1. Our contract
All bookings are made with Blue Latitudes Travel LLC, USA. By booking a trip with us you are deemed to have agreed to these Booking Conditions (which constitutes the entire agreement between you and us) and your booking will be accepted by us on this basis. The services to be provided are those referred to in your booking confirmation product description.
Dates, itineraries and prices are valid from 01 July 2013 until 31 December 2014. Beyond 31 December 2014 dates, itineraries and prices are indicative only.
3. Deposit requirement
For products more than $2000, you are required to pay a non-refundable deposit of 20% of the total price per person per trip for your booking to be confirmed (please note that increased deposit requirements apply for some trips). For trips in which the total amount is less than $1999 you will be required to pay the total amount upon booking. If your booking is made within 90 days of the departure date then for any trip the full amount is payable at the time of booking. Please note that a higher deposit is required for some bookings, custom trips, large groups, or special circumstances.
4. Acceptance of booking and final payments
If we accept your booking we will issue a confirmation. A contract will exist between us from the date we issue the confirmation.. Payment of the balance of the trip price is due 60 days before the departure date. Please note that full payment is required earlier for trips more than 8 days, or custom trips. If this balance is not paid on or before the due date we reserve the right to treat your booking as cancelled. We will endeavor to offer you the most convenient and safe methods of payment.
5. Your details
In order for us to confirm your travel arrangements you must provide all requested details with the balance of the trip price. Necessary details include full name as per passport, date of birth, nationality, passport number, passport issue and expiry date and any pre-existing medical conditions you have which may affect your ability to complete your travel arrangements. If you are 70 years of age or over we also require you to complete and forward a Self-Assessment. Your booking cannot be confirmed without provision of these details.
6. Cancellation by the traveler
If you cancel some or all portions of your booking cancellation fees will apply. A cancellation will only be effective when we receive written confirmation of the cancellation. If you cancel a trip:
• 60 days or more prior to departure, we will retain the deposit
• less than 60 days prior to departure, we will retain 100% paid by you in connection with the booking.
You are strongly advised to take out cancellation insurance at the time of booking which will cover cancellation fees. If you leave a trip for any reason after it has commenced we are not obliged to make any refunds for unused services.
7. Cancellation by Us
We may cancel a trip at any time up to 30 days before departure, subject to clause 14. We may cancel a trip at any time prior to departure if, due to terrorism, natural disasters, political instability or other external events it is not viable for us to operate the planned itinerary. If we cancel your trip, you can transfer amounts paid to an alternate departure date, or alternatively receive a full refund. In circumstances where the cancellation is due to external events outside our reasonable control, refunds will be less any unrecoverable costs. We are not responsible for any incidental expenses that you may have incurred as a result of your booking including but not limited to visas, vaccinations, travel insurance excess or non-refundable flights.
8. Booking amendments
If you wish to transfer from one trip to another or transfer your booking to a third party you must notify us at least 30 days prior to the proposed departure date. A fee of $200 per person per change will apply (in addition to any charges levied by hotels, ground operators or airlines).
If you notify us less than 30 days prior to the proposed departure date the refund policy applicable to cancellations will apply. Transfers to a third party are only permitted where the transferee meets all the requirements in relation to the trip, and transfers to another departure can only be made to a departure within the current validity period.
Amendments to any other arrangements made in conjunction with your trip will incur an $200 administration fee per booking per change. This fee is in addition to any charges levied by hotels, ground operators or airlines. No amendments are permitted to your booking within 10 days of departure.
9. Understanding of Risk
By booking with us you understand that travel, international and domestic, is not an inherently predictable or safe activity. It can be as safe as a day at home in your country, but it involves a risk of delay, theft, injury, disease, or death. By taking a tour and making a contract with us you are waiving your right to sue or seek legal action against compensation from us through any lawsuit, at home and abroad. You understand that travel is subject to all sorts of unpredictable forces and many known risks in the country in which you live and depart from, the transportation that conveys you, and the places in which we operate. You are to examine the country in which we provide tours closely and decide for yourself whether you would like to make a contract with us, and if you decide to make this contract then you waive your right to seek compensation for any minor and severe misfortunes, including but not limited to injury and death. You are to read the news and keep updated on the situation on the country. We have no liability to you for any cost, loss or damage, nor if you cancel mid-trip, will we refund you the cost of any unused portion of your travel arrangements. In addition, you understand that tours with wildlife or nature are subject to the forces of nature and the decisions of the animals and circumstances of weather. On any given tour it is not guaranteed to see the animals you wished for, that inhabit the destination, or to have the most ideal weather to see the destination itself.
The land price of your trip does not include:
• international or internal flights unless specified
• airport taxes and excess baggage charges unless specified
• meals the night of arrival (the day before your trip starts) and the day of departure (after your trip ends)
• Visa and passport fees
• travel insurance for tours less than 5 days in length.
• Optional activities and all personal expenses.
11. Prices & surcharges
.We reserve the right to impose surcharges up to 30 days before departure due to unfavorable changes in exchange rates, increases in airfares or other transportation costs, increases in local operator costs, taxes or if government action should require us to do so. In such instances we will be responsible for the first 2% of the additional costs and you will be responsible for the balance. If any surcharge results in an increase of more than 10% of the trip price you may cancel the booking within 5 days of notification of the surcharge and obtain a full refund. We will not surcharge any booking for travel once paid in full.
12. Age & Health requirements
Minimum General Policy: For the majority of our trips the minimum age for children is 12. All travelers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult who is responsible for the child’s day-to-day care. Please note we cannot guarantee triple or joining rooms for families; accompanying adults may be required to share with others in the group on a twin share basis.
Maximum General Policy: For the majority of our trips we have no upper age limit, though we remind you that our trips can be physically demanding and a Self-Assessment form is required for all passengers 70 years and over.
We are able to provide details on mandatory health requirements; however, we are not medical experts. It is your responsibility to ensure that you obtain proper and detailed medical advice at least two months prior to travel for the latest health requirements, recommendations for your destination and any costs. Where you do not do so and either are not allowed to enter any country, or suffer personal injury or death as a result, we have no liability to you for any cost, loss or damage which you suffer nor will we refund you the cost of any unused portion of your travel arrangements.
13. Passport and visas
You must carry a valid passport and have obtained all of the appropriate visas, permits and certificates for the countries in which you will visit during your trip. Your passport must be valid for six months beyond the duration of the trip. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of the correct visas, permits and certificates for your trip; please refer to the website or contact us for details. We are not responsible if you are refused entry to a country because you lack the correct passport, visa or other travel documentation.
14. Travel insurance
Travel insurance should be taken out at the time of booking for any trips less than 5 days with which we don’t provide insurance. Your travel insurance must provide cover against personal accident, death, medical expenses and emergency repatriation with a recommended minimum coverage of US $200,000 for each of the categories of cover. We also strongly recommend it covers cancellation, curtailment, personal liability and loss of luggage and personal effects. You must provide and carry proof of your travel insurance. If you obtain travel insurance through our assistance you acknowledge that you are satisfied with the level of insurance we have arranged.
You appreciate and acknowledge that the nature of this type of travel requires considerable flexibility and you should allow for alternatives. The itinerary provided for each trip is representative of the types of activities contemplated but it is understood that the route, schedules, itineraries, amenities and mode of transport may be subject to alteration without prior notice due to local circumstances or events. We will however in the best of our ability and in consideration of safety and time include all of the components stated in our product itineraries.
16. Change of itinerary
While we endeavor to operate all trips as described, we reserve the right to change the trip itinerary.
Before departure: If we make a major change we will inform you as soon as reasonably possible, if there is time to do so before departure. The definition of a major change is deemed to be a change affecting at least one day in five of the itinerary. When a major change is made you may choose between accepting the change, obtaining a refund of money paid on the land portion of the trip only or accepting an alternative tour offered.
After departure: We reserve the right to change an itinerary after departure due to local circumstances or events outside of our control. In such emergency circumstances the additional cost of any necessary itinerary alterations will be covered by you: please refer to the Trip Notes for your trip for details of Emergency Funds which you agree to carry to be used in such instances. Please note we are not responsible for any incidental expenses that may be incurred as a result of the change of itinerary such as visas, vaccinations or non-refundable flights.
17. Authority on tour
Our group trips are run by a group leader. The decision of the group leader is final on all matters likely to affect the safety or well-being of any person participating in the trip. If you fail to comply with a decision made by a group leader, or interfere with the well-being or mobility of the group, the group leader may direct you to leave the trip immediately, with no right of refund. We may also elect not to carry you on any future trips booked. You must at all times comply with the laws, customs, foreign exchange and drug regulations of all countries visited, and you also agree to travel in accordance with our travel guidelines.
18. Acceptance of Unknown Factors
You acknowledge that the nature of the trip is adventurous and participation involves a degree of personal risk. You will be visiting places where the political, cultural and geographical attributes present dangers and physical challenges greater than those present in our daily lives.
We use information from government foreign departments and reports from our own contacts in assessing whether the itinerary should operate. However, it is also your own responsibility to acquaint yourself with all possible relevant travel information and the nature of your itinerary. You acknowledge that your decision to travel is made in light of consideration of this information and you accept that you are aware of the personal risks attendant upon such travel.
19. Limitation of liability
We contract with a network of companies, government agencies and individuals to assist in the running of our trips as agent for these third parties. We are not responsible for the acts and omissions of these third parties.
To the fullest extent permitted by law:
• liability for any loss, death, injury or damage which you may suffer (directly or indirectly) in connection with or arising out of your participation in a trip, or any breach of the Booking Conditions, is excluded.
• you release us and our officers, employees, agents and representatives from any liability and expressly waive any claims you may have against us arising out of or in connection with your participation in a trip.
• any condition or warranty which would otherwise be implied by law into these Booking Conditions (Implied Warranty), is excluded.
To the extent an Implied Warranty cannot be excluded, our liability in respect of the Implied Warranty is limited to (in our absolute discretion): (i) the provision of a similar trip to an equivalent value; or (ii) a refund of the total amount received by us from you in connection with your booking.
Any claim by you is excluded to the extent that it is for indirect or consequential loss, loss of profits or economic loss, however it arises, or for indirect, special, punitive or exemplary damages.
20. Claims & complaints
If you have a complaint about your trip please inform your tour leader or our local representative at the time in order that they can attempt to rectify the matter. If satisfaction is not reached through these means then any further complaint should be put in writing to us within 30 days of the end of the tour.
In the event that any term or condition contained in these Booking Conditions is unenforceable or void by operation of law or as being against public policy or for any other reason, then such term or condition shall be deemed to be severed from this contract or amended accordingly only to such extent necessary to allow all remaining terms and conditions to survive and continue as binding.
22. Photos and marketing
You consent to us using images of you taken during the trip for advertising and promotional purposes in any medium we choose. You grant us a perpetual, royalty-free, worldwide, irrevocable license to use such images for publicity and promotional purposes.
Any personal information that we collect about you may be used for any purpose associated with the operation of a Trip or to send you marketing material. The information may be disclosed to our agents, service providers or other suppliers to enable us to operate the Trip.
24. Applicable law
The laws of Pennsylvania, USA, govern these Booking Conditions to the fullest extent allowable. Any disputes in connection with a trip or these Booking Conditions must be initiated in the courts of Pennsylvania, USA.