Terms & Conditions
To book Val Tours services you need to make a written confirmation by letter, fax or email. A booking is accepted and acceptance becomes definite only from the date that Val Tours have confirmed acceptance in writing and issued a proforma invoice. At the point of issuing a proforma invoice by Val Tours to the client, a contract between the client and Val Tours comes into existence. All contracts and matters arising from it are subject to Croatian law and the exclusive jurisdiction of the Croatian courts. Val Tours reserve the absolute right to decline any bookings for any legal reasons whatsoever, at their sole discretion.
According to the proforma invoice issued by Val Tours to a client, a non-refundable deposit (50% of the total amount) is required, by bank transfer to the bank account of Val Tours. If the payment is not received by the due date stated on the proforma invoice, Val Tours reserves the right to treat the booking as cancelled and charge a cancellation fee, the amount of which will not exceed the total cost of the holiday. Customers are therefore strongly recommended to take out travel insurance at an early stage to cover them in event of cancellation.
Payment of the balance of the tour cost is due upon the client's arrival to the tour.
Deposits are non-refundable but are transferable. Deposits are transferable to another specified tour by Val Tours but are subject to deductions for any expenses incurred by Val Tours.
Val Tours reserves the right to cancel any tour for which there are insufficient reservations not less than 45 days before the departure date. In the event of cancellation by Val Tours, all deposits made to Val Tours will be refunded.
A client may cancel his tour reservation 60 days before the departure date without further costs except the non-refundable deposit, which can also be transferred to a future tour run by Val Tours. For cancellations in the period of 60-45 days before the tour, a client would be charged 75% of the total tour cost, where the deposit will be included. For cancellations within 45 days before the tour, a client would be charged for a complete tour cost, where the deposit will be included.
These may occur unexpectedly. When calculating tour prices in advance, Val Tours tries to anticipate the rising costs of ground transportation and accommodation. Price changes may also occur because of fluctuating exchange rates. If unexpected cost rises do occur, we may have to increase the tour cost. If it is necessary to increase the tour cost, customers will be notified not less than 45 days before the departure date with an explanation of the amount. Should it be necessary to increase the tour cost by more than 10%, participants may withdraw without penalty. Tour cost rises of up to 2% will be absorbed within the original stated price.
What The Tour Price Includes
The tour price includes all travel, accommodation and meals as specified in the itinerary of each individual tour and the services of the tour leader(s) throughout. The following items are not included in the cost: arrival costs to the tour starting point (airplane, bus, ferry, railway etc. tickets), travel insurance, passport and visa costs, vaccinations and medication, telephone calls, laundry, drinks and food (unless specified in the tour details), tips and items of a purely personal nature.
Changes in the itinerary may occur even though tours are carefully planned. Indeed, changes will be made to the stated itinerary if in Val Tours guides' sole opinion it will benefit the tour by providing better birdwatching opportunities. The itinerary detailed in the on-line brochure is therefore an illustration of the sites we may visit to gain the maximum birdwatching benefit from the tour, in Val Tours guides' sole opinion. A change in the order that locations are visited is not deemed to be a major change. Should a major change of itinerary or schedule be forced on us while the tour is in progress by occurrences out of control of Val Tours, such as weather delay or breakdown, any additional costs are the responsibility of the participants. Travel insurance is therefore essential.
Passport and Visa Requirements
All participants are responsible for, and must be in possession of, a full passport, valid for at least six months beyond the end of the tour. In addition, participants must obtain any necessary visas required for the tour.
General and more specific information will be made available to all tour participants upon request, such as climate, clothing requirements, bird species we are likely to encounter, etc. Please note, however, that there is absolutely no guarantee whatsoever that specific bird species will be seen. Also, events such as floods, storms, fires etc. may prevent the tour from visiting certain areas resulting in specific bird species being missed; Val Tours will not accept responsibility for this. Any list provided is merely an indication of the species we may encounter on a tour. See also Tour Alterations.
Accommodation will be in a three-star hotel in the vicinity of the birding areas. Val Tours ensures that all rooms are en suite and price includes full board (breakfast, picnic lunch and evening meal). Single rooms are normally available at extra cost. If you are travelling singly, but want to share a room, every effort will be made to find someone of the same sex for you to share with; if this is not possible, however, Val Tours will have to charge you a single supplement.
Travel insurance is absolutely essential and the suitable cover is to be arranged by the participants. This will ensure that the necessary protection is provided against loss of deposit and medical costs, in case of illness or injury during the tour. Please note that travel insurance rarely provides sufficient cover for expensive optical equipment; you are therefore recommended to add this to your insurance policy prior to departure.
Restrictions on Participation
Val Tours programs do not normally entail strenuous activity but, if this cannot be avoided, it will be made clear in the tour details. Nevertheless, participants must be able to complete moderate walks of several miles a day, sometimes on uneven or slippery surfaces, to meet the schedule of the tour. If you have any health problems or physical limitations, you are required to advise Val Tours prior to booking. Small groups do, of course, call for consideration from all to ensure that everybody enjoys the tour. Your cooperation in not participating in any antisocial behaviour, such as smoking in the bus, is therefore expected. Val Tours reserves the right to send home at their own expense any person who will not conduct themselves in an acceptable manner, at Val Tours guides' sole discretion.
The minimum group size is 4 and the maximum group size is usually 8, excluding leaders. A suitable maximum group size to enjoy the tour will depend upon the location. Val Tours reserves the right to change leaders without notice.
Responsibility of Val Tours
Val Tours will take all reasonable steps to ensure that all services provided are of an acceptable standard. Val Tours gives absolutely no guarantee whatsoever that specific bird species will be seen. Any list provided is merely an indication of the species that may be encountered on a tour. Val Tours cannot, furthermore, accept liability for physical injury, loss, damage or expense resulting from any event whatsoever beyond the control of Val Tours. Insurance is therefore absolutely essential.
Errors and Ommisions
Whilst the greatest care is taken in the preparation of the on-line brochure, mistakes can occur. Unless the error or omission has a major effect on the tour to the extent that it would make absolutely impossible for the participants to see a significant number of species listed in the tour description, no claim for compensation can be entertained.