Coronavirus COVID-19 Advice

We know lots of you have questions about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the status of your holiday. We’ve tried to answer as many of these questions as possible below, and we’ll update this page regularly.

Updated 27th March 2020

Note from the Founders

Without wanting to needlessly add to the noise we need to give you the latest on where we stand in regards to the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak.

As you might imagine we have been overwhelmed as a small company trying to understand, decipher and respond to the ever-changing global situation over the recent weeks and days, as we get to grips with what pandemic means for us all. In short it is impossible for us to operate a holiday business for the next few months.

Pausing Everything & Surviving

What it comes down to is this. We’ve been examining this from every angle and it seems the only way through this situation is to do it together: to lean in to it and pause everything for a few months, hunker down and look after each other. We believe this in a global sense as well as in our, seemingly insignificant, surf & yoga holidays case.  

To do this we have decided to ask everyone within the chain of our business to pause with us: our landlords, our banks, the tax authorities, our UK, Indian, Sri Lankan and Portuguese teams and you, our customers. 

I think we all feel this will pass, but we don’t know exactly when. Two months, four months, six months?… and then, we hope, normal life will resume, the world will keep on turning and we’ll keep on doing what we’ve always done. But probably a bit better and with more gratitude.

What does this mean for your booking with us?

In short, we believe we’ll be able to provide your well needed holiday when this is over. So as part of this proposal we are offering all of our existing customers to postpone their holiday and to change their booking to any future point with no administration charges. The only applicable charges would be if there was a difference in seasonal rates. We are also open for future bookings in India & Sri Lanka from September 2020 onwards and in Portugal from mid-June onwards, but of course, these dates will be reviewed regularly as the situation is so fluid.

What if Soul & Surf Ltd. becomes insolvent within that time?

The alternative to this unilateral buy-in for us is bankruptcy. Obviously that is not great for us, or anyone within our chain of business. But for you, our customer, your monies are protected by our financial failure insurance which will pay out at a yet to be determined point after the bankruptcy process is completed. So hopefully that gives you a little peace of mind.

Please email us enquiries@soulandsurf.com to discuss your options should you not be in a position to pause with us.

At times like these, we turn to the greats. As Daniel Bedingfield (google him) once implored, we ‘Gotta Get Thru This’.

It feels more important now than ever to reiterate that by coming on holiday with us once it is safe to do so you are helping us to support the wonderful teams of staff, local business and communities in which we operate. As with other events that have impacted tourism, the floods in Kerala a couple of years back and the Easter attacks in Sri Lanka last year we appreciate that it is our customers who tend to be the most resilient and the first to help the industry recover, recoup and rebuild. Once it is wise to travel again we hope you’ll continue to support us and our teams.

Love, 

Ed, Sofie & Kit Templeton

 


We’re contacting everyone likely to be affected directly.

We currently offer rooms and packages in 3 countries around the world. Sadly, all bookings with us have been paused up until the end of August for Asia and at least until Mid June for Portugal. Reservations for after those dates are all currently going ahead as planned until further notice, though we fear that disruption is likely to go into May, June and beyond. We and our local teams rely on the travel advice from the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to continue to inform our approach with consistency. 

For those travelling later in the year we appreciate how unsettling this situation is, so we’re working round the clock with our local hosts to provide you the flexibility and reassurance you need. Here’s how:

 

We’re providing even more flexibility. 

We are happily requesting and allowing guests to postpone their trips to a later date, should you wish. Doing so will incur no fees, no price changes and will honour any discounts already applied. If you’re happy to keep your booking as it is for now, you don’t have to do anything, and of course if anything changes that affects your booking we’ll be in touch to remind you of your options. Saves you being glued to the news. 

 

We’ll hold your booking for as long as you need. 

If you’re not able to commit to a new date just yet, worry not. You can postpone your trip and rearrange it later. We’ll hold your booking for as long as you need. 

 

We’ll be keeping you updated.

To keep you up to speed, you can follow our Coronavirus updates on this page and in our usual lines of communication. 

 

We’re here for you.

If you are concerned about your trip and would like to discuss your options, please email our lovely Customer Support team on enquries@soulandsurf.com and we’ll be happy to help you. 

 

What’s the status of my trip?

We paused our operations in all locations, for the next 3 – 6 months. Re-opening dates will be assessed regularly once it is wise to travel again.

As of the 23rd March 2020, the UK Gov Travel Advice is this : As countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including travel and border restrictions, the FCO advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. Any country or area may restrict travel without notice. 

We are monitoring the Coronavirus situation closely, following legitimate sources such as:

    – Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO)

    – Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

    – National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC)

    – World Health Organisation (WHO)

We as a UK Tour Operator rely on the travel advice from the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office to inform our approach.

We are offering all of our existing customers to postpone their holiday and to change their booking to any future point with no administration charges. 

Please email us <click to show address> to discuss your options should you not be in a position to pause with us. 

Is my money safe if I’ve got a trip booked, or am about to book one?

We understand you might be wondering whether this is the best time to book a holiday. Happily, UK and European citizens are generally protected under the Package Travel Regulations. 

In non-legal speak this basically means that should the FCO advise against ‘all but essential travel’ to your destination and your holiday is subsequently cancelled, the supplier needs to offer either an alternative, an option to postpone or in some cases a full refund. The supplier also needs to hold insolvency protection to cover refund and repatriation costs in the unlikely event of their financial failure before or during your trip. 

Can I postpone my trip?

We are offering all of our existing customers to postpone their holiday and to change their booking to any future point with no administration charges. 

Please email us <click to show address> to discuss your options should you not be in a position to pause with us. 

You should also contact your airline and your insurance company to confirm if there are compensation options available.

I no longer want to travel, can I cancel and get a refund? Or… My work has banned travel, can I cancel and get a refund?

We are offering all of our existing customers to postpone their holiday and to change their booking to any future point with no administration charges. Please email us <click to show address> to discuss your options should you not be in a position to pause with us. 

You should also contact your airline and your insurance company to confirm if there are compensation options available. Soul & Surf can provide you with a letter for you to pursue this further. 

Do I have to pay my balance or can I wait and see what happens?

Unless we have informed you that your holiday is not going ahead please follow the payment instructions on your booking to pay by the deadline for your booking as normal.

We are offering all of our existing customers to postpone their holiday and to change their booking to any future point with no administration charges. Please email us <click to show address> to discuss your options should you not be in a position to pause with us. 

If you wish to cancel or postpone your trip, the cancellation policy shown on your booking will apply. 

Should I buy travel insurance? 

You should also always take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance as soon as you book. We like World Nomads, but there are countless other options available. 

This forms part our agreement with you and we ask at the point of booking to confirm as to whether or not you have travel Insurance that covers you for cancellation too.

The coverage available to you in the event of coronavirus related problems will depend on the insurer and your individual circumstances, so do contact the insurer if you have queries. 

Will my travel insurance cover me? 

When you made your booking with us you ticked a box to confirm that you had travel insurance that covered you for cancellation too. Please can I ask you to explore this route too as that’s what the insurers are there to do and help you the guest get your money back, whilst covering us the provider for mass cancellations like this to mitigate our liabilities and make sure we have a Soul & Surf for you to travel too in the future.

We’re here to help you.

If you have any further questions about the status of your booking and how Coronavirus may affect this, please contact our customer support team.

Please note, the advice on this article is for guidance only. It may change at any time and may not apply in some circumstances.

 




Guest Reviews

Just wanted to say thank you again to you and Ed for such a fantastic experience. Your place is lovely and I really appreciated all your help and welcome. It suited what I was after and worked out so much better than I had hoped

Anna, London