Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Travel Information

 Last updated: 02:00pm 11th May 2020

 

Pay It Forward Tours is suspending tours departing between 25 March until at least 31 December, 2020

 

The safety and wellbeing of our travellers and staff is our priority, therefore, effective Wednesday 25 March Pay It Forward Tours will suspend all tours until at least 31 December 2020. 

 

Given the unprecedented impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) we have updated our Booking Conditions and to adapt to the constantly evolving nature of this pandemic. The most recent update took immediate effect on 25 March 2020

Tours departing from 31 December 2020

  • At this stage all tours departing from 31 December 2020 will continue as planned. If there are changes, or if your trip is suspended, you will be notified directly by our customer care team or your travel agent. 

  • If you choose to suspend your tour departing from 1 January 2020, you will receive a credit of monies paid to use towards an alternative tour with a departure date before 30 April 2022. For future travel full payment is due 21 days prior to the departure of your trip.

 

Pay It Forward Tours is monotoring current travel advisories from The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). The safety and wellbeing of our travellers is at the forefront of our priorities. If you have booked a tour with us, or are planning to travel with us in the next few months, we have compiled a useful list of answers to common questions below, as well as details regarding changes to our Booking Terms and Conditions. We recommend that you consult with your govenment advisory for more adivce and information.

 

Update to our Booking Conditions 

As a result of the rapidly evolving impact on international travel, we are amending our Booking Conditions to make it easier for our customers to change their plans. These new cancellation policies will apply from the 13th March 2020.  Please see below for a summary of this policy.  Please refer to our Booking Conditions for a complete set of terms and conditions that apply to your booking. 

Deposit and full payment

You are required to pay a non-refundable deposit for your booking to be confirmed.  Payment of the balance of the trip price is due 21 days before the departure date. 

Cancellation by you

1. If you cancel your trip 22 days or more prior to departure, we will hold what you have paid as a credit towards an alternative trip taken by 30 November 2021. In limited circumstances this credit may be less unrecoverable costs that may apply to selected trips.

2. If you have paid in full and cancel at 21 days or fewer prior to departure, we will charge a 50% cancellation fee and hold the remaining 50% as credit towards a future trip to be taken by 30 November 2021.

Cancellation by us

If we cancel your trip booking, you can choose to:

  • hold a credit on file to the value of 100% of monies paid for towards an alternative trip with a departure date before 31 December 2021.
  • or receive a refund of monies paid, less 25% to allow for unrecoverable costs.

Important terms & conditions that apply to the above

The above conditions apply to the land portion of your trip only. Airlines and other travel providers may charge additional fees. 

Unrecoverable Costs

The coronavirus pandemic is a “force majeure event”, which is an event that occurs outside of the reasonable control of either party to a contract. In circumstances where this force majeure event results in the cancellation of your trip, we will suffer unrecoverable losses. Therefore, if we cancel your trip and you select a refund, we will deduct 25% from any refund issued to you to cover these losses.

If we have cancelled your trip, the 100% credit offering is subject to the following conditions:

- The 100% credit offer does not accumulate in the event of the cancellation of subsequent trips.
- This may not to be combined with any other discount or offer.
- The credit can be partly transferred to a person accompanying you on an alternative trip. Otherwise it is not transferable to another person, nor is it redeemable for cash.
- The credit must be used for a future departure date that is within 18 months of the date of cancellation of your initial/original booking.
- Any unused value will be forfeited and may not be held for future bookings or claimed as a refund.
- The credit may not be used for airfares. 

Travel advisories

Because we are an Australian-owned company, if the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade's (DFAT) advisory level for a destination is at ‘Do Not Travel,’ Pay It Forward Tours will either cancel the trip or reroute the itinerary to avoid the areas concerned.  

 

Frequently asked questions

We are continuing to monitor the situation and are providing regular updates. Below are answers to some of the most common questions that our customers are asking.

Are Pay It Forward Tours still running trips? 

As always, the welfare of our travellers and our staff is our first priority.  The World Health Organizations (WHO) advice is to take all the same precautions to stay healthy as you would when you are at home. Unless the official advisories change, we will continue to run trips as usual.

Rest assured we have an experienced global operations team who are monitoring the situation closely. We’re following advice from the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as local official government travel advisories. We have only cancelled our trips in destinations where a ‘Do Not Travel’ warning has been provided by the relevant travel advisory and we will continue to update our Travel Alerts based on expert advice. 

Where can I find more information and travel updates on specific countries?

You can find more information and travel updates for countries specifically affected by Coronavirus at www.smarttraveller.gov.au

 

If Pay It Forward Tours cancel my trip, how and when will I be informed?


We only cancel trips either where the relevant government advisory board (such as the Australia Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)) set their advice level to 'Do Not Travel', or where there are operational restrictions that would prevent us from running the trip as intended (such as border closures).

If your trip is cancelled, we will be in touch with you or your travel agent as soon as we can.

 

I want to cancel my trip, what are the cancellation fees?

 

Please refer to the updated cancellation policy detailed at the top of this page for more information regarding cancellation fees and refunds. 

Please also note that the above amended conditions apply to the Pay It Forward Tours land portion of your trip only. Airlines and other travel providers may charge additional fees. 

If you’d like to cancel your booking, please get in touch with us directly to discuss your options with one of our specialists at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

We also recommend getting in touch directly with your travel insurance provider to enquire about your coverage.

I have travelled to a destination affected by coronavirus, will I still be able to travel on a Pay It Forward Tours trip?

 

If you have travelled through a country affected by coronavirus, we do recommend you take appropriate measures and self-quarantine if necessary.

It is important to note that every country or territory has its own rules for who can enter or exit through its borders. Before arriving at your destination, you will need to make sure you meet all entry and exit requirements. Many countries have put in place new entry measures due to the coronavirus outbreak and these are changing daily. Please ensure you are checking this information daily with your relevant national foreign travel advisory website. 

If you are able to reach the beginning point of your trip with us, we will allow you to continue travelling on your trip. We won’t be testing our travellers before the trip commences. 

 

I want to make a booking in the future, what if the travel advice escalates? 

 

Many people are continuing to travel at the moment and are booking travel in the future too. You can still book a trip with Pay It Forward Tours, safe in the knowledge that we will monitor the situation and inform you if there will be any effect on your travel plans. All new bookings will be subject to the updated Booking Terms & Conditions detailed on this page.

We will continue to provide updates for any destination where our trips are affected by coronavirus. If a change of itinerary or cancellation is required, we will inform you either directly or via your booking agent. If you booked directly through us, a member of our support team will be in touch. 

What is your current advice to customers who have a trip booked to a country affected by coronavirus?

 

If we don’t have a specific country update, then it means your will continue as planned. In making our updates we are informed by advice from the relevant foreign travel advisory and the World Health Organization (WHO).

It is your personal decision whether travel is right for you at this time.

Some recommendations before travel are:

  • Talk to your doctor before travelling 
  • Read the travel advice for your destination and for the countries you need to transit through to get there and get home, as this is being updated regularly
  • Read the advice of the World Health Organization (WHO) and your government’s department of health on how to stay healthy while travelling and minimise your risk of exposure
  • Check our wesbite for updates

What if I travel and get quarantined by the local government?

 

If you are travelling and are displaying coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, we will follow local health authority advice and assist you in seeking medical care. Depending on the policies of the country, this may include quarantine.


What happens if the group get sick or someone shows symptoms?

 

If you, or any member of your group, displays symptoms associated with coronavirus (COVID-19) we will seek local medical advice on a case-by-case basis and follow our incident management plan for transmissible diseases.

 

If either I, or my group gets quarantined in a destination that is not my home who will cover the cost?

 

Many travel insurers will not provide cover for medical expenses associated with choosing to travel in a destination known to have a coronavirus risk. We strongly recommend checking your travel insurance policy before you travel to determine what level of insurance coverage you may be eligible for in the event that you are quarantined while overseas. If you, or someone in your group, becomes unwell, our team on the ground will be able to assist with contacting relatives in urgent cases.

We generally recommend travellers carry a contingency fund for unavoidable situations such as severe weather, natural disasters and civil unrest when they travel. With this in mind, we recommend you carry US$500 for medical expenses in case it is needed. This recommended amount is listed in USD for the relatability of universal travellers; however, the local currency is required in the countries you are visiting.

Will Pay It Forward Tours be giving out masks to your groups? 

 

If you would prefer to wear a mask while travelling, please source and bring your own from home. We will be following World Health Organization (WHO) advice on when and how to use masks as per below:

  • If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with suspected coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.
  • Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
  • Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
  • If you wear a mask, the you must know how to use it and dispose of it properly.

 

My workplace has a self imposed quarantine if I travel to certain countries? What fees will I be charged if I decide to cancel?

Please refer to the updated Booking Terms & Conditions on this page and on our Policies tab. We recommend you get in touch with us directly to discuss cancelling your trip, as fees will differ depending on when your trip is due to depart and the current situation in the country.  

We also recommend contacting your travel insurance provider to enquire about your cancellation coverage for associated expenses, such as flights. 

 

What do I do if an airline cancels my flight?

 

We don’t have any control over an airline's decisions to stop or reduce their flights to a destination. You will need to get in touch with your booking agent (who booked your flights) or your airline directly for more information. 

What if a country’s altered entry requirements affect my ability to join my trip?

 

Every country or territory has its own rules for who can enter or exit through its borders. If you have travelled through a country affected by coronavirus, you may be denied entry or be required to quarantine for a period of time. 

Before arriving at your destination, you will need to make sure you meet all entry and exit requirements. Many countries have put in place new entry measures due to the coronavirus outbreak and these are changing daily. Please ensure you are checking this information daily with your relevant national foreign travel advisory website. 

If you are able to reach the beginning point of your trip with us, we will allow you to continue travelling on your trip. We won’t be testing our travellers before the trip commences.

If you are not able to enter a country, and therefore can’t reach the beginning point of your trip with us, please contact us to discuss your options. 

If included activities are cancelled because of closures to local attractions and tourist sites, will I be refunded for these missed activities?

Where an included activity on your trip is not able to be experienced due to closures outside our control, such as closed museums and tourist sites, your group leader will endeavour to arrange alternative activities wherever possible. Please note individual refunds will not be given.

 

I’m not travelling until later in the year, should I cancel or get in touch?

At this point, unless we have notified you that your trip has been cancelled, it will be going ahead as normal. Until then we recommend monitoring the situation in the countries you've chosen to visit by following your relevant government travel advisory.

It's important to remember the containment of the coronavirus is an unfolding situation, and circumstances will likely change significantly in the next few months. This means choosing to cancel or delay your booking now may result in unnecessary cancellation and amendment fees. We recommend you keep monitoring the information sources provided on this page.

 

 

Get in touch

 

You can contact our support team online or over the phone, we are currently experiencing significant call volumes and long wait times. We will be contacting all customers as soon as possible. 

 

We are grateful for your support through this challenging time, and encourage everyone to be kind to one another while we navigate this global crisis. 

 

P: 1800 215 339

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