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By submitting an application and making a deposit payment for a program with Challenges Abroad Australia Pty Ltd, trading as ‘Challenges Abroad’, you confirm that you accept and agree to the following terms and conditions.

All references to “we”, “us” and “our” refer to Challenges Abroad associated group companies and its affiliates or partners. All references to “you” are to the participant.

 

Services Provided

Challenges Abroad agrees to provide the Services as set out in your program itinerary. We reserve the right to make changes to the Services from time to time, subject to these terms and conditions.

Services include, but may not be limited to:

  • Providing preparation documents including welcome pack, packing list, country information, briefing pack and health & safety manual;

  • Arranging a pre-departure briefing in person, remotely via video conference or via telephone;

  • Arranging suitable accommodation and food, where applicable, for the duration of the program (details are outlined in the ‘what’s included’ section on the website program page and itinerary document);

  • Arranging transfers to and from the airport, where participant flights are booked in accordance with flight instructions in welcome pack;

  • Providing and maintaining a full international support structure;

  • Providing 24-hour emergency support;

  • Providing international travel assistance and advice.

We endeavour to ensure that all programs run as scheduled and all Services are provided as confirmed. However, if for any reason outside of our control, an element of the program is not available, alternative arrangements will be made to minimise the impact. We will inform you of any changes as soon as possible.

We reserve the right to change an element of the program if it will be beneficial to the participant or in the interest of your safety.

 

Refusal of Service

Challenges Abroad reserves the right to refuse to offer our Services to you, at any time, for any reason.

 

Documentation Required

Passport and Visas

It is your responsibility to ensure you have any necessary visas and a valid passport for your program. You must check to ensure that all necessary procedures are adhered to and that they reflect your travel arrangements. Any visa information provided by Challenges Abroad is done in good faith and we cannot be held responsible for a country’s decision to change visa rules, deny a visa application, refuse entry, exit or the right of passage (national and local laws governing immigration).

We do not accept any liability for any losses you may occur arising from any such action or for failure to have the correct travel documentation.

 

Insurance

You are required to secure appropriate comprehensive travel insurance cover to protect you against any losses caused by travel, loss or damage of baggage and or personal effects by any means, non-refundable airfare, emergency and medical evacuation and other medical expenses.

It is strongly recommended that you purchase program cancellation cover to protect yourself against any losses relating to your inability to travel for medical reasons, if someone in your family takes ill or dies suddenly. The policy must cover the entire duration of your Challenges Abroad program.

The details of your insurance policy must be provided 8 weeks prior to program commencement for your protection.

 

Working with Children Check (WWCC)

You must supply a WWCC (or equivalent). Details on how to complete this process will be supplied in your Welcome Pack. You agree that your participation on a Challenges Abroad program is subject to the outcome of this check.

 

Health and Medical Forms

It is your responsibility to visit a healthcare professional and ensure you have any necessary vaccinations within the appropriate timeframe, and receive any medications required for the full duration of your Challenges Abroad program.

Our staff are not medical professionals, and the standards of medical care in countries where Challenges Abroad operates are likely to be lower than you are used to. You, and your primary care physician, are responsible for ensuring you are able to manage your own mental and physical wellbeing, including administering medication, for the entirety of your program.

You are required to declare any specialised health, medical or dietary requirements at the time of booking. Where any participant declares an illness or pre-existing condition, a fit for travel form will be provided to be completed by a primary care physician, no later than 8 weeks prior to your program commencing. Failure to disclose any known medical conditions, physical or psychological, is grounds for cancellation of your program without refund.

Challenges Abroad reserves the right to reject or cancel a booking on the grounds of comments or advice from your primary care physician, or from consultation with our own medical and mental health professionals regarding your physical and mental fitness to undertake this program. Any additional medical documentation we require will be at your own expense.

 

Emergency Contact

You must supply us with the emergency contact details of a close friend or family member when completing your booking form. We reserve the right to contact this person should we deem it necessary.

 

Flights

It is your responsibility to book flights that arrive in time for the start of the program as specified in the welcome pack. You must supply us with this information no later than 8 weeks prior to your program commencing. Failure to do so may result in your booking being cancelled with no refund.

 

Program Fees and Payments

Challenges Abroad program fees are displayed on the website and are subject to change without notice. What is included in your program fee will be displayed on the ‘What’s Included’ section on the website program page or in your program itinerary.

The fee for a program consists of a ‘booking deposit’ and a ‘balance payment’. The booking deposit is payable at the time of booking and is non-refundable after a 7-day cooling-off period from the date of booking. The balance payment includes the remaining cost of your program as specified in your program invoice. You can choose to pay the balance payment in fortnightly, monthly or quarterly instalments.

Your participation on the program is dependent upon full payment no later than 8 weeks prior to program commencement. If you fail to make the balance payment by the date specified in your program invoice, it is at the discretion of Challenges Abroad to provide you with the following options:

  • Ask you to pay the deficit amount with in a specified period of time

  • Transfer your program to a later commencement date to allow you more time to make up the deficit funds

  • Any other arrangement can be made at our discretion

If none of these options are available, then we will consider this a cancellation by you and will be subject to the ‘Cancellations and Refunds’ clause below.

If you are concerned about meeting the balance payment by the specified date you must contact Challenges Abroad as soon as possible.

We reserve the right, by giving notice to you any time before departure, to increase the fees to reflect an increase in costs to us, caused by factors outside our control. You are entitled, within five days of receiving our advice of such an increase, to cancel that part of the Services to which the increase applies.

 

Cancellations and Refunds

When Challenges Abroad cancels a program

Challenges Abroad reserves the right to cancel a Program if, in its sole discretion, it believes that circumstances warrant it. This includes cancellation because of Force Majeure (as outlined below).

You agree that you will take out travel insurance that may cover cancellations in some but not all circumstances.

In the cases where there is a cancellation, Challenges Abroad’s first recourse will be to place you on an alternative Program. Challenges Abroad will use reasonable efforts to match any alternative Program in accordance with your preferences. In the event that we are unable to provide you with a suitable alternative, you will be entitled to a refund of your program fee that has been paid. What is defined as a ‘suitable alternative’ will be at the sole discretion of Challenges Abroad.

 

All Programs and extension trips are subject to a minimum number of participants. Flights should be held on a flexible basis until a departure is guaranteed. You will be advised when a trip is guaranteed. Should a trip not reach minimum participants you will be advised of this 10 weeks prior to departure. In this instance we will:

  • Suggest an alternative program or departure for you to transfer your booking to; or

  • Offer the option, if it is possible, for you to travel alone or in a smaller group – cost may vary; or

  • Provide a full refund of the balance payments made to us if an alternative is not suitable for you.

If a refund is applicable, payment will be processed 8-12 weeks following written notification.

In all cases of cancellation by Challenges Abroad, we will not refund you for any expenses incurred by you related to your program, including, but not limited to, airfare, visa expenses, insurance, documentation and equipment purchases. Please note this list is not exhaustive.

 

When you choose to cancel your program

If you choose to cancel your program for whatever reason, the following fees will apply:

  • More than 12 weeks prior to departure – total loss of deposit and 30% of the balance payment.

  • 8-12 weeks prior to departure – total loss of deposit and 60% of the balance payment.

  • Less than 8 weeks prior to departure – total loss of program cost including deposit.

If a refund is applicable, payment will be processed 8-12 weeks following written notification.

Participation on your program is dependent upon making the balance payment by the date specified in your program invoice. If you fail to make this payment in the specified time frame, Challenges Abroad reserves the right to treat this as a cancellation unless discretionary options set out in the ‘cancellations and refunds’ clause are offered. If your booking is considered a cancellation by Challenges Abroad, you must not retain any donations received and pay these to the Charity.

In the event that a participant chooses to leave a program early, whatsoever the reason, no amounts will be refunded.

 

Transfers

Participants may transfer their program to another start date or location at no additional cost. The intended transfer must be to either a date, location or program type as available on the website.

To be eligible for a transfer participants must request a transfer from Challenges Abroad, in writing, no later than 8 weeks prior to their program commencement. Transfers requested less than 8 weeks prior to program commencement will be granted at Challenges Abroad’s discretion and may incur a fee.

 

Under 18’s

If you are under the age of 18, and a legal guardian is travelling with you, they will be entering into this agreement on your behalf by completing your program booking.

If you are under 18, and will be travelling unaccompanied, you legal guardian must print and sign this document, and enter into this agreement on your behalf, in order to confirm your place on your program.

Challenges Abroad will also provide a consent and release form, which all of your legal guardians must sign and notarise, at lease 8 weeks prior to departure.

 

On your Challenges Abroad Program

Health and safety

You must always respect and follow the health and safety procedures as set out by Challenges Abroad in the host country. You will receive a health and safety briefing outlining these procedures during your program orientation. You understand that disobeying health and safety instructions could result in disciplinary action as outlined below.

In the event you break any local laws, we will bear no liability and will not be required to mediate on your behalf with local authorities.

Challenges Abroad reserves the right to make decisions on your emergency medical care deemed essential by the most qualified in-country staff member in the event you are not able to do so and Challenges Abroad will not be held liable for the outcome of such care.

We do not accept responsibility for any loss or injury (including, without limitation, loss of personal property, illness, death or personal injury) suffered by you, which is caused by a third party who is unconnected to Challenges Abroad, or results from any program or component of travel which has not been arranged by us.

Whilst Challenges Abroad recognises that it has a duty of care to ensure participants are safe, participants take part in all programs at their own risk. We cannot accept responsibility for your health and safety whilst in the host country or for any loss or damage to property or any third parties property or persons howsoever caused.

Notwithstanding this, Challenges Abroad does not seek to exclude or limit liability for death or personal injury caused by negligence on its part or for any other loss or damage for which it is legally prohibited to exclude or restrict liability.

 

Code of conduct and disciplinary procedures

You agree to abide by the Volunteer Code of Conduct. Any breach of this Code of Conduct will result in disciplinary action.

First offences will usually result in a verbal warning where appropriate. Repeated offences after the first warning could lead to a final written warning. Any further offences will result in dismissal.

Challenges Abroad reserves the right to issue a warning of any kind, including dismissal from the program, regardless of whether any warnings have been given. All disciplinary action will be documented and take place in front of a witness, where appropriate.

The following non-exhaustive list details actions that are grounds for immediate dismissal:

  • Possession, use or supply of illicit drugs

  • Breaking local laws,

  • Taking alcohol/being intoxicated while on project or interacting with Challenges Abroad program partners

  • Disobeying health and safety instructions resulting in the injury or harm of yourself or others

  • Gross misconduct which could injure or harm others, disrupt program activities or jeopardise relations between Challenges Abroad and the host community

  • We deem it is in the best interests of your health and safety or of the program in general

In the event of dismissal for any reason, we cannot be held responsible for any costs incurred by the participant and no fees will be refunded.

Any requests to dispute the dismissal must be put in writing to [email protected]. We will then provide a senior manager not directly involved in the program to review the case and make a full and final decision.

 

Child protection

You agree to read and abide by our Child Protection Policy and Social Media Policy. If at any time you fail to follow either policy, you understand that you may be dismissed from your program and further appropriate action taken.

 

Complaints

Any problems or complaints should be resolved by prior discussions with the local representatives whilst in country or after your travels with the worldwide operations team based in the UK. If you feel that your problem has not been adequately dealt with, you may send a formal written complaint via email to [email protected]. Formal complaints will normally be acknowledged within 3 working days and a response sent as soon as relevant details of the complaint have been procured.

 

Personal Risk

You accept that you will be subjected to various emotional, physical and psychological demands by participating on a Challenges Abroad program. You are aware and accept that the standard of living in the relevant country, including food, hygiene and accommodation, may be below the general standards of your own country.

Travelling before, during and after your program is entirely at your own risk. You accept the responsibilities and risks associated with your choice to travel, temporarily reside in and provide volunteers services in a foreign country. Some risks that may arise include, but are not limited to:

  • Hazards of travelling in remote areas;

  • Travel by automobile, van, bus, airplane, boat, train or any other means of conveyance;

  • The forces of nature;

  • Civil disturbances;

  • National or international conflicts;

  • Terrorism;

  • Interacting with dangerous wildlife;

  • Personal injury or illness from the local environment;

  • Accident or illness in remote locations without immediate evacuation or medical facilities; or

  • Negligent acts of third parties.

You confirm and agree to all of the following:

  • You understand these and other risks inherent in such a program;

  • You also confirm that your participation is completely voluntary;

  • You assume all risk associated with your project work;

  • You agree to indemnify us against any claims of any kind that arise from your participation.

 

General

The participant hereby grants a royalty free, non-exclusive license in favour of Challenges Abroad in respect of all images captured or of any correspondence received by us from you during or after the program (in whatever format). Such license shall be granted in perpetuity and shall confer the right on Challenges Abroad to reproduce all or any of such images or correspondence in whole or in part for use in any advertisement or promotional material of Challenges Abroad as we see fit.

You agree to allow us to transfer any personal data held by us about you to the placement host or homestay family. We will access your personal data fairly and lawfully in accordance with the principles of the Data Protection Act 1998 for the sole purpose of continuing to provide the Services to you.

CA shall be permitted to assign fully its rights and obligations in respect of our agreement with you and to subcontract any of our obligations. The participant shall not assign any of its rights or obligations under our agreement without the prior written consent of CA.

Any advice or recommendation given by CA or its employees or agents to the participant who is not confirmed in writing by CA is followed or acted upon entirely at the participant’s own risk. CA is not therefore liable for any such advice or recommendation which is not so confirmed.

These conditions shall not confer any benefit or right of action on any third party and the provisions of the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 and any subsequent or supplementary or modifying legislation are hereby excluded to the fullest extent possible by law.

 

Force Majeure

Neither party shall be liable to the other for any delay or non-performance of its obligations in respect of our agreement arising from any cause beyond its reasonable control including, without limitation, any industrial dispute, act of God such as natural disasters or disease outbreaks, governmental act, act of terrorism, war, fire, explosion, civil commotion. The affected party so delaying shall promptly notify the other part in writing of the cause and the likely duration of the cause.

Where force majeure results in cancellation of your program, your program fees will be non-refundable. We will always do our best to find a suitable alternative for you in any such event.

 

Governing Law

If any provision of these conditions is held by any competent authority to be invalid or unenforceable in whole or in part the validity of all other provisions of these conditions and the remainder of the provisions in question shall not be affected and shall remain in force. These terms and conditions shall be governed by the laws of Australia and any dispute arising shall be determined by the Courts within that jurisdiction.