We just returned from a 7 night China tour using Chinatour.com as the tour operator. We spent 3 nights in Beijiing, one night each in Souzhou and Hangzhou and 2 nights in Shanghai. Wanted to provide our experience and some feedback for others who might be thinking of booking through this company. Overall, we had a great time and were pretty pleased with everything, though there were a few "hiccups", which I will cover as well.
As a bit of background, this is our 2nd tour of China, as we did one last year with another company (Affordable Asia) - I have posted on a thread about my experience with them. The itinerary this time was slightly different (No Xian) and the stops in Souzhou and Hangzhou. We enjoyed China so much that when we saw a TravelZoo deal come over for ChinaTour.com, we jumped on it since the price was so good. Very similiar in pricing to what we got the year before (under $1000 pp) but it seemed that more was included in terms of meals and sight seeing.
First, I have to say that Chinatour.com might want to upgrade their website a bit and make booking on line a bit easier, such as actually allowing you to enter your credit card information when you book the reservation. It was not as an easy experience then we had with the other tour company. Minor thing, but just a suggestion. However, we had great communication with May Lin during our booking and up through our departure for China. It was easy to send our passports and get the Visas, etc. I did note that when we booked and when we were mailed our final itinerary there was a change in one of the hotels. I was a bit disappointed since I had done thorough research on the hotels before booking and thought the replacement wasn't as good. I did understand ChinaTour.com reserved the right to change hotels.
Ok, we flew out of LAX on Air China (as we did the year before - same flight in fact) on the "red eye" leaving at 12:40 AM and arriving in Beijiing about 5:30 AM. Flight was full, but comfortable. Air China plane was nice, has the individual TV/movie screens, which makes the time pass so much quicker. Service was great (this is my third time flying them internationally). Also they are affiliated with United and you can actually receive credit for the flight. We were served 2 meals during the flight, with some small snacks (crackers) available near the galley areas, with drinks there as well.
I am going to break this review up a bit so it isn't so big in the thread......next arrival in Beijiing and the beginning of our tour!