The following rules must be applied in case of cancellation of a tour by a client.
As of today forward, we will enforce our contract at all times. (October 2015)
Rules of refunds:
Read with Cancellation Costs above
Our contract reads:
This has to be read in conjunction with the Consumer act and I quote from it: (English available athttp://www.thenct.org.za/NCTDocs/founding-legislation/f8d6f6aa-994d-4305-b3d0-ea056416bbd0.pdf or in the Contracts between school and Travel and Sport on Dropbox)
Consumer’s right to cancel advance reservation, booking or order
(2) Subject to subsections (3) and (4), a consumer has the right to cancel any advance
booking, reservation or order for any goods or services to be supplied.
(3) A supplier who makes a commitment or accepts a reservation to supply goods or
services on a later date may—
(a) require payment of a reasonable deposit in advance; and
(b) impose a reasonable charge for cancellation of the order or reservation,
subject to subsection (5).
(4) For the purposes of this section, a charge is unreasonable if it exceeds a fair
amount in the circumstances, having regard to—
(a) the nature of the goods or services that were reserved or booked;
(b) the length of notice of cancellation provided by the consumer;
(c) the reasonable potential for the service provider, acting diligently, to find an
alternative consumer between the time of receiving the cancellation notice
and the time of the cancelled reservation; and
(d) the general practice of the relevant industry.
(5) A supplier may not impose any cancellation fee in respect of a booking,
reservation or order if the consumer is unable to honour the booking, reservation or
order because of the death or hospitalisation of the person for whom, or for whose
benefit the booking, reservation or order was made.
The most important reference as guideline to quantifying any of above is given in 4(d) above.
The industry general practice is 50% to 100% deposit, forfeitable in many cases (Surevest Travel, hotels, airlines etc. are points in case)
The keywords are:
Reasonable deposit – our deposit at around 20% is much more reasonable than the industry – 50% to 100% is the norm.
Reasonable cost for cancellation – Our +- 20% (being the deposit) is a very reasonable cost for cancellation of a booking, compared to our industry.
Both terms, reasonable cost and reasonable deposit, are open for interpretation, which places the burden on the consumer to prove what reasonable is and the task on us to defend our interpretation of reasonability.
It is our ethical and moral duty to operate within the boundaries of the law. If we assume that the law was written especially to make the playing field fair, and we operate more lenient than the law, we are being kind and generous to our clients, doesn’t matter what their opinion is. (somebody that loses money due to the outcome of a personal decision always feel cheated and will have long sad stories or threaten legal action)
Paragraph (5) is covered by our insurance and when a client has a legal claim, the claim has to be processed and paid to the client before we make any concessions/payments.
Make sure your teachers understand the rules. It is the obligation of the client to read the contract he signs, so don’t lift this out in presentations etc.
Tours sold under the previous grey rules will be honoured in line with your undertakings with the clients, subject to you writing a mail before Friday 23 October informing us of special agreements you have in place so we can determine our risk in advance. If you do not inform us of these tours, cancellations will default to the new ruling.