Advice for guests

We’re frequently reviewing the information contained on this page and are committed to ensuring that the safety of our guests is our first priority. The information and policies that follow were made in good faith and correct at the time of publication. Due to the constantly evolving nature of the Coronavirus pandemic, we may need to change or update the policies outlined below at short notice and in line with new developments, relevant guidance and legal obligations.  

Information correct as of 11:30am 07.10.20

We will only travel to destinations that are exempt from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office’s (FCDO) essential travel only list. If the guidance changes for the destination you are due to travel to and this has an effect on our ability to provide your holiday, we will be in contact as soon as we can to talk through your options.

We are paying constant attention to the guidance from the FCDO, ABTA and Public Health England in the UK, as well as to the guidance from the local health authorities in our destinations. All our holidays are subject to the local Covid-19 regulations of the destination country, which may differ from that of the UK. We recommend you are familiar with these before you travel.

For guests who are concerned about their travel plans in light of the Coronavirus outbreak, we answer the most commonly asked questions below.

Is my ski holiday going to take place as planned this winter?

Our winter 2020/21 ski holidays are expected to go ahead as planned. We will only travel to destinations that are exempt from the FCDO’s essential travel only list.

If you are due to travel in the next few weeks, we will contact you with further information regarding your holiday if the guidance from the relevant governing bodies changes for the destination you are due to travel to. We ask you to please be patient as we will be contacting those customers with the most imminent departures as a priority.

How will I know if my travel plans are going to be affected?

The unpredictable impacts of the Coronavirus pandemic mean that decisions about changes or amendments to your holiday may occur at any time, and could be no more than a few days before you are due to depart.

We pay constant attention to the guidance from the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office’s (FCDO), ABTA, Public Health England and local health authorities in our destinations. We will respond to any advice issued by the FCDO against non-essential travel to your destination, and will contact you as soon as it is clear we won’t be able to provide your holiday at the originally planned time. 

Will my holiday experience be different due to Coronavirus?

We’ll do our very best to make sure your holiday is everything you expect it to be. Due to the constantly evolving nature of the Coronavirus crisis, we might need to change or withdraw some advertised accommodation facilities and resort services so we can keep everyone safe. Wherever we can, we’ll let you know about this in advance, but sometimes it might be at very short notice.

Our holidays will be subject to the local Covid-19 regulations in that destination and those of our airlines or transport providers, and we recommend that you are familiar with these before you travel. Information can be found on the relevant country pages of the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office’s (FCDO) website, so please ensure that you read these. 

For the most up to date information on everything we are doing to make your holiday as safe as possible, please visit our “In Safe Hands” page.

How will you help to keep me safe on holiday?

We are closely following the advice of the UK Government and FCDO regarding international travel and working within the recommendations and regulations of our destination countries to minimise the risk of Coronavirus.  Whilst it would be impossible to eradicate all risk, the best way to stay safe is to maintain good hygiene, regularly wash your hands with soap and water and keep a social distance from others. Where it is not possible to keep over 1m distance from others, you should wear a face covering. For the latest advice from the World Health Organisation click here

Our holidays will be subject to the local Covid-19 regulations of the destination country, and those of our airlines or transport providers, at the time of travel. Due to the constantly evolving nature of the Coronavirus pandemic, these regulations may change up to the time of departure and may be different to the regulations we are experiencing in the UK.

For the most up to date information on everything we are doing to make your holiday as safe as possible, please visit our “In Safe Hands” page.

Will I be entitled to a refund if Esprit Ski has to cancel or make a significant change to my holiday due to the Coronavirus outbreak?

If things change and we have to cancel your holiday because of Coronavirus, you can move your holiday to another available date or destination of equivalent value, or pay the difference to upgrade your trip. If for any reason you are not able to move your holiday, we’ll give you a refund.

Equally, if we have to make a significant change your holiday, we’ll give you the option of accepting the change or receiving a refund. You can find out more about what would be considered a significant change in our booking terms & conditions.

Please remember it is a condition of our booking terms that you have valid travel insurance. We would strongly recommend that you take travel insurance out at the time of booking that offers additional Coronavirus cover.

I am due to travel this winter with Esprit. Can I get a refund if I choose to cancel my holiday?

Once we are able to confirm that your holiday will go ahead as planned, up to the date that final balance is due, you have the option to postpone your holiday until next year and your deposit payment will go against a future booking with us. Most of our partners have done this too, giving you the flexibility to make changes. If any partners charge a fee, we might have to pass it on though. After you have paid your full balance, if you choose to cancel your holiday we will not be able to offer a refund on your holiday or added extras and our usual booking terms & conditions.

Equally, if we make the decision to suspend your holiday to a given destination and you cancelled before we took that action, we will not offer a refund retrospectively. You should therefore ensure that you have adequate travel insurance and seek to recover cancellation charges from your insurer where possible.

If you have underlying health concerns, we would recommend that you speak to your GP and travel insurer, who may offer a degree of cover for cancellation on these grounds, subject to the terms of your policy, and you may need a note from your GP to support your claim.  

I haven’t yet paid the balance for my holiday. Can I pay later while I wait and see what happens?

As we’ve seen, due the constantly evolving nature of the Covid-19 crisis, the FCDO and UK government are frequently changing the list of countries with additional quarantine measures and/or restrictions on leisure travel. We remain optimistic that all our holidays will go ahead as planned this winter. As a responsible tour operator we want to reassure you that we put your safety first and we will not operate holidays to destinations with additional quarantine measures on arrival and/or restrictions on leisure travel.

In light of the current travel restrictions, for ski holidays due to depart in December 2020, we’re delaying taking full balance payment until 8 weeks prior to departure (instead of the usual 10 weeks). At the time of travel, if your chosen holiday destination has additional quarantine measures on arrival and/or FCDO restrictions on leisure travel, we’ll cancel your holiday and you can move to a later date or have a cash refund.

I’m due to go on holiday in the next few days but the government have enforced a localised lockdown in my local area. Can I still go on holiday?

Unfortunately, you will not be allowed to go on holiday if, within 14 days of departure, you have been advised not to travel outside your local area due to a government imposed localised lockdown which includes restrictions on all non-essential travel. In these instances, you can move your holiday to another available date or destination of equivalent value, or pay the difference to upgrade your trip. If for any reason you are not able to move your holiday, we’ll give you a refund.

I’m due to go on holiday with Esprit, but have now contracted Coronavirus. What are my options?

If you contract COVID-19 within 14 days of your departure date and have a medical certificate to confirm your diagnosis, you can move your holiday to the same holiday (including accommodation and airline) at a later date in the season.

This applies to you and a travel companion sharing the same room, plus any dependents. If you would prefer to cancel your holiday, in the first instance please contact your travel insurance provider.

I’m due to go on holiday in the next few days but I’ve been contacted by NHS Test & Trace. Can I still go on holiday?

Unfortunately, you will not be allowed to go on holiday if NHS Test & Trace have asked you to self-isolate within the last 14 days for a period covering your departure date. This may be checked and verified at the airport, and you could be denied boarding by the airline. In these instances, please contact your travel insurance provider, then contact us (or your travel agent) and we will do our very best to help you.

Will I be covered by my travel insurance if I decide to cancel or have to self-isolate?

This will depend on the terms of your policy. Depending on the reason for your cancellation (for example if you are concerned about a serious underlying medical condition), you should contact your travel insurance provider to check if you can make a claim.

We would highly recommend that you take out travel insurance that covers you for additional coronavirus-related disruptions.  Many travel insurance policies will no longer cover you as standard if your holiday is disrupted due to Coronavirus, but there are new policies and add-ons appearing on the market that will. Look for ones which will cover you in the event of NHS Test & Trace disrupting your holiday plans.

My holiday was cancelled by you due to COVID-19 and I decided to take Refund Credit Note (RCN) instead of a refund. How/when can I use it?

We understand that having to postpone your holiday was no doubt disappointing, and we’re sorry that you couldn’t get away for a well-deserved break. Our team are ready and waiting to help you make your future travel plans in the ‘new normal’, so here’s some guidance on how you can use your RCN:

  • If you use your RCN to book an ATOL-protected holiday, it is protected under our ATOL subject to the terms of the ATT Payment Policy.If you use it to book a non-ATOL-protected trip, that new holiday will not be ATOL protected.
  • Your RCN is non-transferable and can only be used by the person/s named on the RCN. Your RCN should not be re-sold.
  • Make sure to keep your RCN alongside your original booking documents, as this will show the ATOL protection extending from your original ATOL-protected booking.
  • You can only redeem your RCN against one booking, i.e. it cannot be split across two or more bookings. If you don’t use the full value of your RCN on your new booking, the balance will be refunded to you in cash.
  • If you do not redeem your RCN against a new booking by the date of expiry, a cash refund will be offered in its place.

Plus don't forget you can use your RCN for a new booking across any of our Hotelplan brands.

Where can I check for up-to-date travel and health information for my destination?