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  1. #1

    Default Shuttles to and from Airport - One for the suggestion box :)

    I'm a little disappointed to read all the negative comments from people that did not have a friendly, vocal driver.

    I would think since Couples is arranging these transfer vehicles they would want their prospective visitors to get a pleasant start to their trip. It may be something they could look into. What harm is there in encouraging contracted drivers to be a little more friendly and social?

    The drivers (and some guests) from what I've read seem a little perturbed at having to stop for rest room breaks. It only seems fair if we're being given a beer at the airport lol It's all relevant.

    A big part of the experience is interacting with and learning a little bit about the country from a local driver. It certainly makes a long ride more enjoyable. We are curious and want to know a little about what we are seeing.


    (Sue)

  2. #2

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    We've been to "couples" a couple of times and had some "OK" drivers and only once a driver that didn't talk hardly at all. This past spring we had the most Awesome driver ever. His name was "Bud" and he really did a great job at explaining all the scenery and told all about Jamaica, the people, etc. He was also very good at telling jokes. I learned so much from him (and we've been to Jamaica 7 times)and had such a great time with him that I wish there was a way to request him to be our driver again. It is nice when they talk, joke around and of course play Regae. It make the time go fast and I never tire of learning more about the Island.
    Karin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    808

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    I have yet to see a driver that was not overly chatty... they are great. I love the stories, and them pointing out houses by famous boxers/actors/etc.

    One time we had a driver with a cooler full of red stripe, and was selling them for like $2 or $3... It was excellent.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    763

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    Last year our driver was exceptionally great at telling us all about Jamaica on the way to the resort. I thought that was great since it was our first time as well. It is a long drive and that sure does seem to speed it up. Some of them are absolutely fabulous about it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    751

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    Quote Originally Posted by IACouple View Post
    I have yet to see a driver that was not overly chatty... they are great. I love the stories, and them pointing out houses by famous boxers/actors/etc.

    One time we had a driver with a cooler full of red stripe, and was selling them for like $2 or $3... It was excellent.
    ....Last November when we went to CN, It was like our bus was going to Detroit instead of a resort. But leaving and going to the airport, we had a driver named "Elliot". Who told stories, pointed out the sights, and had as laughing the entire trip.

  6. #6

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    We had Bud on our recent trip to CTI. It was our first trip and he made the drive fun and educational. The driver on the way back to the airport didn't say 2 words. I thought maybe it was just the difference between arrival and departure. We really had a great trip to the resort and would love to see more drivers like Bud.
    Bonnie & Jon

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    2,307

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    We've never had a chatty driver, but if we asked questions they did answer. I've never had a rude driver, they just needed to be asked questions to open up.

    BTW ~ The drivers are contracted through a company so Couples doesn't have a lot of control over who the drivers are.
    Juliann & Jeff
    Jamaica Soon Come

  8. #8

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    Couples may have no control over who the drivers are, but they certainly have input as to the quality of service they outsource on behalf of their paying guests. Couples is a business after all and as such consider all aspects of it's customer relations.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    332

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    I found the driver on the way to CTI was informative, friendly and just to add some local flavor, dropped off a meal to his son and his son's mother, so we got to see them and their town.

    I attributed the silence on the way back to MoBay to the general depression of the guests leaving. I'm sure if we seemed more chipper, the driver would have been more personable.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    268

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    our driver wasn't very talkative but that was fine by us, as my wife was feeling ill and i was busy snapping pictures. when we asked questions he was friendly and answered them in depth

  11. #11

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    last trip going our driver was Stuart 'Little", even though he's about 6'2",.
    he was a lot of fun and took pride pointing out the scenery and what was what.

    On both return trips to Mobay drivers didn't say much, maybe they read the mood on the bus that we were all on downers because Couples made us go home....

    even if you are on a downer, please feel free to tip the driver, I cant believe how fast some are to line up at the rear window grab their bags and run like they don't have about 3 hrs to spare.....its nothing like the gracious mood when we are all arriving....

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    1,284

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    We've taken the shuttles to both Negril and Mobay, and our drivers have always been courteous. If we asked questions, they would provide information, some more than others. Usually they also play a few Bob Marley CDs.

    Jamaica is not the U.S. U.S. business methods of "encouraging" friendly drivers do not necessarily work in Jamaica.

  13. #13

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    We have been to CSA twice, 08 & 09 both times quiet drivers, that was ok with us we are kind of quiet. Also both times the drivers stopped at a little place and asked us if we wanted to use the restroom and buy a beer. The van was full both times and no one wanted to get off, all of us were in agreement that we didn't want to waste any time, we just wanted to get to the resort and off we went. That's how we like it.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    520

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    Never had a horrible driver one kept promoting his CD which got annoying but never a bad one. I do however think that if that majority of people on the bus don't want to stop it's ok not to. I don't mind stopping but for the most part I guess, but I would prefer not to I just want to get to CSA the quicker the better.
    Erika & Sean

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    118

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    We have always had a very pleasant driver on the way to and from CN. The driver usually takes the temperature of the group on the bus. If there are a bunch of repeater's he doesn't have much to say. On the other subject of stopping half way. I personally think it's a waste of time. You are really only about 15 minutes from the resort. If the bus isn't crowded I usually ask if people want to stop or just go directly to the resort. If all are in agreement we tell the bus driver not to stop. In 7 trips we have only stopped twice. The last time I knew better than even ask since there was a group of 8 that were asking for a beer stop before we were out of the airport.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    776

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    I think only one time we had a driver that was pretty quiet. Of course that might have something to do with the fact that the couple traveling with us over indulged on the plane and were sleeping most of the way.

    We have had times when we stopped and times when we have not, but that is because no one on the bus wanted to stop.

    The ride back has always been quiet, but we usually have a morning flight so it is pretty early in the morning and I don't think that anyone feels like talking.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    322

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    We've had a couple of quiet drivers, but have never had a rude driver or any bad experiences on the shuttle bus ride to Couples. As long as they drive safely, it really doesn't matter to us if they feel like being quiet during the trip.

    I'd try to ask a few easy questions to open up the conversation, if the silence is bothering you. Maybe he's just a bit shy. Remember, your driver has likely made this same trip hundreds of times. Perhaps he's lost interest in being a ersatz tour guide. I've generally found that most Jamaicans are very proud of their country, and when given the chance they would love to tell you more about their beautiful island home.

    We have never felt more genuinely welcomed in any country that we have visited, and never have never felt more at home than when we've arrived at Couples.
    Last edited by Cubismo; October 8th, 2010 at 11:01 AM.
    nobody's favorite poster

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    644

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    [QUOTE=Cubismo;94516]We've had a couple of quiet drivers, but have never had a rude driver or any bad experiences on the shuttle bus ride to Couples.

    I agree with Cubismo, we have had the same experience in our 7 trips to Jamaica. We too never had a rude driver but we have had a few really quite ones. If available, we always try to sit near the driver to strike up a conversation. We love the Jamaican people and it's always interesting and informative to talk to them. As another poster mentioned, they are very proud of their country and some are very eager to talk about it. Unfortunately, in 3 out of 7 trips it was like pulling teeth to get the driver to talk. After I tried a couple of times to strike up a conversation or asked a question it was obvious that the driver just wanted to be left alone to do his job. I respected that and just talked with the wife and checked out the sites along the way. We didn't stop on any of those trips and we were never asked if we wanted to by the driver. As much as we can't wait to get to the resort, we also enjoy stopping to interact with the locals at the rest stop. In fact, in all of the trips, the driver never asked if we wanted to stop but I think we stopped 4 of the 7 trips.
    I'm sure a lot depends on the group thats on the shuttle as to whether or not the driver decides to stop too. Last year there were only 4 other people on the shuttle with us. They were all together and 3 of them had matching t-shirts. The 2 ladies had "Bridesmaids" on theirs and the one guy had "Groom" on his. (we wondered where the "Bride" was). You would have thought they were heading to a wake. My wife and I actually felt sorry for them. Here they were heading to beautiful CSA and they seemed to be totally miserable. What a shame.We thought maybe the bride failed to show up. It turned out she did because the wedding took place and the entire wedding party took over the swim up pool bar & pool all week. Needless to say, it was a long trip with no music and nobody talking except us. We have had great trips with informative, fun, reggae playing drivers too. We also met new friends from Ohio on one trip back in 2004 that we still talk to from time to time. They actually came to our 25th vow renewals at CN on that trip. It's hit or miss with the drivers. Hopefully you get a good one. It's a great way to start your trip and it makes for a shorter drive.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    197

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    In 5 visits, we've had chatty and non-chatty drivers. Personally, I'm okay either way -- I'm always eager to learn something new about Jamaica. We've never had anyone who was unpleasant or rude. Sometimes the other passengers turn into ugly Americans, but that's another story.

    In terms of the rest stop/bathroom break, if you don't overdo it at the airport lounge, you should be ok b/c, as noted, you're only 15-20 mins from the resort (CN and CSA, at least) where there are plenty of bathrooms and free drinks. The last couple of times, the driver has asked if folks want to stop and the consensus has been to keep going to the resort.

    One time, we stopped because two obnoxious, drunk passengers wanted to smoke and drink. As a result, the other 4 couples on the bus were stuck at the rest stop for over 20 mins sitting in a hot bus. So, one piece of free advice: IF you want to stop, consider your fellow passengers who may not want to drink, smoke, or use the facilities and do whichever you need to do as quickly as possible so everyone can get to the resort and start enjoying themselves.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    190

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    After 3 hours sleep the night before, some of us like the quiet on the way to our resort. I'm just sayin'.

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