COVID-19: an update on Travelwild Australia’s response to the current situation

22nd March 2020

It is with extreme regret that we have taken steps suspended all West Coast Tours for the at least 6 months.

Closed borders, social distance requirements and the discouragement of all travel make it impossible for us to do anything else.

We will start contacting all our customers from tomorrow (Monday 23rd March 2020) morning.

Good luck and stay safe. ☹️


19th March 2020:

This information was sent to all 2020 travellers on the 19th March 2020

Dear Travellers.

We are writing to let you know that the team at Travelwild Australia are closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation. The travel industry worldwide has been impacted significantly, we know this is a challenging time and empathise with all of our customers, suppliers, staff and people of nations across the globe who are being impacted. The last couple of weeks have been very challenging and the situation is changing daily. We know that people want and have to adjust their travel plans in light of the current situation, and we’re doing everything we can to facilitate that.

2020 Tours

Currently, all tour departures are being reviewed daily, however we expect that the bulk of the disruption will occur over the next couple of months with a slow return to normal after this, of course this expectation can change at any time.

If the tour you are travelling on has been impacted will be in touch shortly to discuss options if we haven’t already.

On Tour Risk

We believe the risk of catching Covid-19 on tour is very low due to our small groups and the fact that we are travelling into remote parts of the country which may well be safer than staying in the cities.

Our small group sizes currently satisfy government recommendations for social gatherings and we will be vigorous with our cleaning.

Risks to Remote Aboriginal Communities

We are aware of the specific danger to vulnerable Aboriginal communities and we will be able to modify our itineraries to avoid these locations. However we are also aware of the financial impact that this can have as many communities rely on our income.

One proposal we have received from a group in WA is that we still access their land to camp, but that we stop any face to face contact with people and not travel into the community. This way we are still able to financially support the community while eliminating the risk of passing on the virus, our campsites are located many kilometres away from community houses and buildings. Note that this was a proposal which came from the community.

Increased flexibility & updated terms

It has been necessary to restructure our cancellation policy with flexible and necessary changes to our trips and to the booking conditions that apply to all Travelwild Australia Tours scheduled to depart in 2020.

Changes & Cancellation of tours by you.

You may reschedule your booking for an alternative departure date at no cost. If you are unsure of when you can travel, we can provide you with a credit. Changes and credits can be used for travel on any Travelwild Australia tour until the 31st December 2021. Please notify us at least 14 days prior to your departure date. Any money you have paid for an existing booking, be a deposit of full amount, will be applied to the new tour or credit. Changes within 14 day will still incur a fee of 100% of the tour fee.

Changes & Cancellation of tours by Travelwild Australia
If we need to cancel a departure, you can then either amend your booking to another departure or receive a travel credit with us to the value of 110% of the value of your original booking. This travel credit can be applied to any Travelwild Australia tour taken before 31 December 2021.

In these uncertain times, the best we can do is avoid panicking, follow the official health advice, and monitor government advisories when travelling.

We thank you for your patience.

 


Booking Related Questions.

Changes & Cancellation of tours by you.

You may reschedule your booking for an alternative departure date at no cost. If you are unsure of when you can travel, we can provide you with a credit. Changes and credits can be used for travel on any Travelwild Australia tour until the 31st December 2021. Please notify us at least 14 days prior to your departure date. Any money you have paid for an existing booking, be a deposit of full amount, will be applied to the new tour or credit. Changes within 14 day will still incur a fee of 100% of the tour fee.

Changes & Cancellation of tours by Travelwild Australia

If we need to cancel a departure, you can then either amend your booking to another departure or receive a travel credit with us to the value of 110% of the value of your original booking. This travel credit can be applied to any Travelwild Australia tour taken before 31 December 2021

How do I cancel or change a booking?

All requests to cancel or change a booking must be in writing, please email tours@travelwild.com.au

My flight has been cancelled, I cannot make the tour?

If you are unable to make the tour for any reason we would consider this a no show or cancellation and our normal cancellation fees would apply, please refer to the first question above. We recommend contacting your travel insurance provider as many policies would cover this scenario

Is it possible my tour will be cancelled?

We are committed to operating all tours and it is our intention to honour all bookings for all passengers, however yes some tours have been cancelled, those affected should have been contacted, we do not want to cancel any more tours however this may be necessary


Travel Related Questions

What measures are you taking to limit a passenger catching Coronavirus?

  • Minimal touching: Guides will great you with an “elbow bump” greeting when they pick you up: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elbow_bump
  • When we pick you up, we will spray your bag with a disinfectant
  • Everytime anyone enters our vehicle, they will be asked to use hand sanitiser, this will be provided at the door of the vehicle
  • Each day, the door handles of the vehicle will be wiped with a disinfectant
  • No food shall be prepared without the use of disposable rubber gloves
  • Swags (your camp beds) will be sprayed with disinfectant both at the beginning, and at the end of your tour

What are you doing to protect remote Aboriginal Communities?

We are aware of the specific danger to vulnerable Aboriginal communities and we will be able to modify our itineraries to avoid these locations unless specifically invited to access areas which are well away from people and communities.

What happens if someone on the tour appears to be sick?

We reserve the right ask any passenger who appears sick to leave the tour, our procedure would be to immediately notify authorities and take their advice, in this scenario it is likely that the tour would terminate.

Can I join the tour if I feel sick?

No. If you are not feeling well we recommend you immediately visit a doctor, if you are displaying flu like symptoms you will be asked to leave the tour unless you have a doctors certificate stating that you do have Covid 19

Should I bring my own hand sanitiser?

We will do our best to provide ample hand sanitiser on tour, however many locations are experiencing shortages of this product due to panic buying, so yes, if you have this product please bring it along.

Should I wear a facemask?

We do not require this however you are free to wear a facemask on tour.