I was in South Africa and had to curtail my trip due to COVID and spoke to the 24 hour help desk. Particular thanks are due to Pauline who amended my travel plans promptly and to Leah my travel manager.
Gavin has been excellent! Plus Callum and Ted.
Good support in difficult times
A usual an excellent service and it's great to have a helpful agent at the end of the phone when flight changes are needed.
I want to thank Bruno for going the extra mile to get me back to the UK before the lockdown in South Africa. He answered all my questions and concerns. I have been using DAF for many years
Thank you so much Stafford for an amazing itinerary, hotels and locations. All jaw dropping good. Also thank you for coming up trumps when BA cancelled our return flight. Unlike some people travelling with other travel companies who were left stranded, you seamlessly re-arranged everything and kept us notified - a fantastic service in trying times!
Jerry was very helpful when we needed to come home early due to Coronavirus. When we need flights we can always rely on him.
The young man who sorted my flight was very helpful. He did a great job and luckily I got back safe during this very difficult time.
Whenever I emailed for information you always responded which was a great help and gave me peace of mind while I was trying to get back home to my family.
DialAFlight are just the best. And Ryan pulls out all the stops for us. Very many thanks
With a very difficult situation all members and especially Niall were brilliant. Flights changed and constantly keeping us informed
All went well
Thanks for very efficiently arranging to change my flight back given my decision to cut short my trip
Thanks for the professional and helpful service rendered while out in South Africa at the height of Covid 19, bringing me back safely to my family and friends
Thank you Lincoln, Luke and colleagues for all your help in getting us speedily back to the UK
Jacob was wonderful as were the other members of staff I spoke to in trying to get early flights out of South Africa. They have forged our loyalty for future bookings.
Lucas kept me up to date. Always receive an excellent service from him
So impressed with friendly and efficient service especially during this virus outbreak. App easy to use. Will be my go to booking agent from now on
Stan was an absolute star! Even my wife noticed.
Thank you for your help in getting my party out of Egypt before their lockdown
Went above and beyond when our flight was cancelled
You were accessible, helpful and efficient.
Fantastic service especially when flights had to be changed at the last minute. Thank you Chris and Sally
Roger was very helpful when I needed to bring my return flight forward from Cape Town.
Flights to and from George in South Africa went like clockwork with no delays or problems. Your team including Roray were brilliant in every respect especially given the pressure they are under due to CV. DAF are our new travel agent!
Fab support and advice from Mason while we were in South Africa awaiting lockdown due to Corona Virus.
I always recommend you to my friends
Devina and her colleagues were very professional. I appreciated Devina leaving me a voicemail a week before my flight wishing me a good trip. I will recommend your company to family and friends. I hope you and yours stay corona-free!
Shane was able to help me in changing my flight home. Very efficient
Under present situation I would like to express my gratitude to Rosie on your help line and Isaac on your day team. They have been exceptional. I tried to get help from insurance, British embassy, local agents to get info about when and how to get home from Cape Town. No-one would answer the phone or sent a message saying they would get back in 48 hours. Our flights were booked for the 25th March and Rosie changed our flights for no extra cost. She was helpful, unflappable, calming and friendly and answered the phone immediately.
Our guide was enthusiastic to show us Marrakech's historic sites.
At first, he did so, starting with a visit to the glorious Ali Ben Youssef Madrasa, known for its Islamic art of calligraphy and decoration. But soon, all pretence at sightseeing was cast aside as he led his clients from one friend's shop to another's.
EMBRACING THE BUZZ
This was our first lesson for enjoying Marrakech. It is a maelstrom of market forces and everyone wants a piece of the tourist action. That's what gives it a vitality like nowhere else on earth - and the trick is to embrace all this hustle and bustle and enjoy the experience.
Scooters buzz pedestrians, pedestrians shout back; the muezzin calls the faithful to prayer; street food vendors press their offerings on the hungry.
From all directions, crowds funnel into the passageways of the souks, selling every sort of trinket, carpet, basket, clothes, leather work, spices and metalwork as their shopkeepers stand by, ever vigilant for a new customer. Westfield it isn't.
A PLACE TO RELAX
And here is the second lesson. You need a lovely hotel as a relaxing retreat from the excitement of the city. Ours was initially not easy to find. On arrival, we drove through the rose-red city walls and slowed to a crawl. We were in the medina – the heart of old Marrakech.
Where was our hotel? Suddenly, out of the hubbub, a khaki-uniformed doorman appeared and ushered us down a narrow passageway, though a carved wooden door and into the cool of La Sultana Marrakech.
Only three-and-a-half hours earlier, we'd been in London. Now, we were enjoying a welcoming glass of almond milk on the hotel's roof garden, looking out in one direction to the peaks of the Atlas Mountains and in another to the minarets of the old city.
Below us were the 17th century tombs of the city's one-time ruling family and, on a nearby telegraph pole, a couple of storks nested in the sun.
Soon, we left the tranquillity of the hotel to attempt some bartering in the souk.
LEARNING TO BARTER
Despite my wife's best efforts, we never really picked up the art of bargaining. We found it a tricky sport. Instead, we went to a fixed-price supermarket and emerged with an assortment of slippers, lamps, baskets and plates.
Then we headed for Jemaa el-Fnaa, the largest square in Africa and certainly one of the most extraordinary public spaces in the world.
By the end of the weekend, we had seen most of the sights Marrakech has to offer, including Yves St Laurent's Majorelle Garden, which houses an enormous collection of cacti.
MIXING OLD AND NEW
So we decided to take a last look at the city with a horse and carriage. Our hotel doorman explained to the driver that we wanted a one-hour tour, combining something of the old city with a glimpse of the new.
This provided an opportunity for a third lesson. Instructions to the driver of a horse and carriage in Marrakech need to be extremely specific. An hour after we'd left the hotel he was keen to drop us at the already visited Majorelle Garden, where he stopped his barouche.
After we persuaded him to drive on our one-hour tour became two hours, as we meandered through the suburbs and even took in the city's ring road. But as least we saw more of Marrakech than we had bargained for!
We knew by now that the required mantra in Marrakech is 'go with it'. And have fun while you're doing it.
In La Sultana the mood was wonderfully relaxed - and it seemed the right time to join a cookery class.
COOKING LIKE A LOCAL
We were taught how to make the Moroccan speciality, tagine - a slow-cooked stew featuring spices, nuts and dried fruits. It takes its name from the earthenware pot in which it's cooked.
We thoroughly learned the lesson that Marrakech is so gloriously in your face that the perfect plan is to revel in the chaos - and stay somewhere that's perfect to simply switch off.
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