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    Road Scholar

2018 CUSTOMER CHOICE AWARD
Corporate Values

Overview

Road Scholar has a consumer rating of 3.04 stars from 80 reviews indicating that most consumers are generally satisfied with their purchases. Road Scholar also ranks 2nd among Student Travel sites.

  • Service
    1
  • Value
    1

This company responds to reviews on average within 13 days

Positive reviews (last 12 months): 20%
Positive
4
Neutral
3
Negative
13
View ratings trends
7
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What reviewers want you to know

Positive highlights

Critical highlights

  • I booked a trip, paid in advance, and then without warning Road Scholar cancelled the trip.
How would you rate Road Scholar?
Top Positive Review

“Outstanding Customer Service”

Cherie G.
1/29/20

Recently we were asked to change the dates of an upcoming trip to Croatia/Slovenia due to low enrollment. The Travel Change Team and Travel Arrangements Team quickly made the needed changes and kept us fully communicated via emails during this process. I was particularly impressed with the flight schedule which was customized to our requests. Thank you Road Scholar!

See positive reviews
Top Critical Review

“cancel for any reason insurance is no insurance”

linda h.
5/10/20

Don't buy. Road Scholar cancelled our trip, but refused to pay for our airline tickets, even though we had "cancel for any reason" Insurance. They claim that since they cancelled the program, they can also cancel the insurance. Note too, if you purchase and need to cancel, you don't get your money back, only a voucher for future travel.

See critical reviews

Reviews (80)

Rating

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Reviews that mention popular keywords

trip (39) rs trip (3)
lindah1538
1 review
0 helpful votes
May 10th, 2020
Don't buy. Road Scholar cancelled our trip, but refused to pay for our airline tickets, even though we had "cancel for any reason" Insurance. They claim that since they cancelled the program, they can also cancel the insurance. Note too, if you purchase and need to cancel, you don't get your money back, only a voucher for future travel.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Linda,

Road Scholar initiated the suspension of your program due to COVID-19. Because your trip was suspended, the Trip Protection Plan, a plan created to cover fees should you cancel from the program, is automatically refunded. As for airfare, in light of the extraordinary circumstances, we have found that airlines have been waiving fees for their passengers, even if a policy is not posted on their website. With that in mind, we suggest that you contact your airline to have your penalties waived.

Road Scholar Trip cancellation insurance offers two-part protection. If you cancel your program for a covered reason, for example, a medical emergency, insurance refunds any penalties you incur and it is a refund, not a voucher.The Cancel for Any Reason benefit protects travelers if they cancel for reasons not covered by the plan, such as a family event. In that case a voucher is issued for future travel. It is a very good plan and covers travelers who cancel their trip for any reason.

Sincerely,

Kirsten
annk196
2 reviews
17 helpful votes
February 19th, 2020
My first trip with Road Scholar 5 years ago was well run & the trip was as advertised. With the next trip taken 3 years ago the activity levels were changed after booking and there were a couple of service issues pre trip trying to get questions answered thru their call centre. I considering taking another trip with RS this fall and my experience with their customer service area has been long and painful. I asked that an issue be escalated to a supervisor for review - and after over a week & follow up calls from me still no response. I would not recommend the current RS.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Hello Ann, we endeavor to offer great customer service and apologize for the delay in responding to your issue. We are anxious to research the cause of the customer service delay. However, we do not have enough information to assist you. Please contact us here by private message and provide your full name and phone number so that we can inquire on your behalf. Best, Your Friends at Road Scholar
margaretk266
1 review
7 helpful votes
April 21st, 2020
Please read the Only reasons for cancel for any reasons with insurance.
I lost $1100 due to the COVID crisis. Road Scholar cancelled the trip and I lost all my airfare costs. Gratefully I did not have a lot prepaid to RS because I wasn't refunded my deposit.
I will NEVER book a trip with RS again. The insurance mentioned on their website is SO misleading.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Margaret,

Unfortunately, there is not enough information available here to address your concerns, but if Road Scholar suspended your program and you did not initiate the cancellation, you are entitled to a refund of your deposit and we encourage you to contact us at 1 (800) 454-5768 and we'll be happy to review your options over the phone.

When the program is suspended, your insurance costs are also refunded. If you purchase independent airfare, we have found that airlines are waiving fees for their passengers, even if the policy is not posted on their website. If you haven't already done so, please contact your airline carrier and investigate their reimbursement policy.

Sincerely,

Your Friends at Road Scholar
pkg1
1 review
1 helpful vote
June 30th, 2020
This has been the worst business transaction and I will file it under two words "Unethical" and "Extortion"
I have been trying to cancel a trip to the Netherlands in the Fall of 2020 since March 2020. I have emailed them and they respond acknowledging what I want to do and advise that I call them. I call them and they do not answer and there is NO OPTION to leave a voicemail. They have the gall to send me an invoice in June to pay the balance of the trip!! This organization needs to be investigated. 1) We currently cannot travel to Europe due to Covid-19, 2) I gave more than four months notice of my desire to cancel. 2) They refuse to give back the $250 payment I made AND want me to pay for the trip in full by July 2!! Road Scholar NO MORE!!
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
We are sorry that you have been unable to reach us by phone. We are experiencing higher than normal call and email volume during these unusual times. We want to talk with you and regret that unusual call demand has kept us from speaking with you. A Road Scholar representative will contact you shortly. We appreciate your understanding and patience. Your friends at Road Scholar.
pamelal310
1 review
1 helpful vote
May 20th, 2020
Our trip to Egypt was cut short by a week because of the Covid-19 situation. I had purchased trip insurance through Road Scholar for that trip. Obviously, it had to be cut short, but Road Scholar assured us that we would be reimbursed for the part of the trip we missed. That did not happen. They have sent me many requests for donations, and nothing about reimbursement. After almost 2 months are requesting some remuneration, they finally offered a small credit toward another trip....but it had to be by June 5th. Um...we are still in the middle of a pandemic, so that's not going to happen. They have not offered one penny of my money back even though I bought my insurance from them. Yes, they're an educational travel group...and boy! did I get an education.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Pamela, When the travel restrictions were announced and borders were closing, we worked around the clock to make sure that 731 participants who were attending programs in 25 countries were able to return home safely. Getting you and your fellow participants home was most important, so we spared no expense for your safety, securing airfare and even extra food and lodging for many at a considerable expense to Road Scholar. Insurance companies do not pay out for pandemics so once we got everyone home, we prorated missed program days and offered you and other participants whose programs were cut short by world events, a voucher to compensate for time missed. Since the program was in process, we paid out in full to our vendors. Any funds we were able to recoup were passed on to our participants in voucher form. The voucher is good for three years, it does not expire in June. We requested confirmation of our email by June 1st for record-keeping purposes. These are extraordinary times for Road Scholar and the travel industry in general and we are working hard to make the best decisions for our programs and our participants while preserving the future of our organization so that we can continue our mission of lifelong learning for many years to come. Sincerely, Road Scholar
carolf433
1 review
11 helpful votes
April 13th, 2020
Road Scholar is keeping well over 10% of the program cost, despite a cancellation due to COVID-19. I even purchased insurance. This is not the type of company I will be taking my business to.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Carol,

This seems rather unusual and we would like to research your cancellation further. Would you please private message us through Sitejabber and provide your full name and phone number so that we can further investigate your situation.

Sincerely,

Your Friends at Road Scholar
geraldd114
Gerald D.
1 review
14 helpful votes
April 12th, 2020
Keep in mine that once RS has your money, almost no force on earth can get it all back for you. We had a cruise around the coast of Italy planned for the first 10 days of June 2020. Beginning in mid-March, we and scores of other registered participants were in a panic about being elder on-board participants during the Covid-19 pandemic, so we contacted Road Scholar and said that we had looked on the web site and were stunned that the trip had not only not been cancelled, but that RS was still looking for sign-ups! Finally, RS cancelled the trip -- but because it was cancelled in April, not in June, RS kept our $1800 down payment sent in the fall of 2019 and refunded the rest of this $10,000+ trip. RS had astronomical liability exposure -- imagine its attempt to defend wrongful death suits. I wrote a letter to the CEO, James Moses, sent it certified mail return receipt requested. But, in the end, the technical terms of the trip meant that RS got $1800 for providing NOTHING and we got holding the bag.
We have been on several trips with RS over the years, but we have vowed that RS is a bunch of mealy-mouthed goniffs who will NEVER get any of our money again.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Gerald,

We are puzzled by your claim that you were not refunded in full for your Road Scholar program. On March 19th, Road Scholar suspended all Aegean Odyssey programs through mid-September. All participants who were enrolled at the time of the program suspension had received a refund, including yourself. We directly communicated with you on March 23rd that you would be receiving a full refund for the program. Our records indicate that we processed a full refund on March 24th back to your original payment method--a paper check for $8,398 and a e-refund of the deposit directly to your checking account for $2,400. The Trip Protection Plan was also refunded.

Sincerely,

Your Friends at Road Scholar
donm480
1 review
1 helpful vote
May 25th, 2020
We were extremely dismayed and surprised to find out that - after paying over $1800 for Cancel for Any Reason travel insurance from AON / RS for a 3 week Road Scholar trip scheduled in Sept / Oct 2020, and after cancelling our trip in this unprecedented Global crisis in March - we have not been given any kind of prorated rebate on the insurance premium we paid, essentially for services unrendered.

We had the policy for less than 3 months and it was well in advance of the trip. It is certainly not fair or reasonable for AON / RS to take such advantage of this Global crisis to make a profit because of something that we couldn't control.

All we ask for is a significant rebate on the Insurance premium, not unlike many other Insurance companies actions that have been taken voluntarily in support of their customer base. For example, If I had paid my annual auto insurance in advance and then sold my auto a few months later I would be given a prorated rebate. I don't understand how Aon / RS can think to do otherwise.

If this can't be resolved fairly then we will never agin book any travel with ROAD SCHOLAR.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Don, Cancel for Any Reason Coverage is a benefit that allows our participants flexibility to cancel or change their program dates for reasons uncovered by the Trip Protection Plan. We reviewed your order and when you canceled your enrollment, under the Cancel For Any Reason Coverage benefit, you received a credit for the Road Scholar cancellation fees you incurred to use toward another learning adventure. Your credit can be used for up to three years on any Road Scholar adventure of your choice. When you opt to cancel with the Cancel for Any Reason Coverage, you are using your insurance to receive the credit, and cannot receive a reimbursement for your insurance premium as it was used to cover your cancellation. Sincerely, Road Scholar
paulf297
1 review
22 helpful votes
October 3rd, 2018
I'm on my 9th Road Scholar tour and can't wait for it to end. Disorganized! Political!
Study Leader informed us Obama canceled a planned oil pipeline but Trump is allowing it because he has stock in oil. Tonight we had a guest speaker who started off with a derogatory comment about the Supreme Court nominee. May cancel two booked tours, one with 8 friends who booked based on our recommendation.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Hello Paul,
Thank you for letting us know about your experience thus far on your program. We’re sorry to hear it hasn’t been pleasant for you. We would like to address this and speak directly with the study leader on the program, so we ask that you please contact us directly with additional information regarding the program you are attending. We'll look forward to hearing back from you soon.
Best,
Your Friends at Road Scholar
elizabethn44
Elizabeth N.
7 reviews
1 helpful vote
December 5th, 2015
We've been looking for new places to travel to, but didn't really know where to begin. We heard of roadscholar and searched it out online. What a great service! I love that they take you to places and plan the trip for you, including fun physical activities as well as sightseeing and cultural learning adventures. We traveled with some great people on our trip to Scotland which made the whole vacation that much better. It was amazing and we can't wait to book our next trip!
carak16
1 review
25 helpful votes
November 25th, 2018
Just landed for a road scholar trip , in a strange city, running late and worried you'll miss your transfer shuttle?

Who ya gonna call?

Not Road Scholar! They place no importance on this important aspect of customer service. At least they didn't when I took my trip to Santa Fe. The "emergency" call center didn't know who was supposed to meet us at the airport-didn't have any names-didn't know if they were still there or when they were leaving.

Really? I think that is what technology is for. Unforgivable, Road scholar. You can do better.
serenao4
1 review
19 helpful votes
May 15th, 2019
In a short while you will hear why,
Fortunately I have not spent a dime yet.
In shorttheir customer service stinks, they don't answer questions in a forthright manner they are impersonal and they are Heavy $$$$manipulators and Not Non Profit
Who do they think They are kidding
Us seniors are sharp as knives when it comes to dough
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Hi Serena, Road Scholar offers thousands of programs on a variety of topics and price points. From our search box on the web you can view 97 adventures in the United States at or under $750.00. That cost include lodging, group leader, instruction, field trips, taxes, gratuities and most meals. We strive to offer great customer service and are anxious to improve your experience. If you would If you would like to learn more about how to find trips within your budget, send us a private message with your phone number here on SiteJabber so we can reach out to you by phone. Sincerely, Your Friends at Road Scholar
kathleenm717
1 review
2 helpful votes
May 14th, 2020
I did the San Miguel Allende (SMA) trip and it was just okay. It started out bad when no one was at the airport to meet us at the time we were told to be there. The airport was about two hours from SMA so this was not a small issue. I finally called RS and the person showed up an hour late with the attitude of "I'm here now!" The lectures were old and canned from a US expat who screamed in a small room. I am hard of hearing and had to remove my hearing aides because of the pain caused by his large lecture room voice. I asked the tour director to ask him to moderate his voice and she said there was nothing she could do. Less than a third of the people went to the lectures because there was so little content. This was during the entire immigration and border detention problems! What a wonderful opportunity for current events. Why aren't lectures done by real locals - it would be so much better than hearing it from a US perspective. That is all we get at home. Essentially there was little education on what was billed as an educational tour. The tour director was very disorganized to the point of walking us a couple miles to the wrong restaurant and then walking us all back. It was very hard on the elderly participants. You were on your own if you had food allergies in spite of the fact that RS asks about this in advance and I also informed the tour director. She showed up at my table almost hysterical about 10 minutes after I was served something I was allergic to. Luckily my travel companion tasted it before I did and took my dish away. One local guide mentioned the plays he was in, and recited from them, ad nauseum, while we sat in the hot sun and learned almost nothing. RS could not even manage to send me a review form and finally just took my review over the phone. This was not what I had expected and it turns out others were very disappointed too as everyone was give a $200 credit toward a future trip. I will give them one more try and am hoping the tour is not cancelled due to COVID-19. I had heard such good things about RS. i was very disappointed.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Kathleen,

Thank you for the thorough description of your experiences on the San Miguel de Allende trip. We pride ourselves on offering excellent educational content and fulfilling experiential experiences and we are disappointed when we learn that we have fallen short. We value customer feedback and use it to make immediate improvement to our programs. Thank you for enrolling in your second Road Scholar trip. We look forward to escorting you on a memorable adventure.

Sincerely,

Your Friends at Road Scholar
evelynf38
2 reviews
22 helpful votes
March 1st, 2019
we just returned from our second Road Scholar trip
first was last year to Cinque Terra- no problems and no change in flights and/or itinerary
this most recent trip was from Antarctica- fabulous destination, largely run by a different company on the ship = antarctica 21
however, we were fogged in for 2 extra days
R.S. rebooked us from what was a non-stop to a 3 -stop trip home from Santiago, Chile
initially we were told by our guide they wouldn't retry
however, when we prevailed and said we would pay ourselves AND showed them that our original flights were available, they changed them
this took 24 hours of wrangling and was upsetting obviously
HOWEVER, our upset was compounded by the lack of any interested response when I tried to speak with upper management once we returned home
the insular culture of this company is frightening and akin to an inbred fraternity.
customers have no ability to accurately verbalize their frustration
we were not seeking renumeration, but rather simply attempting to understand why the so-called "custom travel" department was so insensitive to the individual traveler
we'll never travel with them again nor would we recommend them
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
I’m sorry you don’t feel we have been responsive in understanding your concerns. We researched your problem and learned that a member of management working in the Office of the President has reached out to you personally several times and has been available by phone or email to learn more about your experience. We value feedback from our participants and strive to be responsive. We are sorry that we have fallen short of your expectation.
ellens200
1 review
8 helpful votes
September 7th, 2019
1) activity level ("on your feet") was way over-stated! Mostly we sat at educational lectures and on buses. Visits to museums took zero effort.
2) much of Road Scholar's written communication was factually inaccurate and/or had non-stop discrepancies from one page to the next. EVEN OUR CRUISE SHIP'S NAME WAS WRONG (including on post-program survey)! $uch $loppy unprofe$$ionalism is unacceptable.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Hello Ellen, We are eager to review your concerns and make immediate improvements to our communications. Unfortunately, we don’t have enough information to do so. Please contact us via private message and let us know which program you are referring to. We would like to discuss your experience further so we can improve our future programs. Best, Your Friends at Road Scholar
cherieg22
1 review
0 helpful votes
January 29th, 2020
Recently we were asked to change the dates of an upcoming trip to Croatia/Slovenia due to low enrollment. The Travel Change Team and Travel Arrangements Team quickly made the needed changes and kept us fully communicated via emails during this process. I was particularly impressed with the flight schedule which was customized to our requests. Thank you Road Scholar!
barryn30
1 review
9 helpful votes
June 4th, 2019
I have taken two trips with Road Scholar in the last year. Peru & Patagonia. I booked a trip to Tibet, Nepal & Butan over 6 months in advance. When I canceled the trip within 2 weeks the kept the entire $500 deposit, No refund and no consideration for transfer. I called back within 2 week to rebook the Tibet trip and the told me I would have to pay another $ 500 deposit. I should have know better after my Peru trip. A woman in a walker and a wheel chair was permitted to go with us on this trip! This caused numerous hours of delay. Road Scholars did nothing.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Hi Barry, upon cancelling from a program, participants pay a fee to help cover the costs of arrangements already made on their behalf. Those fees are disclosed before, during, and after the enrollment. Sincerely, Your Friends at Road Scholar
thomasp799
2 reviews
1 helpful vote
June 3rd, 2020
My wife and I were scheduled to take a Road Scholar trip departing on March 14 to Israel. This was the time Covid 19 was breaking out all over the world. Since my wife and I were of an age where medical authorities were warning against travel, we decided to cancel the trip on March 5. We thought by that time Road Scholar would have canceled the trip as there were clear indications that Israel was going to close its borders. When I spoke with RS, I was told because it was so close to the start of the trip I could expect no refund but that I had purchased Trip Insurance and should file a claim. We did this and after 6 weeks were told that their trip insurance did not cover Covid 19 but that RS would provide a credit for future travel and I would receive a letter confirming that within a week. Three weeks later after hearing nothing I called RS. I discovered that they did indeed cancel the trip as of the 9th of March and that all people still registered received a full refund but because I cancelled 4 days prior I could not receive a refund. I was told I would still get a credit for future travel and that would arrive shortly. It is now June 3 and I still have not heard anything from RS. While I realize Covid19 has been very difficult for travel companies, its now 3 months since I cancelled and I have not heard a word from RS. Frankly I am very disappointed given there reputation. If indeed I ever receive a credit (which at this point I not confident I will) I would be hesitant to use it given my experience with this booking. Buyer beware!
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Thomas, We deeply apologize for the delay. With further investigation it appears we did not receive information about your credit from the insurance company which is why it was not processed in our system. We have quickly remedied the situation by applying your credit onto your account for your full program amount. You will also be receiving an email today confirming the credit and can use this credit on any future Road Scholar program of your choice within the next three years. Sincerely, Road Scholar
rr104
1 review
18 helpful votes
September 1st, 2017
Had to cancel trip due to flooding Hurricane Harvey. Better buy their expensive insurance because they didn't care about Houston destroyed. No money back.
bb307
1 review
13 helpful votes
October 4th, 2019
A recent hiking trip with RS to the Canadian Rockies was a huge disappointment. First, people who could barely get on and off the bus were allowed on this trip. Ridiculous. Only 4 of us could go on daily hikes they called "motivated" or harder than the others -- all of which I considered easy to very moderate. The hiking pace was also crazy slow. The catalog/website descriptions of the trip were way off base. Simply not truthful.

The majority of meals were served in a windowless hotel conference room. Very mediocre food. Breakfasts were the worst. Restaurant meals for dinner were way better, but certainly not terrific restaurants I would go to again. A couple of us younger, energetic folk purposefully left the group on two evenings just to get away and have some time to chat and eat at GOOD restaurants.

RS is clearly not for people, like myself, looking for true rigorous activity with other happy, young at heart people. It was clear to me that RS attracts a much, much older crowd, which is fine, but that's false advertising in their materials. Their original name of ELDERhostel fits their group way better. Nothing wrong with being older, but it sure isn't fun being around grumpy, negative retired folk who have a very "old and tired" mentality. I won't be going on another RS trip. Lesson learned.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Hello B. B.,
We allow our participants to choose the pace of the program according to what they feel they can do. If you can give us more information on the program you attended we can look into what you mentioned about the activity level and meals too. We will look forward to hearing back from you via private message. Best, Your Friends at Road Scholar
judithc129
1 review
11 helpful votes
August 14th, 2019
Excited to see Alaska...so excited about this trip! Catalog said "Moderate Pace". OK...good....means we are going to move our bodies. Well, what a disappointment to learn this certainly was not going to happen! Unfortunately not all travelers could even do a low paced activity...a real damper for those of us eager for actjvity. Shame on you Road Scholar for misleading us to think this would be such an adventure. Some people had difficulty getting on and off the buses....walking for some was difficult! Pretty unfair tactics. A couple meals were served in hot, windowless hotel conference rooms. Hotel in Anchorage was pretty horrible and not clean. Have diet restriction and on 2 occasions group leaders (2) had not taken this into consideration...and I don't think they really cared ! One leader, I felt, could not wait until she returned home! In making my arrangements with Road Scholar I was asked on several occasions to get in touch with someone with my question...representatives for RD just didn't seem to have their information at hand...these were pretty basic questions. A very disappointing trip...too bad for RS...friends who travel were waiting for my critique...they won't be traveling with Road Scholar.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Hello Judith, we would like to speak with you regarding the program you attended to Alaska and your experience there. Please feel free to reach out to us at 877-634-1893. Best, Your Friends at Road Scholar
paulg589
1 review
7 helpful votes
April 10th, 2019
I booked a tour with Road Scholars that was more than a year away. A week after the booking we had a change of plans and I had to cancel to trip. I was charged $500.00 for the cancellation. This cancellation charge was not explained when I booked the trip nor was the cost clearly spelled out in the documentation I received.

Will not use this organization again!
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Paul G,
It is standard practice for us to disclose our registration policies during the enrollment process. Once registered, our participants receive an enrollment letter by mail, email or both depending on their preferences, summarizing the trip details. The mailing contains details of your trips transfer and cancellation policy. Our policies are disclosed in our brochures and on our website. Sincerely, Your Friends at Road Scholar
michaelh465
1 review
25 helpful votes
February 13th, 2018
My 82-year-old mother signed up for an RS "experience" in New England. The second she signed up, they were hounding her to sign up for more expensive $12,000+ tours in Europe. She then discovered that RS was planning to charge $180 ONE WAY from Manchester NH to their "hotel" just 15 minutes away. She had the foresight to buy their "Trip Insurance" but found out when applying for a refund, that they made her fill out a 5-page explanation as to why she decided against the tour. Roads Scholars are SCAM ARTISTS exploiting the elderly. This makes them FIRST CLASS SCUMBAGS, taking advantage of the vulnerable like our elderly. Shame on you! "NON-PROFIT"? Right! You hide behind that designation. Just crawl back under that rock. There is a special place in hell waiting for you.
tims603
1 review
5 helpful votes
October 22nd, 2019
We recently traveled to Madeira for a medium rated activity level trip. Our guide was fantastic, providing enthusiastic and knowledgable information about the natural features and flora of the region as well as sociological and political contexts of present day life on the island.

Unfortunately, my wife became ill the morning of our scheduled return flight to Lisbon, from where we were to make connections to fly home (U.S.). Our guide was extremely helpful and communicative regarding our circumstances, but the process he was instructed to use to support us in this situation was seriously flawed.

He gave us an 8 page Road Scholar instruction sheet outlining the process by which we would be covered for expenses of our delayed and rebooked travel. The process is administered by something called "On Call." It turns out that this outfit is the same as "Emergency Assistance Plus", a travel insurance company.

We were required to seek medical care and have the attending physician fill out FOUR of the pages (in English) with results of medical examination, including vital signs, blood test results and a medical diagnosis. One form was essentially an affidavit requiring the physician to assert that the patient was unfit to travel. All four required signatures, email and telephone contact numbers.

Our guide advised us to go to the local public hospital emergency room, which we did. The situation at the hospital was chaotic to the point of nightmarish. My wife on a gurney with an I.V. in a hallway with other patients, most of whom were in much more serious medical issues. We observed one poor soul not 5 feet away who suffered a seizure and was bleeding from his mouth, probably from biting his tongue. It took fully 5 minutes before any medical staff intervened and attempted to navigate his gurney through the maze of other beds in the hallway.

Needless to say, the likelihood of ever even being examined by a Dr., let alone having him fill out a 4 page form, was an impossibility. We left the facility and ultimately made our own arrangements for return travel to the U.S. at considerable $ expense to us.

Upon contacting "On Call" upon our return, their response was to again send us the Road Scholar 8 page form originally presented to us. It seems that it is necessary now to get a Portuguese doctor whom we never saw and who didn't examine my wife to my wife to provide 4 pages of information from our home in Colorado.

We admit to our naivety in going to a public hospital in a foreign country, but given that many Road Scholar trips take place abroad, the process they've contracted for through "On Call"/Emergency Assistance Plus is a joke. We were hung out to dry with zero returned communication for hours. The communication we received was useless at best, and if it weren't so insulting, it could be considered ironic.
roads5
Road S. – Road Scholar Rep
Dear Tim,

We were so sorry to hear about the experience you and your wife had to endure and hope she is doing better. We include emergency assistance in the price of our programs for situations just like yours. We apologize the paperwork you were asked to complete seemed onerous, but when someone gets sick abroad, our emergency assistance provider requires as much information as possible so they are informed and able to provide the necessary help. Our primary concern in these situations is the health, safety and well-being of our participants. We’ll be in touch with you to discuss filing a claim for reimbursement of your travel expenses home. Again, we’re sorry to hear about the disappointing end to an otherwise positive Road Scholar experience and are glad you made it home safely.

Sincerely,
Your Friends at Road Scholar
ruthanned2
1 review
0 helpful votes
December 11th, 2019
My recent RS trip to Australia and New Zealand was great. Holland America provided comfortable amenities and our RS sponsored shore outings were filled with exciting adventures. Our team leader, Ngaire Douglas, shared her vast expertise with us and gave us wonderful insights into the history and culture of both countries. Ngaire offered options for our various levels of physical fitness so everyone could benefit from all the shore outings. This was my 14th RS trip and certainly near the top if not the top of my RS trips.

Ruthanne DeWolfe.
Evanston, Illinois

Q&A (18)

Answer:

Yes, I took my granddaughter at 16 on a Road Scholar trip to Italy and we enjoyed a great time. So the following year I took her to Paris and once again we enjoyed a great trip. I am shocked by bad reviews when we had such a great educational time.

By Joan W.
See more answers (2)
Answer:

Hello, Yes, If Road Scholar cancels a trip you are refunded for the program. You are not refunded for independent air travel you may have made. Sincerely, Road Scholar

By Road S.,
Answer:

Hello Alex, Keep the Pace programs feature steady walking, standing and stair climbing throughout the course of the day. If your mom is active and enjoys walking, she should enjoy a Keep the Pace program. The program's daily itinerary can be found on the Road Scholar website. A note outlining the day's specific activity appears at the top of each day's daily itinerary. If Keep The Pace is too active, we also offer Ireland at a Slower Pace. Sincerely, Your Friends at Road Scholar

By Road S.,
Answer:

My most memorable guided trips were with Road Scholar (e.g., Iditarod Dog Sled Race in Alaska; snorkeling, kayaking, hiking in Puerto Rico; Behind the Scenes at Disney World in Florida). But the worst were also with RS (possibly since it started contracting out trips to "providers"?). Unfortunately, I don't know who writes the information given to us participants: RS or the provider? And, if RS, does the provider get to approve it for factual accuracy? My suggestions: 1) check and double check the stated activity level for the RS trip, 2) look out for factual discrepancies in pre-trip written communications, 3) even be prepared to contact RS DURING YOUR TRIP with any egregious shocking appalling complaint, and 4) research other travel companies that might offer the same trip.

By ellen s.
Answer:

Hello Robert, the sizes of all our trips varies quite a bit. If you can give us the program number or title we'd be glad to check and see how many participants can attend a certain program you'd like to attend. We are also available by email -- contact@roadscholar.org and by phone at 877-436-8056 during business hours Monday - Friday 8am - 9pm (EST). We hope to hear back from you soon!

By Road S.,

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Road Scholar, the not-for-profit leader in educational travel since 1975, offers 6,500 educational tours in all 50 states and 150 countries.

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Road S.
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