Brad and his husband, John joined Zoom Vacations in Egypt last October. They have been on a number of trips with us, and it is always so much fun to travel with them. After this last tour, we received a meaningful email/testimonial from Brad. It’s always nice to receive this kind of message, and so wonderful to share it. Truly, we hope all of our travelers feel they have the kind of experience that Brad has, and that we continue to do this (and even better) for years to come.
Traveling with ZOOM
My husband John and I have been on many tours and vacations with ZOOM Vacations. Tours have included, Australia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, India, Cuba, Jordan and Egypt. In addition to group tours, we have asked the ZOOM team to arrange for personal trips to places that are not on their regular tour list. We call ZOOM when we are looking for a luxurious vacation with a knowledgeable local tour guide who will be sensitive to LGBTQ issues.
When on vacation I post a lot of pictures to Facebook to share with our grown children, family and friends. Whenever we return from a trip, friends always comment on the amazing pictures and the opulent luxurious hotel properties along the way. In addition to those comments, close friends and family also ask, “Is that with the agency you usually travel with?” They then ask about ZOOM and more details about the trip. It is so easy to see in the photographs the difference between a regular vacation and a ZOOM vacation.
So what is the difference? While we “read up” about the places we are planning to visit, we never have to worry about the details of the trip. From the moment we get off the plane at our destination until the moment we return home, everything is coordinated for the traveler. From the person meeting you at the arrival gate, to the person escorting you to the front desk to check in to your hotel, everything is planned to make travel as smooth as possible.
An example of how ZOOM creates a “worry free” vacation happened on our tour of South Africa. We signed up for the Blue Train overnight excursion, followed by the Marine Safari. They were add-ons offered by Zoom. Our flight was arriving a day before the tour was to begin. A couple of months before the trip, ZOOM staff called to see if we would like to take a day tour of Soweto and Johannesburg. We chose to sign up and it was amazing! Then we boarded the Blue Train. After a day of great food and wine tasting on the train, our ZOOM coordinator Bryan Herb got a text that the bush lodge we were heading to for the marine safari was on fire and had burned to the ground. While the ZOOM guests on the trip continued to enjoy the train trip, the ZOOM team went to work to find new accommodations. When we disembarked the train there was a van ready to take us to our next destination. Instead of the bush lodge, they had arranged for us to stay at an amazing resort on the waterfront with incredible views. While the bush lodge had burned down, we still traveled the short journey to the lodge to experience the tour of the animals, birds, whales, great white sharks and more. As we watched the “under control” smoldering of the lodge, the local guide explained to us the ecological importance of fires in that area and their role in regenerating the natural fauna.
We have met some wonderful people on our ZOOM tours. The numbers are always small so you get to know each other, and if you want time alone it is easy to find. It is always interesting to meet someone who is on their first ZOOM vacation. They have heard that ZOOM is different, but they don’t really know what people mean when they say that. After a few days on the tour, “newbies” have no problem identifying the unique, detailed, luxurious components that are part of a ZOOM vacation. They are also surprised that while some people have traveled with ZOOM many times, everyone is welcomed the same way on the trip.
Let’s face it, no matter what tour you take to Egypt you are going to see temples and pyramids and the sphinx. You will probably ride a camel and experience the desert. In India you will see the Taj Mahal. But when people see our ZOOM vacation experiences, they see more than those photo ops. They can see us with a group of people having an amazing time together. They see champagne glasses being raised in the most unusual places and accommodations and specialty events that other tours do not offer. The intimate small groups allow for serendipitous experiences that large tours just do not offer. It is a lot of “small things” that make a huge difference.
If you have been on a ZOOM vacation, my words probably resonate with your experience and you “get it.” For those who have never “ZOOMED,” try it. You are in for a treat.