Longhaul Holidays with Escape Worldwide
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Escape Worldwide S2264. We act as The Global Travel Group plc in connection with the sale of travel products. Unless specified as the operator, the Global Travel Group plc is the agent of ATOL protected Tour Operators and other principals.
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BEFORE YOU TRAVEL
In order to travel overseas, you’ll need a full passport. British citizens need a full 10-year passport. Ensure that it’s in date, or you’ll not be going anywhere! It’s your responsibility to ensure that you have a valid passport. For some destinations, and it’s a good rule to use at all times, the expiry date of your passport has to be an extra 6 months from the time you come home. Exact requirements vary from country to country, so it’s a good idea to check with the embassy of your destination, to see what they need. Non-British citizens, including those from other parts of the EU, must contact the embassy of their destination for up to date advice. All children who are not already included on their parent’s passport will now need their own.
Check and re-check your passport validity at least 6 weeks before departure. If you need a new passport, apply well in advance of travel. For more details, contact the Passport Office on 0870 521 0410. Remember that the names you give us for your tickets must match EXACTLY those on your passport.
If it’s a honeymoon, do bear in mind whether or not you’ll be changing your passport into your married name before or after you travel. Generally, most people find that they have quite enough to deal with, so travel in their Maiden name with their existing passport.
It’s a good idea to leave a photocopy of the important information of your passport with someone in the UK, so that this information can be faxed through to you should you lose your passport whilst away.
Some countries require that you have a visa before you can enter, although requirements for these vary tremendously from country to country, and can change with little or no warning. It is often necessary or essential to obtain your visa – generally a stamp in your passport – prior to leaving the UK, and a fee is almost always payable for this. Visas may be required by British passport holders for visits to non-EU countries, or for visits to EU countries of more than three months, or if you have a criminal record. Immigration, visa and entry conditions may apply to other nationalities travelling overseas. You should be aware that it is at the discretion of the authorities of your destination whether to issue you with a visa or not, and Escape Worldwide cannot accept any responsibility should you have to cancel your holiday due to a visa refusal.
For specific information about a particular country, visit the COUNTRY INFO section on this site. Always contact the embassy, High Commission or Consulate of your destination in good time before you travel, to ensure that you meet their entry requirements fully. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct documentation to travel.
We STRONGLY advise that you obtain adequate travel insurance prior to your holiday. We can arrange this for you, however, we do not insist that you buy it from us. What we do insist is that your safety and well-being whilst away is given due priority. Visit our INSURANCE section for details of the policy we can provide. If you choose not to buy insurance from Escape Worldwide, we will need to know through whom you purchased your insurance, and the policy number. In doing this, you agree to indemnify ourselves against any losses incurred by us as a result of you being inadequately insured.
The cheapest insurance policy is not often the best one, and what is good for one person may not be ideal for another. Check the details of your policy carefully. Some activities such as scuba diving, hot air ballooning or bungee jumping will require an additional premium to be paid, or will not be covered at all. Check closely. Most have a ‘cooling off’ period, allowing you to change your mind if you feel that it is not suitable. Don’t forget to take the policy with you, and leave a copy with someone at home.
A combination of alternatives is often the best bet. If you can obtain local currency in the UK, it may be helpful when you first arrive. Remember, however, that it’s not always possible to do this, as some countries will not allow you to take their currency in and out of the country. Also take some travellers cheques and some other cash – UK pounds or US dollars is a good idea, but carry it safely. Don’t forget your credit card, either!
Booking Car Hire
Escape Worldwide can book your car hire in many destinations – just ask us for more information. Booking ahead means you can make the most of your time away.
WHILST YOU’RE AWAY
Most hotels will require a deposit for incidental charges from you at the time of check-in - many will take this via a hold on your credit card, while others will need to process your credit card and will refund the amount processed (minus any applicable charges) when you check out. Some hotels will need a deposit by way of cash, generally in local currency.
Exchanging Money Overseas
To get the best value for money while away, do some shopping around to find out where offers the best rate, but remember to bear in mind any commission charges. Hotels often charge a higher level, yet they do offer the most convenient service. Bank opening hours vary tremendously, and in many countries, banks are often closed in the afternoon. Remember your credit card PIN, as these can often be accepted overseas. Check with your credit card company before you go.
Problems and Complaints in Resort
Tour operators are always keen to resolve any problems you may have while you’re still away, rather than on your return. Should you have any problems, speak immediately to your representative or hotel manager, and give them the opportunity to put it right. Most tour operators will give you a complaint form should you not be happy with their resolution, and if you do wish to pursue a complaint on return from your holiday, contact your tour operators’ customer services department, or ourselves, as we’d be delighted to assist you. You are advised to do this soon after your return.
In recent years, many tour operators have found an increase in the level of complaints which they feel – after thorough investigation – to be unjustified. Reputable tour operators will investigate any issues raised and will fairly treat all complaints. Yet many will be equally thorough in dismissing anything which they feel to be unjustified – in the long term, after all, the additional cost of dealing with unjustified complaints such as bad weather, is simply added to the cost of everyone’s holiday.
Calling Home from Abroad
It’s often best to check with your holiday rep in resort as to the best way to call home. It is almost always cheaper to use a local payphone than a hotel phone, and phone cards can often give an additional saving. The international dialing code for the UK is 44, which is followed by the area code in the UK – without the ‘0’, and then the rest of the number. It is often necessary to insert additional numbers at the start of dialing, so check carefully! Mobile phones may work in certain locations –check with your service provider in the UK.
Take your drivers licence with you when you collect your car. Remember that all car hire companies have different terms and conditions, so make sue that you fully understand these before you drive away. All driving convictions must be declared. Any additional insurance cover is recommended, especially in the USA.
ABOUT YOUR HOLIDAY BOOKING
Official hotel ratings vary hugely around the world, and many tour operators have chosen to use their own grading to avoid any confusion. This may mean, however, that different tour operators may give different ratings for the same hotel according to their own views. Ratings given by Escape Worldwide are those passed on to us by the relevant tour operator.
The following abbreviations are commonly used by Escape Worldwide:
FO - Flight Only
RO - Room Only
SC - Self Catering
BB - Bed & Breakfast
HB - Half Board
FB - Full Board
AI - All Inclusive
MP - Meal Plan
Please ask for exact definitions of these should you be in any doubt.
AI - All-Inclusive
There has been a huge increase in the number of All Inclusive holidays being taken in recent years. Yet the facilities on offer as a part of the AI package can vary tremendously, and you are recommended to check with us for exact details.
AOA - Allocated on Arrival / Late Deal Holidays
Many tour operators sell holidays close to the time of departure at a low price, based on unnamed accommodation, so that you are not aware of your exact destination. These are not featured in the tour operators brochures, and so you cannot draw a comparison to the brochure price. In return for the low price, the tour operator may not include transfers to and from the airport (although these can often be purchased separately), and special requests and special needs cannot be guaranteed. Please ensure that you are fully aware of the tour operator’s terms and conditions if you are booking this type of holiday, as they can often be more restrictive than on brochured holidays. Such holidays are best suited to people who are more flexible in respect of their holiday arrangements.
All travel times shown on this site, or given to you on the telephone, by e-mail or in your travel documentation, are in local time, i.e. the time of where you are at the point stated. Flight timings are subject to change, and charter flights are more susceptible to changes than schedule services. Escape Worldwide is not liable for any changes made. It is important to carefully check your tickets to ensure that you are aware of the correct timings. All timings are given in the 24-hour clock, with times form 00:01 to 12:00 being in the morning (AM) and those from 12:01 to 24:00 being in the afternoon (PM).
Should you have any special requests for your holiday that may not otherwise be included by the tour operator, such as a low-floor room or vegetarian meals, please advise us of this at the time of booking, and we’ll do our best to tell your tour operator. However, such requests are never guaranteed by the tour operator, and are often subject to availability. Please bear in mind that you cannot request something that can otherwise be paid for at a supplement, such as an upgraded room or specific view.
Special Needs & Customers With Disabilities
If you or any member of your travelling party has any medical condition that means that special travel, accommodation or dietary requirements are necessary, please advise us of this before you book your holiday. We will then be able to check fully with your tour operator of the arrangements they are able to make, allowing you to make an informed decision on your holiday. Most tour operators are pleased to offer full assistance in such circumstances.
If children are travelling as a part of your party, it is imperative that you advise us of their age on the return date of travel. The date of birth must match exactly with that shown on their passport, otherwise travel may be refused by airline or immigration authorities. Children aged under two on their return date are classed as infants, and as such will not be entitled to a separate seat on the aircraft, unless a child fare is paid. Only one infant per adult can be carried under international regulations.
Most tour operators will send your tickets to ourselves about two weeks before your date of departure. We will then check your tickets before sending them on to yourself. If you have not received your tickets 7 days before your departure, contact us immediately.
If you have booked your holiday close to the date of departure, your tickets will often be available for collection at the airport. You will be advised of where to collect these from, and a fee is often charged. Again, you will be advised of this at the time of booking. Take your tour operators booking reference and any associated paperwork with you, to collect your tickets.
We will require that you pay ourselves a deposit at the time of your booking. This payment is passed on to your tour operator to enable them to reserve your holiday, and some will not do this until it has been received. The full balance of your holiday is then due 10-12 weeks (depending on individual holiday booked) prior to the date of your departure. If you book within 10-12 weeks of departure, we will require full payment at that time. Escape Worldwide holds your payment as an agent for the operator or supplier of your holiday or service.
Kindly note that payment made by non-UK registered debit and credit cards, and all premium and business credit cards, will be subject to a 2% transaction fee.
Escape Worldwide LLP acts as Agent for ATOL Protected Tour Operators, in accordance with the Civil Aviation (Air Travel Organisers Licensing) Regulations 1995. This is for your financial protection. After you have booked your holiday with us, we will send you written confirmation of your holiday, plus a receipt for monies paid. Notify us immediately if any details shown are incorrect. The information shown will include your tour operator’s ATOL number as well as details of all services provided by them that are covered by their ATOL, issued by the CAA.
Once you have booked your holiday, you are legally bound by the terms and conditions of your tour operator. All tour operators include cancellation and amendment procedure in these, and all will levy a charge should you wish to cancel your holiday. Expect to forfeit your deposit immediately, and note that many tour operators impose a sliding scale of fees, increasing to the full cost of your holiday prior to departure. Tour operator’s fees vary, so make yourself aware of these before you book. Tour operators have introduced this procedure as they themselves are in turn often charged fees by hotels, airlines and other suppliers in the event of a cancellation. Your cancellation also means that they have a reduced time in which to resell the holiday, and this has to be taken into account.
Cancellations must be made to us in writing, and must come from the person who originally made the booking. It is in your own interest to do this as soon as possible after you have made the decision to cancel. Some circumstances of cancellation may be covered by your insurance policy, so check carefully.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office issues advice relating to travel to many countries around the world. We strongly recommend that you check this information before you book your holiday, and again prior to your departure. Visit www.fco.gov.uk or phone the FCO Travel Advice Unit on 0207 238 4503/4504.
It may be recommended or essential to meet some health requirements if you travel to certain destinations, and advice for health vaccinations can be found in the relevant section on this site. Please do bear in mind, however, that this advice is for your information only and is subject to change. We strongly recommend that you speak to your GP prior to travelling. Allow plenty of time to do this, as some vaccinations may be given over a series of weeks.
The Department of Health issue a useful leaflet entitled ‘Health Advice for travellers’, which can be obtained from Post Offices or by calling 0800 555777. Additionally, many tour operators will advise you on health tips in resort either by way of a leaflet with your tickets, or on arrival at your welcome meeting.
Some airlines may not accept passengers who are more than 28 weeks pregnant. Please raise this issue with us BEFORE you book.
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