Terms of Service
If you have a question about any item outlined in this Terms of Service, wish to make a reservation, have a general question about a trip, or simply wish to share your thoughts, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
We hope to share our remarkable journeys in Bhutan and the region with you soon!
Your full trip price typically includes deluxe accommodations, the services of our expert (English-speaking) trip leaders and guides, baggage handling and airport transfers, all ground transportation, sightseeing and tours described in your travel program document/itinerary, visa processing services, all fees and entrances to attractions and all trekking services and amenities (if you signed up for a trek), including camping and commissary equipment (comfortable and roomy two-person tents, kitchen and dining tents, and other logistical gear), camp and cook staffs and guides. Three meals a day are included on all your trips, airport transfers are included, as are complimentary air booking or re-booking services for your flights into and out of Bhutan, as well as any domestic internal flights within Bhutan and any changes thereto. Please note that airfare and airline fees are not included in your trip price.
Our trip prices typically do not include international airfares and domestic airfares (unless otherwise stated on your travel program), your personal expenses getting to and back home from the trip, airport departure fees and excess baggage fees. Some meals may not be included in the trip price in order to allow you the flexibility to try some local restaurants and eateries on your own. Tips and gratuities for our leaders, guides & transport and logistics staff are not included (but neither are they compulsory). Some other exclusions are alcoholic beverages and items of a personal nature such as, but not limited to, travel insurance, phone calls, internet services, expenses resulting from delays or missed flights and or other unforeseen circumstances beyond our control.
Please note that we do not provide an itemization of costs for our trips and that all trip prices shown are in U.S. Dollars. For the most part, our trip prices remain as published. However, most of our trips are planned more than a year in advance and, as such, the pricing may change due to circumstances beyond our control. Bhutan Orient Expeditions reserves the right to adjust the trip pricing as we see fit to reflect the changes in our costs.
Trip Reservations, Deposits & Payments
The easiest way to make a reservation is to call us at 1-855-4-BHUTAN (248826). Alternately you may contact us by email to make a reservation. We strongly recommend making early reservations. There are only a limited number of regular flights (& seats) into and out of Bhutan on the two Bhutanese airlines. Early reservations ensure that you have a seat on one of those flights. The lead time also helps us better map out the smooth logistics of your trip, creating a much better travel experience for you.
Once you have decided on your trip, you can contact us by email or phone and we will send you an invoice for the trip deposits and airfare for the flights to and from Bhutan from the gateway city, which currently includes Bangkok (Thailand), Singapore, New Delhi (India), Kolkata (Calcutta, India), Gaya (India) and Kathmandu (Nepal). You are responsible for booking your own international roundtrip flights to the gateway city. If you require assistance booking those international flights, please let us know by mentioning it when you get in touch with us. When we receive your trip deposit, we will confirm your space on the trip of your choice by sending you a confirmation response that includes your receipt for the deposits and a short visa application form and guide. This will be followed by a Pre Departure Packet that contains your detailed travel program itinerary, medical and health information, travel insurance information; a clothing and equipment Packing List, a recommended reading list, and background information on the countries you will be visiting. The Pre Departure Packet also contains a Personal Preferences Form where you can provide us with information on any special dietary, health or travel-related needs, your Emergency Contact Information (so we know who to contact in the unlikely event of an emergency during your trip), our full Terms of Service document for your reference, and a Liability Waiver for your trip.
Your printer-friendly air tickets for Bhutan will be sent electronically to your email address after your flights have been secured. Any additional trip alerts and updates as well as a final trip briefing with Emergency Phone Numbers (where you may be contacted during your trip) will be sent out closer to your final departure date (which may be a month or less ahead of your departure, depending on your trip).
Your Final Trip Payment is due four months or 120 days before your final departure date, whichever is earlier. Your Final Trip Payment due date will be shown on both the invoice and the receipt for your trip deposits.
Payments for your trip deposits and final trip payments should be made out directly to the U.S.-based Client Trust Account for Bhutan Orient Expeditions. Banking details are contained in your trip invoices, receipts and other payment related documents you will receive when you sign up for a trip.
Please note that trip deposits and final trip payments for our travel extensions in the region i.e. Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal and the Himalayan foothills of India are invoiced separate from our Bhutan trips. In such cases, the trip payment schedule and due dates will vary and we will send you separate invoices and receipts for these featured travel extension journeys.
Last Minute Bookings
Last minute bookings are confirmed dependent on the availability of space. For trips that are booked closer to our departure date, we will do our best to accommodate you on the trip based on availability. For such late bookings we will send you an expedited schedule for your trip deposits and payments as well as the transfer of trip-related information and travel documents processing that will vary from trip to trip, depending on the time of booking. Expedited last minute booking schedules will change the standard deadlines shown above. If you are booking a trip that is close to departure (AFTER the 120-day payment deadline shown above) the full amount of your trip payments and Bhutan domestic or regional airfares will be required at the time of reservation.Please contact us directly by phone or email if you have further questions about last minute bookings.
Cancellation & Refunds
Our trip cancellation and refunds policy is designed to cover possible losses from advance payments made to our travel partners, airlines, government agencies, hotels and other businesses involved in the logistics of our journeys. Please read our cancellation and refunds policy and consider it carefully as they are non-negotiable. Please note that the cancellation fees and charges are assessed per person
The quickest way to cancel your trip is by calling our direct line at 1-805-534-9224 or, alternately, by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a brief description of why you are canceling your participation in the trip. The date we receive your notification will be considered the effective date of your trip cancellation.
1) Prior to 4 months or 120 days before the trip start date, whichever is earlier, guests may transfer the full amount of their payments with no penalty to another trip of equal duration and comparable lodgings and activities as determined by Bhutan Orient Expeditions.
2) A nonrefundable administrative fee of $100 will be charged for all cancellations prior to 4 months/120 days before trip start date.
3) A nonrefundable cancellation charge of $800 or the Bhutan and Regional airfare payments equivalent, whichever is greater, shall be deducted from your total trip and air payments for cancellations made between 120 to 90 days before trip start date.
4) A nonrefundable cancellation charge of 50 percent of the total trip price in addition to the $800 or Bhutan and Regional airfare payments equivalent, whichever is greater, shall be deducted from your total trip and air payments for cancellations made between 89 to 61 days before trip start date.
5) A nonrefundable cancellation charge of 75 percent of the total trip price in addition to the $800 or Bhutan and Regional airfare payments equivalent, whichever is greater, shall be deducted from your total trip and air payments for cancellations made 60 to 45 days before trip start date.
6) The full amount of all your trip and air payments shall be deducted for cancellations made 45 days or less before trip start date. In other words, no refunds will be made on the full amount of all your payments to Bhutan Orient Expeditions for cancellations within this time frame.
7) No Refunds will be made for trips cancelled on or after the trip start date
8) No refunds will be made for “no show” guests who fail to appear on the trip start date (although late arriving guests will be accommodated).
Other Operators, Suppliers and/or Providers
Bhutan Orient Expeditions acts only as an agent for any transportation carrier, hotel, ground operator, or other suppliers of services (collectively called “other operators”) connected with specific Bhutan Orient Expeditions trips (also variously referred to as “journeys”, “expeditions”, “tours”, “treks”, “travel programs”, “departures”, “offerings” etc.) These “other operators” and suppliers are solely responsible and liable for providing their respective services. The passenger tickets in use by the carriers shall constitute the sole contract between the carriers and the passenger; the carriers are not responsible for any act, omission, or event during the time participants are not aboard their conveyances.
Bhutan Orient Expeditions, its employees, subsidiaries, affiliates, officers, directors, successors, representatives, assigns (collectively “Bhutan Orient Expeditions”) shall not be held liable for (A) any damage to, or loss of, property or injury to, or death of, persons occasioned directly or indirectly by an act or omission of any “other operator” or provider, including but not limited to any defect in any aircraft, watercraft, or vehicle operated or provided by such other provider; and (B) any loss or damage due to delay, cancellation, or disruption in any manner caused by the laws, regulations, acts or failures to act, demands, orders, or interpositions of any government or any subdivision or agent thereof, or by acts of God, strikes, fire, flood, war, rebellion, terrorism, insurrection, sickness, quarantine, epidemics, theft, or any other cause(s) beyond their control. The participant waives any claim against Bhutan Orient Expeditions for any such loss, damage, injury, or death.
The single traveler supplement will be waived if you are willing to share rooms with one of our other single (same-sex) travelers. In such cases, we will do our best to match you with a same-sex roommate for your trip. If you prefer to have single room accommodations as a matter of personal choice or privacy, the single traveler supplement shown on your travel program document will be added to your final trip price.
The Cancellation and Refunds Policy on our trips to Bhutan and the Region tend to be stringent because of a combination of strict governmental, hotel, tourism, and airline regulations and policies. While travel insurance is not mandatory for taking one of our trips we strongly recommend that you consider purchasing a plan that fits your needs in order to protect your significant financial investment in the trip.
A good travel protection plan or trip insurance can cover you for unavoidable cancellations due to personal reasons or for unforeseen medical emergencies. It can also cover you for unexpected costs ranging from emergency medical evacuation to airline delays, missed connections and cancelled flights.
Because of a potential for conflicts of interest we do not partner with or resell or accept commissions for providing third-party travel insurance. If you do not have a preferred travel insurance provider you may wish to review the various coverage plans offered by the three main companies listed below (disclaimer: While these companies rank highly in consumer reviews, and some of our past clients have expressed satisfaction with their services, Bhutan Orient Expeditions does not have any business relations with any of them and shall not be held liable for any transactions with these companies. They are suggested merely as a courtesy, and a starting point for your research into finding the travel insurance that best fits your needs.)
San Diego (California) based CSA Travel Protection, owned by Europ Assistance, a worldwide emergency services company started in 1963 (http://www.csatravelprotection.com/; phone: 1-800-711-1197; email: email@example.com)
Richmond (Virginia) based Allianz Global Assistance has an international network of offices in 28 countries around the world. They use part of their proceeds to fund learning by travel scholarships for youth between the ages of 14 & 21 and offer a destination guide newsletter as well as travel news articles. (http://www.allianztravelinsurance.com/; phone: 1-866-884-3556; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
AIG owned Travel Guard offers round-the-clock customer service through their World Service Center 1-800-826-4919. (http://www.travelguard.com/)
When calling a travel insurance provider you may wish to inquire about one or more of the following coverage types:
Trip Cancellation and Interruption Protection: If you must cancel your trip due to covered reasons, such as unforeseen medical conditions affecting yourself, traveling companion, or an immediate family member. Trip Delay Protection: Provides reimbursements for the cost of additional accommodation, meals and transportation incurred through unforeseen delays. Baggage Protection: If your bags are lost or stolen it provides reimbursement up to a limited amount. Also, if your bags are delayed by the airline, provides limited coverage for the purchase of essential items you will need until your baggage arrives. Medical Protection: This type of protection provides coverage for Emergency Evacuation and Medical Protection, including emergency transport to the nearest qualified medical facility. Also reimburses for covered accident or sickness medical expenses during the trip. Worldwide Emergency Assistance: Provides emergency assistance (with a 24-hour hotline) if you require help with cash transfers, lost documents, and other medical and travel-related problems.
Health & Medical
While no vaccinations are currently required for entry to any of our featured destinations, please note that travel-related health alerts, risks and requirements change from time to time and that, as a result, this information may be outdated. For the latest updated information, please consult the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) (Online:http://www.cdc.gov/; Phone: 1-800-232-4636) before making your travel plans. Please also note that the CDC & the World Health Organization recognize a risk of malaria for certain areas of South East Asia and South Asia. We strongly suggest that you contact your personal physician for details of the health measures you should take prior to your departure. A (suggested) General Health and Safety Guide & a Suggested Health Kit Checklist is included in our Pre Departure Packet.
For our more rigorous and physically demanding trips and expeditions such as, but not limited to, treks, biking, and river-rafting we may ask you to complete a medical fitness questionnaire or to provide us with verification of your fitness to join those challenging trips in the interest of your own safety and so as not to inconvenience our other guests. Bhutan Orient Expeditions reserves the right to refuse participation to any guest at any time before or during the trip for medical or psychological reasons. Guests are responsible for their own medical expenses before, during, and after their trip.
Please note that if you join our trip with a pre-existing medical condition or injury that is not disclosed to us ahead of the trip start date, and medical services and/or emergency evacuation becomes necessary as a result of the pre-existing injury or condition, all resulting expenses will be charged to you and no refunds will be given for unused portions of the trip.
We treat all the health and medical details provided to us by our guests as strictly confidential information.
Liability Release & Assumption of Risks
All arrangements for transport, accommodation, and services are made upon the express condition that Bhutan Orient Expeditions shall not be liable for any direct, indirect, consequential or incidental damage, injury, loss, accident, delay, or irregularity of any kind occasioned by reason of any act or omission beyond its control, including, without limitation, any act of negligence or breach of contract of any third party such as an airline, hotel, restaurant, ground handler, etc., who is to or does supply any goods or services for the tour. Without limiting the foregoing, Bhutan Orient Expeditions is not responsible for any losses or expenses due to delay, or changes in schedule, overbooking of accommodations, default of any third parties, sickness, weather, strikes, acts of God, acts of terrorism, force majeure, war, quarantine, criminal activity, or for any other cause beyond its control.
Bhutan Orient Expeditions reserves the right to change the pricing of its trips without prior notice for reasons it may deem necessary. Bhutan Orient Expeditions may, at its discretion, among other things, change, abbreviate or omit any part of a trip itinerary; substitute hotels, leaders, staff and or trip highlights and activities; or change any means of conveyance without notice and without allowance of refund, with the liability for any potentially increased costs to be borne by the trip members. Bhutan Orient Expeditions reserves the right to pass on fuel surcharges or other cost increases beyond its control as allowed by law.
If any published trip, tour, trek, journey or expedition, or part thereof, is cancelled by Bhutan Orient Expeditions due to acts of insurrection, strikes, acts of God, or any other cause beyond its control, refunds will be based upon the difference between the original trip price and the cost of services already provided. No refunds will be given for unused goods or services.
By signing up for a trip, guests and trip members grant express permission to Bhutan Orient Expeditions to take photographic records of its trips for promotional and commercial use without compensation to trip members.
All trip applications are subject to acceptance by Bhutan Orient Expeditions.
Participant Responsibility Contract
Trip members, guests, travelers, or participants assume the responsibility to choose or, in the case of a custom private trip, design, a trip that is appropriate to their physical abilities and interests. They are also responsible for being in sufficiently good health to participate in the trip of their choice, and for seeking the advice of their certified personal physician or medical practitioner in preparing and planning for their trip. Trip members and guests are also responsible for studying all pre-departure trip information, including all health-related information; for bringing all equipment and clothing listed on the Pre Departure Packet packing list; for meeting the standards of personal hygiene on the trip and for acting considerately toward other trip members and guests on the trip. In addition, trip participants also agree to act in a manner that is respectful to the cultures of the the countries visited on the trip. Public smoking is prohibited in public spaces during our trip.
Bhutan Orient Expeditions reserves the right to decline to accept or retain any person as a trip member should such person’s health, mental condition, physical infirmity or general deportment impede the operation of the trip or the rights, welfare, or enjoyment of other trip members.
If any participant leaves or is removed from a trip, no refunds for unused services shall be made.
Changes in the Participant Contract clause can be made only in writing signed by an officer of Bhutan Orient Expeditions.
LegalTrip deposits paid by participants indicate acceptance of all the terms of service outlined on this page and the full set of the Terms of Service set out in the Pre Departure Packet. Bhutan Orient Expeditions is a participant in the California Travel Consumer Restitution Fund (TCRF). Bhutan Orient Expeditions is also registered and compliant with the California Seller of Travel Program (CST). CST:20-77990-40.
The parties agree that any litigation arising from or concerning this website, web page, trip literature, any part of portion of the Terms of Service outlined on this page or in the Bhutan Orient Expeditions Pre Departure Packet or the trip itself, must be resolved in the state of California.
For the purposes of any such arbitration, Bhutan Orient Expeditions in Bhutan and Bhutan Orient Expeditions in California are and shall be treated as two distinct and separate legal entities.
This is the Official Web site of Bhutan Orient Expeditions
Telephone & Fax
Tel: 855-4-BHUTAN (248826) for calls within U.S & Canada
Tel: 805-534-9224 from anywhere (including the U.S. & Canada)
Monday–Friday, 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. (Pacific time)
Bhutan Orient Expeditions
1189 Los Osos Valley Road, #6858
Los Osos, CA, 93412, USA
Member: Tourism Council of Bhutan • California Sellers of Travel (CST), U.S.A • & The Association of Bhutanese Tour Operators (ABTO), Bhutan. Bhutan Orient Expeditions ©2017. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Bhutan Orient Expeditions
Toll Free: 1-855-4-BHUTAN (248826)
Monday through Friday
9 a.m.-5 p.m., Pacific Time
© 2014 Bhutan Orient Expeditions
All rights reserved. CST#2077990-40