Things you need to know
Your financial protection
The air holiday packages in this brochure are ATOL protected by the Civil Aviation Authority.Our ATOL number is 3047.
Non-air packages are protected by our Association of Bonded Travel Organnisers Trust Ltd Bond. (For full details please see booking condition number 14)
To book a holiday, please complete the booking form (you can download this by clicking the link on the right of this page) remembering to complete the two pages and send it to us with the deposit shown in the price box for the holiday chosen. For unescorted holidays, we will ask you for further payment as soon as we commit to various advance purchase tickets on your behalf for flights, train tickets etc. These are non-refundable and so it is important that your travel insurance is in place at this stage. An invoice will be sent to you for the balance of money due about 12 weeks in advance of travel, for payment 10 weeks before the holiday start date. During these last 10 weeks, we will be paying large sums on your behalf which we will be unable to reclaim and your commitment is therefore vital during this period.
What the price includes
- Standard class rail travel with seat reservations as appropriate (first class is included where shown).
- Economy (or equivalent) class on scheduled flights as appropriate from London Heathrow, Gatwick or Stansted (other airports by arrangement for escorted and unescorted holidays). Please be aware that, in the case of escorted holidays, if you choose to fly from a regional airport or go by rail and, for some reason (e.g. weather) the main group is unable to fly, you will arrive at your destination without your tour leader and may incur additional hotel or transport costs until you meet the group. Flight upgrades may be available upon request.
- Sleeping berths on overnight trains where applicable.
- Bed and breakfast appropriate to the country being visited. For USA and Canada it is unusual for breakfast to be included but it is becoming more common for hotels to provide a very simple continental breakfast.
- All transfers on escorted tours where appropriate. Transfers on unescorted tours by individual arrangement.
- Local and airport taxes where applicable.
What the price excludes
- Single room supplements – we charge these at cost.
- Lunch and evening meals except where shown in the itineraries.
- Passport, visa and personal expenses. Australian entry visas are included in the Antipodean and Legendary Ghan tours.
- Rail tickets to and from London or other joining points mentioned in the itinerary (we can supply these upon request).
Generally, we use good quality, medium sized hotels (the equivalent of 3-star rating) with private facilities. Inevitably, the choice of hotels is limited in some remote areas and here we would use the ‘best available’. Sometimes, we use 4 or even 5-star hotels where we can take advantage of good offers or contract prices. Please remember that hotels are often rated in official guide books by their facilities and not their quality. We have come across, and occasionally use, some amazingly clean, comfortable and good value 2-star establishments which can never aspire to a higher rating because they cannot ‘tick all the boxes.’
Health, fitness and luggage
Throughout our time organising railway holidays, we have found that most of our customers prefer to handle their luggage themselves, thus removing the delays in bags arriving at rooms and eliminating the need to have bags packed for collection before breakfast. We therefore do not include baggage handling in the cost of the tours and this should to be taken into account when packing for the holiday.
Because the holidays that we offer are based on travelling, it is important that customers are reasonably fit. If you have any doubts please telephone us to discuss your particular situation and we will do our best to accommodate you.
Our Booking Condition number 20 explains the need for you to notify us of any medical problems which could affect your fitness to travel – we are required by law to notify airlines of clients with reduced mobility including people with walking difficulties, broken limbs, also pregnant women.
Health Precautions and Immunisations Recommended
The following information is accurate at the time of going to press but you should also seek the advice of a qualified practitioner.
- European destinations on this website plus Australia, Canada, New Zealand, USA: None
- Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa, Egypt: Hepatitis A, polio, tetanus, typhoid, hepatitis B.
- China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Namibia, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Sri Lanka, Thailand: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, malaria, polio, tetanus, typhoid.
- Japan, Mexico: tetanus, hepatitis A, hepatitis B.
- Eritrea: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, meningococcal meningitis, tetanus, typhoid, malaria.
- Vietnam: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, Japanese encephalitis, polio, tetanus, typhoid, malaria.
- Russia: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, Japanese encephalitis, polio, tetanus, tick-borne encephalitis, typhoid.
- Mongolia: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, tetanus, tick-borne encephalitis, typhoid.
The type of malaria tablet and dosage varies from place to place and from time to time. For up to date information on any health precautions, please consult your G.P. or visit website: www.hpa.org.uk
We, Ffestiniog Railway Holdings Ltd, (Ffestiniog Travel) act as an Introducer Appointed Representative for the purposes of your travel insurance, appointed by Global Travel Insurance Services Ltd who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority whose status can be checked on the FSA Register by visiting www.fsa.gov.uk/register or by contacting the FSA on 0845 606 1234.
We will send you an application form on booking enabling you to arrange this insurance. If preferred, you can go to our website where you can obtain a quotation and arrange the insurance on line.
Beyond providing this information, we are not allowed to assist you in any way in the arrangement of your travel insurance or give any advice.
It is a condition that you purchase sufficient travel insurance to cover the duration of your holiday and that you provide Ffestiniog Travel with the details required on the booking form. Each holiday in the brochure includes the day of departure and the day of return and this is the period to be used for insurance purposes. Please ensure that the travel insurance policy is suitable for your needs.
Use of Rover Tickets
Where tours are based on rover tickets such as InterRail, availability and validity are based on the best information at the time of going to press. These are outside the control of Ffestiniog Travel and are therefore subject to change.
Privately Organised Groups
Our holidays are ideal for private groups of ten or more. They can be taken at any time of the year (although charges may vary with the season) and are available with or without a tour leader. This is a service that we have provided for many years for groups from clubs and societies creating tours to meet their specific requirements.
Passport and Visa Information (Applicable to British Citizens)
- A full British passport is required for all non UK holidays in this brochure. Please allow at least six weeks and preferably three months for issue and renewal.
- Outside Europe, many countries stipulate that passports must be valid for at least six months beyond the date of your intended visit.
- Visas are not required for holiday visits to Argentina, Bolivia, Canada, Ecuador, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Namibia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, South Africa or Thailand.
- In the case of the USA, UK citizens may enter the country on the Visa Waiver Programme. An ESTA authorisation is required which must be applied for in advance of travel. Applications can be made on line at www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel or Ffestiniog Travel can apply on your behalf (£20 fee applicable). Please be aware that, for entry on this programme, your passport must be machine readable and, if issued after 26 October 2005, must have a digital photograph imprinted on the page rather than glued on.
- A visa for Australia can also be issued electronically by notifying the immigration computer if you supply Ffestiniog Travel with a clear photocopy of the data page of your passport. There is a fee of £20 for this service.
- Visas are required for visits to Belarus (even for transit), China, India, Russia, Mongolia, Vietnam, Eritrea and Egypt. Advice will be given when booking a holiday.
Speak to us
If you have a problem, if you do not understand anything or want to know more, contact us and we will be pleased to help.
Telephone: 01766 772030
Our thanks for assistance and photographs to our tour leaders, Ffestiniog travellers, tourist offices, railways, other organisations and individuals who have helped us to plan the holidays and helped put this brochure together.
Airlines Used for Ffestiniog Travel Holidays
We use scheduled services provided by major airlines. The arrangements are not definite at the time of printing and we cannot give you any firm information about the airlines or the type of aircraft on which you will travel. We are required by law to notify airlines of clients with reduced mobility problems including people with walking difficulties, broken limbs and also pregnant women.
Extensions to Escorted Tours
If you participate in one of our escorted tours and you would like to extned your holiday, we recommend that you do so at the end of the escorted tour, rather than at the beginning. This eliminates the risk of your being ready to embark on an escorted group tour which is unable to depart the UK due to, for example, a volcanic ash cloud, airline or strike action, extreme weather conditions etc.
Rates of Exchange
Rates of exchange used for calculating prices on this website are those applying at 1st May 2014 or 1st August 2014, please see price box for each tour.
True rates are usually slightly better than tourist rates published in the most popular newspapers but, for ease of reference by customers, the tourist rates at that time are set out below.
£1 sterling buys:
|1st May 2014||1st August 2014|
|Denmark (Den kr)||8.65||8.96|
|New Zealand (NZD)||1.77||1.85|
We are pround to be members of the Association of Independent Tour Operators (AiTO) which is committed to responsible travel and Sustainable Tourism. The key objectives are to protect the environment, to respect local cultures, to benefit local communities, to conserve natural resources and to minimise pollution. We fully support the Travel Foundation which is a UK charity that cares for people and places we love to visit. It is helping the travel industry to take effective action on sustainable tourism in mainstream destinations across the world, improving quality and keeping holidays special.
Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways
By booking a holiday with Ffestiniog Travel you are helping to develop and preserve the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways.
It has never been so easy to explore Europe's cities by train. The holiday begins when you board Eurostar.
Series 3 of this popular BBC2 programme has just completed. Re-trace Michael Portillo's rail journeys in one of our specially created tours that mirror each episode.
More opportunity to explore a country that remains relatively untouched by tourism. Enjoy travelling in a small group of a maximum of 14 people and discover Romania's rural beauty.
An in-depth tour of the Ffestiniog Railway, the world's oldest narrow gauge railway including areas not normally seen by the public.
Take a family rail holiday to Germany's Black Forest and discover a different destination whilst enjoying a sociable, relaxed way of travelling.
Mark the Bicentenary Anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo, a visit to the famous battlefield is included in our rail tour of Belgium in June 2015.
Ffestiniog Travel provides 'out of hours' support for all independent travellers in the event of an emergency.