General Terms & Conditions

How to reserve your trip

If you already know on which trip and date you would like to travel, simply select the trip date of your choice on the respective trip page, a pop-up window will appear. We require a $300 deposit to confirm your spot + 50% of the amount of the private room if you choose to book a private room upgrade.

The balance of the trip will be automatically charged to your credit card 90 days before the departure date (or later if we haven’t received the minimum amount of participants to confirm the trip 90 days before departure. The latest date for us to confirm the trip is 21 days before departure.) Let us know if you are travelling with other people, and make sure they reserve their spot as well. You can forward them your booking using a link on the payment software.

You can read our FAQ section to get all the important information before booking.

If you would prefer to be contacted by a booking agent to answer some of your questions before paying the deposit, and you would ultimately like to reserve a spot on one of our trips, please use this contact form.

1- Please specify :

– What kind of package do you want “Guided Surfing” or “Learn to Surf”,

– If you know your travel dates or if you are flexible in your travel dates,

– How many people are travelling with you and their names and emails (you can write it at the last question of the reservation form),

– What kind of accommodation do you want (shared bedroom, double occupancy),

– Your questions (you can write it at the last question of the reservation form)

2- Wait for our confirmation by email for the availabilities and other details of your reservation.

(Please make sure to check your junk mail folder in the next 48h if you haven’t heard from us.)

3- When you are ready, you can book your spot online through our secured online payment platform, with your credit card.

4- The balance of payment is due 90 days prior to departure (or later if we haven’t received the minimum amount of participants to confirm the trip 90 days before departure The latest date for us to confirm the trip is 30 days before departure.)

Accepted Payment Methods

At this moment, we only accept payments by Credit Cards.

Security, taxes and booking fees

Book in confidence because the payment software we use has a 2048-bit encryption system and runs on the same infrastructure trusted by Netflix, Airbnb, Lyft, Comcast, and millions of others. Both our booking platform and website are securely encrypted over SSL and affiliated with Stripe payment solutions.

Prices are tax included.

A booking fee of 6% (on your initial deposit only) will be charged by our booking system. The balance will be charged on your credit card 90 days before departure or as soon as the trip is confirmed between 30-90 days before the trip departure.

Payment Options

We offer two payments options to suit your needs:

  • Full Payment – One payment in full upon reception of invoice, if the reservation date is less than 90 days prior to departure.

  • $300 deposit + balance 90 days before departure

 

(Reservations received less than 90 days prior to departure must be paid in total.)

Accepted Payment Methods

All required documents must be submitted to SURF Expedition by email when doing the deposit (Medical Insurance proof, other important  medical or allergies information we should know about, passport details if booking a flight through our partner agency.)

Late Payments & Bookings

Accounts are due in full no later than 90 days prior to departure. Reservations received within 90 days prior to departure must be paid in full. Please provide us with all the required documentation via email at the time of booking.

Spots are available on a first-come-first-served basis so please be aware that your booking will only be accounted for once a deposit has been received.

If the accounts are not paid in full by the due date, your space may not be guaranteed and Surf Expedition reserves the right to treat your booking as cancelled. All missed or late payments of more than 10 days are subject to a $50 fee per missed due date.

In the event that the trip has not yet reached the minimum number of participants to confirm the stay 90 days before departure, Surf Expedition may issue the invoice for the balance or debit your card less than 90 days before departure when the minimum number of participants is reached.

Cancellations by Surf Expedition

If at 21 days prior to departure there are not enough clients booked for your chosen trip date, Surf Expedition reserves the right to cancel the trip. Clients will be given the option to choose between a full refund or to be rebooked on alternative trip dates. The refund or credit is only in the event that there are not enough participants to travel on your chosen travel date.

Cancellations due to circumstances of “Force Majeure” 

If a trip is cancelled due to circumstances of « Force Majeure » (including but not limited to war, the threat of war, demonstration, natural disaster, pandemic, civil unrest, state of emergency, border closing, fire, volcanic eruption, strike, significant fluctuation in exchange or other external events that would not make the trip safe or viable), no refund will be given for unused travel services (in whole or in part), and the price or value of unused services may not be exchanged. We strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance to protect yourself against these types of circumstances in the event of trip cancellation or interruption.

Trips postponed between March 15, 2020 and August 2, 2020 due to Covid-19

On March 29, 2020, we went above and beyond our reservation policy to issue a full credit to all trips scheduled between March 15 and August 2 to travel on another confirmed date before December 31, 2021.

If this is your case, you can check our 2021 surf trip calendar and contact us to rebook your trip.

Details on cancellations due to Covid-19

No refund or credit will be issued if you cannot travel due to Covid-19.

While we are doing our best to stay afloat during this extremely difficult time, we are unable to issue refund or future travel credit as we have high operating costs to cover from the time you register for the travel, whether you choose (or are able) to travel or not, while Covid-19 is still an issue and can jeopardize your trip. We have a lot of costs to cover prior to your arrival to prepare a stay and hire staff so that we can accommodate you as best as possible, and we can’t just issue a credit for later in the current situation.

When the crisis is over, we will give as much credit as possible to all of our customers who have lost, however, we cannot make any commitments to anyone now as we do not know how economically impacted we will ultimately have been. until it is finished. Without knowing how much we will have been affected, we cannot know what we can afford to give.

For this reason, for all COVID-19-related cancellations (including, but not limited to, the authorities in your country of departure or the authorities at the travel destination prohibit travel or close their borders, if your flight is cancelled by your airline, if you cannot travel or decide not to travel due to Covid-19, if you become ill, test positive for Covid-19, have a member of your direct family test positive or any other reason related to Covid-19); we will not be able to issue you a credit to make a new reservation at a later date. Please read the “Cancellations by Customer” section to see what charges apply.

We strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance with a “cancellation for any reason” policy to protect yourself in the event of trip cancellation or interruption. This insurance must be purchased within a certain time frame, usually a few weeks after your initial travel deposit has been paid, so please research it carefully at the time of booking to ensure you will be covered. We cannot bear the risk of being an insurance company. It is up to the client to choose whether or not to take out cancellation insurance with an insurer of his choice at the moment of booking his trip.

Exception: If you were supposed to travel between March 15th, 2020 and August 2nd, 2020 we have issued you a full credit to travel on another confirmed date before December 31, 2021.

Cancellations by Client

Pre-departure cancellations must be submitted in writing via email with receipt confirmation by us. It is the responsibility of the client to ensure that adequate trip cancellation and interruption insurance is purchased to cover any forfeited portion of their trip cost if a cancellation is necessary.

Any cancellation by you will incur a cancellation fee** as follow :

  • Within the first 48 hours of booking or reserving only – 0%; full refund minus any processing fee, bank transfer fees or change in currency)

  • More than 90 days before departure – initial $300 deposit forfeited. The remaining balance can be applied for another confirmed trip date before December 31st, 2021. Trip dates to be confirmed by Surf Expedition when we reach the minimum amount of participants. We will try our best to transfer you to another date, but we might not be able to guarantee this at the time of cancellation. You can only rebook one time to a new confirmed trip. You will need to pay the difference if the booking is more expensive and there will not be a refund if the booking is less expensive.

  • 61-90 days before departure – 50% of payments forfeited, the remaining balance will be held as credit that you can use for a new booking on a future trip date* before December 31st, 2021.

  • 60 days or less before departure – 100% of payments forfeited

*Trip date must be a confirmed date by Surf Expedition, meaning that Surf Expedition confirmed there are enough participants to be able to offer the trip on this date.

**Cancellation fees help cover expenses that are paid in advance (such as maintenance and camp preparation costs, marketing expenses, travel arrangements for staff, reserved accommodations, transportation & services). These are unfortunately not refundable to us. When you book your trip and we confirm the trip, your inscription is accounted for to make sure we are covering our basic operating costs. Your decision to cancel means we might have to operate a trip without covering our minimum cost because we’ve already confirmed the trip to other participants who have booked their flights. Once you booked your spot, it also means that the spot becomes unavailable for someone who could have booked otherwise.

For these reasons, we hope you can understand that although we would love to be able to refund you, we financially can not bear the financial risk of offering such refunds or credits as a business trying to survive these difficult and uncertain times.

The best way to protect your trip if you decide to cancel your travel plans is to get a “cancel for any reason” travel insurance.

You can, however, transfer the trip to a friend if you cannot participate, provided that it represents a new reservation (the amount of your reservation cannot be used to pay the balance of a friend who has already reserved a place on a trip). An administrative fee of $ 100 applies to transfer your reservation to someone else.

 

Unused Services

There will be no discounts or refunds for missed or unused services, which include voluntary or involuntary termination/departure from tour i.e. sickness, death of a family member etc., missed flights, late arrival on the tour or premature departure, either voluntary or involuntary. All transportation and accommodations are secured and paid for in full prior to clients arriving at their destinations and as such, no refunds or credits are provided to Surf Expedition for missed or unused services. This is one of the reasons why travel insurance with trip cancellation and trip interruption coverage is advised.

Mandatory Travel Insurance with medical coverage

It is mandatory for all participants to have proper travel medical insurance, which should be purchased by you when we send you the trip confirmation. Proof of travel insurance covering medical emergencies must be provided at the latest 15 days prior to arrival at the destination by the clients before he is permitted to join the group.

To enter Costa Rica, you must request from your insurer a certification issued in English or Spanish, noting at least these three conditions and upload this certification when filing the online HEALTH PASS (see below) :

  • The validity of the effective policy during your visit to Costa Rica.

  • Guarantee of coverage for medical expenses in cases of pandemic disease COVID 19 in Costa Rica, for at least US $50,000 (fifty thousand dollars of the United States of America).

  • A minimum coverage of US $2,000 for extended lodging expenses due to pandemic illness or trip interruption/cancellation due to illness, which covers the extra cost of the passenger due to quarantine.

It is mandatory that tourists purchase travel insurance, covering their accommodations in case of quarantine and medical expenses due to COVID-19 illness. An explanation of one’s travel insurance coverage, addressing Costa Rica’s requirements, must be uploaded or entered into the HEALTH PASS in order to be reviewed and approved by the Costa Rican authorities. If more information on international insurance is needed, the Costa Rican authorities will contact the passenger at the email address indicated in the HEALTH PASS.

Your coverage must also:

  • Protect you against accident, death and injuries from the activity of surfing, medical expenses, emergency repatriation and personal liability.

  • Have a minimum of $1 Million coverage

Due to the Covid-19 situation, rapid changes in airlines and borders policies can occur. We strongly recommend purchasing insurance for trip cancellation that says “cancel for any reason”. This insurance must usually be purchased no later than a few weeks after paying your initial deposit. Check with your insurer at the moment of booking your initial deposit to make sure you know when is the deadline to purchase this insurance.

  • Protection for lost or stolen luggage is recommended but not mandatory.

Filling out an online formed called “Health Pass”

To enter Costa Rica, you must complete the digital form called “HEALTH PASS” and available at https://salud.go.cr

  • This pass will be available 48 hours before boarding. It must be accessed in an updated browser (except for Internet Explorer). An individual form must be completed for every person, including minors.

  •  An explanation of one’s travel insurance coverage, addressing Costa Rica’s requirements, must be uploaded or entered into the HEALTH PASS in order to be reviewed and approved by the Costa Rican authorities. If more information on international insurance is needed, the Costa Rican authorities will contact the passenger at the email address indicated in the HEALTH PASS.

  • Tourists must request from their insurer a certification issued in English or Spanish, noting at least three conditions, without forgetting to add it to the HEALTH PASS.

When filling the HEALTH PASS, it will ask you where you will be staying during your stay in Costa Rica.

Since you will be staying at a private dwelling which is not a hotel, please write “CASA PRIVADA, PAVONES” as your address for the leg of your trip during the surf retreat.

Due to Covid-19, new requirements could be required by the visited country and it is the responsibility of the client to make sure they pass all requirements to enter the visited country :

  • Nicaragua Entry Requirements for Tourists (updated September 9, 2020)

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Y5bESyswV1IV-IyhCsfckrLt0vzw9RXvVehr18iR37k/edit?usp=sharing

Passports & Visas

It is the responsibility of the client to ensure that they are in possession of a valid passport (6 months validity beyond return date), correct visas, permits or certifications prior to departure.

It is the responsibility of the client to ensure that they have passed all the mandatory requirements, including health requirements.

It is in no way the responsibility of Surf Expedition if clients are refused entry because clients lack the correct travel documentation or health requirements.

Client Details

In order for Surf Expedition to confirm airport pickup and travel arrangements, clients must provide the following details necessary with the balance of the trip cost:

  • Flight details (arrival and departure time, flight number and name of air carrier)

  • Any allergies and pre-existing medical conditions

  • Any medications which will be carried with the client during the trip

  • Travel Insurance with medical coverage policy number and international phone number of insurer in case of emergency

  • Name, phone number and email of a trustworthy person to reach in case of emergency (family or friend)

Minimum Age

Our tours are for people 18 years of age and older, however, we agree to make an exception for 17-year-olds who have obtained a parent’s consent to join the trip. During the trip to Nicaragua, there are scheduled parties with alcoholic beverages and an evening spent in a bar. Alcohol-free options for people under the age of alcohol are available and it is Surf Expedition’s guides priority to make sure all our guests are safe, however, Surf Expedition will not exercise control to prevent a Minor Participant from participating in a scheduled activity. 

The minimum age to participate in surf lessons in Costa Rica is 14 years old and all teenagers under 17 years old should be accompanied by a parent.

Pricing & Surcharges

Pricing is based on American Dollars at the time of booking. If your credit card company is in another currency, keep in mind that they might charge you an additional service fee.

Surf Expedition reserves the right to impose surcharges within 30 days prior to the beginning of the trip for the following reasons:

  • Increase in transportation costs (air or otherwise)
  • Increase in local operation costs

Discounts

All discounts and reduced pricing is applied at the discretion of Surf Expedition. From time to time we may offer reduced pricing on selected trips. The reduced pricing applies strictly to new bookings only, and bookings that have already been secured with a deposit are locked into their original pricing and are not entitled to the reduced pricing. Past Traveller Discounts are valid only for travel booked within 12 months of the initial booking. For all promotions with a promo code or coupon, you must mention it to us during the reservation request in the notes section.

Flexibility & Change of Itinerary

The itinerary provided is a representation of the activities that Surf Expedition provides, but it is understood that the route, schedule, itinerary, amenities and modes of transport are subject to change or alteration without prior notice based on local circumstances or events. While we strive to ensure that all trips are operated as described, Surf Expedition reserves the right to change the trip itinerary. If any major changes are made prior to departure clients will be informed as soon as possible. A major change is one where at least two in five days is affected. Surf Expedition reserves the right to make major changes to the itinerary after departure due to local circumstances or events outside of our control.

In Country Authority

Surf Expedition travel guides might have to take decisions on matters likely to affect the safety or well being of the clients participating in the trip. If a client fail to comply with the decisions of the guide, or interferes with the well-being of the group, the guide may ask him/her to leave the trip, with no right of refund. Luckily, this has never happened, but we do reserve the right if something major would occur.

Optional Activities

Optional activities not included in the basic trip price do not form part of the trip or the contract. Any assistance provided by Surf Expedition in arranging or reserving optional activities will not be part of the contract and does not renders Surf Expedition liable for them. You understand that by taking part in these optional activities, you’re doing it at your own risk.

Errors & Omissions

Although Surf Expedition has made concerted efforts to verify the accuracy of statements made in our trip documentation, including brochures, website and trip notes, we cannot be held responsible for any errors, omission or unintended misrepresentation that may occur.

Acceptation of our General Terms

If you do not understand some of our terms & conditions, please write us an email at info@surfexpedition.com before booking. The act of making a reservation confirms your understanding and acceptance of our general terms & conditions. Our terms and conditions could be updated without any notice.

Surf Expedition Inc is based in Bocas del Toro, Panama and operating under the Panama Corporation Laws.