Once we were in touch with the local experts, we had little interaction with Travel local, so I can't really comment
We left the planning of this 3 week trip rather late and had little idea of what we should see, but Nutan at the Local Expert put together a brilliant itinerary at short notice, including a great variety of culture, nature, city and rural life with plenty of time to savour each stop. Every part of the trip was executed professionally and warmly by whoever was looking after us that day. The hotels were all good quality with plenty of local flavour. The tour guides we met along the way were all punctual and friendly, often speeding us through queues and formalities, ensuring we had the best experience.
Very little. The process from enquiry to final itinerary was very fast and professional, with lots of suggestions The only change to the trip we would have made in retrospect, would be to stay just one night in Polachi in order to make time for the Bandipur Tiger reserve near Ooty.
Nearly all were fabulous. Professional . friendly, knowledgeable. Our driver, Eldho, was with us throughout, delivering us safely and punctually, with extra local facts and stories. Some guides were not fluent enough in English to understand our questions or explain history etc, but did not spoil the experience. The one exception was our walking guide in Periyar, who seemed bored by the whole thing and hardly spoke except to point and say "bird" or "elephant".
If you're going this way, apart from the obvious cities, you must got to Mari beach while it is still tourist-free, Allepey for the rice boat (stay overnight!) and Periyar for the wildlife walk. Also, only visit Goa if you want to relax in the sun. It felt bit like the Costa del Sol, full of middle-aged Brits avoiding the British winter, but taking all the rest of Britain with them!
Sunset and sunrise on the backwaters of Alleppey was the highlight. Spending the tip with 3 local guys, seeing everyday riverbank life was special.