Standard Terms and Conditions
Here's all the stuff that our
lawyers make us say. But we wrote it ourselves, to try and
make it more understandable!
We've attempted to create this
'fine print' in a manner that is fair and understandable.
Basically, we expect you to act fairly, and in turn, we'll act
If you have any questions or
concerns, please ask.
Tours are offered
conditionally, and are subject to receiving a minimum number of
participants. Deposits are fully refundable until the tour
If the needed minimum number
of people do not confirm, we might offer to operate the tour
with fewer people but a higher cost per person.
have the choice of canceling and receiving a full refund of any
monies paid, or of enjoying a similar itinerary on a
'self-drive' or 'FIT' basis - staying at the same places, with the same
inclusions, but driving yourself by rental car rather than as a
passenger on a coach.
In such a case, we would
provide you with a mid-sized automatic rental car, touring maps,
directions, and itinerary notes in lieu of coach transportation
A decision to confirm the
group tour or to offer a self-drive substitute will be made at
least four months prior to tour commencement, and of course sooner if tour registration numbers so
indicate. Tour participants will be immediately advised as
soon as the tour status changes from conditional to confirmed.
Please do not incur any other
costs that would not be fully refundable (such as airfare) until
we have guaranteed the tour will proceed.
We reserve the right to
alter an itinerary at any time for any reason, although we will
at all times attempt to ensure that any changes or substitutions
are of similar interest.
If an included item needs to
be omitted for any reason and can not be compensated with what
we consider to be a fairly equivalent item, then you will be
refunded our underlying cost of that omitted item.
In the event of weather,
strikes, industrial action, protests, mechanical problems, or
other unforeseen issues outside our direct control, we will
attempt to minimize the impacts of such events as best we can, but
can not accept liability for such actions or non-actions of third
Payment and Pricing
Prices are quoted on the
basis of per person, with two people sharing a room.
A $500 per person
non-refundable deposit is required to confirm your place on
The balance is due 90 days
prior to tour commencement and
if not received by that date your booking will be automatically
cancelled and deposit forfeited.
Full payment is immediately
due for tour reservations made with 90 days of tour
A $100 per person rush fee
may apply to payments made in the last fourteen days prior to tour
Price reflects a 3% discount
for cash/check. If you wish to pay by credit card, then
you will be advised the base tour price (ie the discounted price
Tour prices include both US
and foreign currency costs and are based on a
stated range of wholesale exchange rates. If the wholesale
exchange rates move outside of this range prior to full payment
being received, then the tour price will be
adjusted (either up or down) to fairly reflect the change in the cost
of tour components. If the price of the tour increases by
more than 10%, you will be offered a no cost, no penalty
opportunity to cancel and receive a full refund of all monies
Tour prices are locked in
place once full payment has been received.
Our Experience is Your
We have been operating
Travel Insider tours since 2003, and have been in the travel
industry since 1989.
We can't guarantee that
nothing will go wrong, but we can offer to do all we can to help
in the event of problems.
Occasionally we've had
challenges and problems in the past, because we are necessarily
dependent on actual providers and the services they operate in the
countries we travel to. If, for example, a train is late or
cancelled, there's nothing we can do about that except wait for
the next train. If someone's luggage is lost by an airline,
or stolen from a hotel, that's again something that sometimes
happens. The key thing is to take such challenges in your stride, to
remain positive and willing to enjoy the rest of the experience,
perhaps (eg) buy
some replacement clothes, and then move forward with the rest
of your travel enjoyment.
We ask that you understand we
will do all we can to make your travels as positive an experience
as possible, but any time we step out our front doors, we introduce
variables into our lives, even more so in foreign countries with
different concepts of customer service. The key part of your
enjoyment of any
tour and travel experience is to not let the inevitable problems that come our way
interfere with our enjoyment of the rest of the tour.
Special Rates for Singles,
Triple Shares and Children
We offer a matching program
for singles who wish to share a room with another solo traveler.
If you do not wish to share
a room, or if no suitable room mate is found, we can offer a
Some of the hotels used on
some tours do not have triple share rooms and so triple share
rates are not always available.
Child discounts are
sometimes available; and it seems every different hotel and
attraction operator have different policies and different age
limits. So we can't offer an across the board indication
of child discount levels, but will do the best we can to help
you bring your children (or grandchildren) with you too.
Imagery and Information
The photographs and video shown and
information provided on this web site and related promotional
materials depict typical scenes as described,
but the subject matter may not necessarily be experienced or
seen, as illustrated, while on our tour. No warranty is made concerning
Please note that we may take
publicity photos during our tours for subsequent public display.
Your image may appear in these photos, but you would not be
identified by name. In addition, other tour members
will be taking pictures for their own purposes. You agree to
appear in these photos, and if you wish to not appear in photos,
will advise ourselves and other tour members in writing so we know
to not inadvertently include you.
Assuming full payment is
received more than 75 days prior, an electronic set of documents
including a full souvenir itinerary, stay-behind
itineraries to be left with friends, relatives, and workmates,
travel vouchers if needed and other materials will be sent to you,
typically two to three
weeks prior to tour commencement.
If you have registered for
the tour closer to departure, documents will be sent
no sooner than two weeks after full payment is received.
You can change the names of
participants at any time prior to document issuance for a $50 per name change fee.
You can change the travel
arrangements we have made for you at any time prior to full
payment being made, subject to applicable cancellation and
change fees, which vary depending on the travel products
affected and their applicable policies, and will in all events
also include an administrative fee on our part of not less than
$50. If you anticipate the need to make changes between booking
your tour and actually taking the tour, please discuss with us
the likely feasibility and costs of any changes or
Subsequent to full payment
being made, changes of any type may or may not be possible, and
may require the payment of a higher fee plus courier fees for
documents to be returned to us and to suppliers then sent back
to us and on to you.
Once payment has been
received, if you cancel your
participation prior to one month before tour commencement, you will receive a 50%
refund upon the return of all tour documents, unused.
you cancel after that time, or do not return all tour documents,
unused, our ability to refund depends on if we can resell your
space to other travelers. If we can resell your space at
full price, you'll still get a
50% refund; if we can't, no refund will be paid.
No refund is given for
cancellations subsequent to 48 hours prior to the start of the
advertised 'Day 1' of the tour, and/or for any unused portions of a tour.
Cancellation and change fees
may be reimbursable by a travel insurance policy, depending on
circumstances. For this and all other reasons, we
recommend you purchase travel insurance accordingly.
We recommend you purchase
comprehensive travel insurance to provide some degree of financial
compensation and mitigation in the case you experience any losses.
Note that some policies also
allow for you to cancel your travels for any reason or as a result
of pre-existing medical conditions, providing partial or full
recompense in such cases, but for this coverage to be activated,
you are typically required to buy the insurance within 7 - 14 days
of paying the deposit for the tour.
Inclusions and Exclusions
Only those items
specifically stated to be included are included in the tour.
All other items not so specifically stated are not included and
if you choose to avail yourself of them would be at extra cost.
Unexpected things happen to
us all, everywhere, and may happen to us when we are touring,
too. Weather, special events, traffic, closures,
mechanical problems, changes/delays in operating schedule by
suppliers, or who
knows what else may interfere with the planned tour itinerary
and require us to make changes as best we can.
We will do the best we
reasonably can to present the tour to you as described, and/but
if circumstances beyond our control require us to make changes
to the tour, we will do the best we reasonably can to provide
alternate inclusions of hopefully similar interest.
If a tour component is
cancelled and that results in us obtaining a refund, then we
will either allocate that money towards other touring items or
refund the money on to you in turn, whichever, in our opinion,
will make for a better tour experience.
Activities, Health and Meals
You should be in good health
and reasonably fit in order to participate in the walking
components of this tour (eg be able to conveniently climb 75
steps or walk a mile at a normal average climbing/walking speed).
Note that some foreign
countries do not provide experiences that are as 'safe' as in the
US. It is not uncommon to see slippery surfaces, uneven
steps, and poor or no handrails, for example. Ice is another
hazard if present. You need to be aware of such challenges
and be responsible for your own safety.
Please note that seating on
coaches can not be reserved and all passengers are expected to
take fair turns in the front, middle and rear of the coach (we
publish a rotating roster for the front seats to ensure this is
amicably managed for all).
We typically do not fill coaches more than three quarters full,
so you'll usually always have plenty of seats to choose from.
Unless advised otherwise,
special vaccinations are not mandatory, but you may consider it
prudent to check with your healthcare professional and to follow
any courses of protective vaccinations he/she recommends prior
to traveling with us.
If you have any special
dietary or other preferences for meals, please let us know prior
to when you make final payment so we can advise the hotels
accordingly. We will help you to meet your needs, but can
not guarantee that this will completely and consistently occur.
Other countries aren't necessarily as sensitive to dietary
issues as the US is.
Your Responsibilities Include
It is your responsibility to
get yourself to the tour commencement place at or prior to the
tour commencement time, and to observe the tour timetable during
the course of the tour.
It is your responsibility to
ensure you have the necessary travel documents that may be
required (a current passport not due to expire until six months
after the end of your travels, and with sufficient blank pages
in it for visa stamps), and to obtain any necessary visas
authorizing your travel to the countries in the tour.
It is your responsibility to
have arranged any vaccinations that are either mandatory or
recommended by your healthcare professional. It is your
responsibility to arrange and pay for your own medical care
should you become unwell on the tour. While we will do
what we can to assist, we are not healthcare professionals and
our ability to assist is tempered by our requirement to continue
to maintain the touring experience for other tour members.
It is your responsibility to
comply with the reasonable requirements and requests of the tour
leader and tour guides, and if you don't understand any such
requirement, it is your responsibility to request and obtain the
Our tours leave promptly
at the advised times from each stop. It is your
responsibility to be on the vehicle/vessel or at the meeting
point on or prior to each
departure time. If you miss any departure time it is your
responsibility to make your own arrangements to catch up with
the tour, and no refund will be given either for missed tour
components or the costs you incur after so missing any part of the tour.
It is your responsibility to
exercise care and prudence while traveling. Not all
foreign destinations have the same high standards of care and
safety that are usually to be found in the US, and you need to
be self aware and to realize that in some countries, the
obligation is on you to be careful and cautious, not on service
providers to attempt to foresee and prevent imprudent acts.
Care and prudence involves being aware of theft/crime risks,
being careful when visiting places that might have
slippery/uneven walkways and stairs, keeping away from the edges of tall
things, watching out for low beams in buildings, and all other
things where problems and mishaps may occur.
It is your responsibility to
obey all local laws while on tour.
If you encounter any
problems, you agree to immediately advise us of these problems
so that we can mitigate and hopefully resolve them.
If you do not
notify us of problems in a timely manner, then our subsequent
liability and obligation to you is limited to that which would
have applied if you had advised us in a timely manner, and if
such redress is now no longer available to be offered to you due
to the passing of time, we have no obligation to offer you
alternate compensation instead.
Limitation of Our Liability
We act only as agents for
the principals offering the services and products included in
this tour and have no control over their products and services.
David M Rowell, 'The Travel
Insider', dba Travel Insider Touring and Adastra Tours, and the various companies
involved in providing services offer no warranties express or
implied and reserve the right to amend this tour in any way at
any time as they may choose in their sole and unfettered
discretion. Participation on this tour is on an “own risk” basis
and participants are responsible for ensuring that they act in a
prudent and appropriate manner.
We are not liable for any
matters outside our control, including acts and omissions of
suppliers, and matters related to war or terrorism or natural
disaster or civil disorder and or the fear of war or terrorism or natural
disaster or civil disorder, whether reasonable or not, and any other Acts of God.
You agree we are not liable
for any acts or omissions, and agree to indemnify us and hold us
harmless from any matters arising from your own acts or
omissions or those of your fellow tour members or other people
in general. You
further agree that in any case where liability may be found, our
liability will in no case exceed that reasonable amount of
profit we earned from your payment to us that relates to the
loss or damage or other problem suffered by you.
Acceptance of these Terms and
Your forwarding payment to
us is your act of acceptance of our terms and conditions.
You agree that you have conveyed these terms and conditions to all people
traveling with you, and the payment for each of the people
traveling, whether it be paid directly or jointly, is evidence
of each person's acceptance.
Any disputes or other
matters arising from the operation of these tours or involving
David M Rowell, 'The Travel Insider', dba Adastra Tours, will be
heard within the jurisdiction of King County, Washington, and
will be interpreted under US law and practice and will be judged
in the light of the normal standards of conduct and liability at the places
where the matters at issue occurred, these standards typically
being lower than in the US. All parties
agree to accept binding arbitration (also in King Co, WA). In the event that any
term or condition is varied or voided, the remaining terms and
conditions will remain binding on you and us.
Other Tour Terms and Conditions
Each tour may have
additional terms and conditions that specifically relate to that
particular tour. In such cases, if the additional terms
conflict with these terms, then the tour specific terms will
over-ride these generic terms.