Please see our guidelines on Tour listings. Based on the offerings on your web site it appears that your company simply sells berths on existing Antarctica trips. If you are actually chartering these ships and putting staff on board please clarify, otherwise your listings are unfortunately not appropriate for our guides. -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:32, 24 September 2010 (EDT)
Thanks for your quick reply--as you may have seen, I tried to add our company to the Antarctica page once before but never heard back as to why it was rejected.
We do both--charter ships and act as a specialty travel agent booking into other company's cruises. As an agent, we ONLY book Antarctica and Arctic cruise so we are not like a general travel agent. That's part of why I thought we would be able to be listed. Currently we have two cruises on the TravelWild website that are charters run by our parent company, Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris. On these, we charter the ship, staff it and run our own program/itinerary. You can see these trips at:
I'm familiar with Van Os Tours, so if you add a listing I'd suggest using them and their web site in the listing instead of travelwild - based on http://www.photosafaris.com/photography-trips-2010/antarctica-photo-tour/ it's clear that John Shaw & friends are leading the trip, but referring directly to your site, however, will almost certainly cause the listing to eventually be removed since your business appears to be primarily that of a reseller and Wikitravel has had real problems with travel agencies abusing the site, resulting in the guidelines in the Tour policy to eliminate resellers. If you feel that changes are needed to that policy feel free to comment on the Wikitravel talk:Activity listings discussion page, but be sure to read the existing discussions on that page first. -- Ryan • (talk) • 14:14, 24 September 2010 (EDT)
Since this is a page about Antarctica travel--and not photography tours--and TravelWild's business is 85% selling Antarctica cruises (again, we specialize in polar cruise--it makes more sense to us, to you and to your website visitors that TravelWild be listed rather than Photo Safaris. The Antarctica tours offered by Photo Safaris is one of about 40 photo tours Photo Safaris offers each year and so that company is not about Antarctica cruises--it's about photography tours--whereas TravelWild's is primarily about Antarctica cruises. It appears that other tour companies are listed because they market trips to Antarctica. That's what TravelWild does as well. We don't sell air, Caribbean cruises, resorts, etc.--just polar cruises and most of that is to Antarctica.
I guess I'll have to appeal it but this is both frustrating and a process that seems very unfair--not to mention time consuming to simply get listed for doing the same thing other companies do--selling Antarctica cruises.
Thanks for your time.
Before writing anything more, I apologize for a rant that is directed not specifically at you, but at the hundreds of companies trying to use Wikitravel as a tool for self-promotion. Wikitravel:Goals and non-goals has been very clear since the site was first launched that this site is devoted to producing quality travel guides, not to advertise businesses. We fully recognize that there is some synergy that exists between business owners and travel writers, but those companies that simply show up, plaster links to their company in several articles, and then disappear are of no benefit whatsoever. Allowing such contributions without any limits leads to spammy, useless articles that are of no use to anyone - it happened in the past, and that's why the current policies exist. It's unfortunate that companies feel it is "difficult" to advertise here, but that's not what this site is for, and to be bluntly honest most of the volunteers that spend countless hours trying to write decent guides would be ecstatic if those whose only interest in this site is to use it as a promotional tool would go away. -- Ryan • (talk) • 15:39, 24 September 2010 (EDT)
Thanks again for your reply.
I don’t see anything in your guidelines that would preclude us from adding our company to the list. As you know, there is no great benefit to us being listed as I doubt we will see much click-through traffic and there is zero SEO benefit. Really it’s just a matter of fair versus unfair at this point and adding to the article. We'd be glad to add more information to it. Whether you are aware of it or not, we’ve been going to Antarctica and sending people—on both our own, chartered itineraries and those of others—for as long as there’s been consumer travel to the continent and we know as much about Antarctica cruising as any company listed.
It is disingenous for Wikitravel to pick and choose who gets listed and state that it’s based on your stated guidelines/policy--clearly it is not. Even your explanation that we are not getting a listing because we, “simply sells berths on existing Antarctica trips” would mean that both Intrepid Travel and Rockjumper should not be listed, though they are. I think they should be listed. And I think TravelWild should be listed as well.
I think I’ve taken enough of both of our time on this. I’ll just move on.