Terms and Conditions of Sale for the purchase of package-style trips
Version dated 15/10/2020
In case of disagreement over the interpretation of these terms and conditions of sale, the original version in French shall prevail.
These terms and conditions of sale (or “T&Cs”) apply to the purchase of any trip by a consumer (or the “Client”), offered via the brochures and chamonix-guides.com website (or the “Website”) of the SAS COMPAGNIE DES GUIDES DE CHAMONIX MONT BLANC, a Société par Actions Simplifies (a form of simplified joint-stock company registered under French law) with a capital of €364,400, and registered offices at 190 place de l’Eglise, 74400 CHAMONIX MONT BLANC, FRANCE, registered with the ANNECY RCS (companies register) under the number 448 519 306 – Intra-Community VAT number FR 23 448 519 306 (or the “Company”).
It is specified that as part of its trading activity, the subject matter herein, the Company:
- is listed on the French register of tour and holiday operators under the following number: IM074150011 as of 22 September 2015;
- holds a garantie financière (financial guarantee) with GROUPAMA ASSURANCE, 5 rue du centre, 93199 NOISY-LE-GRAND Cedex - Contract n° 4000713874/1;
- holds public liability insurance with MMA IARD, 14 Bd Marie et Alexandre Oyon, 72000 LE MANS - Policy n°125901025.
For any questions regarding bookings and purchases, the Company can be contacted by:
telephone: +33 (0)4 50 53 00 88.
Article 1 – Description of services
The Company markets to Clients trips known hereafter as “the Trip” or “the Trips”. The Trips are based around mountain sports and combine several types of service (for example: mountain guiding services, ski lifts, and accommodation). An information sheet (or the “Information Sheet”) detailing the specific details of each Trip can be consulted on the website.
Article 2 – Contract process
The Client consults the Information Sheet on the Website and in these T&Cs for information about the trip in question. This information relates notably to the destination, itinerary, activities, levels of physical fitness and technical ability required, risks involved, the number of participants required, transport, accommodation, food/catering, administrative and health formalities, cancellation policy, price, payment terms, and the option to take out insurance.
2.2.1. Via the Website
From the webpage about the chosen trip, the client is directed to the reservations centre where certain personal details are requested in order to process the booking. The booking cannot take place unless the Client acknowledges he/she has read these T&Cs and the information contained within the Information Sheet. A deposit, as detailed in Article 3.2, must be paid by the Client to confirm any booking.
2.2.1. By telephone or in the offices
The Client can equally book a trip by telephone or in the offices having consulted the relevant information on the Website. A sales advisor can make the booking via the reservations centre as per the process described above.
The Client will receive a confirmation email for each Trip, which contains the Information Sheet, these T&Cs, a receipt for the deposit and a contract (the “Contract”). If the Client does not receive a confirmation email, it is his/her responsibility to contact the Company.
Article 3 – Price – Payment – Price amendment
The price of the Trip is shown in the Trip Information Sheet on the Website. Services included in, and excluded from, the price are specifically listed on the Website. In principle, all cost items not explicitly indicated as included in the price are excluded from it. Unless specifically indicated in the aforementioned document, drinks and personal equipment necessary to participate in the activities described are never included in the price.
For bookings made more than 30 days before the start of the trip, a deposit is paid as per the conditions detailed in Article 2.2. This deposit is up to 30% of the total price. The balance is to be paid before the 30th day preceding the start of the trip.
For bookings made within the 30 days preceding the trip, the total amount is payable as per the conditions detailed in Article 2.2.
Any sum due is payable by bank transfer, credit card (not American Express), in cash (up to a maximum of €1000 per trip), by cheque (issued by a French bank only), or Chèque vacances (French holiday vouchers) paid in the Company offices.
Where a deposit is paid by credit card, if the balance has not been paid before the 30th day preceding the start of the trip, this amount will be automatically charged to this same credit card the following day.
In the absence of payment within the above deadline, the Company is under no obligation to maintain the availability of the trip. Any sum not paid on its due date, and which despite formal notice remains unpaid after 5 working days will incur by right, from the day after the deadline and on the amount including any taxes, penalties equal to the legal interest rate increased by three (3) points, without prejudice to reimbursement of recovery expenses incurred by the Company and to any other rights and appeals to which the Company is entitled.
3.3. Price amendment
The prices of trips that take place abroad are likely to change to take account of variations in exchange rates in foreign currencies. Price increases may not exceed 8% of the Trip price. The price established in the Contract cannot be increased in the 20 days preceding the Trip start date.
Article 4 – Cancellation – Modification to the trip
4.1. Cancellation by the Company
The Company will notify the Client of any cancellation, for whatever reason, by email. In case of cancellation of the Trip by the Company:
- as a result of insufficient participant numbers, this number being detailed on the Information Sheet, the Company will refund the whole of the amount paid by the Client. It is specified that in this case the cancellation cannot occur:
- in the 30 days preceding the start of the trip for trips of over 6 days;
- in the 15 days preceding the start of the trip for trips of 2 to 6 days;
- in the 48 hours preceding the start of the trip for trips of less than 2 days;
- as a result of exceptional and inevitable circumstances, the Company will refund the whole of any amount paid by the Client;
- on any other grounds, the Company will refund the Client the total amount paid by him/her together with compensation equivalent to that which the Client is likely to accept in case of cancellation on his/her part.
By mutual agreement, the Parties may decide to substitute a Trip of the equivalent value in place of a refund for the amount paid by the Client.
4.2. Changes by the Company
4.2.1. Before the start of the trip
If before the start of the Trip, an external event forces the Company to change an essential element of the Contract agreed with the Client, the Company will inform the Client by email as soon as possible and offer him/her, if possible, a change to the Trip. The Client can either accept the proposed change or cancel the Contract, which would result in the refund of any amount the Client would have paid. The Client will make his/her choice known, by email, within eight (8) calendar days of receiving the information detailed above. If no reply is received within that time period, it will be assumed that the Client has accepted the proposed change.
4.2.2. After the start of the trip
If after the start of the Trip, the Company is unable to provide a major part of the services or activities identified in the Contract, representing a substantial percentage of the price paid by the Client, the Company will make its best effort to replace them with equivalent services or activities. If the Company is unable offer any replacement service or the replacement services are declined by the Client for valid reasons, the Company must guarantee the Client is returned to the point of departure or another destination agreed with him/her, without surcharge and in equivalent conditions.
4.3. Cancellation by the Client
Any cancellation request from the Client will be made by email and it is his/her responsibility to ensure this is received. Booking fees, which are fixed at 5% of the cost of the trip and capped at two hundred (200) Euros as well as any insurance costs are never refunded.
In the case of cancellation of trips of two days and over, the following sums are retained:
- more than 30 days before the start of the trip: 5% of the price of the trip capped at two hundred (200) Euros;
- between 30 and 21 days before the start of the trip: 25% of the price of the trip;
- between 20 and 8 days before the start of the trip: 50% of the price of the trip;
- in the seven days before the start of the trip: 100% of the price of the trip.
In the case of cancellation of trips of less than two days, the following sums are retained:
- After 12:00 (noon) the day before departure: 100% of the price of the trip.
In the case of voluntary termination of the Trip by the Client, he/she will receive no refund or compensation.
Article 5 – Transfer of Contract
The Client can transfer his/her Contract to a third party who fulfils the same conditions as him/her as long as this contract has not come into effect and up to seven days before the start of the Trip. The Client must inform the Company by email and it is his/her responsibility to ensure this is received. Any transfer of the Contract incurs transfer fees of fifty (50) Euros, owed jointly and severally by the transferor and the transferee to the Company, as well as the balance of the purchase price. A new contract is established in the name of the transferee.
Article 6 – Duration
The Trip comes into effect from and is valid until the dates given in the Contract. The Contract comes into effect on the date it is agreed.
Article 7 – Liability
7.1. Company liability
The Company will neither be considered liable for nor at fault for any delay or non-fulfilment resulting from a case of force majeure. For the purposes of these T&Cs, a case of force majeure, in addition to the meaning this term has under French case law, means any event of any kind that can be deemed to be beyond the control of the Company.
Nor does it accept any liability for the provision of services as detailed in the Contract by foreign third parties or the poor execution of the contract attributable to the Client. In relation to the type of activities offered by the Company, it shall not be held liable for changes made to activities for reasons of safety; for changes in the programme as a result of weather and conditions in the mountains, of the fitness levels of participants, and of their technical skills. Equally, it shall not be held liable if the following safety instructions are not observed by the Client.
7.2. Client liability
The Client shall not be held liable for failure to comply with his/her contractual obligations in the case of force majeure, as per the meaning set out above.
Article 8 – Safety
The Client is cognisant of the (sometimes extreme) sports nature of the activities offered in these Trips. He/she undertakes to abide by the advice and instructions provided by the service providers and guides.
The Client refrains from personal actions that could endanger his/her own safety, that of other participants and of any accompanying professionals whilst taking part in these activities.
It will be the professional supervising the activities who decides on any changes in activities for reasons of safety, of weather and conditions in the mountains, of the fitness levels of participants, and of their technical skills. As a result, a different route or another mountain range may be proposed, with any supplemental costs occasioned remaining the responsibility of the Client.
Failure to follow safety instructions such as, for example, participating in a Trip without complying with the obligatory fitness/skills levels detailed in the Information Sheet could justify the exclusion of the Client from the Trip. This exclusion, decided on for safety reasons, does not entitle the Client to any refund.
Article 9 – Administrative and health formalities
Administrative and health formalities relating to the Trip are listed on the Information Sheet. In any event, it is the Client’s responsibility to hold an acceptable form of identification valid for his/her Trip. This applies to each participant, in the case of multiple participants, including minors.
This information is provided as an indication and does not exempt the Client from ensuring he is aware of police, customs and healthcare formalities in place in the country where the Trip takes place.
Article 10 - Insurance
The Trip price does not include any insurance or repatriation cover, nor cancellation insurance. The Client is obliged to have repatriation insurance cover. It is strongly recommend that the Client takes out cancellation insurance. Via the Company, the Client take out repatriation insurance cover and/or cancellation insurance provided by Europ Assistance, the details of which appear on the Site.
Article 11 – Withdrawal
The Contract does not entitle the Client to the right to withdrawal, as set out in article L.121-20-12 of the Code de la consommation (France’s Consumer Code).
Article 12 – Personal data
The Client’s personal data are automatically processed by computer for purpose of processing Trip purchases. In order to allow the completion of Clients’ bookings, these data are also disclosed to the Company’s partners. Furthermore, and subject to the Client’s express agreement, these personal data may also be used for marketing purposes. According to the Informatique et libertés (France’s Data Protection) law of 6th January 1978, the Client has the right to access and rectify or delete any information about him/her as well as the right to prevent the processing of his/her personal data. These rights are recognised by the Company.
Article 13 – Additional information
The Company undertakes to, where appropriate, provide the Client with the following information, at least 10 days before his/her scheduled departure date:
- The name, address and telephone number of the local representative of the Company or, failing that, the names, addresses and telephone numbers of the local bodies likely to be able to help the Client in case of difficulty or, failing that, an emergency telephone number for contacting the Company;
- Where the trip involves minors travelling abroad, a telephone number and address allowing direct contact with the child or the adult with responsibility for the child during the trip.
Article 14 – Tolerance/Waiver – Changes
Any tolerance or waiver by one of the parties in relation to the non-fulfilment or poor fulfilment by the other party of one of the provisions of these T&Cs can, under no circumstances, and whatever the duration, generate any right whatsoever for the party concerned, nor alter in any way the nature, scope and execution of these obligations by the other party. The Company can, at any time, make any changes or adaptations to these T&Cs. The applicable T&Cs will be those in place on the date of the Contract.
Article 15 – Contradiction
Where there is a contradiction between the provisions of these T&Cs, the Information Sheet and the contract, the provisions contained within the document of the highest rank shall prevail.
The hierarchy of documents, in ascending order, is as follows:
- Information Sheet
Article 16 – Claims - Mediation
The Client can address any claim arising from the non-fulfilment or poor fulfilment of the Contract to the Company at its head office by registered post with proof of delivery. The Client is strongly advised to support any claim with any factual evidence so that, if required, in case of any finding of failure by the Company in its obligations compensation may be considered. The Company will make every effort to reply to the Client within three (3) weeks from receipt of the said letter.
In the absence of agreement between the Company and the Client, the latter may have recourse to a standard mediation process by submitting the details of his/her dispute with the Company to the following mediation service: MTV, Médiation Tourisme et Voyage (Mediation, Tourism and Travel) via the website mtv.travel.
Regardless of the method used to contact the mediation service, the Client’s application must include the following details: his/her postal and email addresses, telephone number(s) as well as the full name and address of the Company, a brief statement of the facts, and evidence of any preliminary approaches made to the Company.
Article 17 – Domicile – Governing Law – Attribution of jurisdiction
The parties shall be deemed to be domiciled at their head offices and/or respective residences. The parties shall attempt to resolve on an amicable basis any dispute that may arise between them relating to the validity, interpretation, execution and cancelling of the Contract. It is also noted that the Client benefits, in case of dispute, from a mediation service and can also bring his/her case before the relevant courts with jurisdiction where he/she is domiciled.