Cruz del Sur!

Trip Start Oct 22, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Peru  ,
Monday, November 13, 2006

Didn't we vow never again to catch overnight buses?  Well yes we did, but we had to get out of Cusco somehow.  The prices of flights to Lima were unfortunately way outside our budget, so we decided to pay that little bit extra and travel in comfort with the bus company that has the best reputation, Cruz del Sur.  To be honest our experience showed they are not worth the extra money you have to pay and thought they were about the same as any other bus company we've used in Peru.
At the bus station in Cusco we checked in our luggage to the "secure baggage area".  Not that secure as you would expect, we found, as locals were wandering through and a few beggers were back there sniffing out the bags.  We showed our ticket and proceeded towards a security guard with a hand held metal detector.  He swiped it over Megan's bag and it let out a high pitched squeal.  Megan opened one of the ten zips on her bag and showed him her toothbrush, calculator and earplugs tucked inside and, satisfied, he waved her through.  Rick's bag was obviously going to beep, so we let him know there was a laptop inside and he waved us through without even bother to scan it, ummm yeah great token security, he missed the gun and hand grenades we had tucked inside (not! obviously).  As we were getting on board we had our mugs recorded on video camera and just before we drove off the security guard came on board to do a final filming of everyone on board.  Was this for security or so they could identify everyone's remains after a crash?
Two hours into the trip and we weren't feeling the best.  It was either because we were up to track 54 of the Pan Pipes 100 Greatest Hits CD being pumped on the bus's stereo (it is amazing how many different notes you can get out of hollow bamboo!) or the fact the road from Cusco to Lima, going via Nazca, is like the Dandenong Tourist Road on steroids.  It was hours and hours of twists and turns as you headed down the mountains to sea level.  The grumpy stewardess did try to entertain the passengers by putting on a few movies.  All were understandably in Spanish, but as they were dodgey copies and spent most of the time jumping, missing entire scenes.  She did get a bingo competition going as we were coming into Lima though.  Alas we don't know numbers in Spanish so had to listen on as a guy from the expensive seats downstairs won.
 During the night we did manage to get a few hours sleep, Rick's legs wedged into the seat in front.  They guy pushing and pushing wondering why his seat wouldn't go back that extra inch (Ahh that'd be my knees mate!).  Again why is it the smallest people need so much room?  They need to design bus seats for people taller than five foot!  During the night someone also decided to have a crap in the bus's "urine only" toilet.  Imagine driving down a twisty road, your legs wedged into the seat in front of you the aroma of someone's crap in the air.  What a lovely trip!  Why oh why did we go against our vow to never catch an overnight bus again?  Probably because we're broke and as backpackers it has to be the cheapest option!
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airwise on


I want to share the issue we had with Cruz del Sur.

I bought my 5 tickets over Internet in February for the month of June
In June, a strike paralyzed the East and particularly the border with Bolivia. This forces us to rethink our itinerary ...
I contacted Cruz del Sur 5 days before our trip planned between Puno and Arequipa to ask them how to be reimbursed and if they do so. I receive a reply asking me to go to an agency in a city served by the company. It will Arequipa, we meet the director of the agency after waiting 1 hour which tells us that there is no problem that can be reimbursed ... but for now the fund is not open and we invited to board the evening ...
Of course during the evening nobody (he went to hospital emergency!!!), we are dealing with an obnoxious seller asking us to leave ... We came back to see her with a police officer (in this case the Commissioner) for 2 After hours of explanations ... Several calls later, it’s not possible to be instantly refund ...
Incidentally we learn that the journey has been relisted ... then sold twice and no refund ...

We decided to contact Iperú who are there to assist tourists in their approach to litigation without result so far ... (2 months after the fact). The transfer has supposedly taken place, transfer number from Visanet is not know from Visa!!! and my bank can not find it ...

To Concludes about Cruz del Sur:
- Liar
- Thief
- Look elsewhere: Flores we used seems to be a good company with new buses, private terminals without taxes, clean and safe.

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