Focus on Nature Tours / Armas HillPaid for services not provided

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Problems on the Costa Rica birding trip Jan 30 - February 15, 2011. (Note payment was made to the company months in advance for daily guiding services and all trip related expenses in Costa Rica):

Trip leader, Armas Hill, failed to meet up with group until the morning of the third day;
Day 4: Armas routed the group via rough back-roads with which he was unfamiliar; upon arriving at the destination city, group had to wait while he went searching for accommodations - he was apparently denied credit card authorization at the first two hotels to which we were taken;
Day 6: all-day river trip was cancelled when Armas could not pay for the tickets;
Day 7: Armas was unable to pay the hotel bill for previous three nights or the driver from day 4; he was detained by the hotel, police were called; group left for next destination without Armas who said he would rejoin us when money was deposited to his account; had to find our own accommodations;
Day 9: Armas arrived early afternoon saying he received payment for a future trip, so he now had the finances to continue;
Days 9 - 16: trip resumed however the itinerary and accommodations kept changing from pretrip documentation; it was difficult to keep contacts at home up-to-date on whereabouts; we refused a scheduled overnight trip into Panama when Armas divulged it was illegal to take his rental car across the border.


  • An
    ananias Sep 25, 2016
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    In february of 2010. That scammer Arms Hill was been in the Amazon looking for bird-whatchers hot spot and Iam tour guide in Amazon so he nocked my office door in Manaus and he made a contract with my company for 5 days service with all inclusive to pay at the end because he said the money cames down in bank in 2 days. And I did my best for him and on 5 days later he had not money to pay for us and he cry a lot but not tears in his eyes...
    We pay him some food he was hungry for 7 days in Manaus and we pay his transport back to the airport and said as soon he get in USA- for sure send us the full debts made in Manaus U$ 2.300. And we don´t know anymore where he is...
    If you in anywhere intend to came to the Amazon don´t trust on that false (, the federal police in Manaus knows about his bad reputation he did in.
    For any help here is my contact and whatsapp: [protected]
    Email: [email protected]

    0 Votes
  • Nj
    NJacana Nov 03, 2011

    I have yet to see any court action and nobody has punched him out. That's why he gets away with it. He wouldn't so that to me!

    1 Votes
  • Jo
    John Uscian Oct 26, 2011

    Yes, that sounds like Armas. He stole $500 from me as a deposit for a Brazil birding trip. I became suspicious of him when I asked him if we would see any Amazon parrots (i.e., of the Genus Amazona) on the trip and he replied, "Oh, we won't be in the Amazon." A quick check on reviews of his company, Focus on Nature Tours, revealed him to be a fraud. Never did get my $500 deposit back. Good riddance to what would otherwise have been a very expensive waste of money.

    0 Votes
  • Fr
    Frankie M W Sep 05, 2011

    This man and his company, Focus on Nature, has no business being in the travel business. In August 2011 we went to Brazil and I basically had to pay again! I paid months ago in full for hotels, transport, tours, etc. He had no money to pay hotels, transport, entrance fees to Iguazu Falls, nothing! He ended up leaving the tour two thirds the way through with a 'heart problem...' Funny how when we checked at the next hotel they had reservations for the other people but not for him. All pre-planned no doubt. He borrowed money from everyone, was so darn disorganized, running from pillar to post trying to arrange transport while we sat around, flights were not booked as promised, in all, a total joke. Oh yes, we were told we could not see the Harpy Eagles because they were not nesting this year... Any old excuse to save a buck. The itinerary was not followed, lies the whole way through. We were in the fortunate position to be able to pay our own way, I dread to think what would happen to someone who had no additional funds, it does not bear thinking about. Stranded in Brazil no doubt. Maybe languishing in a jail for not paying a hotel bill? Stear clear of this company, folks, a total and utter waste of space. How he remains in business is beyond me! If it were in the United Kingdom, he would have been closed down years ago. How he gets away with it in the States, I have no idea. He has promised to repay what is owed. I think pigs may fly first. If I can save one person from dealing with this company...

    F M W

    1 Votes

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