. I don’t think at the time anybody could have envisaged the circumstances – not politics but a virus. Thanks too to Laura for routing us home direct from Brazil at our request and not via the hot spot of Madrid."
"Laura: Thank you SO much for all your help and on the ballness - you've been really amazing.”
"Thanks to the sterling efforts of Margot Chard , we made it out of Latin America . We got out from Montevideo via Sao Paolo .We even kept our business class status. Now we are imprisoned in the UK. All the best!"
Unfortunately, with the FCO advice against all foreign travel and borders closed in many Latin American countries, we have had to cancel hundreds more bookings which were due to depart in April and May. Many clients have been happy to postpone their holidays for a later date or accept a credit voucher and our team has worked quickly to accommodate these requests.
"I just wanted to write down our thanks for your and JLA’s support with our coronacrisis re-arrangements. It must be a crazy time for you, and we really appreciate the proactiveness and service, so that we can enjoy our Mexican trip next year. When considering the booking, of course, we debated a DIY job vs your premium experience. How glad we are to have booked with you. In such a worrying time for the industry, I can only imagine that JLA is one of the leaders in how you are handling this. Please do pass this on your management and colleagues. I’ve also added an anonymous review on the site. Best wishes for the next few months, Rachel."
We also recognise that not everyone is in a position to rebook their trip at this time. In such cases, we have endeavoured to get refunds back to our customers as promptly as possible.
"I just thought I’d drop you an e mail to say thank you so much for providing our refund to the timescales you outlined. We are very grateful that you have been able to do this, and also so sad it came to this as we would have loved to have traveled with you this year. We’ve been very impressed with how you’ve dealt with everything to do with the Covid19 pandemic. We shall definitely make sure we travel to South America with you in future years, and shall encourage our friends to use your services too. You’ve been remarkably professional during what must be a very difficult and testing time for your company."
"Further to my email dated 10 April, this is just to confirm that the refund arrived in our bank account this morning. Many thanks for your help. I would also mention that, when one sees so much adverse publicity in the media, we have much appreciated dealing with a reputable travel company."
"Just to let you know the money is in my account today. We’re really impressed with JLA , especially given some of the stories relating to other tour companies. Look forward to renewing contact as we get out on the other side of this nightmare.
" BK, Richmond
"Just a note to thank Journey Latin America for the full refund received today. Once again it highlights the integrity and quality of your company. I shall continue to recommend you to anyone thinking ‘Latin America’ and hope that I too will soon be able to plan another trip with you. Please pass this on to your Directors and team. Thanks again"
. MB, London
"Refund received today for which many thanks considering how stretched you must be at JLA. You have kept faith with us and we will reciprocate when better times are here."
"Me and Rebecca both have received our refunds. Thanks a lot. Excellent service from your company. We look forward to travelling with your company soon. Regards Himanshu."
Once again we would like to thank all of our clients for your support and patience as we navigate these uncharted waters. Your positive feedback is really greatly appreciated and lifts the whole team during these challenging and uncertain times.