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09-05-2022 11:51 AM
We have been very very careful to not get covid. Like so many others, we decided it was time to get back to normal. We chose a 10 day Canada small group tour with Tauck. Small group better than big group-check. Tauck- stellar reputation-check. Canada was 2 hours from US if any problems occurred-check.
Before the trip every traveler signs a covid waiver (they call it a pledge). It says if you get covid you will not hold Tauck responsible blah,blah. It also says if you get covid you "will be separated from the group." Of course that is what should happen. A traveler should self report covid and isolate to protect everyone. Only 4 of 13 couples wore masks. We took our own self tests-just in case. To my knowledge there were no test provided to travelers.
On day 7, my husband described feeling like "i'm coming down with a cold" He said I'm going to test when we arrive at the hotel. Sure enough he tested positive. We immediately notified the tour director. He came to our room collected our vox devices and said the company will be in contact with us. He kept shouting : It is the law. You cannot leave Canada for 5 days. Then said : you have to have an official lab test (vs home test) to qualify for travel insurance. Where do we get testing? He said to ask at the front desk. He left our room. Is there a travel agent nearby? Check with the front desk.
Tour guide said : every trip has had someone get sick!
The next morning we got a text from director that said o not show at any event. You have been separated from the tour. Of course we would never have exposed anyone with covid.Our email from the company said the same. It went on to say that we are responsible for making any medical, hotel, travel rearrangement. We had Tauck travel insurance but that is coverage AFTER the trip interuption.
We located a test site a short cab ride from the hotel. The challenge was we were in French speaking Quebec! Thank goodness for the translation app on the phone! Could we get Plaxovid? Answer: no you have to go to hospital for that.
We made our way home.
I do not blame Tauck for our getting covid. We would never continue with group and expose anyone. It was disappointing that we were immediately abandoned by Tauck. Just check with the front desk, was their answer for every question.
The insurance claim is going to be a mess! If interested I'll share what happening with this.
Before you travel, think through what you will do if you become ill. We thought we had a good plan. We were traveling with a top group, had insurance and in close proxomity to US.
When Tauck said "separated from the group" they meant WE ARE DONE WITH YOU. You are on your own.
09-05-2022 12:04 PM
Bummer your trip was ruined, and it's interested and somewhat disturbing to hear how you were treated. I think it's going to be a long time before we can safely undertake carefree travel.
Covid is so very contagious. Last October, before the Omicron variant arrived, I picked it up just going to Walgreens pharmacy to get my Covid booster shot. The store was busy but everyone was masked including me. I'd neither seen anyone or been anywhere else.
09-05-2022 12:05 PM
I am so sorry your trip was ruined and I can't imagine how alone you both felt getting sick away from home.
I hope you and your hubby are feeling well now. sending you a hug.
09-05-2022 12:07 PM
@granddi Hope your Covid has minimal and no long-lasting effects.
As for travel, I really wanted to do some this year, but safety is an illusion that dances in front of me like a mirage.
09-05-2022 12:12 PM - edited 09-05-2022 12:14 PM
@granddi My husband and I travel exclusively with Tauck and have since 2005. I read their site forum all the time and am also a member of numerous Tauck related Facebook groups. I have read other stories similar to yours. I am so sorry that this is the way your situation was handled. For many reasons -- it seems to me that Tauck is not the Tauck it used to be. Short staffed like everywhere else -- but that is no excuse given what the trips cost -- they just keep going up and up -- and they keep adding more and more dates as the tours fill up.
Years ago when we were on the Warsaw/Budapest/Vienna/Prague tour a couple had an emergency at home and had to leave immediately. Our tour director had them scheduled on the first flight out the following morning literally within 15 minutes. Several months ago a friend of mine fractured her shoulder in Italy the day before her cruise was supposed to start. It happened on a Monday -- Tauck finally got her home on Friday night. Again -- the travel environment is very difficult right now -- but the rudeness she experienced dealing with a Tauck agent was ridiculous.
It's really a shame -- but I have to say all of this is the reason we will not even think about travel until things return to at least some semblance of normal. Who knows when that will be. From what I have read -- the insurance company is also very backed up and claims are taking much longer than usual -- so be prepared. I hope you and your husband are doing well! Please keep us posted.
09-05-2022 12:18 PM
So sorry that this happened. As much as DH and I love to travel we will not travel internationally, even to Canada, for quite some time. My fear is exactly as the OP experienced--you're on your own for hotels, medical care, etc., etc.
Fortunately, we've been to 50+ countries and there's nothing on our bucket list!!! LOL!!!
We'll stay in the USA and no tours for the foreseeable future.
09-05-2022 12:36 PM
A friend of mine had a very similar situation happen recently in Ireland. It was a mess. Not easy to get a test kit like it is here. Had to isolate. Tour went on to the rest of the country. She finally was able to fly home. Had a very rough go of it and took several weeks to recover. I'd like to travel, but I think it's still a bit too risky.
09-05-2022 12:49 PM
Its disheartening to hear of your experience but I am relieved you are home safely. I bet your home never looked so inviting. I would be interested in hearing of your ordeal to get back. It sounds like you were very savvy in your decision making given the circumstances. Here I thought too traveling with reputable group was the way to go. Thanks for sharing.
09-05-2022 01:07 PM
We took the US National Parks tour in late May with Collette. Everyone was to have had their shots prior to traveling but we know that at least a couple of the couples came on the tour sick to begin with! Coughing, snot snorting, just totally disgusting. Sure enough someone got so sick he was left behind in WY and had to fend for himself for the 5 days. He was the only one that was honest enough to say he was sick. On day six he got a rental car and had to drive the 250 miles himself!! to the SD airport which was our return airport.
Now to the 9 of us flying from SD to CT. Six of the 9 of us had had covid at that time but never said a word! Our flight was cancelled and Collette did nothing to help us whatsoever so we rented a van and drove back to the hotel we had stayed in until the next day. We did successfully fly out the following day.
DH and I were the only ones that did not come down with covid as we had had it early April and thankful to have had enough antibodies. I just can't believe people are so careless with others health, I was beyond livid.
We did have insurance and it took about 9 weeks to receive our refund but we did get it.
Long story short, refund was received. Beware of traveling with Collette cause they didn't give a ****** about stranding us in the middle of nowhere and some people just suck.
09-05-2022 01:13 PM
@granddi. Sorry this happened to you. A couple of questions.
Did you stay in Canada for the required 5 days?
If not, how did you get home? Was your car in Canada?
If it was, why did you take a cab to the doctor?
Did you tell the cabbie you tested positive? Just wondering how many people you exposed.
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