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We want to thank you for your patience and perseverance in these unprecedented times. In response to the dynamic situation around COVID-19, we have replaced our standard booking and cancellation policy of “no refunds within 30 days of your trip” with some temporary measures aimed to be genuinely fair in support of everybody involved, and still being around next season to run your next trip.
Trips within 30 days
Clients who choose to cancel, or whose circumstances force their cancelling, may have a 25% refund or a 50% credit on a future trip through May 2021. (See Insurance Bonus below if you insured your trip.)
Why 50%? Because 50% is about what it takes to keep the business operational, and the other 50% goes to immediate expenses and modest margin of that specific trip. It is that second 50% that we can shift forward to your future trip. In order to have the prices that we do for the services we offer, we have kept our margins very small. (See “Why are your trips the best” on our FAQ page for details) This has contributed to the situation we’re in now.
Cancellations within the 30-day window who have not paid their balance receive no refund. The unpaid balance is your “refund”. If you had paid your trip remainder, we’d be happy to give you a 50% transferrable deposit voucher. If you’d like to pay that remainder now, we will issue you that credit.
Trips more than 30 days away
Registrants who choose to cancel, or whose circumstances force their cancelling, a trip more than 30 days away for which they’ve paid only a deposit may apply half of their deposit to a future trip.
will be decided on a case by case basis based on the number of people left in the group. Refunds will be made upon return of the rental.
We have strongly urged people to cover their trip with travel insurance. It is to protect us all in unforeseen situations such as this. However, we recognize that some travel insurance policies fail to cover certain risks. We would like to honor you who tried to protect your trip. We sincerely appreciate your efforts. If you have travel insurance, and make a claim, and your claim is denied, we will credit or refund an additional 25%.
Put another way, this means that if you did have trip insurance, you will see 75% to 100% of the value of what you’d paid. If your insurer reimburses you for the 50% that we do not credit, you are full up at 100%. If they do not, and you are willing to go through the process of making a claim–which does make a statement–show us the denied claim. No matter how long it takes, we will credit you another 25% in appreciation for having made a good faith effort to insure your trip.
If you did not insure your trip, we are very sorry, but our business is not designed with the margins to cover trip cancellation. We make investments and commitments to be able to provide trips, and many of these costs do not go away if a person cancels or even if the whole trip cancels. We are a small, homegrown company and simply do not have the financial reserves to act as an insurance company ourselves.
Extras and Hotels
All rental extras are completely refundable.
Hotel cancellations depend on the hotel policy.
Trips are running
Kayak trips are compatible with social distancing, which is one of the strongest preventions for the spread of this virus. (Here is a link to an impressive and well-illustrated summary of the situation and what we’re learning.)
Some of our clients come from Mexico or are already here and in a community that has not yet been affected. It’s partly for them that we do not want to cancel.
We are initiating measures on our trips to minimize the sharing of germs. They include soaking utensils in bleach water 3 minutes and letting them air dry; and sanitizing commonly touched surfaces such as community drybags and kayak carrying straps. Participants are encouraged to keep the same set of eating utensils and cup for the entire trip. Handwashing with soap is encouraged and hand sanitizer also readily available. We recommend against high-fives and congratulatory hugs at the end of a great paddle, but instead invent other creative ways to bond with and encourage each other.
Where cancellations have reduced trips to one person, we are running the trip to provide work for the guide, and occasionally adding a volunteer guide for additional support (it’s cheaper for the volunteer guide to be fed on a trip than to eat in town, and certainly more socially distanced).
Balance and vision
In lean times, priorities conflict and decisions become tough. You, our loyal and enthusiastic clientele, are of paramount importance to us, and we deeply honor the faith you have expressed in us. We assure you we are trimming everything we can from our expenses, while being as fair and generous as we can in the balance, not only to you, but also to the dedicated staff behind the scenes in Loreto without whom there would be no SKBM. We are all tightening our belts and securing our sandals for the journey ahead.
We look forward not just to survive the present, but with the vision to thrive into the future.
Thank you for your understanding.
As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions or comments. firstname.lastname@example.org