As seasoned travelers we never expect everything to go perfectly. However, we do expect that when problems arise that they will be addressed and satisfactorily resolved. This is the third consecutive time that both Virgin Traders and Virgin Island Sailing have exceeded our expectations in that regard! Here are some specifics regarding our experience;
Throughout the planning process, Joann Higgins, our broker through Virgin Island Sailing, consistently responded to emails quickly and thoroughly answered our questions. More impressively, she conveyed such a delightfully optimistic attitude that she almost convinced us that we’d done her a favor by asking questions! Even when we didn’t ask, she offered information regarding transfers, ordering groceries, etc. Likewise, Joann followed up after our trip to ensure that we enjoyed our worry-free week.
When we arrived, we were welcomed by a chilled bottle of champagne, a bottle of rum, and t-shirts for the entire crew. (We put all to use on our first free stay-aboard night!)
Although the boat provided ample storage, VT agreed to store our empty suitcases on land for us.
Shortly after our arrival we had difficulty with our WiFi and our groceries hadn’t been delivered. Instead of just offering us use of their phone (which was all we requested), Amanda placed the calls herself. Although she was perfectly polite and pleasant, she also commanded authority and saw that the issues were quickly resolved. We have no doubt that we would have struggled without her effective advocacy. Likewise, upon our return Amanda spontaneously called to confirm our water taxi—something we never thought to do. We were very thankful she took charge, as the taxi had inadvertently scheduled us for the following day and thus we would’ve been stranded and left struggling to find other transportation.
Prior to leaving the dock, we received a thorough introduction to the boat and all of the mechanisms. In fact, the instruction was so complete that we never had a problem the entire week!
Also prior to our departure, Amanda visited us on the boat and offered suggestions about where we should (and should not) travel during the first few days due to high winds and waves. Once again, her unsolicited advice helped us to enjoy our trip much more than we would have had we functioned on our own.
The staff also cheerfully complied with our requests to take pictures of us on the boat before departure. Although they’ve probably handled this chore a thousand times before, you’d never know it as they acted as though it was a unique pleasure to be handed three cameras and asked to take several shots on each.
The Virgin Challenger itself was a pleasure to drive and ride—it handled well, even in high seas. Each evening as we bobbed gently in our chosen bay we’d admire the other boats and chat about which one we’d like to own. Consistently, we all agreed that the Challenger was the best choice! Her spaciousness, sleek lines and underwater blue LED lights made it an easy choice!
In short, the week was an exquisite treat that really can’t be adequately described! To have the opportunity to motor about the British Virgin Islands, coming and going at will, is something that everyone should be able to do at least once! There is no doubt in our minds that the staff of Virgin Traders and Virgin Island Sailing helped us optimize our trip. For that reason, we look forward to making a fourth trip with them in the near future!!
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