Travelers' Intercom

Before we left Ushuaia, Argentina, for our expedition-ship cruise to Antarctica in December 2018, our guide Sebastian held a meeting with our group of 23. By that time, he had already made this trip many times, but he shared an experience with us that had occurred on his first trip.

The first night on the ship, his phone rang at 3 a.m. Reception said he needed to come deal with one of his tour group who was demanding they call for a taxi.

When he arrived, he found a woman...

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For a trip to Mexico City with my wife, Arlene, Feb. 17-25, 2019, I reserved a car online with Hertz (www.hertz.com) in January. I was given a total cost of $192, which would equal MXN3,694.

However, when we went to pick up the car, the price we were charged was MXN5,490 ($285, according to my credit card statement), or 48% more, even though I had with me the original receipt with the price I had been given at booking. On my part, there was no informed consent that the price in Mexico...

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Marlene Snedaker and a ranger in Kibale National Park, Uganda. Photo by Umar Kalule (driver)

I spent two weeks in Uganda in February 2018 — my fifth trip to Africa — traveling with Explore! (Oakland, CA; 800/715-1746, www.exploreworldwide.com). They’re based in England. This was my sixth, and best, trip with them!

Excluding international airfare and travel insurance, I paid $5,130 for the 11-day/10-night “Gorilla & Chimp Safari.” (Even though I was traveling solo, my lodging was twin share to save money.) Full medical and travel...

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A gorilla photobombing Brenda and George Milum in Rwanda.

Following a 6-day tour to Ethiopia in November 2018, my husband, George, and I headed to Uganda and Rwanda, where we had arranged gorilla trekking through ITN advertiser Fish Eagle Safaris (Houston, TX; 800/513-5222, www.fisheaglesafaris.com).

Our “gorilla day” in Uganda was a bit of a letdown. First, it was a long, grueling hike up to the gorillas. I was fine because I had paid extra to be carried up on a stretcher, but George could not be talked into being...

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Kalasha women wear elaborate dresses like these daily — Chitrāl district, northern Pakistan. Photos by Linda Huetinck

Three of us, all over age 80, took a fabulous private tour of Pakistan with Hunza Explorers (Village Ghulkin, P.O. & Tehsil Gulmit Gojal Upper Hunza, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan; phone +92 333 5 626529, www.hunzaexplorers.com). My friends each paid $4,390 per person, double occupancy, which included all meals. I paid that plus a single supplement of $335.

We had contacted the company owner, Karim Tajik, and, after quite a few emails, agreed on an itinerary. He always...

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As I began preparing for an 80-day cruise around South America that was scheduled to start on Jan. 4, 2019, I became interested in what would happen to my remains should I not succeed in finishing the journey. (86 at the time, I turned 87 this May.)

Where would my cadaver go? Who would pay to ship it home or for cremation? What problems would there be for my children, since I have no significant other?

My research soon advised me that Holland America Line, or HAL (855/932-1711...

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View from the <i>Tarifa Jet</i> ferry. Photo by Lorenz Rychner

While sitting in the ferry terminal of Tarifa in Andalucía, Spain, on my way to Morocco on Nov. 15, 2018, I had an experience from which we all could learn.

After hearing me speak Spanish one moment and English the next, a rather distraught couple asked me for advice. They were based in Algeciras, Spain, where I had been for the last few days, and they wanted to make one trip to nearby Gibraltar, east of Algeciras, and another to the ferry port for Tangier, Morocco, on the...

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As my tour group was being driven to the airport in Turkey (June ’19, pg. 20) for our various flights to the US, one member asked, “Do you all have the Mobile Passport Control app?” We all shook our heads ‘no.’ “You have to download it,” he continued. “It’s saved me so much time at Customs.”

Intrigued, I took a look at the app on the Google Play store on my Android phone. As it was described, this free app allows you to fill...

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