It’s a minefield out there and while Ireland is truly a wonderful country to visit for any or all of the reasons and places mentioned in Irelands Hidden we have our share of rotten apples. I take my hat off to those of you who are doing just that, judging by the amount of enquiries I get daily about where to go and what to do and while I am happy to help if I can, I would be the first to admit I certainly don’t know it all.....

The people that do, are Authentic they have been putting packages together for people travelling to Ireland for over ten years, so they have handled just about every enquiry you can imagine. And if the thought of tailor made packages being expensive frightens you think again.....

Did you know that if there are nine or more of you in a group, they can have you chauffeur driven for the same price as carhire, now you are talking , how's that for peace of mind, someone who knows the road systems and all the best places to go, watering holes included. But that is only one perk?

These guys have long term relationships with the best hotels, castles and restaurants so their business is about keeping each other sweet. So you the client are automatically going to get any free upgrades that are going, plus the most coveted tables by the window or fireside.

It’s a no brainer if you ask me, why spend hours trawling the net in search of a good deal, I cant tell you how many ‘good deals’ I have heard about that I would consider rubbish. For example an email from a honeymoon couple whose ‘tour operator’ had almost exclusively booked them into B&Bs?

Why would they do that when you could get a deal in a romantic castle (we’ve dozens of them) for the same money or less. Not that I am knocking B&Bs we have some excellent ones, but these were dives altogether in the middle of nowhere and that wasn’t an isolated case.

Seems to me these ‘tour operators’ are charging a mighty mark up and ripping off the American public. My advice go to the experts Authentic Travel, it is in their interest to give you the best possible experience of Ireland and yours in getting the most bang for your buck.

And if that isn’t enough to convince you? Think on? As an independent traveller, what happens if your flight is delayed, cancelled, you get ill, or heaven forbid you have any kind of mishap while you are here.

Wouldn’t you like a 24/7 back up service, to a real person, never a machine, who's on the ground, ready to make all the necessary alternative arrangements and meet you at the airport with a hot water bottle and a brandy?

Thought so, or if you are like me and change your mind 50-100 times before finally settling on a plan, having someone hold my hand through that wont lose their patience and cut me off mid demands....well that kind of service is priceless and as they say for everything else there's visa…..

For a stress free holiday of a lifetime visit

By Susan Byron author of