Gate 1 vs St Hilda Sea Adventures - Tour Companies Compared
Compare details and see what other travelers are saying.
Overall — 4
Value — 3.7
Guide — 3.8
Activities — 4.0
Lodging — 3.9
Transportation — 3.9
Meals — 3.7
Overall — 5
Value — 4.9
Guide — 4.9
Activities — 4.9
Lodging — 4.9
Transportation — 4.9
Meals — 4.9
5.0 October 2018
I recently returned from the 11 day Classic Poland trip which I took with my cousin. We were pleasantly surprised with just how whimsical and charming much of Poland is. Our guide, Jolanta Postrzygacz, was fabulous. She consistently went the extra mile to make everyone happy including offering "treats" representative of Poland during longer coach rides. While the hotels weren't super deluxe, they were pretty comfortable and most of the included meals were wonderful. The tours were very informative and enjoyable. It was an excellent trip and I highly recommend it!Read more
1.0 October 2018
Does Not Recommend
Do not book with Gate 1. If you do, don't get sick cause they leave you for dead. If you do they will take creepy photos of you. If you do don't get the travel insurance, because they will not honor it.Read more
1.0 August 2018
Does Not Recommend
Think TWICE before contacting Gate One Travel. I timely cancelled my international trip due to a medical emergency. They laughed at me and kept my hard earned $11,000 and gave me NO REFUND, in spite of me having cancellation insurance that I bought FROM THEM. It's a big international company that take advantage of the working class. Please look elsewhere. Gate One Travel is a RIP OFF!Read more
Tour Gate 1 Travel Company Reviews
5.0 October 2017
This is a holiday gave me a chance to slow down, and take the time to feel part of the natural world: the sun, to notice the hook-beaked oyster catchers and families of rare seals, to enjoy the wonderful food, the sunshine, scudding clouds, waves lapping and the feeling of being held safely by the St Hilda whilst being at the mercy of winds, tides and waves. It was fun to share tasks with fellow passengers and to laugh. I haven't laughed so much for years. And I loved seeing beautiful coastal parts of Scotland for the first time from the sea, gaining the chance to wonder at the histories and cultures that have flourished, been lost and yet live on in the remote, unusual places where we moored. I discovered my sea-legs, but I found much more - the pleasure of a little bit of distance from land, the new perspectives it gives and sheer joy of experiencing the sea, and its role in revealing new dreams and uncovering old ones. All this was in the company of knowledgeable crew - sea-farers who made the whole cruise delightful from start to finish and easy-peasy for a land-lubber like myself.Read more
5.0 October 2017
This was a fantastic holiday - there is something magical about being in a ship, relying on wind and waves, seeing beautiful scenery, eating lovely food, helping sail the ship and enjoying the experience with a group of witty, friendly, knowledgeable people.Read more
5.0 October 2017
This holiday was like no other: it was stepping into another world where the wind, sun and sea mattered because our lives were held by the ship and these big elemental forces. It was a realm of sea faring lore, laughter and fun, where the elements - water, wind and tides - mattered and shaped and influenced our journey. It's easy to laugh on a ship because you are sharing the camaraderie of crew and ocean and somehow the sea is lighter than the land. Instead you have the myths and stories of sea and mysteries of the deep - Moby Dick, Jonah, Noah's Ark and Ring of Bright Water! It's fascinating to be on a slow journey with time to reflect and to be looking at the strange, populated and then depopulated, fought over Scottish coastal landscape from a new perspectives. It's fun to work with the charming, witty, friendly skippers and fellow crew hauling anchors and sails. But, most of all, it's a joy to be on, and in, and feeling the elemental ocean. I felt safe and found my sea-legs, but I also stumbled into a new world, one that enriches and ignites dreams.Read more
Tour St Hilda Sea Adventures Company Reviews
|Tours||809 Trips||8 Trips|
|Average Trip Price Per Day||$ 209||$ 166|
|Operator Type||Group Tour Operator||Small Ship & Expedition Cruise Line|
|Size||Global Operator||Local Specialist|
|Headquarters||Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, United States||Oban, Scotland|
|Solo Friendly||N/A||Good for singles|
Founded in 1981 with three employees and based in suburban Philadelphia, Gate 1 now employs more than 200 people worldwide with offices in 20 countries, ranging from Hungary to Cambodia, Argentina to Israel.
What Makes Gate 1 Stand Out?
Gate 1 offers a variety of tour packages and river cruises around the world, promising to provide exceptional value for the price. They focus on North American travelers who seek “high quality, yet affordable” guided trips, with accommodations ranging from superior tourist to moderate deluxe class.
They have a lot of different choices when it comes to destinations, durations, and inclusions. Most tours have additional offerings for meals, activities, and excursions available for additional fees.
Traveler reviews for Gate 1 oscillate between 5 star and 1 star experiences. Those that have had an excellent time cite the tour pacing, guides, and extensive sightseeing opportunities as positives.
Those for whom these same factors contributed to a negative experience may have had higher expectations than is available or offered for the competitive budget prices that Gate 1 is known for.
Who Will Enjoy Traveling With Gate 1?
Gate 1 is the perfect travel choice for families, couples, and friend groups seeking a cost efficient journey. As Gate 1 is a strictly budget minded brand, it’s important to be fully aware of the trade-off when you choose to travel with them.
You will see a lot, and be out and about visiting several sites - however keeping costs low is one of their main priorities. This means hotels will be basic, meals won’t be 5 star, and your coach will have fewer amenities. In addition tours with Gate 1 feature several optional add ons and sightseeing tours, not included in the base price. Average tour price is around $2,000, often less.
If you’re flexible, open minded, and are interested in maximizing your sightseeing above all else, Gate 1 could be for you. Knowing what to expect is key for enjoying the trip to the fullest.
Gate 1 trips cover much of the world, including destinations in North, Central, and South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia. Itineraries focus on the top sights, historical attractions, and national parks.
Gate 1 Travel Style
In a nutshell, the Gate 1 travel style is “see a lot for a little”. Hotels and accommodations are usually 3 star hotels. Expect basic comforts, with fewer amenities available. However if you’re the kind of traveler for whom a bed and some coffee in the morning is a fine trade-off for busy days outside and tons of sightseeing, the trade-off will be worth it.
You will be met on the ground with a dedicated tour leader, available to assist throughout your travel experience.
Escorted group bus tours are a big part of their business - between 24-42 people. These coaches are again, more utility focused than amenity focused, but you will be comfortable. And in general bus tours take frequent stops to allow for stretching legs and using of facilities.
Gate 1 also offers small group tours (with a maximum of 22 people), river cruises on two continents, independent city stays and fly and drive packages, rail packages, customized vacations, and combination bus/cruise tours -- something for almost everyone interested in a budget vacation.
Why Choose a Tour With Gate 1?
For the budget traveler, Gate 1 is a fantastic choice. They offer several types of trip package to choose from, including rail, river cruise, and small group tours, at competitive rates. Their escorted tours are extremely popular, and customers repeat trips with them regularly.
While Gate 1 is the primary brand, and they are all about giving a positive and packed international travel experience on a budget, other brands associated with Gate 1 are more premium focused. These include the Signature collection, offering luxury tour options and smaller groups.
St. Hilda Sea Adventures provide the unique experience to see Scotland from the sea. They offer many activities and private excursions - a perfect travel experience for families, older travellers, and small multi-gen groups.
What Makes Them Stand Out?
Taking only up to 11 guests (6 on St Hilda and 11 on Seahorse II), their tours are incredibly unique, as you cruise aboard a classic ex-tall ship (St Hilda) or a proper small ship (Seahorse II). Activities include sailing, swimming, sea kayaking, paddle boarding, fishing, rock pooling, and lobster potting. Or, you can simply choose to just relax and watch the spectacular wildlife and scenery float by.
Who Travels With Them?
All ages and all types enjoy traveling with St. Hilda Sea Adventures. Families, couples, and solo passengers are all welcome. Passengers can choose to do as much or as little as they like. This is a great trip for young kids to enjoy as well, for the thrill of hoisting the sails like a true sailor.
Where Do They Operate?
The West Coast of Scotland is where they specialize, the Outer and Inner Hebrides specifically. Such a niche focus is a huge positive for those interested in getting a unique view of this part of the world.
Why Travel With Them?
Their Scottish cruises give you the opportunity to see extraordinary wildlife and to cruise aboard a small ship with skipper and chef and a small group of passengers. All food is included, and there are many opportunities for interesting excursions. Some excursions are included in the price however, you can also arrange excursions based on your interests. These are not included but allow for a wonderful amount of personalization to your travel experience with St. Hilda Sea Adventures.