Terms and Conditions
Your contract is with Virgin Holidays Limited, trading as Travel City Direct. Virgin Holidays is a member of ABTA with membership number V2043 and ATOL holder number 2358.
The following terms in this web site shall have the meanings set out below when used in these Booking Conditions:
|‘We’, ‘Our’, ‘Us’, ‘Travel City Direct’||means Travel City Direct.|
|‘Holiday’||means the Holiday booked by you or any person on your behalf.|
|‘Travel Agent’||means any Agent through whom your booking with Travel City Direct is made.|
|‘Force Majeure’||means any circumstances which are unusual and/or unforeseeable which are beyond the control of Travel City Direct, the consequence of which could not have been avoided even if all due care had been exercised, including (but not limited to) war or threat of war; riot; civil strife; hostilities; political unrest; government action; industrial dispute; natural or other disaster; nuclear incident; terrorist activity; weather conditions; closure of airports; fire; flood; drought; re-scheduling or cancellation of flights or alteration of the airline or aircraft type by an airline and technical problems with transportation and all similar events outside our control.|
|‘Major Change’||includes the following when made before departure:
‘Package’ means a package as defined in the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992.
These conditions and the ‘Useful Information’ in this web site apply to all Holidays and govern your relationship with Travel City Direct. Please read them carefully before making a booking.
1. Your holiday contract
When a booking is made, the ‘lead name’ on the booking guarantees that he or she has the authority to accept and does accept on behalf of all members of your party the terms of these booking conditions. After we receive your booking and all appropriate payments, if the arrangements you wish to book are available, we will issue a confirmation invoice. A binding agreement will come into existence between us when we dispatch this invoice to the ‘lead name’ or your Travel Agent. This contract is governed by English Law, and the jurisdiction of the English Courts. You may however, choose the law and jurisdiction of Scotland or Northern Ireland if you wish to do so.
It is important to check the details on your invoice when you get it, or if booking late at the time of booking, that all the details are exactly as you requested. In the event of any discrepancy, please contact us or your Travel Agent immediately as it may not be possible to make changes later.
Some airlines and accommodation providers only load their seats/ accommodation to sell approximately 10 months before the departure. If this applies, we will tell you at time of booking and will issue an invoice setting out the details of your booking and we will take a deposit. A contract will then exist between us on the basis that, the actual price payable will be the applicable price once the airline/accommodation provider releases the seats/accommodation. The flight timings and other details will be those confirmed by the airline at the time the seats are released and may differ from those advised at the time of booking. We will also advise you of the confirmed price, flight timings and other details when the seats are released for booking by the airline. You will then have 7 days to confirm whether you wish to continue with the booking on the basis of the confirmed price, flight timings and other details or cancel the holiday and receive a full refund. We will issue a revised invoice if you confirm that you wish to continue with the booking. We will refund your deposit if the flight seats/accommodation do not become available. We will have no other liability and will not be responsible for refunding any other associated costs incurred.
2. Prices and Web Site accuracy
Although Travel City Direct make every effort to ensure the accuracy of the website information and pricing, regrettably errors do occasionally occur. You must therefore ensure you check the price and all other details of your chosen arrangements with us at the time of booking.
3. Passports, visas, health requirements and travel documents
It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of all necessary travel and health documents before departure. A full and valid passport is required for destinations we feature (including children) and visas may be required for some destinations. Requirements may change and you must check the up to date position in good time before departure. If you or any member of your party is not a British Citizen or holds a non-British passport, you must check passport and visa requirements with the consulate or Embassy in which you are intending to travel, prior to booking.
USA – Travel Authorisation (ESTA)
It is mandatory for anyone travelling to or transferring through the US under the Visa Waiver Program, to obtain approval to travel no later than 72 hours prior to travel by completing an online process ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorisation) scheme. The cost of an ESTA is currently approx $14 per person and can be obtained by visiting https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov or the Visit USA Website at www.visitusa.org.uk where further information on the scheme and up to date fee can also be found. Once completed and approved, the ESTA application is valid for two years and allows multiple visits without the need to reapply. Travellers can apply for an ESTA even if they have no firm plans to travel to the US.
Failure to obtain an ESTA could result in the passenger being denied boarding by the airline.
We consider adequate travel insurance to be essential. Please read your policy and take it with you on holiday. It is your responsibility to ensure that the insurance cover you purchase is suitable and adequate for your particular needs.
5. Your financial protection
We provide full financial protection for our package holidays, by way of our Air Travel Organiser’s Licence number 2358. When you buy an ATOL protected flight or flight inclusive holiday from us you will receive an ATOL Certificate. This lists what is financially protected, where you can get information on what this means for you and who to contact if things go wrong. We will provide you with the services listed on the ATOL Certificate (or a suitable alternative). In some cases, where we aren’t able do so for reasons of insolvency, an alternative ATOL holder may provide you with the services you have bought or a suitable alternative (at no extra cost to you). You agree to accept that in those circumstances the alternative ATOL holder will perform those obligations and you agree to pay any money outstanding to be paid by you under your contract to that alternative ATOL holder. However, you also agree that in some cases it will not be possible to appoint an alternative ATOL holder, in which case you will be entitled to make a claim under the ATOL scheme (or your credit card issuer where applicable). If we are unable to provide the services listed (or a suitable alternative, through an alternative ATOL holder or otherwise) for reasons of insolvency, the Trustees of the Air Travel Trust may make a payment to (or confer a benefit on) you under the ATOL scheme. You agree that in return for such a payment or benefit you assign absolutely to those Trustees any claims which you have or may have arising out of or relating to the non-provision of the services, including any claim against us, the travel agent (or your credit card issuer where applicable). You also agree that any such claims may be re-assigned to another body, if that other body has paid sums you have claimed under the ATOL scheme. If you book arrangements other than a package holiday (e.g. accommodation only), the financial protection referred to above does not apply.
If you have booked a flight inclusive holiday which commences in the Republic of Ireland, we hold a Travel Agents Licence Number TA0743 issued by the Commission for Aviation Regulation and as a requirement have arranged an approved secure bond. This means that when you book a holiday with us you can be entirely confident that in the unlikely event of our insolvency before or during your holiday, if you are overseas full arrangements will be made to repatriate you at the end of your holiday by CAR and any money you have paid to us is fully secured by ATOL.
6. Paying for your holiday
In order to confirm your chosen arrangements, you must pay a non-refundable deposit, including the applicable booking fee, which may be higher than the standard deposit to secure specific types of airline tickets, tours, cruises etc, and this will be confirmed to you at the time of booking (if booking within 10 weeks of departure full payment will be required by credit card or debit card). The balance of the cost of your arrangements (including any surcharge where applicable) is due not less than 10 weeks prior to departure. If we do not receive this balance in full and on time, we reserve the right to treat your booking as cancelled by you in which case the cancellation charges set out in clause 9 will become payable.
All monies you pay to one of our authorised travel agents are held by him on behalf and for the benefit of the Trustees of the Air Travel Trust at all times. This is subject to the agent’s obligation to pay it to us for as long as we do not fail. If we fail, any money held at that time by the agent, or subsequently accepted from you by him, is and continues to be held on behalf of and for the benefit of the of the Trustees of the Air Travel Trust without any obligation to pay that money to us.
We accept payment by credit card and debit card – direct payments to Virgin Holidays by credit card will incur a charge of 1.5% of the value of the transaction (this charge is correct at time of print and we reserve the right to increase/decrease this charge and you will be advised at the time of booking).
Booking through Virgin Holidays Retail Stores and Call Centre
If you make a booking with us through our dedicated retail stores and call centre rather than booking online, a non-refundable booking fee will be charged.
Credit Card Fraud Contingency:
If you do not supply the correct credit or debit card billing address and/or cardholder information, the issue of your tickets may be delayed and the overall cost may increase. We reserve the right to cancel your holiday if payment is declined or if you have supplied incorrect credit card information. We also reserve the right to do random checks (including the electoral roll) in order to minimise credit card fraud. As a result of this, before issuing tickets we may require you to provide us with a fax or postal copy of proof of address, a copy of your credit card and a recent statement.
7. Your holiday price
Travel City Direct endeavours to ensure that the most up to date and correct prices are shown on our website (our brochures indicate a guide price) Travel City Direct reserves the right to raise or lower their prices at any time. Occasionally, an incorrect price may be shown, due to an error. When Virgin Holidays become aware of any such error, we will endeavour to notify you at the time of booking (if we are then aware of the mistake) or as soon as reasonably possible. We reserve the right to cancel the booking if you do not wish to accept the price which is actually applicable to the holiday.
In respect of Packages, changes in fees (including transportation costs, fuel costs, dues, taxes, fees such as landing taxes or embarkation/ disembarkation fees at ports/airports and exchange rates) and services mean that the price of your travel arrangements may change after you have booked your holiday. However, there will be no change to the cost of your holiday within 30 days of departure. In relation to package holidays, we will absorb and you will not be charged for any increase equivalent to up to 1.5% of the price of your travel arrangements, which excludes insurance premiums and any amendment charges. You will be charged for the amount over and above that, plus an administration charge of £1.00 per person together with an amount to cover the agent’s commission. If this means that you have to pay an increase of more than 10% of the price of your travel arrangements (excluding insurance premiums and amendment charges), you will have the option of accepting a change to another holiday if we are able to offer one (if this is of equivalent or higher quality, you will not have to pay more but if it is of lower quality you will be refunded the difference in price), or cancelling and receiving a full refund of monies paid, except for any amendment charges and cancellation charges already incurred. Should you decide to cancel for this reason, you must exercise your right to do so within 14 days from the issue date printed on your final invoice. Should the price of your holiday go down due to the changes mentioned above, by more than 1.5% of your holiday cost, then any refund due will be paid to you. However, please note that travel arrangements are not always purchased in local currency and some apparent changes have no impact on the price of your travel due to contractual and other protection in place.
Air Passenger Duty
Taxes and surcharges referred to on price panels throughout the website have been calculated to include the UK Government’s Air Passenger Duty (reductions or increases may apply at the time of booking)
8. If you change your booking
If, after our confirmation invoice has been issued, you wish to change your travel arrangements in any way, we will do our utmost to make these changes, but it may not always be possible. Any request for changes to be made must be from the ‘lead name’ on the booking or your Travel Agent. You will be asked to pay an administration charge of £50 per person and any further cost we incur in making this alteration. You should be aware that these costs could increase the closer to the departure date that changes are made. Only one change of departure date, per booking may be permitted. Any change in departure date will be treated as a cancellation and full cancellation charges will apply. You will be asked to pay an admin fee of £50 per person and a new deposit per person to secure the new departure date. However, we will discount the new booking with the original deposit amount paid. Any further changes may be treated as a cancellation by you and result in cancellation charges being applied.
Note: Certain arrangements may not be amended after they have been confirmed and any alteration could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements. In some cases, any changes made may mean you having to pay for the cancelled arrangements and purchasing new ones at full cost.
9. If you cancel your holiday
You, or any member of your party, may cancel your travel arrangements at any time. Written notification by post, e-mail or fax from the ‘lead name’ on the booking or your Travel Agent, must be received at our offices. Since we incur costs in cancelling your travel arrangements, you will be required to pay the applicable cancellation charges shown in the grid below:
|Period before departure within which notice of cancellation is received by us in writing||% of total booking price*|
|More than 70 days||Loss of Deposit (which includes booking fee)|
|Less than 14 days||100%|
|*In some cases the deposit may be a higher amount to secure your arrangements, this will be non-refundable and the charges will be added to the cancellation charges above.|
Our cancellation charges are a percentage of the total holiday cost, (not including your insurance premium). These charges are based on how many days before your departure we receive your cancellation notice and not when your correspondence was sent to us. Please note that any amendment charges are non-refundable. For insurance premiums you should refer to your insurance provider’s cancellation policy.
Please note: If you have booked a cruise, any cancellation or amendments (including name changes) will incur an additional charge to the amendment or cancellation charges stated here in line with the relevant cruise line’s charges.
Please note that, in the case of cancellation after receipt of documents, no refund will be given unless unused tickets are returned to us.
Please note, if only some members of your party cancel, in addition to incurring the applicable cancellation charges, we will recalculate the holiday cost for the remaining travellers. You may have to pay the extra room charges such as single room supplements.
In cases where cancellation charges made by our suppliers are higher than the cost of the deposit, we may pass the charge on to you. Please ask for full details and we will notify you of the specific charges applicable to your booking.
Note: Certain arrangements may not be cancelled after they have been confirmed and any cancellation could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements.
10. If we change or cancel your holiday
We begin planning the arrangements we offer many months in advance and so we reserve the right to make changes to and correct errors in holiday details both before and after bookings have been confirmed. We must also reserve the right to cancel confirmed bookings at any time. For example, if the minimum number of clients required for a particular travel arrangement is not reached we may have to cancel it.
Most changes are minor but occasionally, we may have to make a Major Change. If we have to make a Major Change or cancel, we will tell you as soon as possible and if there is time to do so before departure, we will offer you the choice of the following options:
- (a) (for Major Changes) accepting the changed arrangements or
- (b) Purchasing alternative arrangements from us, of a similar standard to those originally booked if available (if the chosen alternative is less expensive than your original one, we will refund the difference but if it is more expensive, we will ask you to pay the difference) or
- (c) Cancelling or accepting the cancellation in which case you will receive a full and quick refund of all monies you have paid to us.
However, we will not cancel your confirmed booking 10 weeks or less before departure except for reasons of “Force Majeure” (as explained above) or failure by you to make full payment on time.
Due to the unpredictability of Force Majeure events we shall not be liable for any changes either before departure or during the holiday, which in our opinion are necessary to protect your safety. In this event, we will offer you suitable alternative arrangements, or, if you do not travel, return the monies you have paid us but we will not pay you compensation.
In all cases, except where the Major Change arises due to reasons of Force Majeure and subject to the exceptions below, we will pay you the following compensation as detailed below:
|Period before departure when a major change is notified||Compensation payable per adult (for children see below)|
|More than 70 days||£0.00|
|Less than 14 days||£30.00|
Please note that the above payments are per full fare-paying passenger (excluding infants). For children invoiced at reduced rates, compensation will be paid on a pro-rata basis of the adult rate.
We will not pay you compensation and the above options will not be available if we make a minor change or cancel as a result of your failure to make full payment on time. We regret we cannot pay any expenses, costs or losses incurred by you as a result of any change or cancellation.
We will not pay you compensation where we make a Major Change or cancel more than 10 weeks before departure or in the event of Force Majeure.
Very rarely, we may be forced by Force Majeure to change or terminate your arrangements after departure. If this situation does occur, we regret we will be unable to make any refunds (unless we obtain any from our suppliers), pay you compensation or meet any costs or expenses you incur as a result.
Under EU Law, you have rights in some circumstances to refunds and/or compensation from the airline in cases of denied boarding, cancellation or delay to flights. Full details of these rights will be publicised at EU airports and will also be available from airlines. Reimbursement in such cases is the responsibility of the airline and will not automatically entitle you to a refund of your holiday price from us. Your rights to a refund and/or compensation from us are set out in clause 10.
If you are delayed for a reason other than Force Majeure and in respect of the main flights included in your Holiday, if the delay exceeds 4 hours we will ensure that you receive light refreshments from the airline; if it exceeds 6 hours, you will receive a main meal and in the event of a longer delay, wherever possible, you will receive meals and accommodation appropriate for the time of day.
We are not always in a position at the time of booking to confirm the carrier(s), aircraft type and flight timings which will be used in connection with your flight. Where we are only able to inform you of the likely carrier(s) at the time of booking, we shall inform you of the identity of the actual carrier(s) or any change in the identity of the actual carrier(s) as soon as we become aware of this. The carrier(s), flight timings and types of aircraft shown in this web site and detailed on your confirmation invoice are for guidance only and are subject to alteration and confirmation. The latest timings will be shown on your tickets which will be despatched to you approximately two weeks before departure. You must accordingly check your tickets very carefully immediately on receipt to ensure you have the correct flight times. It is possible that flight times may be changed even after tickets have been despatched – we will contact you as soon as possible if this occurs. Any change in the identity of the carrier(s), flight timings, and/or aircraft type will not entitle you to cancel or change to other arrangements without paying our normal charges.
This web site is our responsibility, as your tour operator. It is not published on behalf of, and does not commit the airlines mentioned herein or any airline whose services are used in the course of your travel arrangements.
Please note that, in accordance with Air Navigation Orders, in order to qualify for infant status, a child must be under 2 years of age on the day of its return flight.
Please note the existence of a ‘community list’ (available for inspection at http://ec.europa.eu/transport/air-ban/list_en.htm) detailing air carriers that are subject to an operating ban with the EU Community.
When you book a Holiday with Travel City Direct you accept responsibility for the proper conduct for yourself and your party whilst on Holiday. If we or any other person in authority is of the reasonable opinion that you or any member of your party is behaving in such a way as to cause or be likely to cause danger or upset to any other person or damage to property, we will be entitled to terminate the holiday of the person(s) concerned. The person(s) concerned will be required to leave the accommodation or other service and we will have no further responsibility to them including any return travel arrangements. No refunds will be made and we will not pay any expenses or costs incurred as a result of the termination. You will be responsible for making full payment for any damage or loss caused by you or any member of your party during your time away. Payment must be paid direct at the time to the service supplier concerned failing which, you will be responsible for meeting any claims subsequently made against us (together with our own and the other party’s full legal costs) as a result of your actions.
13. If you have a complaint
In the unlikely event that you have any reason to complain or experience any problems with your holiday arrangements whilst away, you must immediately inform our representative and the supplier of the service(s) in question and complete a report form whilst in resort. Most problems or complaints can be resolved while you are away, however if not resolved, please call us on 0344 557 8830 option 2, email us at email@example.com or write to Customer Relations Department at Virgin Holidays Limited, The VHQ, Fleming Way, Crawley, West Sussex, RH10 9DF within 28 days of your return to the UK giving your booking reference and full details of your complaint and all other relevant information. Please keep your letter concise and to the point. This will assist us to quickly identify your concerns and speed up our response to you. Please also see clause 14 below on ABTA.
If this procedure is not followed we will not have the opportunity to investigate and rectify your complaint whilst in resort and this may affect your rights under this contract.
14. What happens to complaints
We are a Member of ABTA, membership number V2043. 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. For online bookings, 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 registering your complaint with us; it will not determine how your complaint should be resolved. Any unresolved complaints logged via this platform will be directed to an approved ADR provider within the UK.
15. Our liability to you
(1) In respect of Packages
We promise that your Holiday arrangements will be made, performed or provided with reasonable skill and care. This means that we will accept responsibility if, for example, you suffer death or personal injury or your contracted arrangements are not provided as promised or prove deficient as a result of the failure of ourselves, our employees, agents or suppliers to use reasonable skill and care in making, performing or providing your arrangements. Further, we will be responsible for what our employees, agents and suppliers do or do not do if they were at the time acting within the course of their employment or carrying out work we had asked them to do.
(2) In respect of other arrangements
We promise to use reasonable skill and care in the performance of our contractual obligations, subject to and in accordance with these Booking Conditions. Our contractual obligations consist of using our reasonable skill and care in making your booking and arranging your accommodation/car hire/ flight, as well as using our reasonable skill and care in choosing our suppliers.
(3) In respect of Packages and other arrangements
We will not be responsible for any injury, illness, death, loss, damage, expense, cost or other claim of any description whatsoever which results from:
- The act(s) and/or omission(s) of the person(s) affected or any member(s) of their party or
- The act(s) and/or omission(s) of a third party not connected with the provision of your arrangements and which were unforeseeable or unavoidable or
- ‘Force Majeure’ as defined above.
(4) Except as specifically set out in these conditions, we will not accept any further or different liability than the Package Travel, Package Tours and Package Holidays Regulations impose. It is your responsibility to show that reasonable skill and care has not been used if you wish to make a claim against us.
(5) We limit the maximum amount we may have to pay you for any claims you may make against us.
The maximum amount we will have to pay you where we are found liable for loss of and/or damage to any luggage or personal possessions (including money) is £50 per person affected unless a lower limitation applies to your claim under this clause. For all other claims which do not involve death or personal injury, the maximum amount we will have to pay you if we are found liable to you on any basis is three times the price (excluding insurance premiums and amendment charges) paid by or on behalf of the person(s) affected in total unless a lower limitation applies to your claim. This maximum amount will only be payable where everything has gone wrong and you have not received any benefit at all from your holiday.
(6) Where any claim or part of a claim (including those involving death or personal injury) concerns or is based on any travel arrangements (including the process of getting on and/or off the transport concerned) provided by any air, sea, rail or road carrier or any stay in a hotel, the maximum amount of compensation we will have to pay you will be limited. The most we will have to pay you for that claim or that part of a claim if we are found liable to you on any basis is the most the carrier or hotel keeper concerned would have to pay under the international convention or regulation which applies to the travel arrangements or hotel stay in question (for example, the Montreal Convention as amended for international travel by air and/or for airlines with an operating licence granted by an EU country, the EU Regulation on Air Carrier Liability for national and international travel by air, the Athens convention for international travel by sea). Where a carrier or hotel would not be obliged to make any payment to you under the applicable International Convention or Regulation in respect of a claim or part of a claim, we will not be obliged to make a payment to you for that claim or part of the claim. When making any payment, we are entitled to deduct any money which you have received or are entitled to receive from the transport provider or hotelier for the complaint or claim in question. Copies of the applicable international conventions and regulations are available from us on request. In any circumstances in which the carrier is liable to you by virtue of the Denied Boarding Regulation 2004, any liability we may have to you under our contract with you, arising out of the same facts, is limited to the remedies provided under the Regulation as if (for this purpose only) we were a carrier; any sums you receive from the carrier will be deducted from any amount due from ourselves.
(7) Local Excursions/Activities/Events
We will not accept responsibility for services or facilities which do not form part of our agreement or where they are not advertised in our website. For example any excursion you book whilst away, or any service or facility which your hotel or any other supplier agrees to provide for you. Excursions, tours, activities or other events that you may choose to book or pay for through our concierge service or whilst you are on holiday (“Local Events”) are not part of your package holiday provided by us and these website terms and conditions do not apply. For any Local Event your contract will be with the supplier of that Local Event and not with us. We are not responsible for the provision of the Local Event or for anything that happens during the course of its provision by the supplier. Please note that this position also includes all hazardous activities.
(8) The services and facilities included in your holiday will be deemed to be provided with reasonable skill and care if they comply with any local regulations which apply, or, if there are no applicable local regulations, if they are reasonable when compared to the local standards in practice.
16. Data protection/privacy
17. Special requests and medical problems
If you wish to make a special request, you must do so at the time of booking. We will try to pass any reasonable requests on to the relevant supplier but we cannot guarantee that requests will be met. The fact that a special request has been noted on your confirmation invoice or any other documentation or that it has been passed on to the supplier is not confirmation that the request will be met. Failure to meet any special request will not be a breach of contract on our part unless the request has been specifically confirmed.
We are happy to advise and assist you in choosing a suitable holiday. As some of the accommodation and resorts featured may lack even the simplest facilities, such as ramps for wheelchairs, lifts etc, it is important that, when booking, you advise us of any disabilities and special requirements to make sure the holiday meets your specific needs. If we reasonably feel unable to properly accommodate the particular needs of the person(s) concerned, we will not confirm the booking or, if full details are not given at the time of booking, cancel when we become aware of these details. For further assistance, please call our Special Assistance Department on 0344 557 3998.
18. Accommodation Occupancy Restriction
Please note that all accommodation is provided for occupation only by the persons named on your final invoice and sub-letting or sharing with other persons not on your final invoice is prohibited.
Registered in England: Company Number 1873815.
Registered Office: Company Secretariat, Virgin Holidays, The VHQ, Fleming Way, Crawley, West Sussex, RH10 9DF