Terms and Conditions

Please read the following terms and conditions carefully. They spell out the relationship between you and Backroads of China. By booking a trip, it is understood that you agree to the conditions which follow.

1. Deposit requirement

A deposit is 800 CNY per person (for trips up to 3000 CNY per person) or 25% of the tour cost (for trips over 3000 CNY per person) is due at least 3 months prior to the starting date of your tour (or at the time of booking if less than three months). The tour booking will not be confirmed until the tour deposit is received.  This deposit is non-refundable and will not be returned if the client decides to cancel the tour. For payments made in foreign currency, please use the current exchange rate at the time of transfer.

2. Balance owing

The balance of the tour fee can be paid in the following ways:  1. On the first day of the tour directly to the tour guide. Cash payments must be given in local currency (Chinese yuan).  2. In advance of the tour by either Western Union or bank transfer. Please ensure that payment by bank transfer is sent at least three weeks prior to the tour departure. Payment by Western Union must be made at least one week prior to the tour departure, to allow sufficient time for the funds to be received. Please see Payment Information for further details.

3. Price and surcharges

Backroads of China has the right to increase the price of a tour up to one month prior to the trip departure due to changes in transportation costs, entrance fees or accommodation prices. If this occurs, Backroads of China will notify the traveller of the price increase by email. If the price increase is more than 10%, the traveller has the right to cancel the booking and obtain a full refund of the deposit.

4. Cancellation by the traveller

Any cancellation of a tour by the traveller must be made in writing and acknowledged by Backroads of China. The tour deposit will be retained by Backroads of China as the cancellation fee.

5. Cancellation of a tour by Backroads of China

Backroads of China has the right to cancel any trip at any time prior to departure due to major safety concerns such as terrorism, natural disasters, political instability or other events which make it unviable to run the tour. Your full deposit will be refunded. In this event, Backroads of China is not responsible for any extra expenses that you may have incurred in preparation for the trip. For this reason we suggest you take out travel insurance at the time of booking to cover such circumstances.

6. Unused services

There will be no discounts or money refunded for missed or unused services once the tour has begun. This includes voluntary or involuntary termination of the trip, i.e. sickness, death of a family member etc. For this reason, the traveller is advised to take out travel insurance which covers these types of situations. If Backroads of China has booked flight tickets on your behalf, we will refund these tickets less the cancellation fee charged by the airline.

7. Flexibility

The traveller realizes that the nature of this type of travel requires flexibility and should allow for alternatives. The itinerary provided for each tour is not definitive and the route, schedule, amenities and modes of transport could change from time to time due to local circumstances or events, which may include sickness or mechanical breakdown, flight cancellations, strikes, inavailability of train tickets, weather conditions, landslides and other unpredictable or unforeseeable circumstances. If Backroads of China makes a major change to the itinerary prior to the beginning of the trip, the client will be notified in advance. At this stage, the client has the right to withdraw from the tour and obtain a full refund if they are unhappy with the change. If conditions necessitate changes while the tour is in process, the tour guide will keep the clients informed. If the change involves not visiting an attraction that was included in the tour fee or taking a cheaper form of transport (eg. hard sleeper instead of soft sleeper) the price difference will be refunded to the client.

8. Acceptance of risk

The traveller acknowledges that the nature of Backroads of China tours is adventurous and may involve a significant amount of personal risk. By booking with Backroads of China, the traveller acknowledges that she/he has considered the potential risks, dangers and challenges involved. The traveller actively assumes all such risk and releases Backroads of China from any claims arising from any damages or injuries or death resulting from these inherent risks.

9. Travel documents

The traveller accepts all responsibility for obtaining all necessary documents and permits including passport, visas, vaccination certificates and insurance policies required on the journey. Any information given by Backroads of China about visas, vaccinations, travel insurance, climate, clothing, baggage, special equipment etc. is purely advisory and Backroads of China is not responsible for any errors or omissions in the information provided.

10. Flight ticket services

If the traveller requires Backroads of China to purchase flight tickets on their behalf, they are responsible for supplying the correct passport details at the time of request (including full name as shown on the passport and passport number). If the passport details supplied are incorrect, the traveller accepts full responsibility for the mistake and must pay the corresponding re-ticketing fee charged by the airline company as well as a 50 RMB/ticket penalty fee from Backroads of China.

11. Travel insurance

It is mandatory that all travellers obtain travel insurance and this insurance must cover personal injury, medical expenses, repatriation expenses and evacuation expenses. The traveller acknowledges that the cost of the tour does not include insurance and that the traveller is required to obtain separate coverage at an additional cost. When obtaining travel insurance the traveller must make sure the insurer is aware of the type of travel to be undertaken. The details of your travel insurance policy must be provided to Backroads of China prior to tour commencement. If you do not take out travel insurance, you will be unable to participate in the tour and your tour deposit will not be refunded.

12. Guiding services

Backroads of China uses both professional and amateur guides, depending on the tour destination and the type of tour being organized. Both types of guides are chosen for their familiarity with the local area, good English skills, positive attitude and customer service skills. The guides are responsible for arranging your day-to-day activities, meals, accommodation and transportation in accordance with the tour itinerary. If the traveller requires any changes to be made to the tour schedule or accommodation along the way, they can discuss their suggestions with the guide. The guide will fulfill any reasonable request which does not interfere with the progress of the tour, or in the case of group tours, which is agreed upon by the other group members. If the traveller’s request is unreasonable or the traveller makes numerous changes, the guide may refuse the client. The traveller must respect the guide’s final decision.
The guides are under strict instructions not to take travellers shopping unless the travellers request it. If a guide or driver asks the traveller to visit some shops, the traveller has the right to refuse. Backroads of China asks that the traveller inform us in writing of any such situations.

13. Medical issues

You must advise us in writing, at or prior to booking, of any physical, emotional or mental condition which may require professional attention during the trip or may require the use of special equipment. If any such condition arises after the trip is booked, you must advise us immediately.  Failure to advise us shall release Backroads of China and all professional personnel from any liability related to such condition or its treatment. Backroads of China has the right to decline any trip participant whose condition, in our opinion, will make it unviable for them to participate in the tour, or whose condition may affect the health, safety or enjoyment of other participants.

If your medical condition allows participation in the tour, you must bring and be responsible for all necessary items related to your condition. Backroads of China is in no way responsible for obtaining medication or equipment, or ensuring proximity to doctors or hospitals. The traveller acknowledges and accepts that our tours often visit remote villages and countryside areas where medical care is non-existent or extremely limited.

Backroads of China is not responsible for the costs of any medical treatment you may require during the trip. Under no circumstances is Backroads of China responsible for the quality of medical care, or lack of, you may receive while on the trip.

14. Responsibility for your tour

All services are organized by Backroads of China. As a tour operator, Backroads of China organizes, promotes and sells tour programs consisting of several travel services including transportation, accommodation, food and beverage and guiding services which are provided from various suppliers. Backroads of China does not operate or own any of these suppliers. Therefore, Backroads of China is not responsible for any negligent or willful act or failure to act of any supplier. The traveller acknowledges that the quality of the products organized by Backroads of China, including accommodations and all other services related to the tour, are not within the control of the company and therefore, the traveller releases the company from all claims arising from any damages, loss of enjoyment, inconvenience or injuries related to the quality of such products.

Payment of your deposit is taken as acknowledgement and agreement to the above conditions.