Holiday From Hell

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Lamb475's review of Australian Womens Travel - www.australianwomenstravel.com

★☆☆☆☆

“Holiday From Hell”

Written on: 05/04/2017 by Lamb475 (1 review written)

Going to India with Mary of Australian Womens Travel in March 2017 was meant to be my trip of a lifetime, my first major overseas trip, the first of many intended overseas trips. Instead of being a wonderful, fulfilling and joyful experience, being safe and in good hands and taken care of, it ended up being quite a horrible ordeal, one that will stay with me for the rest of my life.
Taking the advice of the tour leader, I paid for a twin share package – the worst decision of my life. Being a quiet, sensitive, cultured, passive and considerate person I very quickly saw the “schoolgirl bully” group forming around the obnoxious, brash, aggressive, domineering woman with whom I was forced to share rooms for the entire tour.
From day two, it became clear to me that she was determined to dominate and bully me. Just as in every high school bully group, she encouraged her close, like-minded, aggressive, gin-drinking friends to join her in the spiteful and mean bullying that then plagued me for the remainder of the horrendous 23 days.
I firmly believe she was waging a campaign to have me leave the twin share arrangement and to pay extra for my own single rooms for the remainder of the trip in order for her to have the twin rooms to herself, without having to pay the extra herself.
Unfortunately, I hadn't budgeted for the extra for single rooms so that was not an option for me to take up. The only other couple in a twin share arrangement were the tour leader and her daughter. When I asked the tour leader if I could swap with them I was brusquely told it was not an option and that I had to simply deal with it.
The repeated, incessant and non-ending mean-spiritedness and game-playing at my expense, having orders barked at me, being sworn at, being blocked in doorways, having my bag roughly handled so it ripped, being glared at, ignored and ostracised and deliberately left out of activities all contributed to this being the worst holiday ever of all time.
The deliberate and calculated dumping of me in the Delhi airport, knowing that I was agitated, confused and frightened in such a huge and intimidating place, was appalling and unforgiveable, as was the cold and calculated and spiteful re-arrangement of plans to exclude me from the tour to the Dalai Lama's orphanage in McLeodganj, to name but two of the incidents that they orchestrated.
Unfortunately for me, several of the women on the tour were repeat travellers, so they were friends with Mary. I can see why she would be reluctant to speak to them about their treatment of me. I was not the only one who had noticed and suffered from the discourtesy and rudeness and bad-manners that a large proportion of the women were displaying. Being such a small group of 8 meant that there was no escape. Yes, if you're all of a like-mind, if you're all similar in background and personality, if all of you are compassionate, well-mannered, courteous and considerate- maybe there is a way of having a small group of strangers work. This certainly did not happen in this group. There were 4 or 5 exceedingly dominant, forceful, loud, brash individuals who kept the remainder of the group in tow. I never stood a chance once I was marked as a target, as vulnerable and sensitive. 23 days of hell.
I not only DO NOT recommend, but I heartily DISCOURAGE, anyone who is in any way vulnerable or sensitive or inexperienced in travel from going on a trip with all women, or with Australian women full-stop, or going twin share with a stranger, or risking going in a small group. This trip cost me $15,000 AUD – what they did in ruining it for me, goes beyond a mean schoolyard “prank”. It was appallingly spiteful, malicious and utterly unforgiveable.

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