General Terms and Conditions of Business
1) Booking and down payment
If you would like to make a reservation with us, we will be pleased to send to you a binding reservation confirmation. You are kindly asked to complete our booking form. Submitting to you the reservation confirmation, we will at the same time offer you to conclude a travel contract. An advance payment amounting to 20% of the total price – but min. 50,00 Euro – needs to be paid to us within one week. The travel contract will come into force upon advance payment receipt. If preferred by you, it is also possible to charge your account with the payments. In that case please let us have the required bank details. If booking takes place within a period shorter than four weeks from the start of the holiday, the full rental amount must be paid immediately. If we do not receive the payment within the period established by law, we are entitled to cancel the contract after sending a written payment reminder establishing a reasonable grace period. After the cancellation of the contract, we are entitled to demand a cancellation charge from the customer in accordance with Section 4 of our GBT (General Terms and Conditions of Business). A fee of 10,00 € is to be payable for each payment reminder.
2) Balance payment
The balance payment must be paid not less than four weeks before the start of the holiday. After making the payment the customer receives a holiday voucher with the exact address of their accommodation, a map with directions and details about the meeting point with our local contact person. If we do not receive the balance payment within the period established by law, we are entitled to establish a reasonable period for payment. Should we still not receive the payment after the expiration of this period, we are entitled to cancel the contract. After the cancellation of the contract, we are entitled to demand a cancellation charge from the customer in accordance with Section 4 of our GBT. If we are able to rent the property elsewhere after the contract has been cancelled, the achieved rental price will be deducted from the cancellation charge. Depending on the increased administrative expense, an administration fee of 75,00 € is due in each case.
3) Cancellation of booking by customer
The customer may withdraw from the agreement at any time before the start of the holiday. In the event of a cancellation, we request a cancellation fee for booked accommodations, which will be calculated in accordance with the following percentages:
up to 61 days before start date: 15% of rental charge
60 to 45 days before start date: 25% of rental charge
44 to 35 days before start date: 50% of rental charge
34 to 15 days before start date: 60% of rental charge
14 to 7 days before start date: 70% of rental charge
less than 6 days before start date: 80% of rental charge
The holiday provider is at liberty to to assert higher, more specific damage claims. The customer has a possibility of proving that no damage or less damage was incurred than the claimed flat rates.
4) Cancellation charges and GBT (General Terms and Conditions of Business) for services of third party holiday providers
As to services booked with the participation of third party providers (e.g. flight, car and hotel bookings), GBT and cancellation charges of the respective providers shall apply. The customer has a possibility of viewing the GBT of third party providers on our business premises. If requested, we can also send the above mentioned GBT documents to the customer.
5) Ancillary costs
Ancillary costs such as electricity, gas, water and final cleaning are included in the rental price. If gas bottles provided should run empty, the house owner or relevant contact person should be notified immediately. Possible heating costs are calculated on departure.
6) Bed linen and towels
All beds are freshly made on arrival. Bed linen can be changed once a week. It is either stored in a wardrobe or can be obtained from the house owner or contact person. Kitchen and bathroom towels are also available and can be changed at least twice a week. However, towels are not to be taken to the beach.
7) Substitute accommodation
If for unforeseeable reasons the accommodation booked by the customer cannot be provided, a property equivalent in terms of facilities and location will be allocated. In this case the customer has no entitlement to claim any reduction.
8) Price changes
The prices for holiday properties listed in our catalogue are subject to change in time. However, after confirmation of booking and complete holiday registration, the prices specified are definitive. In the case of bookings for flights, cars and hotels, the prices specified are subject to adjustment by the relevant tour operators.
9) Ground plans in our catalogue
Ground plans of individual holiday homes or apartments in our catalogue are not to scale. Their only purpose is to give the customer an idea of the arrangement of rooms in a property.
We cannot accept any complaints related to inconveniences of everyday life in Portuguese villages, e.g. barking dogs in the vicinity or ringing church bells.
11) Defects in accommodation
Our customers are obliged to immediately notify the house owner or relevant contact person in the case of any defects in their accommodation so that these can be rectified promptly. If these defects cannot be rectified and are so serious that make it impossible for the customers to remain there, our contact person will try to provide a substitute property equivalent in terms of facilities and location. If the customer neglects to notify a defect, no reduction in the rental price can be claimed.
12) Deadline for complaints
Claims on account of non-contractual rendering of the holiday services must be notified directly to us in writing within a month from the end of the contractual rental period. It is recommended to make claims in writing for the purpose of evidence. After expiry of this period such claims can only be asserted if the customer was prevented from complying with the deadline through no fault of their own. Customers’ claims based on §§ 651 c – 651 f of BGB (German Civil Code) shall be barred by limitation after one year. The period shall commence on the day when the contractual rental period ended or should have ended. If negotiations between the customer and the travel agent about the claim or the circumstances substantiating the claim are pending, limitation shall be inhibited until the customer or the travel agent rejects continuation of the negotiations. Limitation shall occur no earlier than three months after the end of the inhibition. Claims in tort shall be barred by limitation after three years.
13) Power failure and water supply cut off
In Portuguese villages water may become scarce in the summer time and be cut off entirely for several hours. In rare cases power failures may also occur due to heavy rains or strong winds. Both inhabitants of the village and our customers have to come to terms with these conditions. In such cases there is no entitlement to price reduction.
Statutory liability for other than personal loss or damage shall be limited to three times the rental price, provided we do not cause the damage intentionally or through gross negligence. If we act as an agent for other holiday service providers, the relevant providers shall be liable, provided we have not negligently breached any duties to provide information or indication, or to exercise due diligence.
15) Rescission of contract due to exceptional circumstances
If the holiday is seriously impeded, jeopardized or impaired due to instances of force majeure, unforeseeable at the time of conclusion of the contract, e.g. an earthquake, a war, a civil war or an epidemics, the contract may be rescinded either by us or by our customer. If the contract is terminated, we require a pro-rata payment of the full rental price for services already rendered. If the customers have not started their holiday yet, none of their claims shall apply.
16) Services not utilised
If our customers fail to avail themselves of holiday services in whole or in part due to late arrival, early return or other compelling reasons, no claims for repayment can be asserted. However, should we be able to rent out the accommodation in question to another customer at short notice, we will refund the amount acquired from the rental to the other customer.
17) Obligations and special duties of the customer
The booked property may only be occupied by the contractually agreed number of persons. In the case of additional occupants, we are entitled to demand an adequate compensation for the period of over-occupancy or to request our customers to have the additional persons leave the rental property. This request may also be made by our local contact person. Pets may be brought only after obtaining a prior approval. Our customers are obliged to treat the rental property with due care and to notify all defects or signs of damage without delay. Upon departure, the property is to swept clean. All dishes are to be washed and rubbish removed. If the property requires more than a standard final cleaning after customers’ departure or if damage is detected to the facilities of the rented property, we shall be entitled to bill our customers for the costs incurred as damage compensation. Our customers are liable for all signs of damage they are guilty of causing to the rented property during their rental period. The house owner may request that the customers sign an inventory list. Should anything be missing at the end of the rental period, our customers are obliged to recompense for the loss provided that they are responsible for the damage inflicted deliberately.
18) Holiday cancellation insurance
In all cases we recommend that our customers be provided with holiday cancellation insurance which we would be pleased to arrange on their behalf with ELVIA-Travel Insurance.
19) Severability clause
Should the above provisions be invalid, the remaining provisions shall retain their validity.