Tour Cancellation and Refunds Related to Corona Virus - Covid-19
EBT understands the seriousness and impact on the whole world presented by the Corona Virus pandemic. We as a company are doing everything in our power to ensure the safety of our current clients and partners in the countries where we operate. As of April 2020, EBT has suspended all on the ground operations until June 30, 2020.
If you have already booked or plan to book onto a trip with EBT in 2020, please note the following: clients are entitled to have their full trip balance moved to another trip if we decide to cancel the tour due to logistical, safety, and/or travel complications related to Covid-19.
Full refund of balance will be issued for the following reasons if the client decides that they do not want to move their balance to a future trip:
1. Clients can provide EBT with medical proof that they or a family member has Coronavirus.
2. EBT cancels the trip.
3. If your travel logistics become impossible within reason - IE travel bans, flight cancellations, restrictions imposed by your government, etc.
We are all in this together and we are determined to do the right thing. We will only run our trips if we deem it safe to do so, for both our guests and the remote mountain communities we visit.
Tour Safety and Liability
EBT adventures carry a certain amount of risk since we are trekking into the mountains and cities of developing countries. There is a chance of you being injured or even killed on an expedition. EBT trips are not holidays per se. EBT tours are adventure trips and by their very nature there are risks involved.
Interested parties cannot come on an EBT tour unless they buy travel insurance.
All tour participants will need to provide EBT with a photocopy or other proof of travel insurance before coming on a tour. Tour participants will also need to sign a waiver releasing the guides, Epic Backpacker Tours, Epic Backpacker Adventures Limited, and our partners of any liability.
EBT cares deeply about the well being of all of our tour participants. We do everything in our power to provide a safe and secure adventure tour environment. By coming on an EBT tour, tour participants absolve EBT and its affiliate partners of all liability relating to injury or damages.
Medical, Visas, and Passports
Medical vaccinations, passports, visas, flights etc. are entirely your responsibility and must be arranged prior to departure. EBT takes no responsibility for cancellation of your trip in the event that you are not allowed to fly, or able to continue the tour due to ill preparation.
The tour participant must ensure that his/her passport is valid for at least six months beyond the date of the start of the tour. Failure to do so will result in visa denial and subsequent forfeiture of deposit and balance amount.
If you are unable to travel due to not obtaining the appropriate visa and/or passport we reserve the right to retain the cost of your trip (see "Visa Denial" section below).
You must ensure you are medically fit to travel and participate in the tour. We accept no responsibility for any losses you incur or any element of the tour that you are unable to participate in, on account of your health or fitness.
It is your responsibility to ensure that you research your intended destination(s) and activity/(ies) to determine whether you are able to participate and that you are at the required fitness level to undertake the tour. EBT reserves the right at any time to require a participant to produce a doctor’s certificate certifying that they are fit to participate/ continue participating in the tour.
Deposit: Once paid, the deposit is non-refundable (except in case of tour cancelation, see "Tour Cancellation" section below) as it secures your spot and prevents other people from booking the tour once the tour has reached capacity.
Full balance refund with more than 160 days to start of the tour:
-If you pay the full amount at the time of booking, the deposit amount is non refundable, but the remaining balance is refundable should you cancel within more than 160 days of the start of the tour.
Partial balance refund with more than 90 days to start of tour:
-If you cancel after paying the balance, 50% of the trip balance payment (less the deposit amount) is refundable if cancelled within 90 days of the start of the tour.
-For Iran and Pakistan trips, the partial balance will only be awarded if Epic Backpacker Tours has not closed the trip to additional participants or if the client cancels within 90 days prior to the start of the tour, whichever comes first. This is because the company is unable to resell the cancelling client's spot should the client choose to drop out after the trip has been closed.
- If cancellation occurs less than 90 days from the start of the tour, no amount will be refunded.
- Please note that if a guest/client signs up for one tour and is moved to a future tour at the request of the guest, no amount of the balance payment is to be refunded in the case that the guest decides to excuse themself from a future tour all together.
Tour Change Fees
Under normal circumstances (including civil unrest in the countries where Epic Backpacker Tours operates in), clients cannot change from the original tour they booked to a future trip without prior permission from EBT. Changing to a future tour may not be possible if the original tour booked is FIVE MONTHS or less from departure.
Clients can not change tour dates simply because the client decides the original dates booked do not work for them anymore for whatever the reason may be with the exception of personal emergency.
Changing from the originally booked tour to a future tour (once approved by EBT) will incur a change fee of £250 per client. The client will not be permitted to come on a future EBT trip if the change fee is not paid in a reasonable amount of time (at least five months before the next planned departure date). When the original tour departure date is less than four months/120 days away, it may not be possible to change tours due to visa procedures or trip availability.
In the event of a legitimate emergency IE death in the family, personal circumstance that otherwise prevents the client from coming on an adventure tour, or serious health problems, the change fee shall be reduced at the discretion of EBT. In this case, the client would need to provide proof of the emergency to Epic Backpacker Tours in order for the company to consider the claim legitimate.
-Some of the destinations EBT travels to require obtaining visas in advance.
If you are denied a visa after taking all of the correct steps required to apply and are unable to come on the trip solely because of a denied visa, you will be refunded the full balance amount (no tour participant has ever been denied a tourist visa as of now). Proof of visa denial and correct application is required to receive balance refund.
Please note that you may be asked to travel to the Pakistani or Iranian consulate in your home country as part of your visa application. We strongly recommend that you are available in your country during the visa application process (Pakistan visa). If you are unable to do this, and choose to apply for your visa without being in the country, you do so at your own risk. We will not refund the cost of the trip if you are unable to go to the embassy to sort out your visa.
If you are denied a tourist visa because you did not submit all necessary documents in a timely manner, you are NOT entitled to a refund. We are however reasonable people and if you are denied your visa for reasons beyond your control after taking all of the correct application steps, and provide proof that your visa was rejected, we will refund you.
Important: Remember it is your responsibility to apply for your visa in a timely manner in order to give yourself enough time to submit extra documents should they be requested by the given state consulate. If an individual does not submit all of the correct documents issued by EBT and follow all of the correct application steps whilst submitting the visa application in a timely manner to the correct authority, the individual is not entitled to a refund. If an individual attempts to apply for a visa using documents not issued by EBT and our partners, the individual will automatically forfeit their refund should a visa denial occur. If an an individual has applied for a visa BEFORE joining an EBT tour and is denied due to issues within or beyond their control, the refund will also be forfeited.
Refunds will not be issued if EBT determines a visa denial to be the fault of the individual rather than a circumstantial denial beyond the individual's control.
Paying the Balance
Payments are due approximately 3-4 months before the tour begins, we will let you know when the payment is due via email, payment options will also be provided. Please ensure that you pay the tour balance in a timely manner.
Tour Cancellation by EBT
EBT reserves the right to cancel any tour in extraordinary circumstances, forced by virtue of unforeseen circumstances such as civil or political unrest, natural disaster, other matters it could not foresee or prevent.
This may also apply to tours where minimum numbers have not been reached, in the case of insufficient participant numbers a refund (including deposit) or tour transfer shall be offered.
In the case that EBT is forced to cancel a tour due to civil unrest, catastrophic political instability, natural disaster, or other factors that would compromise the safety of the tour, all participants would be fully refunded or moved to the next available tour of their choosing.
EBT does not cover any client pre/post tour travel expenses in the case that a tour is cancelled for reasons beyond the company's control IE civil unrest, catastrophic political instability, natural disaster, or other factors that would compromise the safety of the tour. Clients can opt to go through their travel/flight insurance to obtain refunds for flights or other travel expenses incurred before the start of the tour.
It is unlikely that the EBT will have to make any changes to our published itineraries, however arrangements are made several months in advance. Occasionally changes may need to occur without prior notice for reasons over which we have no control.
EBT reserves the right to make changes without prior notice at any time, both before and during the tour. It is agreed that a published itinerary constitutes only an indication of what the tour is planned to accomplish and is not to constitute a contractual obligation on the part of EBT.
Participants agree that the nature of the tours offered by the EBT requires a degree of flexibility and that the contents and timings of the tour (including the arrival time at the tour’s destination, changes in route or method of transport) may be materially and consequently affected as a result of ‘force majeure’, weather, local political conditions, man made or natural disasters (including landslides, quakes and severe flooding), strikes, entry or border difficulties, mechanical breakdowns, flight cancellations, sickness, or other unforeseen circumstances
You agree to accept this flexibility and to accept that we cannot be held responsible for delays and alterations in the schedule, or for expenses incurred as result of any delay or alterations arising from any such circumstances over which we have no control.
Acceptance of Risk
Participants acknowledge that there is a significant element of personal risk in participating in the tour, and accepts and consents to the personal risks inherent in the implementation of an EBT tour itinerary. Participants must accept the limitations of EBT liability set out herein as being reasonable.
EBT will appoint the tour leader(S) in advance of each tour and the identity of each tour leader shall be communicated to participants in pre departure information. Upon the first meeting and at the commencement of the tour, and that by continuing on the tour, EBT and the tour leader(S) shall be free to assume that the participant is fully aware of the tour leader(S) identity and shall accept all appropriate instructions given and requests made by them.
Participants agree to accept the decisions of the tour leader(S), who shall have absolute discretion and authority to securely implement EBT obligations to fulfill any given itinerary and achieve best possible tour outcomes.
If your physical condition or behavior is such as to affect the well-being of yourself or other members of the group, and/or if you are being obstinate or in any way disruptive, combative, or violent and/or affecting or potentially affecting another participants enjoyment/safety of the tour, it is up to tour leader’s sole and absolute opinion to decide to remove you from the tour without any right to refund.
If you choose to leave the tour at any point you will be required to provide your decision to the tour leader in writing, you will not be permitted to rejoin the tour at a later date.
We will always endeavor to resolve a complaint as it arises. In order to do this we need to be made aware of the complaint. Participants agree to the following procedure, at the earliest opportunity any perceived failure in the performance, or improper performance of the implementation of the itinerary, whether by EBT or its partner's, is to be respectfully communicated to the tour guide in a timely manner.
The tour guide and participant will make prompt efforts to resolve the complaint. In the event that the complaint remains unresolved then the participant agree and is welcomed to set out their complaint in writing to the EBT within 7 days of completion of the tour.