At YellowWood we want you to feel confident with your decision to travel and explore. Holidays and adventures are there to look forward to, to learn from, to inspire and to enable relationships and experiences.
We want you to know that we are doing everything we can to facilitate your return to safe and meaningful travel. Please read the FAQs below to see how we are managing our adventures during these challenging times, and don’t hesitate to ask if you have an unanswered question!
“not how any of us planned on this going but you have been fantastic throughout this process so I’ll definitely travel with YellowWood again when able!” Jeff Boateng, Australia, 2020 (received a full refund after we had to cancel his adventure to Ethiopia)
Cancellations and Changes to my Trips
Which adventures are running and are they the same as usual?
We are reliant on the travel advice from the UK Government’s Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the status of the destination country, as well as World Health Organisation (WHO) and National Travel Health Network & Centre (NaTHNaC).
We will confirm with you minimum of 30 days before your booked adventure, whether your trip is running.
We will only run trips that;
- We know are viable (in terms of FCO advice)
- Which can be run adhering to local rules and guidelines.
- Where or risk assessment deems it is safe to do so. This is assessed using Industry guidelines from the Word Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) and our specific and thorough YellowWood Adventure risk assessments.
We will keep you fully informed of any changes to the itinerary, which may result following Risk Assessment or local guideline changes.
What happens if we (YellowWood) cancel your trip?
If we are forced to cancel your trip as it is not either viable (if the FCO advise against all but essential travel), or if we can not manage your health and safety on a particular itinerary, or because we do not have the numbers to reach our minimum, then we will ask you to select one of the following options, which may already be familiar to you:
- Move your booking monies to a new adventure in 2021 (dates are published on our website, or we may be able to schedule a date to suit you). Your monies are fully protected by the Travel Trust Association.
- Accept a credit refund note: this is a 100% financially protected note that can be used at any time for a future adventure with YellowWood. Your monies are fully protected by the Travel Trust Association.
- Request a refund: if you are in a situation where you need to request a refund, then we will be able arrange that for you. We will process this within 14 days of receiving your bank details, but often the refund will be with you much sooner than that.
What happens if I cancel my trip?
To provide you with as much flexibility as possible in these changing times, if you cancel your trip up to 30 days before your adventure, you can:
- move your booking to a new date or new adventure without any cancellation charges.
- Accept a credit note, with no expiry date, for the value of your booking, to be used against a future adventure.
What happens if the FCO change their advice regarding travel to my adventure destination whilst I am already on an adventure?
We will support you so that, as advised by the FCO, if you are able to leave, you should do so. All expenses for alternative travel, testing, treatment or self isolation will need to be covered by you so it is important that you have travel insurance that covers the costs incurred due to Coronavirus.
We will treat your booking as if it were cancelled and will work out an offer of remaining credit towards a new trip, or a partial refund credit note or refund based on the proportion of your trip that was cancelled.
You should ensure you are confident of what is covered by your travel insurance provider.
What happens if quarantine requirements are changed whilst I am already on an adventure?
If you would like to return home early to avoid quarantine restrictions coming into place, we will support you with arrangements but it will be at your own discretion and all expenses for alternative travel, testing, treatment or self-isolation will need to be covered by you. It is important that you have travel insurance that covers such costs incurred.
It will depend on your adventure itinerary as to whether it is possible to facilitate your return home ahead of schedule.
We will not be able to offer any sort of refund for any portion of the trip not used.
What if my flights are cancelled but not the trip?
The first thing to do is to contact the airline to confirm the options available to you, including alternative flights and/or refunds.
Our focus on individual customer service means that we will help you look at alternative flight options too. We’ll do our best to find a way to get you out on your adventure and if that’s not possible, then we will move your booking to a later date or convert it to a credit note.
What if not enough people book onto a trip?
All trips have a minimum group size in order to go ahead (usually 4)
For viable trips, we will confirm to you that the minimum group size been reached and aim to guarantee your departure at least 45 days before it is due to start. You will be notified by email when this happened. If the minimum group size is not reached, we will have to cancel that departure date and you can either move to an alternative date, receive a refund credit note, or receive a full refund.
Health & Safety
We have asked our suppliers to sign up to the Safe Travels protocols set out by the WTTC so you can feel confident that you are in safe hands. As travel restrictions ease and our itineraries become viable, each of our adventure information pages will include a trip specific Coronavirus section to explain any changes that have been made, along with any safety measures.
All of our adventures already involve the following;
- Small groups: We have a maximum of 12 but most often our groups will be between 4 (our minimum number) and 8-10. Should you wish to travel with just family and friends, we are experienced in creating wonderful customised adventures in our destination countries
- Off the Beaten Track: We have an excellent choice of itineraries where the focus is outdoor activities (walking and horse riding) with most of the day being spent outdoors. Some itineraries use camping as the main accommodation option – see individual holidays for further detail.
- Care for our communities: We will carry out a Community Impact Assessment to assess how a visit from our group, may affect local communities to which it travels.
- Experienced staff: or local and Yellowwood guides are all experienced in terms of managing groups, risk and health & Safety, as well as having local knowledge and experience (or direct access to someone with local knowledge).
- Personal and attentive customer service: due to our small size we can help you with your individual situation and find the right solution to suit you
In the followup to the Covid-19 pandemic, we have introduced the following;
It is important for your own health & safety, and that of the group and those you may interact with on holiday, that you honestly assess and monitor your own health.
- YellowWood will ask you to complete a confidential health screening questionnaire. This will help you self assess your physical condition / risk profile and ensure we have up to date information for you in the case of an emergency.
- We ask that you take your temperature each morning to check for fever in the 10 days before your YellowWood Adventure.
- Only restaurants with protocols complying to local requirements for food hygiene and social distancing will be used.
- We will encourage outdoor eating spaces where possible.
- We will minimise buffets and meals involving food sharing (picnics)
- You may be asked to wear face coverings in public areas when in local communities, to help reduce the risk of us introducing coronavirus to remote villages.
- We will only offer hotels that are operating a COVID-19 protocol that complies with local government guidelines.
- If you are a solo traveller, the majority of our itineraries cater for single rooms as an option, for a single room supplement. Where you are happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender, forming a social bubble, we will ensure you stay with the same room/tent mate for the duration of your trip.
- Tents (on camping itineraries) are provided by YellowWood adventures, and will be thoroughly cleaned prior to use. Tents will be labelled so that the same tent is used by the same people during an adventure, negating the need for them to be cleaned daily during the trip.
- We will minimise the use of public transport, and carry out a risk assessment where public transport is used within an itinerary
- Enhanced cleaning of group vehicles with virucidal cleaners will take place.
- Touch points, such as van door handles and seats will be cleaned regularly throughout the day by your guide or driver. We would politely request that people stay in the same seat during a day, to minimise transmission risks.
- Drivers will follow local protocols on the usage of face masks and social distancing.
- Where you need to sit next to someone else, we would ask you to wear a face covering.
- We will request vehicles with opening windows but on long distances, or across hot / dusty areas, it may not be possible to keep the windows open.
- Where air conditioning is used, it will bring air in from outside of the car.
Personal Health & Hygiene
- We ask you to follow basic COVID-19 prevention procedures including frequent hand washing for 20 seconds with soap and water and use of 70% alcohol hand sanitisers.
- We ask for you to bring your own suitable and preferred sanitiser supply on holiday with you to reduce incidence of transmission through shared bottles, and skin irritation through use of unfamiliar / untested liquids. Our guides will have their own supply and every effort will be made to have extra available for in case it is required.
- Many of our destinations operate on a cash economy basis so contactless payment is not possible. Please ensure you sanitise after handling money or consider use of gloves
- Follow local guidelines as regards distancing and face coverings. Guidelines will vary – your leader will be able to advise you of what is expected, and will role model appropriate behaviour. Please bring suitable face coverings with you – you may wish to bring a mix of washable and disposable face coverings which will suit the facilities available to you during the trip – see kit list. Min x 6 masks / face coverings plus zip lock plastic bags to keep used masks safely whilst they ‘quarantine’ for 72 hours.
- There may be last minute tweaks to the detail of your itinerary, if sites or museums etc. are closed. Our links with local operators in our destination countries will minimise the risk of this and enable us to create exciting alternative options.
What happens if I, or someone else shows symptoms during the adventure?
If a you, a member of the group, or a group leader develops Coronavirus symptoms during the adventure, we will assist you/ them to get medical attention as soon as possible, and will follow in country guidelines regarding the reporting of the symptoms, isolating, and getting a test done.
It is very important that you have travel insurance that covers the medical and other costs incurred due to Coronavirus. All expenses for testing, treatment or self isolation will need to be covered by you (and reimbursed by your insurance company). We will support you in getting all the care and facilities that you required.
Do I need to pay before my trip is guaranteed?
We have introduced some new Terms and Conditions regarding final payments, and will now only ask you to pay 30 days before departure, which is when we will definitively guarantee or cancel your departure.
Do I have to pay the balance if there is still a travel ban in place?
We will review the status of your trip 30 days before departure and will inform you of its cancellation if there is still a travel ban in place. If we have not informed you that the trip is cancelled, please follow the payment instructions on your booking to pay by the deadline and ensure your space on the adventure is secure.
If you wish to cancel or postpone your trip, you can review your options and get in touch with us to do that (see the section on ‘What If I cancel my trip’).
Is my money safe?
Yes, your funds are 100% protected by the Travel Trust Association (TTA), in line with the UK Package Travel Regulations Legislation. At YellowWood, we recognise your rights to receive a timely refund of any monies relating to a booking if we cancel it due to covid, and have consistently offered our clients this option