Picos Important Information
Welcome to Northern Spain’s glorious coastal mountains
- All you need to know about our holidays in the Picos de Europa
- Seasons & Services, Day Off, Insurance, Booking Conditions, At Your Own Risk, Making a Booking…
Please refer here for any further information concerning your walking holiday in the Picos de Europa. If you have any further questions that aren’t covered here, please feel free to get in touch by calling 01799 513331 or make an accommodation enquiry here.
Organised Walks - At Your Own Risk
You join us on our organised walks at your own risk, responsible for your own safety, as part of an autonomous group, in which each member has a duty of care to each other.
You will be asked to sign a disclaimer in this respect. This is an explanation of the status of our organised itineraries whether they involve walking, snowshoeing or skiing. We refer to such itineraries as organised, not guided. They are available on a basis of goodwill so that you might enjoy an itinerary you might not otherwise discover. They are nothing more than an opportunity to go out in beautiful scenery in company. It is a fact that mountains, mountainous areas and activities undertaken in them are associated with personal injury and death. By coming to such areas, you are exposing yourself and your party to the possibility of personal injury or even death. In such an event, Collett's will not be held responsible for your interest in mountainous areas and your involvement in mountain pursuits, which can occasionally have tragic consequences.
In these days of litigation it is important you know that every time you (and each member of your party) join us on an organised itinerary you do so at your own risk as part of an autonomous group, in which each member of that group has a duty of care to the other. This is no different from the responsibilities you have on a casually arranged weekend walk with friends or family in the UK. Our hosts all have experience of the mountains, some more than others. Some have qualifications relevant to mountain activities, but they are not qualified mountain guides. We recruit and train our outdoor staff in line with a Health & Safety Policy, which is based on risk assessment and recognised mountain safety procedures.
Not being professionally responsible for you on organised itineraries does not mean we ignore safety, nor does it make us exempt from owing a duty of care to each person who joins us on an organised itinerary. Your safety is paramount and we therefore take our own measures to maximise safety. We do this in line with legal requirements pertaining to duty of care. We apply Codes of Practice to the procedures carried out by our outdoor staff. We assess, manage and communicate risk. We try to make people aware of the importance of mountain safety and to highlight their responsibilities when part of a group.
Our Codes of Practice should not really be taken into consideration by you when deciding to join an organised itinerary, for at the heart of our procedures are basic mountain safety measures, which should be undertaken by every individual when preparing for a day in the mountains. Finally, during your stay you act at your own risk on any ideas, information and opinions you might acquire from our hosts or from material prepared by us to help you get the most from the area. Thank you for your understanding on all of the above.
Our Day Off in the Picos de Europa
Thursday is our day off in the Picos de Europa. There are no organised walks nor Office Hour. However, there is somebody to meet and settle in new self-guided guests who arrive on this day. For guests staying at Posada el Corcal, breakfast is served as normal. Dinner is available at Posada el Corcal but it is not included in your holiday price, so you pay locally. Many guests use this as an opportunity to eat out locally in one of the many restaurants in Potes, and our team of staff will be on hand on Wednesday evening to help you with recommendations..
Seasons & Services
As far as services are concerned, the season in the Picos de Europa is fairly constant from May to October and this is why we start here in mid May. This is partly because Potes is a town in its own right – not just a place that attracts visitors. Naturally, there is a crescendo in the season during early and mid August. Either way, if you join us in the Picos for a self-guided holiday, having a car is essential, as the lack of public transport and the geography here dictates that you will need to take short drives to the start of many walks, and a 90 minute drive to do the celebrated Cares Gorge, which is a ‘must‐do’ for walkers in the Picos.
Transport during your holiday
Whilst transport is included in our 7 night Walking Weeks, if you prefer, you can opt to self-drive instead. With your own car or a hire car you will be free to visit local places of interest a short drive away on the day off. Our destinations are majestic; driving conditions are generally excellent and every journey should be a pleasurable part of your day. Naturally, having a car also gives you complete flexibility on your days of arrival and departure, instead of joining our transfers from Bilbao Airport. If coming independently by car, Collett’s will send directions to your destination about 3 weeks before your holiday.
Special Dietary Requirements & Severe Allergies
We are happy to cater for ‘special’ dietary requirements and minor intolerances (vegetarian, gluten free etc.) Our kitchens are of a domestic standard and we endeavour to maintain good food preparation practices.
However, due to the limited size and specifications of these kitchens we would advise anyone with a ‘severe food allergy’ which, represents a health threat, serious or otherwise, that we cannot guarantee that traces of some commonly used ingredients (such as nuts, mushrooms etc.), will not make their way into meals, which are not meant to contain such ingredients. Our booking conditions require all guests to inform us at the booking stage of any matters concerning diet or allergies. However, if your intolerance or allergy represents a health threat of any sort, we would strongly recommend that you are carrying the necessary medication during your stay with us.
Collett’s Mountain Holidays Booking Conditions
1. CONTRACT: Please read these booking conditions carefully as they, together with the specific information in your booking confirmation, form an important part of your contract with Collett's Limited (company number : 03467538 whose registered office is at Market House, 10 Market Walk, Saffron Walden, Essex, CB10 1JZ) trading as Collett's Mountain Holidays.
2. PRICES: We reserve the right to alter any of our advertised prices. Our prices were set on 26 November 2018, and the reference exchange rate was 1.131 (as published by the Financial Times). You will be advised of the current price of the holiday that you wish to book before your contract is confirmed. All prices quoted are fully inclusive of non-optional charges.
3. SUPPLEMENTS: We reserve the right to apply a supplement to your holiday after you have booked in the event of increases to the costs of supplying your holiday, which might result from changes in the cost of fuel or other power sources, accommodation costs, costs of compliance with local rules and laws, exchange rate fluctuations and/or government action (including changes in any levels of taxation such as VAT). Supplements will not be applied within 20 days of your arrival date.
4. MAKING A BOOKING AND PAYMENT: When you have chosen your accommodation and you make a request to us to book it, you must pay a deposit of £100 (or £150 for our Ski Safari, Camino de Santiago and Hut to Hut holidays), or if you are booking within 8 weeks of your arrival date the full cost of the booking. Your booking is only confirmed and a contract between us will only exist when a) your party leader has ticked the box on our client portal confirming that they accept our terms and conditions; b) we have received in cleared funds a deposit of £100 or £150 (as appropriate) per person; and c) we have issued our confirmation by email. Please check your confirmation carefully and report any incorrect or incomplete information to us immediately.
5. FINAL BALANCES: If you have paid a deposit, the ‘final balance’ of the cost of your holiday is due 56 days (8 weeks) before departure. If the balance is not received on time, we will remind you that it is overdue. If you then do not pay within 7 days of this reminder we reserve the right to cancel your booking and retain your deposit.
6. INSURANCE: It is essential that you take out adequate and valid insurance, which should include (without limitation) cover against the cost of cancellation by you, assistance (including repatriation) in the event of accident or illness, and third party liability for injury and damage. We recommend that your policy is as extensive as our recommended insurance policy, details of which can be found on our website. Insurance premiums in respect of travel insurance purchased from us are non-refundable and non-transferable.
7. BOOKING CHANGES: After our confirmation has been issued, any requests for changes must be sent to us in writing by e-mail or post, by the person that made the booking. We cannot guarantee that we will be able to accommodate your request but we will try to do so. If you change the number in your party, the accommodation price will be re-calculated. If the party size is reduced, this is likely to mean the remaining members paying more due to under-occupancy.
8. CANCELLATIONS: If you want to cancel your booking, the person who made the booking must send this in writing to us, by email or post. You will be charged a cancellation fee as follows: If you cancel (this is the date on which we receive your written notice of cancellation during the hours of 9am to 5.30pm):
More than 57 days before your arrival date: deposit only;
Between 56 and 43 days before your arrival date: 25%;
Between 42 and 29 days before your arrival date: 50%; and
Within 28 days of arrival date: 100%
Charges are shown as a percentage of your total holiday cost (including any excursions).
9. YOUR RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR BOOKING: When you make a booking you guarantee that you have the authority to accept and do accept on behalf of your party the terms of these booking conditions. This means that you are responsible for making all payments due, notifying us if any changes or cancellations are required and for receiving the confirmation and keeping your party informed.
10. OUR LIABILITY, CONDITIONS of CARRIAGE & LIMITATIONS: (a) Our obligations, in providing any accommodation or service included in your holiday, are to take reasonable skill and care to arrange for the provision of such accommodation or services. Therefore, providing we have selected our providers with reasonable care and skill, we will have no liability to you for anything that happens at the accommodation or any acts or omissions of the provider or other service providers. We will also have no liability in the following situations: (i) where the accommodation or services cannot be provided as booked due to circumstances beyond our control or which amount to "force majeure" (including, without limitation, terrorist activity, natural disasters and adverse weather conditions); (ii) where you incur any loss or damage that could not have been foreseen at the time of your booking, based on the information provided by you; (iii) where you incur any loss or damage that relates to any business activity; (iv) where any loss or damage relates to any services which do not form part of our contract with you. (b) Our liability, except in cases involving death, injury or illness, shall be limited to a maximum of 2 times the cost of your holiday with us. We shall have no liability where the cause of the failure to provide, or failure in, your holiday or any death or personal injury you may suffer is not due to any fault on our part or that of our agents or suppliers, because it is either attributable to you, or attributable to someone unconnected with your holiday and is unforeseeable or unavoidable, or is due to unusual or unforeseeable circumstances beyond our control, the consequences of which could not have been avoided even if all due care had been exercised, or an event which neither we, nor our agents or suppliers could have foreseen or forestalled. We will only accept liability for negligent acts or omissions of our employees, suppliers, sub-contractors, servants or agents providing they were at the time undertaking work authorised by us. (c) Our liability will also be limited: in accordance with and/or in an identical manner to the contractual terms of the companies that provide us with third party services (such as accommodation and transport) and these terms are incorporated into this contract; and by any relevant international conventions which apply to, or govern, any of the accommodation or services included in your holiday with us. Other than as set out above, and as is detailed elsewhere in these booking conditions, we shall have no legal liability whatsoever to you for any loss or damage.
11. ROOM ALLOCATIONS: All accommodation is allocated by us. We will not accept liability for any complaints based on one bedroom being deemed less attractive than another on account of its size, views, character and/or location. The provision of a bedroom with a balcony will only be guaranteed if a balcony is requested verbally at the time of booking by you, then, if available, in writing on the booking form and finally confirmed in writing by us. We reserve the right to change your accommodation, provided the accommodation allocated is of the same or superior category to that originally booked.
12. SPECIAL REQUESTS: Any specific requests by you, such as matters concerning diet or allergies, must be advised to us on the booking form. Whilst endeavouring to fulfil all such requests, we shall not be liable to you if we fail to do so.
13. IF WE CHANGE OR CANCEL YOUR BOOKING: We may occasionally have to make changes or cancel your booking and we reserve the right to do so at any time. Changes If we make a major change to your holiday, we will inform you as soon as reasonably possible if there is time before your departure. You will have the choice of accepting the change of accommodation, or you can take any alternative accommodation we are able to offer you (you will pay the increase in cost if the replacement is advertised at a higher price than your original booking, or receive a refund of the difference if it is less expensive), or a refund of the money you’ve paid to us. These options don’t apply for minor changes. Examples of minor changes include, but are not limited to, change of accommodation to another of the same or higher standard, temporary withdrawal of facilities or seasonal unavailability of amenities. Cancellation We will not cancel your travel arrangements less than four weeks before your departure date, except for reasons beyond our control (also known as force majeure) or failure by you to pay the final balance. If your holiday is cancelled you can either have a refund of all monies paid or accept an offer of alternative accommodation of comparable standard from us, if available (we will refund any price difference if the alternative is of a lower value). Any amendment or cancellation fees you incur in terms of other arrangements you have made with other providers under separate contracts are not claimable from us. Please note that if a change or cancellation occurs because of circumstances beyond our control, for example as a result of the UK’s decision to leave the European Union, war, riot, industrial dispute, actual or threatened terrorist activity and its consequences, natural or nuclear disaster, fire, adverse weather conditions, flood, epidemic or pandemic illness and all similar situations we will have no further liability to you. No compensation, costs, damages, losses, expenses or any other sums, including the cost of securing alternative transport or accommodation will be paid by us.
14. BEHAVIOUR: When you book a holiday with us, you accept responsibility for the proper conduct of all members of your party during your stay. We reserve the right at any time to terminate the stay of any party member(s) whose behaviour is such, in our reasonable opinion, as to cause or to be likely to cause danger, upset or distress to anyone else or damage to property. Full cancellation charges will then apply and no refund will be given. Furthermore, we shall be under no obligation whatsoever to pay compensation or meet any costs or expenses (including but not limited to alternative accommodation) you may occur as a result of your stay being terminated. In addition, you agree to fully reimburse any accommodation provider concerned for the cost of any damage you cause to the accommodation in which you are staying before the end of your stay if the cost has been established by then or as soon as it has been established if later. You must also indemnify us for the full amount of any claim (including all legal costs) made against us by the accommodation provider or any third party as a result.
15. FINANCIAL PROTECTION: The monies you pay to us for your holiday are protected by means of an ABTA bond provided by Travel & General Insurance Services Limited. This means that, if in the unlikely event of our insolvency your holiday can't be provided, you will receive your money back or, if your stay has started, arrangements will be made for you to be able to continue as planned.
16. DATA PROTECTION: Please be assured that we have measures in place to protect the personal booking information held by us. This information will be passed on to the principal and to the relevant suppliers of your travel arrangements. The information may also be provided to public authorities such as customs or immigration if required by them, or as required by law. Our policy can be viewed at www.colletts.co.uk
17. ABTA: We are a Member of ABTA, membership number W6883. We are obliged to maintain a high standard of service to you by ABTA’s Code of Conduct. We can also offer you ABTA’s scheme for the resolution of disputes which is approved by the Chartered Trading Standards Institute. If we can’t resolve your complaint, go to www.abta.com to use ABTA’s simple procedure. Further information on the Code and ABTA’s assistance in resolving disputes can be found on www.abta.com. You can also access the European Commission Online Dispute (ODR) Resolution platform at http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/odr/. This ODR platform is a means of notifying us of your complaint; it will not determine how your complaint should be resolved.
18. SKI SAFARI: Your guide, itinerary and accommodation shall be supplied by MSA srl trading as Arabba Holidays, for which Collett's Limited acts as an agent. Consequently each Ski Safari is neither run nor controlled by Collett's Limited and we are therefore not responsible/liable for its provision or for anything that happens during the course of its provision by Arabba Holidays. You therefore acknowledge that Collett's Limited acts as the disclosed agent of Arabba Holidays, and you agree that in the unlikely event that you need to make a claim, you shall make this against Arabba Holidays, and not Collett's Limited.
19. ANDALUCIA, CAMINO DE SANTIAGO & FRENCH PYRENEES HUT TO HUT: All transport, accommodation and food for these holidays are supplied by third parties (whose identities are available at www.colletts.co.uk/thirdparties), for which Collett's Limited acts as an agent. You therefore acknowledge that Collett's Limited acts as the disclosed agent of these third party suppliers, and you agree that in the unlikely event that you need to make a claim, you shall make this against the relevant third parties, and not Collett's Limited.
20. LIFT CLOSURES: We will not be held responsible for the closure of lifts during the winter season for any reason. In the event of lack of snow, we cannot be held liable, but will endeavour to make mutually suitable arrangements, and these may incur additional costs to you.
21. EXCURSIONS: We are happy to inform you of (and book) activities supplied by third parties, such as Glacier Treks and Summit Ascents, but it is important that you understand that: these excursions and activities are neither run nor controlled by Collett's (even if advertised by us); that we only act as your agent; and that your contract for these services is with the third party supplier in question and not Collett's Limited. Consequently, we are not responsible/liable for the provision of any such third party excursions or activities or for anything that happens during the course of its provision by the supplier. This applies to all activities advertised by Collett’s on our website and in resort and includes Glacier Treks and Summit Ascents. For example, in the case of Glacier Treks and Summit Ascents, as well as any Guided Via Ferrata you may book yourself whilst in the Dolomites, your contract for guiding services is directly with the third part supplier and not Collett's Limited.
22. DELAYED TRAVEL: Collett’s can take no responsibility for repercussions concerning delayed flights or other travel arrangements. If your flight, bus or train is delayed, your allocated transfer will wait for up to 60 minutes – but no longer. We cannot wait any longer because our drivers are on time limits. So, if the delay exceeds 60 minutes, we either (1) allocate you to a later Collett’s transfer free of charge subject to seats being available or (2) in the event of there not being a later transfer, we will endeavour to book you a taxi transfer, although this will be at your expense. We thank you in advance for your patience and understanding in the event of your transfer being delayed due to the delayed flight of other guests.
23. PASSPORT, VISA & IMMIGRATION REQUIREMENTS : Your specific passport and visa requirements, and other immigration requirements are your responsibility and you should confirm these with the relevant Embassies and/or Consulates. We do not accept any responsibility if you cannot travel because you have not complied with any passport, visa or immigration requirements.
24. ACCURACY: (i) We make every effort to give accurate information on our website but cannot be liable to you in the event of changes, which occur after information has been published on the website; and (ii) Any view expressed on the website is the personal view of a member of our staff. Whilst our staff will express personal opinions based on first-hand knowledge of the resort, the final choice of holiday remains yours. We will not accept responsibility for any verbal statement made by a member of our staff unless it is confirmed in writing prior to the start date of your holiday with us.
25. COMPLAINTS: In the unlikely event of any dissatisfaction with the accommodation or any of the services provided during your holiday, the matter must be reported immediately to our resort manager who will endeavour to put things right. You should also try to find a solution whilst you're on holiday. Unless the opportunity for rectification of complaints is given to our resort manager whilst you are in the resort, we will not accept responsibility at a later date. We will not accept liability for complaints unless a complaint form has been obtained from the resort manager by you, and then completed and signed by both you and the resort manager. If we are unable to resolve the complaint satisfactorily during your stay, please follow this up within 28 days of your return home by writing to Tom Collett at 3a Market Hill, Saffron Walden, Essex, CB10 1HQ giving your booking reference and all other relevant information. We will not accept liability for complaints made outside this period. Please keep your letter concise and to the point. If you fail to follow the requirement to report your complaint in resort we will have been deprived of the opportunity to investigate and rectify it and this may affect your rights under this booking. Please also see clause 17 above on ABTA.
26. DISPUTES: Any dispute or claim arising out of this contract that can't be settled between us can be referred by you to ABTA’s dispute resolution (see clause 17) or court.
27. JURISDICTION: You agree that the courts of England and Wales have exclusive jurisdiction and that English law shall apply.
28. FOREIGN & COMMONWEALTH OFFICE TRAVEL ADVICE: You should always check FCO advice on travel to the country you are visiting prior to travelling at https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
Our offices are open today from 9am to 6pm. To book, please call 01799 513331, Or click here to make an enquiry. We will reply within 24hrs. Or 48hrs at the weekend.
Queries relating to passports or visas should be directed to the Spanish embassy: Tel 0207 235 5555 www.mae.es
For general information on EHIC cards and healthcare whilst travelling visit www.bit.ly/HealthcareAbroad
For pre-travel information visit www.gov.uk/knowbeforeyougo
Or use the ABTA information line on 020 3117 0599 or visit www.abta.com