CIE Tours vs Lost World Adventures - Tour Companies Compared

Compare details and see what other travelers are saying.

Rating Breakdown
Overall — 3
Value — 2.8
Guide — 3.4
Activities — 3.2
Lodging — 2.8
Transportation — 3.4
Meals — 3.2
Overall — 5
Value — 4.9
Guide — 4.9
Activities — 4.9
Lodging — 4.9
Transportation — 4.9
Meals — 4.9
Recent Reviews

Go To Ireland... Just Don't Use CIE

3.0 September 2018
J
Does Not Recommend
  • Value 2.0
  • Guide 4.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 2.0
  • Transportation 3.0
  • Meals 3.0
My wife and I travel often and while we enjoyed our tour itself, we would not use CIE again and would caution anyone else before doing so as well.
By the time our tour guide casually mentioned that their numbers on our particular tour were “way down” (our group had 28 the first week and only 18 the second week on a 50 person bus), I had already figured out why. CIE, as a company, is just not very good. Our group of three in Colorado, booked with some other family, a party of two, in Florida, to make sure we were on the same tour. The problem is, in spite of detailed explanation that we would be traveling separately and paying separately, CIE consistently attempted to treat us as a single party of five, both in payment and logistics. They charged our family in Florida an extra $50 to send their ‘travel bags’ to them directly. They messed up the travel vouchers for our group and even had them scheduled to be picked up at the wrong airport in England. This was clearly communicated on multiple occasions, but was still messed up by CIE.

Then there is their transport company. Before getting to the Denver airport, we received notice our flight into London would be delayed 2.5 hours. I called immediately, giving CIE a ten hour notice, and was told it would cost extra money for them to pick us up later. Apparently, they don’t do pickups afternoon. This would have been good information to have beforehand. Upon arrival, when I called the travel company at 2:00 pm local time, there was no answer so we ended up just taking a taxi and paying an extra $70 just to get to our hotel. Despite multiple requests, CIE has repeatedly refused to refund our $45 that we prepaid for our transfer, claiming a non-refundable policy. Think about this… 5 people on our trip, bringing in nearly $20,000 of revenue to this company, and rather than make it right, when the delay was no fault of our own, they choose to hold firm to their “non-refundable” policy and refuse to refund a measly $45.

I gave 3 stars rather than less because the tour itself was great. Our tour guide and itinerary were top notch. We did the 14 day Irish/British Grandeur and it was a whirlwind fourteen days. We saw a tremendous amount of sites and points of interest, but in doing so, we were exhausted by the end, despite being much younger than most of our tour companions. While there were a couple free afternoons and evenings, there wasn’t a single free morning. The mornings that we were leaving the hotel, we were to have bags out of our hotel room by 6:00 am or 7:00 am and we would be leaving between 45 mins and an hour later. Even when we stayed an additional night, our latest morning departure was 8:15 am. This is most definitely not a leisurely tour so be prepared to get good at sleeping on a bus.
The most disappointing part of it all though was the ‘bait and switch’ of the hotels. This tour was promoted as 4 and 5 star hotels, which was a complete fabrication. We stayed one night at a 5 star, two nights at a 4 star, and every single other hotel was maybe a 3 star. Maybe. Terribly uncomfortable beds, pillows, and poor service from hotel staff. For the price we paid for this trip, the hotels were a total rip-off and we expected better. The moral of the story is this; your numbers are down, CIE, because you’re not a very good company and word is spreading about your poor customer service. Go see Ireland! Just do it with a different company.
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USE ANOTHER COMPANY

1.0 December 2017
b
Does Not Recommend
  • Value 1.0
  • Guide 2.0
  • Activities 1.0
  • Lodging 1.0
  • Transportation 3.0
  • Meals 2.0
Had issues with trip and contacted customer service and they said they would review it guess what no response and called again same response spend your money with a company who cares would not use again
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Tour CIE Tours Company Reviews

Very Difficult to Work With

1.0 May 2017
N
Does Not Recommend
  • Value 1.0
  • Guide 1.0
  • Activities 1.0
  • Lodging 1.0
  • Transportation 1.0
  • Meals 1.0
We haven't yet taken our trip, but we are finding CIE to be very difficult to work with. They change flights indiscriminately, are totally inflexible with making any adjustments to remedy problems they caused, never return phone calls, and of course, a supervisor is never available. If we have had this much trouble before the trip, what will the trip be like? We will never book with them again.
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Tour CIE Tours Company Reviews

Their service was outstanding.

5.0 July 2017
C
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
"This Peru travel agency planned and booked a custom trip for me and my wife to Peru in October 2015. The trip included a short stay in Lima, and almost a week in the Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu and Cusco. Their service was outstanding. The planning for the trip was perfect, and we relied entirely on them as we had not been to Peru before. They also went beyond the call of duty by getting a reservation at a good hotel in Lima even though there was a huge convention of the world bank in town at the time. They persisted until they found a cancellation. they even booked two good restaurants for us in Lima. The guides they provided were also excellent, including one who was truly outstanding.

I never would have located this company except through Zicasso. Two years ago we made a trip to Brazil and we looked and looked for a travel agency of this kind and never did find one. I would highly recommend using Zicasso to find the appropriate agency if you are traveling somewhere that you have not previously been to, or if you do not have an agency you are satisfied with."
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Our trip to Peru was planned perfectly, thanks to our travel agent! 

5.0 July 2017
K
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Our trip to Peru was planned perfectly, thanks to our travel agent! He was quick to respond to all of my needs & was very flexible. The hotels and the guides he arranged were great! We couldn't have asked for or imagined a better experience in this magical country!
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Our travel designers did a fantastic job keeping our herd together and entertained - all of the accommodations were excellent, guides were great, tours were interesting.

5.0 December 2016
P
Recommends
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Hiking the Inca Trail (and learning that it is "an" Inca Trail, not "the" Inca Trail)
Tours 21 Trips 55 Trips
Average Trip Price Per Day $ 200 $ 444
Operator Type Group Tour Operator Custom/Private Tour Operator
Size Regional Expert Global Operator
Trip Types
  • Group Tours
  • Independent / Self-Guided Packages
  • Private Guided Trips
  • Small Ship & Expedition Cruises
  • Custom Itineraries
Service Level Standard Luxury
Regions
  • Europe
  • North America
  • Central America & Caribbean
  • South America
  • Africa
  • Antarctica & the Arctic
Known For
  • 50+
  • Solo & Singles Travel
  • Trekking & Camping
  • Luxury
Headquarters Dublin, Ireland Decatur, Georgia
Year Established 1932 1987
Solo Friendly N/A N/A
Tour Languages English N/A
Top Trips
Similar Companies
    Countries
    About CIE Tours

    New Jersey-based CIE Tours, in business since 1932, is one of the largest operators of escorted coach tours through the British Isles, Eastern Europe, Italy, and Ireland.

    Quick facts

    Founded in 1932

    Travel Style: Large Coaches, not handicap accessible

    Single supplement required for those traveling solo

    Group Size: Average 35, maximum 48

    Typical Age Range: Older travelers 50+. Children are welcome, minimum of 8 years old, so families are common as well.

    Average Tour Price: $2,233

    Accommodation Style: 3, 4, and 5 star hotels, depending on the itinerary. 4 stars are the most popular, combining a decent price with comfortability.  

    What Makes CIE Tours Stand Out?

    CIE is a long-established company with extensive regional knoweledge in Ireland. They offers especially good value, with all-inclusive pricing. Also look for early-booking discounts as well as seasonal discounts for solo travelers.

    As part of the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) and the United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA), CIE ensures that their company goes above and beyond when it comes to their client’s safety. They also offer a wide-range of itineraries depending on the client’s budget, interest, and schedule.

    Who Will Enjoy Traveling with CIE Tours?

    Travelers seeking all-inclusive group tours of England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Northern Ireland, as well as a few destinations in Continental Europe. Customers tend to be aged 50-plus and have an interest in history and wish to stay in nice hotels (ranging from three to five stars) with a choice of budgets.

    Irish coastline walk CIE Coach Tours

    The kind of traveler who enjoys a completely hassle free experience, with all activities, meals, and sightseeing planned out. Coach tours are generally enjoyed by travelers who like driving - daydream and gaze out large windows at the world passing by in comfort on your way to the next wonderful stop.

    If you love learning about history, culture, with your days full of ancient cities, churches, and historical information their guide style would be a good fit. And with the occasional spa day at your hotel thrown in these all-encompassing journeys take care of the mind and the body.

    Top Destinations

    Beautiful England castle on lake

    CIE Tours are especially known for tours in and around Ireland, and this is their primarily focus. They also travel to Scotland and Britain, with a small number of coach tours offered in Italy, Eastern Europe, and the Balkan Peninsula. Occasionally, river cruises on the Rhine and Danube are also available.

    CIE Tours Travel Style

    Most of their tours are on large, roomy, comfortable coaches, in the premium - luxury range. Amenities on board are basic, and coaches make frequent stops to avoid the need for using the restroom on the bus.

    Traditional pub in Ireland CIE Tours

    Group size is a max of 48, though 35 people is the average on the CIE Tours. Virtually all aspects of the trip – with no optional extras -- are included in the initial rate, which will not go up after booking, and departures are guaranteed. Itineraries range from 5 to 24 days, though the majority sit in the 8-10 day range.

    CIE will also set up self-drive trips and homestay and B&B vacations for you if you want to travel on your own, or arrange customized tours for groups of 10 or more people.

    Why Choose a Tour With CIE?

    With more than eight decades of experience, CIE Tours offers dependable service and regional know-how. The company estimates that the average traveler will save $550 per week by not having to pay for optional extras during the trip. Their all-inclusive tours alleviate the stress of planning a vacation by providing daily guided tours, hotels, meals, and airport transfers.

    Castle on banks of Ireland

    CIE Tour guides are experts in Ireland and the other regions they travel through, so if you’re looking for comfort, inclusivity of price, plus a high caliber of knowledge and experience, this is a good place to start.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    1. What is the CIE Travel Protection Plan?

    Travel insurance is required on all CIE Tours. The Travel Protection Plan is an easy, convenient way to purchase insurance at the time of your booking, covering cancellation. See other travel insurance options  

    2. Are there restrooms on the coaches?

    Yes, most CIE coaches have restrooms for emergencies. Safety protocol means they are not to be used while the coach is in motion. CIE Tours make regular stops for travelers to stretch their legs and use the facilities.

    3. Are CIE Tours handicap accessible?

    No. Unfortunately the coaches are not equip to handle large wheelchairs or scooters. Walkers or foldable wheelchairs can be accommodated. Sightseeing tours require some walking over short distances, and some difficult stairs, such as when exploring castles. Uneven surfaces are common especially when exploring old sites and ruins.

    4. What should I pack?

    One large piece of luggage is permitted, which will fit under the coach. Layers are advisable for the weather in Ireland, which can be chilly. You may also bring a small backpack or purse. On “Supreme” tours, men will require a dinner jacket, but on all other tours this is not necessary. Comfortable walking shoes are a must.

    5. Are tips included?

    No, tips for your driver, porter, guides, and tour director are not included in the price. They are not required, but are a customary show of gratitude, especially if you enjoyed the trip!

    6. What about airport transfer?

    If you choose to purchase airfare through CIE, complimentary airport transfer is provided for flights arriving before noon. You can choose to purchase airport transfer if you elect to buy your airfare separately.


    About Lost World Adventures

    Founded in 1987, Lost World Adventures offers private and customized trips to South and Central America and Antarctica.

    What Makes Them Stand Out?

    Your guide will get to know you before beginning to plan your customized experience. If you want to have a relaxing beach vacation, they can arrange that. Or if you’d rather hike up the adrenaline, they are able to offer that as well.

    Who Travels With Them?

    They accommodate anyone from honeymooners to large groups. Trips are generally in middle price range - you won’t find tremendously budget items here, but they do their best to craft a trip based on all factors, price included.

    Where Do They Operate?

    They are focused in South and Central America, with a variety of trips from beach vacations to Costa Rica, food tours in Argentina, or Machu Picchu adventures. They are also among the few small companies providing cruises to Antarctica.

    Why Travel With Them?

    For the variety of trip type and theme you can choose from. They have food and wine tours, adventure tours, beach getaways, and cruises - all of which are customizable to your likes and dislikes. If you’d prefer not to overly customize, they have pre-set itineraries as well.

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