Terms & Conditions
Please read these terms & conditions carefully before booking your culinary vacation.
The prices listed by Access Culinary Trips (“the Company”, “we”, “our”, “us”) are based on the costs and exchange rates current at the time of publishing. The Company reserves the right to alter these prices at any time. For trips departing between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2019, the land price of your trip is guaranteed when paid in full. For trips departing after December 31, 2019, prices are indicative only.
The itineraries and dates listed on our website are applicable from January 1, 2019 until December 31, 2019. After December 31, 2019, dates and itineraries are also indicative only. All published information is accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time of publishing, but please note that changes to our trips (which can be significant) can and do occur. The Company will make every effort to keep the client informed of any changes, but cannot be held liable for any alterations made to the published itineraries. Please refer to our website for the most recent update to any trip.
To secure a booking for a group trip, the Company requires a completed booking form together with a deposit of 20% of the total per person price of the trip or, if there are less than 90 days remaining until the trip is due to commence, the Company requires full payment of the trip. Deposits may be different for custom and private trips and will be communicated prior to booking. A booking is accepted and becomes definite only from the date when the Company has confirmed acceptance by issuing the client with a Trip Confirmation email. It is at this point that a contract between the Company and the Client comes into existence. Before your booking is confirmed and a contract comes into force, the Company reserves the right to decline any booking at their discretion. The contract is between the Company and the Client, being the person named on the booking form. The contract, including all matters arising from it, is subject to State of Washington law and the exclusive jurisdiction of the Washington courts. No employee, contractor or sub-contractor of the Company other than a director has the authority to vary or omit any of these terms or promise any discount or refund.
3) Payment For Your Tour
The balance of all monies due, including any surcharges applicable at that time, must be paid to the Company not later than 90 days before departure. In the case of non-payment of the balance by the due date the Company will treat the booking as canceled by the Client.
4) Terms & Conditions for Cancellation by the Client
Loss of monies paid applies to all cancelled reservations. The date of trip cancellation is the date on which the written cancellation is received by the Company. The loss of monies paid is as follows, per person:
Cancellation 90 days or more prior to trip departure – Loss of deposit
Cancellation betw. 60 and 89 days prior to trip departure – 50% of total booking cost
Cancellation betw. 30 and 59 days prior to trip departure – 75% of total booking cost
Cancellation less than 30 days prior to departure – 100% of total booking cost
Cancellation policy for custom and private trips may differ from these terms and will be communicated prior to booking
No refunds will be made if you voluntarily leave a trip for any reason after the trip has begun. The same applies if you leave a trip or cannot fully participate in a trip due to injury or illness. Refunds will be at the discretion of the Company if you are involuntarily forced to leave a trip for any reason. No refunds will be made for any accommodation, transport, sightseeing, meals or services not utilized.
5) Cancellation by the Company
A) Minimum Group Size:
The Company’s trips are priced based on a minimum group size that varies by trip, making our trips financially viable to operate. The Company reserves the right to cancel any trip if the trip does not attract the minimum number of clients required to make the trip financially viable. The Company will not, however, cancel a trip due to minimum group size any later than 60 days prior to the commencement of the trip. In the event of cancellation, the Company shall not, in any case, be responsible for nonrefundable expenses incurred by the client, including, but not limited to airline cancellation fees or insurance purchases.
Alternatively, per Section 8C, clients may choose to pay a small group surcharge that would be assessed to each guest in groups that fall below the minimum group size, which avoids us having to cancel the trip.
Minimum and maximum group sizes do not include Access Culinary Trips guests, such as staff members, journalists and photographers.
B) Force Majeure:
The Company reserves the right to cancel a trip at any stage prior to the scheduled departure due to terrorism, natural disasters, political instability or other external events which make it unviable for the Company to operate our planned schedule. In such a case, the Company will, at its own discretion, refund a portion of the trip price (less incurred costs), reschedule the tour, or offer an alternative tour. Should the client choose to purchase “cancel for any reason” (CFAR) insurance coverage, and the tour becomes unviable for the Company to operate or reschedule, the Company will cover the client’s CFAR deductible up to 25% of the price of the tour.
6) Booking Amendments
If you wish to change your booking in any way, you must contact us as soon as possible and we will accommodate your request to the best of our ability. Surcharges may apply.
7) Substitution of a Client
If any member of the party is prevented from traveling because of the death, injury or serious illness of the passenger, close relative or friend, redundancy or jury service, it may be possible to transfer the booking to another suitable person (acceptable to the Company) provided that written notice is given at least 30 days prior to departure. An administration fee of up to $150 may be imposed by the company to cover non-refundable costs. Airlines may impose 100% cancellation charges and the cost of a new ticket.
A) Documentation Rush Fee: Clients are required to submit all requested documentation (including, but not limited to, insurance, booking forms, flight information, emergency contact information, doctors notes for pre-existing conditions, copies of passports) no later than 21 days prior to departure (60 days prior to departure for Cuba). A $100 rush fee will be assessed if documentation is received within 21 days of departure (within 60 days of departure for Cuba).
B) Late Booking Rush Fee: Bookings made within 21 days of departure are subject to a $100 rush fee.
C) Minimum Group Size: The Company’s trips are priced based on a minimum group size that varies by trip, making our trips financially viable to operate. Per Section 5A, a small group surcharge may be assessed to each guest traveling in groups that fall below the minimum group size, in order to avoid us having to cancel the trip as many other companies do. Minimum and maximum group sizes do not include Access Culinary Trips guests, such as staff members, journalists and photographers.
D) Single Supplements: A private room upgrade can be selected at the time of booking for clients preferring a private room. For clients who are traveling solo and prefer to have a roommate, the Company will try to match you with a roommate of the same gender. Should a suitable roommate not be available, the private room upgrade fee will be assessed. Roommate matching is not available on all trips.
E) Currency Conversion: Prices on this website are quoted in USD only. Should a booking be made by a guest or travel agent outside of the United States, the price will be charged in USD, and the currency conversion will be managed by the credit card company at their prevailing rates.
F) Pricing Adjustments: The Company reserves the right to change the trip costs to take account of the following items: government action, major fluctuations in currency exchange rates, and transportation costs, including the cost of fuel, overflying charges, airport charges and increases in scheduled air fares (where applicable). The Company will not absorb any increase in booking price should a surcharge be necessary. The Client will have to pay necessary surcharges but if these result in an increase of more than 10% of the base trip cost, the Client may cancel the booking within 7 days notification of the surcharge and obtain a full refund. No surcharge will be imposed within 30 days of departure.
9) Insurance Terms & Conditions
Travel insurance is mandatory for all clients whilst on a trip organized by the Company. The travel insurance policy must cover adequate personal accident, medical, medical evacuation and repatriation expenses. It is strongly recommended that the policy also cover cancellation, curtailment, loss of effects and all other expenses that might arise as a result of loss, damage, injury, delay or inconvenience occurring to the client. A “cancel for any reason” (CFAR) insurance coverage is also strongly recommended for all of our tours.
For tours to Cuba, it is required that you purchase a travel insurance policy that covers cancellation, curtailment, loss of effects and all other expenses that might arise as a result of loss, damage, injury, delay or inconvenience occurring to the client. The value of the trip cancellation benefit must equal or exceed the land portion of your tour. It is mandatory that your policy include emergency medical evacuation coverage.
Cuban health insurance is required by the Cuban government for travel to Cuba and is generally bundled into the price of your airline ticket. This satisfies the Company’s requirement for travel medical insurance in most cases. The Cuban insurance policy does not cover any pre-existing conditions. If you have a pre-existing condition or would like increased health benefits coverage, we strongly recommend purchasing supplemental travel medical insurance.
Proof of required travel insurance must be submitted to the Company within 14 days of booking. Failure to do so may result in late documentation charges.
Clients, together with their personal property including baggage, are at all times solely at their own risk. Clients are wholly responsible for arranging their own insurance, understanding the particulars of their policy and providing the Company with documentation within 21 days of booking their tour. When purchasing insurance, clients should ensure that there are no exclusion clauses limiting protection for the type of activities in their trip.
Note: For residents of NY, some insurance policies (including CFAR coverage) may not be available, please check with your travel insurance provider as well as the Company for additional details.
10) Passport, Visa and Vaccinations
It is the responsibility of the Client to be in possession of a valid passport, visa permits, inoculations and preventative medicines as may be required for the duration of the trip. Information about these matters or related items is given in good faith but without responsibility on the part of the Company.
You acknowledge that participating in our trips requires a degree of flexibility, and understand that the route of a trip, accommodation and modes of transport are subject to change without prior notice due to local circumstances. Should the Company deem it advisable to amend an itinerary for any reason, it may do so by shortening, varying or re-routing any trip. These changes are binding and additional expenses will be charged to you if the reason for any alteration is outside the Company’s control. While traveling with the Company you agree to accept the authority of the leader and/or local operator at all times. You are aware that travel within a group may involve compromise to accommodate the diverse desires and physical abilities of group members. You understand that the Company reserves the right to decline, accept, or retain any person as a member of the group at any time. You acknowledge that the Company contracts with a network of companies, government agencies and individuals to assist in the running of its trips. To the best of the Company’s knowledge, these third parties are qualified to perform the duties they are contracted to perform. However, the Company will not be held liable for any injury including death, damage, loss, delay or irregularity that may occur due to the behavior of these third parties. The Company will not accept responsibility or liability for any client who contravenes any law or regulation of any country visited. No employee, contractor, sub-contractor, servant or agent of the Company has authority to vary these conditions. This agreement is governed by the laws of Washington.
The Company does its utmost to ensure you a rewarding and enjoyable travel experience with us. In the case where we offer coaching and guiding, we also endeavor to provide you with the best possible learning experience. We understand that expectations vary greatly from person to person, however, and we cannot guarantee to meet all the expectations of the various people who attend our trips. By agreeing to these terms and conditions you accept that the Company will not be held accountable if our trips do not meet your particular expectations. This includes, but is not limited to, meeting your expectations regarding the quality or quantity of food and cooking classes, snow, ski/snowboard areas, surf breaks, beaches, rock climbing areas, mountain bike trails, and kayaking waterways, the quality or quantity of coaching and guiding, the quality or type of accommodation, the standard or type of transportation, the style of trip leadership and organization, and the extent of your improvement in cooking, snowboarding, skiing, surfing, mountain biking or kayaking or any other skill.
Traveling with the Company may involve risks above and beyond those encountered on a more conventional holiday. Vacations to developing countries and vacations involving snowboarding, skiing, surfing, mountain biking and kayaking and other adventurous activities have inherent dangers that can result in serious injury and even death. Our use of guides and coaches can help to reduce these dangers but it cannot eliminate them. You must be prepared to accept the risks associated with travel to developing countries, snowboarding, skiing, surfing, mountain biking, kayaking, and all other activities if you attend our trips. Likewise, you must also be prepared to accept responsibility for your own actions during our trips. Although our guides and coaches may provide you with advice and directions it is ultimately your responsibility to determine where your limits of capability and experience are and to avoid crossing these limits. We will not be held accountable for the choices and decisions you make during our trips.
Our vacations may also involve dangers due to the countries and regions we visit. The Company visits some geographical regions where, among other things, the standard of accommodation, transport, safety, hygiene, cleanliness, medical facilities, telecommunications, and infrastructure may not be of the standard that you are used to or would find on a more conventional holiday. The safety of roads and standard of driving practices may also be lower in some of these regions relative to what you are accustomed to. Although we do our utmost to ensure that our drivers adhere to local driving laws and drive carefully and safely, we cannot guarantee your safety while driving with us and will not be held accountable for road accidents that occur during your travels with us.
By agreeing to these terms and conditions you accept the risks outlined in the above two paragraphs and fully assume the risks of traveling with the Company. You agree to release the Company from any liabilities connected to these risks.
14) Release of Liability, Waiver of Claims, Assumption of Risks and Indemnity Agreement (hereafter the “Release Agreement”)
By agreeing to this release agreement you will waive certain legal rights, including the right to sue. Please read carefully!
To: Access Culinary Trips, and their directors, officers, employees, agents, independent contractors, subcontractors, representatives, sponsors, successors and assigns (all of whom are hereafter collectively referred to as “the RELEASEES”).
Assumption of Risk: I am aware that traveling to developing countries, snowboarding, skiing, surfing, mountain biking, kayaking and any other activities offered by the Company involve the risk of injury. I am aware that there is a risk of negligence by the Company and/or the trip operator, including the failure by the Company and/or the trip operator to safeguard or protect me from or warn me of the risks, dangers and hazards of cooking, eating, skiing, snowboarding, surfing, mountain biking, and other activities. I freely accept and fully assume all risks, dangers and hazards associated with participating in an Access Culinary Trips trip and the possibility of loss, personal injury or death resulting therefrom.
In consideration of booking an Access Culinary Trips trip I hereby agree as follows:
1) To waive any and all claims that I have or may in the future have against the RELEASEES and to release the RELEASEES from any and all liability for any loss, damage, expense or injury, including death, that I may suffer or that my next-of-kin may suffer as a result of an Access Culinary Trips trip due to any cause whatsoever, including negligence, breach of contract or breach of any statutory or other duty of care, on the part of the RELEASEES, and further including the failure on the part of the RELEASEES to safeguard or protect me from or warn me of the risks, dangers and hazards of participating in an Access Culinary Trips tour.
2) To hold harmless and indemnify the RELEASEES from any and all liability for any property damage or personal injury to any third party resulting from my participation in an Access Culinary Trips tour;
3) This Release Agreement shall be effective and binding upon my heirs, next-of-kin, executors, administrators, assigns and representatives, in the event of my death or incapacity;
4) This Release Agreement and any rights, duties and obligations as between the parties to this Release Agreement shall be governed by and interpreted solely in accordance with the laws of Washington and no other jurisdiction; and
5) Any litigation involving the parties to this Release Agreement shall be brought solely within the state of Washington and shall be within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of Washington.
USA – Headquarters:
Access Culinary Trips
600 Winslow Way E, Suite 236
Bainbridge Island, WA 98110
Local Phone: 1 650-492-4778
Toll Free Phone: 1 800-567-9400
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about our terms & conditions.