African and Indian Explorations: Terms and Conditions
- The destinations featured by us are operated by African Explorations Ltd. (The Company, trading as African and Indian Explorations) and are sold, without exception, subject to the conditions set out below. These conditions shall apply to all business undertaken by The Company. Any other conditions shall be void unless agreed in writing by a Director of The Company.
- No reservation, whether for transport, accommodation, transports, tours or other services shall be considered to be confirmed until an agreed deposit has been received by The Company (normally 25% of the cost of the holiday) and The Company has issued a written confirmation of the reservation.
- Bookings made less then 8 weeks prior to travel must be paid for in full in order for the booking to be confirmed.
- The Company reserves the right to refuse any booking without disclosing its reason for so doing.
- The Company is a booking agent and does not own or manage the aircraft, ships, vehicles, other means of transportation, hotels, other forms of accommodation, restaurants, catering services or other services used on any given holiday. Information and descriptions given about all such products are based on enquiries made by The Company and are believed to be accurate but The Company makes no warranty or representation in respect thereof. The Company shall not be liable for any inconvenience, loss or damage caused by any failure, in whole or part, for whatever reason, of these services unless due to the proven negligence of The Company.
- We create each holiday entirely according to the requirements of each client and do not sell “prepackaged” holidays. You may therefore book your own international or internal flights (or other such services) or we can do this your behalf. If flights or car hire are booked by us with your accommodation, your holiday is covered by our ATOL; if we do not book your flights or car hire with your accommodation then your holiday is protected through our membership of ABTOT. For more information concerning financial protection please see “Consumer Protection” below.
- A booking reservation sheet must be completed and signed by at least the client who is “leader” or originator of each booking. This form, as well as being formal acceptance of the booking and our terms and conditions, makes provision to tell us of important items such as passport, insurance, dietary or medical details (or other specific requirements, such as special occasions, that you believe may be of benefit to us in organising the holiday).
Payment and surcharges:
Our holidays are priced in Pounds Sterling or currency as agreed with each client and we quote one composite holiday price to include all possible accommodation, transfers and ancillary logistics with the exception of: international flights and car hire which are itemised separately on our invoices. The price of your holiday may, under exceptional circumstances, be subject to the possibility of surcharges which unavoidably occur in connection with the following: governmental action, currency exchange rates, increase in air fares, fuel price increases, alterations to the holiday by your or force majeure. Please note that we always try our utmost to negate, or absorb, any surcharges and, in any case, we will always absorb any surcharge amount equal to 2% of the holiday price excluding insurance and air fares. Only amounts in excess of 2% may be invoiced, up to a maximum of 15%. Surcharges are very unlikely.
The cost of your holiday is the amount agreed at the time of booking plus any surcharge. Payment is requested as follows and can be made by cash, electronic transfer, cheque, Visa/Mastercard (which will be subject to a surcharge) or some debit cards. Terms of payment are as follows:
Flights: Require paying for immediately on booking.
For bookings made more than 8 weeks before travel:
Deposit: 25% of the cost of the holiday is payable immediately.
Balance: 75% of the cost of the holiday is payable 8 weeks before the travel date.
Bookings made less then 8 weeks prior to travel must be paid for in full in order for the booking to be confirmed.
Some holidays may require a greater deposit where our suppliers insist on higher levels of deposit.
Payments by cheque should be made out to ‘African Explorations Ltd’.
Cancellation of your booking must be made to us in writing. Cancellations are only valid upon receipt of written notification at our Head Office. Charges will be levied for cancellations made after the due date/s of deposit and final payment because of the supplier terms we must adhere to. Our cancellation terms are driven by the terms of the potentially hundreds of properties, camps and businesses from which we select for each individual itinerary:
Cancellation 56 days or more pre travel: Deposit forfeited.
Cancellation within 56 days of travel: 100% of holiday cost is payable
Should you fail to join a tour, or join it after departure, or leave it prior to its completion, no refund can be made. Note that if the reason for cancellation falls within the terms of your travel insurance policy then such charges will normally be refunded to you by the insurance company, subject to the terms of your insurance. It is for this reason that we ask clients to use a reputable, comprehensive, travel insurer and policy.
Your holiday is properly and fully protected as required by the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992. As we tailor-make every single holiday we have bonding arrangements to cover flight-inclusive holidays as well as holidays where flights are not arranged by us.
A) Flight-Inclusive Bonding: We are licensed by the Civil Aviation Authority and hold ATOL Number 7159. This ensures that in the event of our failure your money will be protected; if you are on holiday at the time, arrangements will be made for you to complete your holiday and return home. We, or the suppliers identified on your ATOL Certificate, will provide you with the services listed on the ATOL Certificate (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 the 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).
B) Flight-Exclusive bonding: Your holiday is further protected by our membership of ABTOT (Membership Number 5197). As a member of the Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT), African Explorations Ltd has provided a bond to meet the requirements of the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992. In the event of African Explorations Ltd’s insolvency, protection is provided for non-flight packages commencing in and returning to the UK and other non-flight packages excluding pre arranged travel to and from your destination. Please note that packages booked outside the UK are only protected when purchased directly with African Explorations Ltd. In the above circumstances, if you have not yet travelled you may claim a refund, or if you have already travelled, you may claim repatriation to the starting point of your non-flight package.
The Company will make every effort to assist clients wishing to alter their travel and holiday arrangements, but cannot guarantee to be able to change confirmed bookings. The extra cost of changed bookings is for your account but The Company also reserves the right to impose an amendment administration charge of not less than £250 to any booking previously confirmed by The Company, exclusive of communications costs.
The Company encourages you, the client, to compare prices and The Company prides itself on keeping quoted itinerary costs to a minimum. In some cases we reserve the right, in the case of negotiations taken to the point of booking but not actually consummated, to make a charge to cover at least the cost of time used in advising the client and, in any case, not less than £250.
Responsibility of The Company:
While the descriptions in our brochure or itineraries are given in good faith, taking into account current information available at the time of writing, the Company will accept no responsibility for errors, omissions or changes that may have occurred when/since our brochure was produced or the individual product description compiled. In circumstances outside the control of The Company, its agents or suppliers, The Company will not accept responsibility for the limitation or withdrawal of facilities, with or without notice and for whatever reason. The use by The Company of transport, accommodation or other facilities in connection with a client’s holiday is subject to the terms and conditions of the operators or owners of such transport,, accommodation or other facilities, for whom The Company acts solely as an agent. Under all circumstances, the client should note that no responsibility whatsoever will be accepted by The Company for any delay, inconvenience, damage, loss or injury to a client, or any other person, except where it results directly from the proven negligence of the Company.
Holidays arranged by The Company will often take clients into close proximity to wild animals. Attacks by wild animals upon people are rare, but The Company cannot guarantee that they will not occur and nor does The Company, its employees or agents, accept responsibility for any injury, loss or damage which may be caused by wild animals. Note: Camps and properties in the destinations that are featured by The Company may not be (and usually are not) fenced. Wild animals are therefore free to enter the limits of such properties at any time. Clients are therefore especially requested to abide by the professional guidance and briefings of guides, camps, lodges, properties, aviation companies or other entities with whom they are staying, travelling, or being hosted.
Changes to Schedules:
Although every effort is made to adhere to schedules, it should be borne in mind that The Company reserves the right (and is in fact obliged to) occasionally change itineraries, routes and accommodation as dictated by changing conditions or force majeure. Whilst The Company uses its best endeavors to ensure that all anticipated accommodation is available as planned, there shall be no claim of any nature whatsoever against The Company for a refund either in whole or in part if any accommodation or excursion is unavailable or the client was unable to use the service. We cannot be held responsible for any delays due to airlines not running on schedule, which will have a domino effect on any air (or other) charters meeting flights and accommodation which may have to be re-arranged. Please note that we subcontract flying services to independent charter companies and they are responsible for the flying. If one of our guides is unable to take a tour due to illness, we reserve the right to substitute another guide.
As mentioned elsewhere, we may very occasionally have to make alterations to an itinerary, or holiday price (or both price), for reasons of (amongst others) fuel surcharges, flight cancellations, schedule changes or ‘force majeure’. This legal term basically means unusual and unforeseeable circumstances beyond our control. Examples (amongst others) are war or threat of war, civil strife, terrorist activity, industrial disputes, natural or nuclear disaster, fire, or adverse weather conditions.
Passports, Visas and Immigration Bureaucracy:
We will advise on visa matters and usually furnish clients with visa forms but the onus is entirely upon the client to ensure that passports, visas and health certificates are actually obtained and are, or remain, valid for the countries to be visited. Neither the company nor its agents will be responsible for any problems caused by visas or other bureaucratic requirements for entry (or exit) to (or from) any country not being correctly obtained prior to departure or during a holiday.
1. Changing regulations in many countries mean that we are usually unable to obtain our clients visas on their behalf. Clients who wish to employ a third party to facilitate visas may wish to use a professional visa procurement service, we can advise on this if requested.
2. Passports are usually required to be valid for at least six months after the date of departure from the country to be visited.
3. Some countries require two full, blank, facing or contiguous pages to be available in a passport.
Comprehensive travel insurance, with repatriation facilities, must be (and is) a mandatory requirement for travel to the destinations that we feature. Insurance should offer the fullest possible cover and be valid not only for the destination you are travelling to but also cover any “special”, unusual or “high risk” activities, such as horse riding. We can recommend an insurance supplier but regulations require clients to arrange their own policy/ies directly with the supplier. It is a condition of booking that clients furnish us with the relevant details of travel insurance policy/ies before travelling. Wherever possible we will organise Flying Doctor or equivalent in-country emergency medical rescue cover or subscription on behalf of our clients, the cost is normally included in each itinerary costing. Please note that such subscription usually only covers emergency evacuation to the nearest hospital.
The Company strongly recommends that anti-malaria precautions are taken for travel into any malarial area; clients should also bring their own insect repellent. The employees of The Company are not physicians and clients MUST consult their doctor or obtain other professional advice (for example from NathNac, Masta, BA Travel Clinic, Centre for Tropical Diseases etc.) regarding travel to any of the destinations featured by The Company, especially concerning immunisation against tropical diseases.
Dealing With Complaints:
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 1HQ. 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.
These terms and conditions shall be governed by and construed in all respects in accordance with English Law and the customer hereby submits to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.