Terms and Conditions

Applicability of Terms & Conditions 

These terms and conditions shall be incorporated into the contract and shall apply in place of and prevail over any terms and conditions contained or referred to in any communication from the customer or implied by custom or practice. Other terms and conditions are expressly rejected by the company.

Booking

Conditions of Booking

The contract shall be formed when the company acknowledges acceptance of the customers booking form and required payment.

The contract is subject to availability of a course place/date and the acceptance by the customer of these terms and conditions. 

Any customer under the age of 18 years must have the explicit permission of his/her parent or guardian before being able to take part in any activity/course offered by the company. The parent or guardian need to be aware and accept the risks involved in adventure activities and satisfy themselves accordingly. 

Participation in adventurous activities entails some risk of injury. All staff employed by the company are trained and appropriately qualified to run activity sessions and will at all times proceed in a manor to limit the risk of injury. However, customers need to accept that accidents and injuries can happen. 

On river days we cannot guarantee that the levels or participants skill level will be appropriate for the conditions therefore we will not offer refunded payment if we do not paddle the exact rivers identified in planning. On occasion we may agree on a change of booking date if it does not effect the initial group numbers. This will be solely at the discretion of Shearwater coaches and management. 

All bookings are on the basis that the customer will, at all times, observe the safety regulations set by the company. 

The customer/student is responsible for the safekeeping of all equipment issued for use during the activity/course. With the exception of fair wear and tear Shearwater Training reserves the right to charge for equipment that has been lost or misused. 

Shearwater Training and its coaches are not under any liability whatsoever in respect of loss or damage to personal property, not caused by the negligence or default of Shearwater Training and its associates whilst in attendance of courses, trips or expeditions.

Neither the company website or literature constitutes an offer and the company may correct any errors or omissions to its published prices at any time prior to the confirmation of the contract in accordance with this condition. 

All information is produced in good faith that it is accurate at the time of publish. Any current price list replaces all previous price lists. 

Course and Trip Fees

Courses and trips can be booked using our booking associates, TryBooking. Full payment is expected upon booking to confirm places. Places can also be reserved via the receipt of a completed booking form and a non-refundable deposit of £50.

The outstanding balance of any course or trip fees is payable 4 weeks prior to the commencement of the event. In the event that the balance is not paid the company will have the discretion to treat the booking as cancelled by the customer. The time for payment shall be the essence of the contract. 

The full course or trip fee is required to reserve a place for any booking made within 4 weeks of the commencement of the course or trip. 

Should the course or trip becomes fully booked, full payment is due regards of the commencement of the course or trip.

Payment Terms

Payment can be made by the following methods:

  • Direct payment via TryBooking – A 20p booking fee is due.
  • By electronic bank transfer via BACS – contact us for bank details. 

Balance payments must be received 4 weeks prior to commencement of the course or trip.

Deposits are non-refundable and cancellations made less than 4 weeks before the commencement of the event will incur penalties. 

Amendments by the customer 

Substitution to the original customer for another can be made provided at least 2 weeks notice is given by the substituted customer to the company and the substituting student satisfies the requirement of the course. All substitutions must be made with the consent of the company with both the substituted and substituting customer being jointly and severally liable for the total course fee as well as an administrative cost of £20.00 per course/substitution.

A customer may apply, in writing, to change course/trip or course/trip dates as long as the original booking is more than 4 weeks from the date of the request. The new course or trip must be one that appears on our website. An administrative charge of £20.00 is payable at the time of change. Any requests to change course/trip or course/trip dates within the 4 week period will be dealt with under the terms and conditions relating to cancellation by the customer.

Cancellations

Cancellation by the customer 

We understand that sometimes a client’s plans change and that they need to change their booking or cancel their course or trip, and we are happy to facilitate this where practicable. However, short notice changes distrust courses and trips and thus will incur a penalty. All cancellations must be in writing and sent either by post or email. The company will acknowledge a cancellation within 5 days of receiving it. Until the customer has received confirmation the original booking remains valid.

We are a small provider and our courses and trips have limited spaces. If we do not have sufficient notice that someone will not attend a course or trip then we do not have sufficient time to fill the place and the revenue may be ultimately lost. To enable us time to avoid costly losses we ask that you contact us as early as possible about your circumstances, so that we can advise of what we can do to help. Often we can be much more flexible with enough notice.

In relation to cancelations, customers will be charged on the following basis:

  • 75% of the total course fee is payable where cancellation takes place less that 4 weeks but more than 2 weeks before the commencement of the course.
  • Where a cancellation takes place within 2 weeks before the start date of the course or, on or after the commencement date of the course, 100% of the total course fee is payable. However, at our discretion, if we feel that circumstances warrant a transfer to another course, a transfer fee of £40 is payable. Transfers are offered on the condition that the course transferred to is not full. You will be notified prior to the start of the course whether there will be a place available for you.
  • All transfers must be taken within a period of twelve months from the original course date. If for whatever reason, the course transferred to is cancelled by the company, the customer would not be entitled to a refund of the course fee. 

Customers are advised that all deposits are non-refundable.

Covid related cancellations

There is a significantly increased risk of cancellation due to Covid-19 – this may be related to restrictions or difficulties with transport or infection. We will work with groups and individuals to manage this as best we can. We hope that people will work with us and help us come up with good solutions that are fair for both parties.

For a limited time we are allowing transfers to other dates, without penalties.

Cancellation by the company 

Whilst every attempt is made to ensure that courses and trips run as planned, the company will notify the customer of cancellation as soon as practicable where it believes on reasonable grounds that cancellation is necessary due to dangerous and/or unsuitable conditions for the course or trip.

The company shall notify the customer of cancellation not less than 5 days prior to the commencement of the course where numbers as a result of either customer(s) cancellation or booked numbers have failed to reach a workable minimum.

Cancellation by the company does not affect a customer’s right to a refund of travel costs that he/she may have incurred prior to the cancellation and since lost except in the circumstances set out in the clauses above.

In the event of cancellation customers will be offered the choice of the following options:

  • Full refund of the fee paid
  • Another booking on a different date
  • personal coaching days equivalent to the bookings cost.

Equipment

Hired equipment

Shearwater Training hire some equipment such as boats to clients subject to availability and on the basis that any damage or loss caused is solely the responsibility of the customer. Should boats be damaged due to negligence by the user, we would expect the user to pay for repair or replacement. We recommend that you take out your own insurance to cover the risk of any damages or loss. 

Boats are to be used for the purpose of kayaking or canoeing in various environments therefore we expect some minor wear and tear can occur. We would ask that clients take care and look after the boats when using them both on and off the water.

Prior to using our equipment we ask that you:

  • Make sure airbags are fully inflated – any leaks should be reported to the coach or leader.
  • Avoid dragging the boat over sharp rocks or rocky beaches
  • Think about moves that have a high chance of impacts
  • Report any damage as soon as possible

Shearwater Training and its staff are not under any liability whatsoever in the respect of loss or damage to personal property, however caused, whilst attending a course or trip.

Communications

Shearwater Training operates a “Virtual office” with most operations done paper free. All communications to customers, including payments, are carried out electronically.

This helps us achieve our aim of carbon neutrality as well as only printing documents when absolutely necessary. However if you require any documentation, such as confirmation of bookings, send to you through the post we are willing to arrange this if sending documents electronically is not suitable or appropriate to your needs – please do think carefully about the environmental consequences before enquiring.

Environment and sustainability

Sustainability

Our business operates almost totally in the outdoors. We are ambassadors for the outdoor activities sector and also believe we are the guardians of our natural world. We firmly believe in sustainable operations and thus work hard to ensure our courses and trips have as little environmental impact as possible.

Environment

We ask clients to adhere to the “leave no trace” practices as well as assisting us in the maintenance of our world. We ask clients to take their own waste home and work to remove as much ‘extra’ waste as possible where found and where it is safe to extract.

We ask clients to think carefully about access to areas; especially where we are visiting areas of limited access. On occasion we will have sought special permissions to be in protected locations. We ask clients not to return to those spots without the same prior permission.

We ask clients think carefully about transport to courses. We encourage people to share lifts where practical or to use public transport and make use of our hire equipment. We encourage these measures to assist in becoming a more carbon neutral community within the outdoors.

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