Keukenhof Gardens
Keukenhof Gardens

Frequently Asked Questions

Covid FAQs

Whilst the risk of contracting COVID-19 on your travels can never be completely eliminated, the risk of transmitting the virus can be significantly reduced. We have always, in partnership with two globally renowned organisations, applied rigorous health and safety checks to our hotels, airlines, cruise ships, coaches, excursion transport and any other significant aspect of our tours. We are going even further, by requiring that these services pass COVID-19 hygiene and cleanliness tests as part of our health and safety protocols. All of our Tour Managers, and any other tour staff will be tested within 24 hours of departure, fully briefed on COVID protocols in destination and up to date with public health guidelines pertaining to your tour. Our 11-point COVID action plan details further measures to keep you safe on tour.

We have a fantastic flexible booking policy that we hope reassures you to book with us. If you book a tour that departs in 2021, you can amend your booking completely free of charge up to eight weeks before departure. If you book a tour that departs next year, you can either amend or cancel your booking free of charge up until 31st October 2021. Read more about risk-free booking here.

Yes of course.  We can help with completion of any online pre-travel country paperwork or airline COVID-19 forms to travel information both before and after your tour.

We ask that you wear masks while travelling on board our coaches (unless you are medically exempt), in the same way that many airlines will still expect passengers to wear them while flying. This is for both your own protection as well as the safety of others in your tour group. There may also be certain sites, museums and other places on your itinerary that require masks, so please keep one on you throughout your tour with us to avoid encountering any issues.

When international travel restarts in earnest, some destinations may require proof of double-vaccination to allow entry. If such information is available, we will advise it at time of booking, For this reason, and for your health and the health of other participants, we strongly recommend that, unless you are medically exempt, you have both jabs and available boosters before you travel on any tour.

In the UK, COVID-19 measures are still in place at the hotels and sites that we visit and are likely to continue after the 19th July. For the most part these are common sense precautions and we are sure you will already be observing them on a daily basis. Your Tour Manager will brief you about what to expect and what you may need to know on each day.  We will be using large vehicles for the majority of our visits (occasionally access requires the use of smaller vehicles) so it will be possible to spread out and sit independently if travelling solo.  

Official guidelines, which can be found here, currently state that if you are confirmed to have COVID-19, or been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, you should self-isolate for 10 days.  If you are on tour you will need to return home if you reasonably can or stay at your hotel during your isolation period, the cost of which would need to be covered by you.  However, starting from the 16th August, anyone who has received both their vaccinations will no longer have to self-isolate if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive.

We will arrange any COVID tests required during your tour in order for you to be able to fly home, but pre-departure and post-return tests are the individual’s responsibility.

Short term cancellations mean that we will most likely be unable to recover costs from airlines and hotels, and therefore fees will apply as per our booking conditions. This is why we strongly recommend COVID cancellation as part of your insurance cover.

 

General FAQs

UK garden holidays generally depart from London, with additional pick-ups depending on the route of the coach, while holidays to Scotland depart from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Perth, with Dundee, Inverness and Aberdeen sometimes included. All Eurostar holidays depart from London St. Pancras and flight-inclusive holidays depart from one or more of the main London airports, with regional flights often available at a supplement. You’ll find the full list of departure points for the holiday you’re interested in on our website. Departure and return times are also given but please note these are approximate and for guidance only. Actual departure times are confirmed with your joining instructions which are sent out around ten days prior to departure and these may vary from those shown on the website.

All holidays are given an activity level based on factors that include distance and terrain walked, time spent travelling on the coach, and so on. These can be seen on each holiday’s page on our website.

On the vast majority of our holidays, all featured visits and excursions are included. On certain holidays, particularly cruises, some of the excursions may be optional giving you the flexibility to do your own thing, with prices starting from as little as £20pp.

Seats can be requested in any part of the coach. For example, if you have limited mobility or sight, or suffer from travel sickness, you can request seats at the front of the coach, or you may prefer to sit on one particular side of the coach.  Please get in touch with our friendly team to discuss any requirements you may have. There’s no fixed limit for luggage, but we generally say one large suitcase to go in the luggage compartment and a smaller bag that you can take onto the coach with you. For flight-inclusive holidays, a luggage allowance of at least 20kg is included as standard.

Of course we can help with connecting rail travel, domestic flight or additional transport to get you to and from your pick-up point and help organise pre- or post-tour nights if required – please contact our reservation team for a quote.

Certainly. Whether you wish to fly out early or stay a few days later, arrange a connecting flight or depart from a local airport, these can all be arranged if possible - do give our team a call to discuss your requirements.

You will receive detailed joining instructions around 10 days prior to you departure, but you are of course welcome to contact us at any time should you have any queries.

Yes, we do – tailored to your exact requirements! Find out more about this by contacting our team.

Travel insurance is required for all overseas holidays and is also strongly recommended for UK holidays – primarily to protect yourself against cancellation charges should you be unable to travel. Please note that Brightwater Holidays no longer sells travel insurance so it is your own responsibility to purchase appropriate cover.

As we move into 2022 we very much hope that we will see a return to normal travel conditions without the need for masks, testing or social distancing. However, rest assured that we will follow whatever regulations or guidelines are in place at the time of travel. Please refer to our website for the most up to date information.

All our tours are fully bonded and protected via the Civil Aviation Authority’s ATOL scheme (flight-based holidays) or through ABTOT (for holidays that don’t include flights).

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