|Colin Murison Small's|
Boring or not, insurance is vitally important.
You are not required by law to have insurance cover on holiday, but tour operators may refuse to accept your booking unless you show have suitable cover. Most – including Hidden Greece – follow that guidance on the basis that in these perhaps over-exciting times it is simply common sense for our clients - and for us.
Most of Hidden Greece’s clients have year-round travel insurance which means we have insufficient business to make registration as an insurance agent viable. We can however recommend four firms you may like to contact:
1 - for policy details of the Travel & General Holiday Insurance cover.
2 – just press CTRL + click on ETA travel insurance (tel: 0800 212 810) to contact the ETA (Environmental Transport Association) who, commenting on recent events in Iceland, made the following remark about their travel policy:
“Unlike some other insurers we are covering customers for the costs they may have incurred due to their holiday being disrupted by the volcanic ash. Some other insurers have avoided paying out on travel insurance policies as they class the incident as an ‘act of God’. We think this is highly unethical but unfortunately it is common place.”
3/4 – If you are 76 or over, however, you should start by contacting either Age Concern (tel: 0845 601 2234) or Saga (tel: 0845 302 0211).
You remain free of course to shop around for other insurers provided the cover you arrange is at least as comprehensive as Travel & General’s. You need to check that your policy protects you against flight delays and cancellations whether by airlines, shipping companies or weather conditions at the time you travel; civil unrest and strike action; travel delays due to technical problems of the air or surface carrier; and of course the usual array of enforced cancellation, accident, illness and baggage etc.
Alteration or cancellation by you
Any alteration you request after receiving our confirmation, but more than two months before departure, is subject to an amendment fee of £25 per booking (not per person). We reserve the right to treat any subsequent change you request as a cancellation (with penalties as set out below) and a new booking. Cancellations, which must be notified in writing, are subject to the following penalty charges per person:
Alteration or cancellation by us
In the event of a major alteration (such as flight change of more than 12 hours), we will offer you either a comparable alternative holiday or a full refund of all payments made. If a lower category of accommodation is offered and accepted we will also refund you the difference in cost plus at least 5%. No compensation will be payable if cancellation is brought about by force majeure (e.g. terrorist activity, strikes, technical problems with transportation, alteration or cancellation of scheduled services etc) or by any other events beyond the control of Hidden Greece.
If you have a problem during your holiday you must inform the hotelier/ owner of the property in which you are staying and/or our local agent. If that fails to resolve the matter you must inform us in the UK by phone, e-mail or fax (the numbers are given in the Desperately Dull Details sent with your tickets): we cannot accept any responsibility if we have not been given the chance to correct whatever is wrong. If you still have a complaint, you must send us full details in writing within 28 days of returning from holiday.
In the unlikely event of the complaint not being amicably resolved, disputes may be referred to arbitration under a scheme devised by arrangement with ABTA but administered independently by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. The scheme provides for a simple and inexpensive method of arbitration on documents alone with restricted liability on the customer in respect of costs. Alternatively, AITO’s Independent Dispute Settlement Service may be called upon by either side to bring the matter to a speedy solution. Whichever option you choose, neither scheme applies to claims for amounts greater than £2,500 per person (or £7,500 per booking) nor to claims which are solely or mainly in respect of physical injury or illness or their consequences. If you seek redress under either scheme, written notice requesting arbitration must be given within nine months after the scheduled date of return from the holiday.
Assistance whilst on holiday:
Hidden Greece will, at its reasonable discretion, provide general assistance when, through misadventure, clients suffer illness, injury or death during their holiday arising through an activity not forming part of the invoiced inclusive tour. This assistance may consist of advice and initial financial aid up to a limit of £5,000 per booking form. If legal action is taken by the client with the prior agreement of Hidden Greece, any initial legal costs will be met, provided such assistance is requested by the clients within 90 days from the date of the misadventure. In the event that there is either a successful claim for costs against a third party or that there is suitable insurance in force, the actual costs incurred by Hidden Greece are to be recovered from the clients.
Hidden Greece and Simply Simon Holidays are trading names of Sunvil International Sales Ltd, a bonded tour operator holding Air Travel Organiser's Licence 808 issued by the Civil Aviation Authority. Your booking is subject to the conditions imposed by the air carrier and such provisions may limit their liability.