Inexpensive, convenient, full independence of travel
We used Sea Air Travelfor the first time for a 10-day rail tour of Italy. Our agent was Lee, and he was very helpful, courteous, and responsive. Even though Sea Air Travel has an unusual method of booking, we had no trouble with it. We decided to pay a little extra & use our credit cards for the trip.
The process to book required faxing in payment information, and then receiving the itinerary and vouchers via e-mail. We printed out the PDF, and at the transfers and at every hotel we passed over our vouchers (although they didn't really need them all the time). The e-mail also included very detailed information about the trip and how to contact Gate1 Travel when abroad.
Our initial flight was delayed and we called the emergency line to leave a message, which was not apparently received on the other end in Italy. But it didn't matter because they had folks at the airport anyway to pick us up. It wasn't necessarily an emergency anyway, since they knew folks would be there to pick up delayed travelers.
At the airport at our initial destination we found the Sea Air Travel rep easily, met some folks from our same tour itinerary, and were transferred after about an hour's wait via water taxi to our first hotel in Venice.
Our hotels were excellent overall (we chose the budget version) and we received a free upgrade in Rome when our class of hotel was full. Our rail tickets were given us at the first hotel, and we had excellent train trips. Our flights were on Alitalia, and we received seats together with just the two of us in the section for both flights.
We extended our trip at no extra cost to allow additional days for a trip to the Italian riviera, and it was the best part of the trip.
Overall, I rate Sea Air Travel very highly if you are a seasoned traveler. It offers a one-of-a-kind trip, where you can have all the hassle taken out of making all your reservations, with the freedom of doing it yourself. If you just want to show up on your trip and have it all planned for you, but be able to wake up at 9 every morning and plan your day however you want, this is for you. You'll especially notice the difference when you pass tour groups and hear the guides telling them to be back at the bus in one hour -- while you can stay and look around all day!
On our trip we ran into some of the same folks in the Sea Air Travel group a few times. They seemed to be enjoying their tour also and no one had any complaints about the booking experience, the accommodations or the trip itself.
I will do Sea Air Travel again if I get a chance.