Impressions of Cruising the Great Lakes - Toronto to Chicago...PART TWO

More will follow.......


  • This is the best cliffhanger I've read in a while...

  • I do not know what is wrong. I just tried to post a portion of Part 2 and rec'd "your post will appear once approved." I'm about to give up.

  • E-mail them again. It will come back. They have a gremlin.

  • Tim at esupport was very helpful the first time. There are other odd things with my account. I might have to wait until tomorrow.

  • It doesn't look like the second installment is going to be recovered. At this point, I have lost interest. I will, however, wrap it up later today since I do wish to offer my opinions. Thanks to those who have shown an interest.

  • We are all ears. What Hep to your review, bizarre!

  • There is a limit, or certainly their used to be on how long a post could be. That’s why I never added unnecessary spaces between paragraphs which is now what people mock me about.

  • It has nothing to do with word count (so I have been told). There are other issues with my account.

  • What issues

  • Wow, what a nightmare.

  • edited October 2022

    So very sorry to hear of your experiences. I have taken two Chicago tours in recent memory: a Tauck Special Event/history tour + a Smithsonian art tour (I have relatives there); both included the architectural cruise and the Art Institute. Both were a shortish week or so. Aside from the Marathon, etc., the itinerary for the Great Lakes cruise is trying to do too much. Chicago, Toronto, Traverse City (Zingerman's in Ann Arbor has done multi-day food tours there)...these are trips in themselves. I think Tauck is trying to include too much in the 12 days imo. It will be interesting to see whether this tour stays in their repertoire. p.s. Thin crust, please.

  • OMG. Not acceptable. I’ve never had a tour director burst into tears. Are you sure she didn’t get something in her eye? I hope you wrote all this in separate pieces of 8 x11 paper and included it inside your comment card. That’s what I would have done and that is what I’ve done in the past. I do not wait until I get home. At home, I it just won’t get accomplished.

  • What a horrible experience!

  • Everything but the locusts!

  • Knowing how positive you are and how you are pro Tauck, kfnknfkz, this trip must have really been a disaster. You paint the picture well and hopefully your review lands in front of the right eyes at Tauck in CT. As I read both parts, I couldn’t believe it could get worse and yet it did. One wonders the impression it made on first time Tauck travelers…probably will keep some from giving Tauck a second try. I’ve not considered this trip, in fact in all our Tauck travels, we’ve yet to take a trip in the US.. When that day comes, it won’t be this one! Thanks for your review!

  • edited October 2022

    In 2021, in lieu of foreign travel because we did not want the hassle of PCR tests plus flights were constantly being changed, we opted to take several independent trips to cites within the US. One was to Chicago. We had only been there once briefly for a wedding years ago so we really looked forward to it. We deliberately chose a time of year to miss the heat. We wanted to arrive on a Sunday to miss the weekend too. What we did not check was when the Marathon was. Yes, we arrived on Marathon Sunday. We had arranged a driver from the airport. He had forgotten it was the marathon, I don’t think he had lived there for long. As soon as we got near the city, the roadblocks and diversions started and it dawned on him why some of his colleagues had declined that booking which is why he ended up with it. We drove around and around. He was virtually stumped as how to get us to the Four Seasons. At one point we said, look we are near the hotel, just let us out and we will walk the rest of the way. He said no, that would not work for us as we would not be allowed to cross the road, even on foot. Eventually we got to the hotel, we received an extra bill for the ride, but everything else went smoothly and we had time to enjoy the Four Seasons facilities. It always seems such a waste of money when Tauck persists on staying in very fancy hotels when there is no time to enjoy them. We toured almost everything there is to see in Chicago and the highlight was our Frank Lloyd Wright tour.
    I did look at this Tauck tour, it is new if I recall. I would love to go to Mackinac island since I first learned about it from watching the cult movie Somewhere in Time many years ago. We have been on several of the US tours but mainly the National park ones. The city ones don’t spend enough time in them, such as the one that includes Charleston, the New Mexico one and the Washington DC to Philly one. They are Ok when you have a free week which is when we have taken these tours in the past before my husband retired. Also, you have to remember that Tauck only offered US tours for a great deal of its history.
    Kfnknfzk, I know you are a long time Tauck customer and so am I. Perhaps you can now appreciate that at times, they do make mistakes. Not realizing about having to deal with the Marathon was a big one! I realize that the Fairmont fiasco really annoyed some people but it certainly will not have been the Tour director’s fault. I know from the behavior of people on our Alaska tour, that even veteran Tauck tour directors have been under a terrible strain. Our TD told me that was the most stressful tour he had ever lead and he had worked for them for many years. I would have been unhappy ro have to change a hotel, I think I would have been happier staying put. When we wrote our hope and trust form, we mentioned about the scheduled train ride we missed and just said Any chance of a refund for the missed ride… and they sent us a check for it. Even though it was not Tauck’s fault the group missed it.
    Perhaps now you can appreciate that some people have had less stellar experiences that you have always had. We certainly have had some negative experiences. As you always say, Tauck will put it right and I am assuming that you will get a refund or certainly those who complain and I guess the ones who made the situation more unpleasant for you will.
    Thank you for your honest review. Come on, what happened!

  • Nancy,

    Thanks for the kind words. I certainly hope my reporting does not deter anyone from taking a Tauck tour. As I mentioned, this fiasco is not indicative of the Tauck brand.

    On a brighter note, my little pup had a great vacation. He even took a driving trip to Tucson with his friend, Enzo. They are still telling us about their adventures!

  • I have an update for those who took an interest in reading my thread.

    Three different individuals with three different titles reached out to me. Two asked for more details; the final individual summed everything up. There were profuse apologies for the mishaps that had occurred. Tauck acknowledged that the overall consensus from all guests was that this tour was a failure (my word, not theirs). One also acknowledged that many guests also shared my observation about the animosity that existed between the tour directors and Ponant staff. She asked me to be very specific in this area.

    My point here is that Tauck does indeed take those end-of-tour reviews very seriously, will act upon them and will make appropriate amends.

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