Critical: Professionalism, Value
I had one really good, and one unpleasant experience with the proprietor Prem. I was travelling with my senior citizen parents, our Lachen - Latchung leg of the journey had to be modified as stays in Lachen and Lachung were not allowed.
Drivers were excellent, and the cabs really good.
Initial interaction with Prem also good. I paid 3000 advance from kolkata itself.
Couple of issues:
1. Prem knew about it and decided to disclose it to me on the night before (Lachen Lachung no stay over issue)
2. Forced me to stay at a below average stay at a pathetic home stay in Naga stating he does not have any other contacts.
3. Since Gurudongmar ls also closed, there s no point in going to Lachen. You can manage the trip with one night halt, again not informed.
4. We decided to return as we could not stay in Naga. This is where the gentleman (Prem) started behaving oddly.
5. As I mentioned earlier, travelling with old parents, he was negotiating on the price as the tour was severely curtailed. (1 day less than the plan)
6. Since we were on our way back, i told him, whatever the amount minus advance and fuel costs paid, i ll pay the rest once we arrive at the hotel.
7. He literally asked the driver to STOP the vehicle in the middle of nowhere in freezing cold, and said, pay me or else vehicle will not move.
Hardly for a dispute of 1500 rupees, we were stuck. I did not have much choice, somehow begged the drivers feet to move the cab, arranged cash whatever I had, paid him in full and got out at our hotel.
I spoke with Sikkim tourism officials and was advised to launch a formal complaint, i will do that as soon as I am out of Sikkim state border as I feel really unsafe, threatened and humiliated, expletives were used during our phone conversation with regards to my dad.
We understand that economy and business has been dull this year, but this kind of behaviour was completely unexpected.
Lesson learnt, better to book cabs as you go along, local drivers are not that bad. OR book through your hotel.
Trust me, he will give you some sob story about what happened, but I am a deeply disturbed by the turn of events, don't know if he was drunk or having a bad day, but we expect better.... Much better....