Booking Conditions

BOOKING CONDITIONS (published January 2014)

Bookings with Andante Travels Ltd are accepted only in accordance with the terms and conditions set out below. In these Booking Conditions references to "you" and "your" include all persons on whose behalf a booking is made (or any of them).



We are ANDANTE TRAVELS LTD, registered limited company no. 1969761. Registered offices: The Old Barn, Old Road, Alderbury, Salisbury, Wiltshire SP5 3AR, United Kingdom. Andante Travels is a subsidiary of Specialist Tours Ltd (company no. 08395250). Andante Travels is a member of AITO and holds ATOL number 3552 issued by the Civil Aviation Authority, which provides for your protection in the event of Andante’s insolvency. The price of our air vacation packages includes the ATOL Protection Contribution (APC) we pay to the CAA. This charge is included in our advertised prices.

As a member of the Association of Bonded Travel Organizers Trust Limited (ABTOT), Andante Travels Ltd has provided a bond to meet the requirements of the Package Travel, Package vacations and Package Tours Regulations 1992. In the event of Andante Travels Ltd’s insolvency, protection is provided for non-flight packages commencing in and returning to the UK and other non-flight packages excluding prearranged travel to and from your destination. Please note that packages booked outside the UK are only protected when purchased directly with Andante Travels Ltd. In the above circumstances, if you have not yet traveled you may claim a refund, or if you have already traveled, you may claim repatriation to the starting point of your non-flight package.

1 PAYMENTS FOR YOUR VACATION

Reservations may be made by telephone or the website. This can be confirmed by card payment over the phone, or will be held for one week, pending receipt of your deposit per person of

  • $500 for tours costing up to $3300

  • $650 for tours costing between $3301 and $5000
  • 
$750 for tours costing between $5001 and $6600 

  • $850 for tours costing over $6601 

  • $1250 for Australia

The contract between us comes into existence when we send out our confirmation invoice which confirms your booking. You undertake to pay for the vacation you have booked and we undertake to provide you with the vacation we describe in the brochure. Please check details on your confirmation invoice including notes on the reverse, and notify us of any errors. If you make a booking on behalf of others as well as yourself, we shall take it that you have the authority of each of those other people to enter into the contract on the basis of these booking conditions and that you and they have agreed to be jointly and severally liable to us. If we are unable to accept your booking, we will of course return your payment to you immediately. The balance payment for all tours is due 8 weeks (56 days) before departure, except for Burma and Central Asia when the balance is due 3 months before departure, and Malta, Namibia and Iceland when the balance is due 63 days before departure. We will send you a reminder 1 - 2 weeks before the balance due date. If you are making your booking within this period, full payment will be necessary immediately. Post-dated cheques are not acceptable nor will we keep records of credit or debit cards to take payment at the due date. Andante Travels reserves the right to cancel any booking for which full payment has not been received on the due date, and to levy cancellation charges as set out in clause 4 below.

2 INSURANCE


It is a condition of booking that all travelers be covered by comprehensive travel insurance and do not travel against medical advice. You should organize it immediately you book so as to be covered in case of the ill health of yourself, a close relative or your traveling companion. We do not check insurance policies; however we request written details (insurer’s name, policy number and emergency contact number) no later than 4 weeks prior to departure. You are responsible for indemnifying us in full in the event that we incur any losses or expenses arising out of your failure to take out adequate insurance cover.

3 IF YOU WISH TO MAKE ANY CHANGES
 to our advertised or your confirmed vacation arrangements, we will do our best to accommodate you but this cannot be guaranteed. Any change is subject to availability and also to payment of an administration fee of up to $85 per person and any associated costs of the change imposed by our suppliers. You should note that airlines may treat a change as a cancellation and create a new booking, charging a 100% cancellation fee.

4 IF YOU HAVE TO CANCEL we must be informed in a letter/fax/email from the person who made the booking. The cancellation takes effect from the date at which the notification reaches our office. You may not transfer your deposit to another tour. Your deposit paid to Andante Travels will be forfeited. A further charge will be made which varies with the amount of time between Andante Travels receiving your written cancellation and the tour departure date. The charges made for our tours are as follows:

  • Burma and Central Asia only: time prior to departure
  • Up to 91 days: Deposit* / 90 - 41 days 35% of tour cost / thereafter as below
  • Malta, Namibia and Iceland only: time prior to departure:

  • Up to 63 days: Deposit* / 62 - 41 days 35% of tour cost / thereafter as below
  • 

All other tours: time prior to departure:
  • Up to 56 days: Deposit* / 55 - 41 days 35% of tour cost / 40 - 29 days: 55% of tour cost /
28 - 8 days: 75% of tour cost / 7 days to date of departure: 100% of tour cost 
*plus any invoiced flight costs if applicable

5 TRANSFER OF BOOKINGS

If you are unavoidably prevented from taking your vacation you may (as long as this is not less than 30 days before departure), find another person to take your place. This right of transfer is subject to a fee of $85 per person. You and the transferee shall be liable to Andante Travels for the payment of the balance, together with any additional charges imposed by the suppliers providing the component parts of your vacation. You are not permitted to transfer your booking to another tour.

6 IF WE HAVE TO ALTER


Although it is unlikely that we will have to make any changes to your travel arrangements, we reserve the right to do so because we plan many months in advance. Where a change is a minor change, we will, if practical, advise you before departure, but we are not obliged to do so. When a change is a significant change (such as an alteration to your flight time by more than 12 hours, or a change to a lower standard of accommodation for the whole or a major part of your vacation), we will advise you as soon as is reasonably possible if there is time to do so before departure. You may then either accept the change, or take an alternative vacation (paying or receiving a refund / credit in respect of any price difference), or withdraw and accept a full refund. In the unlikely event that we become unable to provide a significant proportion of your trip after you depart, we will make alternative arrangements for you to continue the trip at no extra charge, or, if this is impossible, or you do not accept these alternative arrangements for a good reason, we will provide you with transport back to your point of departure.

7 IF ANDANTE TRAVELS HAS TO CANCEL
 your vacation before the date of departure, you will have the choice of taking an alternative vacation (paying or receiving a refund/credit in respect of any price difference) or accepting a full refund of all monies paid. In addition, in appropriate cases, and subject to the following exceptions, we will pay you compensation as set out below. Compensation will not be payable and no liability beyond offering the choices referred to in this clause and clause 6 can be accepted where (1) we are forced to make a change or cancel as a result of unusual and unforeseeable circumstances beyond our control, the consequences of which we could not have avoided even with all due care or (2) we have to cancel because of underbooking or (3) the change is not significant. Underbooking is the situation in which the minimum number of bookings required to run a tour is not met. We will notify you no later than 8 weeks before departure where this is the case. We are not liable to pay you any additional travel or any other costs, expenses or losses which you incur as a result of any change or cancellation by us or for any insurance premiums

Period before departure within which a major 
change or cancellation is notified to you

Compensation per person 
per booking (on top of full refund)

More than 21 days

8 - 21 days

7 days or less

Nil


$85


$125

 

The above sets out the maximum extent of our liability under this clause and we regret we cannot meet any expenses or losses you may incur as a result of inconvenience suffered.



8 FORCE MAJEURE

Except where otherwise expressly stated in these conditions, we regret we cannot accept liability or pay any compensation where the performance or prompt performance of our obligations under our contract with you is prevented or affected by or you otherwise suffer any damage, loss or expense of any nature as a result of "force majeure". In these conditions, "force majeure" means any event which we or the supplier of the service(s) in question could not, even with all due care, foresee or avoid. Such events may include, whether actual or threatened, war, riot, civil strife, terrorist activity, industrial dispute, natural or nuclear disaster, adverse weather conditions, fire and all similar events outside our control.

9 PASSPORTS AND VISAS

All travelers are responsible for ensuring that they have a valid passport (NB some countries require a passport valid for 3-6 months after travel). We require full passport details no later than 4 weeks prior to departure for airline bookings. We will advise British citizens with a British passport if a visa is required. If you are not a British citizen with a British passport, you are responsible for making sure that you aware of and have the relevant documentation. Please contact the embassy concerned. For all clients, all passports, visas, travel insurance and health certificate requirements are your responsibility. Andante Travels accept no responsibility for any delay or expense incurred through any irregularity in your documents. For some countries the process and rules can change without warning. Obtaining one is your responsibility and not part of our contract. You will need to pay all costs incurred in applying for or obtaining a visa. We cannot be held responsible for any changes in the visa process or for any refusal or failure of any country’s authorities to grant a visa to any individual. If you cannot obtain a visa and have to cancel as a result, we regret cancellation charges as set out in our booking conditions will apply. Andante adheres to the travel or safety advice for British Citizens traveling overseas given by the Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) website: www.fco-gov.uk.

10 COMPLAINTS
 in respect of matters arising during the vacation must be reported to staff immediately so that any problem may be remedied on the spot. Our priority is to give you an enjoyable vacation, and we strive very hard to do so. However, if our staff are unable to help, and you still have a complaint, you should put it in writing at the time and then send it to us within 30 days of your return. Failure to take these steps may hinder our ability to resolve the problem and/or investigate it fully and in consequence, your rights under the contract may be affected. We regret we cannot accept liability for any claims which are not notified to ourselves and/or our suppliers strictly in accordance with this clause. If you are ill whilst on vacation, report your illness to our representative, consult a local doctor and also consult your doctor on return home. Should you then wish to make a claim against us as a result of that illness you must provide us with details of both the local doctor whom you saw, and your own doctor, together with written authority for us to obtain a medical report from both those doctors.

11 ARBITRATION


If you have a dispute with Andante Travels which you are unable to resolve, you may call upon the low-cost AITO Independent Dispute Settlement Service (details on request). Claims which exceed £2,500 per person or £10,000 per booking, or claims in respect of illness or physical injury are not admissible under the service. The costs under this scheme, should the award go against you, are minimal compared with those in a court of law.

If, despite our best efforts and having followed the above procedure for reporting and resolving your complaint, you feel that it has not been satisfactorily settled, we recommend that it is referred for arbitration under the ABTOT Travel Industry Arbitration Service. An Independent Arbitrator will review the documents relating to any complaint and deliver a binding decision to bring the matter to a close. Details of this scheme are available from The Travel Industry Arbitration Service, administered by Dispute Settlement Services Ltd at 9 Savill Road, Lindfield, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, RH16 2NY or from ABTOT, Tower 42, Old Broad Street, London EC2N 1HG. This scheme cannot however decide in cases where the sums claimed exceed £1,500 per person or £7,500 per booking form, or for claims which are solely or mainly in respect of physical injury or illness or the consequence thereof.

12 SPECIAL REQUESTS


If you have any special requests, please inform us of these in writing at the time of booking. We will advise the relevant suppliers but cannot guarantee that they will be met. Furthermore, Andante Travels has no liability to you if such requirements are not met. We regret we cannot accept any conditional bookings, i.e. any booking which is specified to be conditional on the fulfilment of a particular request.

13 CLIENT BEHAVIOUR

When you book a vacation with Andante Travels you accept responsibility for the proper conduct of your party. Andante Travels reserves the right in its reasonable discretion to terminate the vacation of any member of your party whose conduct is disruptive or detrimental to the enjoyment of other clients, or whose conduct may prejudice the reputation of Andante Travels with our suppliers or hotel owners. In that situation, Andante Travels shall have no further responsibility or liability to you. The departure of a coach, ship or train will not be delayed for passengers who are not on board by the stated departure time.

14 YOU MUST BE FIT AND WELL
 to take part on one of our tours. Many of our programmes involve a great deal of walking in cities or scrambling over rough terrain on archaeological sites which can be difficult to negotiate and physically tiring.

We rely on your assessment of your own ability to participate in a tour. If you have any reservations regarding your fitness for a trip, please ring us. Under no circumstances should you travel if your doctor has or would advise against it. If you are infirm, disabled or unfit in any way or have any medical condition which will or may affect your tour arrangements, it is imperative that you inform Andante Travels so that we may give you advice as some of the tours would be very unsuitable or even dangerous for you. If you know that you need help, you should bring a helper with you, whose participation is subject to availability and the full tour price. Andante Travels reserves the right to refuse to take participants who have not provided all relevant details of any medical condition, disability, infirmity or other factors which affect your ability to fully participate in the vacation at the time of booking or as soon as any such condition etc. develops, if later.

Bookings are accepted on the understanding that they appreciate the possible risk inherent in archaeological travel and that they undertake the tours, walks or expeditions featured in our brochure, on that basis. It should also be noted that as we travel very often to remote destinations, the general levels of comfort and services are lower than would be found in the US. It is essential that you understand the nature of the trips we offer and that you are able to participate in all the activities included in your chosen itinerary. If you have any doubts as to your own physical limitations then this is not the vacation experience for you!

15 BROCHURE ACCURACY

Andante Travels reserves the right to change any of the prices, services or other particulars contained in this brochure at any time before we enter into a contract with you. If there is any significant change, we will notify you before you enter into such contract. All information is given in good faith and believed correct at the time of printing. Whilst every effort is made to ensure accuracy, occasional errors do occur and you must therefore check your vacation details carefully.

16 THE PRICE OF THE TOUR


Once the price of your chosen vacation has been confirmed at the time of booking, subject to the correction of errors, we will only increase or decrease the price in the following circumstances. A surcharge or refund (as applicable) will be payable, subject to the conditions set out in this clause, in the event of any change in our transportation costs or in dues, taxes or fees payable for services such as landing taxes or embarkation or disembarkation fees at ports or airports.

Even in the above cases, only if the amount of any increase in our costs exceeds 2% of the total cost of your vacation (excluding any amendment charges) will we levy a surcharge. If any surcharge is greater than 10% of the cost of your vacation (excluding any amendment charges), you will be entitled to cancel your booking and receive a full refund of all monies you have paid to us (except for any amendment charges) or alternatively purchase another vacation from us as referred to in clause 6. Should you decide to cancel because of this, you must exercise your right to do so within 14 days of the date of our surcharge invoice. We reserve the right to increase or decrease and correct errors in the prices of unsold vacations at any time.

17 FLIGHTS, FERRIES and TRAINS


In some cases a return flight at a later date can be arranged if this is requested at the time of booking (see clause 3 for administration charge for any such changes). IMPORTANT: Customers booking their own flights should not do so until Andante has confirmed the vacation will operate (at the latest two months before departure) as all group tours are subject to a minimum number of bookings being achieved and are responsible for their own transport to / from the airport.

18. FLIGHT & OTHER TRAVEL DELAY & CANCELLATION


There is no guarantee that flights, trains or ferries will depart at the time specified, and Andante Travels does not have any liability to you for any delay.

19 SUPPLIERS’ CONDITIONS

Transport and other suppliers have their own booking conditions or conditions of carriage, and you will be bound by these as far as the relevant transport provider is concerned. Some of these conditions may limit or exclude liability on the part of the relevant provider and they are often also subject to international conventions.

20 MEDICAL REQUIREMENTS


It is your responsibility to ensure you are aware of all recommended vaccinations and health precautions in good time before departure. It is your responsibility to ensure that you obtain all necessary inoculations, take all necessary medication and follow all medical advice in relation to your vacation (and travel with it in hand luggage).

Should you be taken ill whilst on tour we will endeavour to arrange for professional medical care as appropriate and as quickly as practically possible and, where necessary inform your travel insurers. Please ensure that you provide us with your next of kin details so that we can make arrangements for them to be contacted in an emergency. Please note that all costs incurred by the company in providing this assistance, including payment for any transport and telephone calls must be reimbursed to the company. A receipt will be issued so that you can present this to your travel insurers.

21 LIABILITY


(i) Our obligations, and those of our suppliers providing any service or facility included in your vacation, are to provide them with reasonable skill and care. You must show that reasonable skill and care has not been used if you wish to make a claim. Standards of, for example, safety, hygiene and quality vary throughout the transport and destinations that your vacation may involve. Sometimes these standards will be lower than those which would be expected to be found in the US. The services and facilities included in your vacation will be deemed to be provided with reasonable skill and care if they comply with any local regulations which apply. Please note, however, our obligation is to exercise reasonable skill and care as referred to above. We do not make any representation or commitment that all services will comply with applicable local laws and regulations and failure to comply does not automatically mean we have not exercised reasonable skill and care. Please also note that we will only be responsible for what our employees, agents and suppliers do or do not do if they were at the time acting within the course of their employment (for employees) or carrying out work we had asked them to do (for agents and suppliers).


(ii) We will not be responsible for any injury, illness, death, loss (including loss of enjoyment or possessions), damage, expense, cost or other sum or claim of any description whatsoever which results from any of the following:
- the act(s) and/or omission(s) of the person(s) affected or any member(s) of their party or
- the act(s) and/or omission(s) of a third party not connected with the provision of your vacation and which were unforeseeable or unavoidable or
- 'force majeure' as defined in clause 8 above


(iii) Where any claim or part of a claim (including those involving death or personal injury) concerns or is based on any travel arrangements (including the process of getting on and/or off the transport concerned) provided by any air, sea or rail carrier to which any international convention or EU regulation applies, the maximum amount of compensation we will have to pay you will be limited. The most we will have to pay you for that claim or that part of a claim if we are found liable to you on any basis is the most the carrier concerned would have to pay under the international convention or regulation which applies to the travel arrangements in question (for example, the Warsaw Convention as amended or unamended and the Montreal Convention for international travel by air and/or for airlines with an operating license granted by an EU country, the EC Regulation on Air Carrier Liability No 889/2002 for national and international travel by air, the Athens Convention for international travel by sea (as amended by the 2002 Protocol with effect from 31st December 2012) and COTIF, the Convention on International Travel by Rail). Please note: where a carrier would not be obliged to make any payment to you under the applicable international convention or regulation in respect of a claim or part of a claim, we similarly are not obliged to make a payment to you for that claim or part of the claim. When making any payment, we are entitled to deduct any money which you have received or are entitled to receive from the carrier for the complaint or claim in question. Copies of the applicable international conventions and regulations are available from us on request.


(iv) Where we are found liable for loss of and/or damage to any luggage or personal possessions (including money) where international convention or regulation does not apply, the maximum amount of compensation we will pay you will be $825. This sum will be assessed with reference particularly to your loss and the extent to which this has required you to purchase replacements. You must ensure you have appropriate travel insurance to protect your personal belongings.


(v) Other than as set out above, and as is detailed elsewhere in these booking conditions, we shall have no legal liability whatsoever to you for any loss, damage, personal injury or death which you suffer arising directly or indirectly from any aspect of your vacation.

22 EXCURSIONS


Our local contacts may, at your request, make arrangements for excursions locally on your behalf. However, please note that excursions or other tours that you may choose to book or pay for whilst you are on vacation are not part of your package vacation provided by us. For any excursion, activity or tour you book whilst on vacation, your contract will be with the operator of the excursion, activity or tour and not with us. We are not responsible for the provision of the excursion, activity or tour or for anything that happens during the course of its provision by the operator.

23 DATA PROTECTION

Except where expressly permitted by the UK Data Protection Act, we will only deal with the personal details you give us in order to provide your vacation arrangements, unless you agree otherwise. For example, if we wish to use any of your personal details for marketing purposes beyond our own or for those of other Specialist Tours’ subsidiaries, we will tell you this when we ask for your details and give you the opportunity to say no if you do not wish us to do so. If you make special requests, which include, but are not limited to special dietary, religious or disability related requirements which constitute sensitive information, the relevant data will be passed to the relevant suppliers and carriers to enable provision of the services requested by you. At the request of many of our guests who travel with us regularly, we keep a note of these details rather than ask that this information is supplied again (all notes are automatically deleted if you have not traveled with us for three years or more).

24 WEBSITE

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of our website and brochure, details may have changed by the time you come to book your vacation. You should not assume that details shown on our website match those shown in our brochure. Please check all details of your vacation at the time of booking.

25 TOUR STAFF


All tours are accompanied by a Guide Lecturer. For 'Travels in Archaeology' tours with more than 15 guests a Tour Manager will also accompany the tour. For tours with fewer than 16 guests, Andante Travels reserves the right not to send a Tour Manager. Many tours will also be accompanied by a Local Guide as required by law.

26 YOUR CONTRACT

With us and any matters arising from it shall be subject to English law and to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Court of England and Wales. If you are resident in Scotland or Northern Ireland, the Courts of Scotland or Northern Ireland can deal with any disputes.

27 FINANCIAL PROTECTION

Many of the flights and flight-inclusive vacations in this brochure and on the website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all vacation and travel services listed in this brochure and on our website. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected.

When you buy an ATOL protected flight or flight inclusive vacation from us you will receive an ATOL Certificate. This lists what is financially protected, where you can get information on what this means for you and who to contact if things go wrong.
If we, or the suppliers identified on your ATOL certificate, are unable to provide the services listed (or a suitable alternative, through an alternative ATOL holder or otherwise) for reasons of insolvency, the Trustees of the Air Travel Trust may make a payment to (or confer a benefit on) you under the ATOL scheme. You agree that in return for such a payment of benefit you assign absolutely to those Trustees any claims which you have or may have arising out of or relating to the non-provision of the services, including any claim against us, the travel agent (or your credit card issuer where applicable). You also agree that any such claims may be re-assigned to another body, if that other body has paid sums you have claimed under the ATOL scheme.



For more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLCertificate



- Flight inclusive tours


We hold an Air Travel organizer's license issued by the CAA (ATOL No. 3552). We, or the suppliers of the services you have bought, will provide you with the services you have bought (or a suitable alternative). In some cases, where neither we nor the supplier are able to do so for reasons of insolvency, an alternative ATOL holder may provide you with services you have bought or a suitable alternative (at no extra cost to you). You agree to accept that in those circumstances the alternative ATOL holder will perform those obligations and you agree to pay any money outstanding to be paid by you under your contract to that alternative ATOL holder. However, you also agree that in some cases it will not be possible to appoint an alternative ATOL holder, in which case you will be entitled to make a claim under the ATOL scheme (or your credit card issuer where applicable). Not all vacation or travel services offered and sold by us will be protected by the ATOL scheme.



- Tours without flights arranged by us


Non-air packages are protected by ABTOT. This arrangement means your money will be refunded or you will be brought back to the UK (where your contracted vacation arrangements include return travel to the UK) if already abroad in the unlikely event of our being unable to provide your vacation due to our insolvency.

Last revised January 2014.