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Reviews are compiled and evaluated by an independent third party, BazaarvoiceTM, the No. 1 provider of customer reviews. Reviews are never edited or deleted unless the content does not comply with EF and Bazaarvoice's™ terms and conditions, which prohibit the use of such things as personal information and inappropriate language.
fun timesI love how structured this tour was. Being a first-time traveler to Europe, this was helpful and beneficial because I was able to see all of the things that the tour director thought was worthwhile and didn't waste any time wondering what to do. Will definitely be doing more trips with EF!
Amazing!The England and France trip was beyond anything we could have expected. Our tour guide in St. Malo was amazing! The change of pace from bustling cities like London and Paris, to the humbling beaches of Normandy and the memorials are so amazing it is almost impossible to put into words. The hotels and food were exactly as described. The thing to remember is the portion sizes are normal not super sized so if you are a big eater you will learn some moderation on this trip. Also bring comfortable shoes and be prepared to be amazed. I would recommend this tour to anyone.
Breath takingThis was my first time travelling without family and it was definitely the best experience of my life. I could not have asked for a better trip. Our days were always busy with fun things to do and our tour guide was amazing and he made the experience that much better. He was very friendly, always smiling and knew what he was talking about. There's no way i could pick one thing as my favorite because there was so many things that i loved. Going to the Buckingham palace, seeing the changing of the guards, walking through London and doing some shopping, then going on the eye of London at night. I learned that everyone there loves Canadians. France on the other hand was just as amazing. Mon Saint Michelle, Paris itself, climbing the Eiffel tower, going on the boat tour at night... I could go on about how great each thing was but It would take too long. I recommend to anyone who is thinking about going to do it. It changed my life and i'm sure it will change yours too!
The Expedition of a Lifetime!I was in grade 10 when I went to England and France with EF. I was also young, a little dumb, and completely unexposed to the world. Of course, at the time I'd never consider such things about myself, but my EF travel experience opened my mind. I had never flown over an ocean before, lost my luggage in Amsterdam, traveled around a city via a metro system, taken a ferry from one country to another, been on a beach that was actually warm that early in the spring, or seen another country's major monument, like the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, or the London Eye. I've never been one for museums, but words can't describe the experience you will have in the museums in London and across France. London is my favourite city, and someday I will return. Maybe I'll even live there someday. I loved Paris, but it was the more rural areas of France that took my breath away.
Here's the thing about travelling: it's addicting. Once you've been somewhere as amazing as, say, England or France, where the architecture is of another century, the traditions are of another culture, and the languages are more diverse than any area in Canada or the States, you must continue to explore. This is only the beginning of my adventures. And it is the most memorable expedition of my life... so far.
Wow! What an experienceThis tour gives an experience that is varied and intense. Starting off in London was a great way to start by giving tours of royalty and of the major sights. London is as beautiful at night as it is in the day. Crossing on the Ferry into France allows you to build up anticipation. The Normandy region gives you an amazing experience of the history and also gives you a feel for rural France which is very unique and gives the students more flavor and feel of French Culture. Paris truly is the city of lights! Wow....from walking up the Champs Élysée at night up to L'Arche de Triomphe to walking through Versaille and the Louvre, to going up the Eiffel Tower and taking a Seine River cruise, the city is amazing and the culture is everywhere. EF provides you with excellent support and the guides are amazing! Truly an amazing adventure! THANK YOU!
Life ChangingMy daughter came home crying, overwhelmed by her trip of a lifetime. She said after that amazing excursion, she could never be the same little hometown girl again. Her eyes were opened, her mind was opened and her life as she knew it, had changed forever. The accommodations, meals, tour guides, itinerary and points of interest covered were just the right balance for an enjoyable time. I believe trips like these are very important for our youth to experience life outside their comfortable borders. All in all, the experience was priceless!
Much more to say here...We had an amazing experience. The itinerary was an unexpected gift of learning, not just about history, but of the evolving human spirit (lots of wars, memorials, etc.). It was a rigorous agenda that often just gave us just a taste of a place, and a likely yearning to return. More time was needed to explore and some more in-depth guide information (perhaps an opportunity to use the headsets? I would not have expected the tour director to have all this info or to have even been able to share it with the whole group) would have been excellent.
Our tour Director was AMAZING!! We loved her spirit and sense of humor. She made the most of many challenging situations and handled them with diplomacy and composure.
As for the tour being something accessible for students with disabilities, namely physical limitations, there is much work to be done. While EF cannot make other countries create ADA-like improvements, they can and should do more to prepare their staff and tours to address the needs of disabled students, simply better understanding the accommodations needed and what options are or are not possible. Much more is possible than you think if you are not even trying.
Great ExperienceThis trip was very nice. Going to England, Normandy and France was a great experience. The tour director knew what she was doing. They were always knowledgeable about each site and where to go find things. They knew how to operate the metro an get us tickets. On long bus rides you had nice buses. During site seeing it was fun learning about historical areas and monuments. The food was kind of boring unless you count the night we had muscles. It could have been better. Although choosing lunch was fun. The hotels we went to were nice. Overall the trip was fun, but a bit exhausting.
Could have been so much moreFirst of all, our family has traveled to Europe for over 30 years. My husband was a bicycle tour leader in France before going to graduate school, so we offer these thoughts with that background.
1. The tour should have non-stop flights. With a group of teenagers, it is ridiculous to risk a stop over in the interest in saving money. I am sure that the families would gladly have paid another $100-$200 per student for a non stop flight. During our tour, weather delayed the trip from Atlanta to Toronto by 6 hours. Even with a quick transition to the next flight in Toronto, one of the student's wallet was stolen or lost. It is just safer to have a non-stop flight.
2. Food. The kids' evening meal was always at 5:30 p.m. This is just too early for dinner. The group meals only offered one choice to eat. In St. Malo, the choice was mussels. Two of the kids were sickened by that choice. Surely there could be a choice of entrée at these dinners, even if it were a less expensive option like pasta.
Also, the tour director should never, ever offer an American fast food restaurant as an option for a group meal. The students' first meal in France was at Pizza Hut. There are so many options for food in France that are reasonable and convenient - even the highway restaurants are able to accommodate large groups and they offer many choices to eat.
Although the quality of the hotels was fine, the locations were so far away from the cities the kids were to visit, so much time was lost commuting that could have been spent touring the city. For example, in London, the students stayed in Barking, and in Paris, they stayed in Maison Lafitte - past CDG airport! There are so many choices of hotels in London and Paris, in particular, that the far afield hotels were not necessary. Also, we went to great expense to send a card to our son at the Maison Lafitte Hotel, and they never gave it to him. He asked twice at the front desk.
The tour guide on our son's tour was very unprofessional. First of all, she wore revealing clothes (where her breasts were visible. Secondly, we question her ability to lead a tour effectively. Setting up dinners at 5:30 pm was poor planning. Everyone spent much more on food than we had budgeted simply because they were having a second dinner.
All in all, I would not recommend this tour because we had the distinct feeling the planning was intentionally lowest of the low budget, so EF tours or the tour guide could keep as much money that was not spent on the students. That is a terrible feeling to have when you have entrusted your child to a tour company that is supposedly reputable.
Incredible Trip!This trip was truly incredible and was super educational and fun. It balanced being able to see things as a tourist while also providing so much opportunity to learn about the different places, particularly because of the amazing guide, Doniel!