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In response to reader suggestions and encouragement, we are introducing a series of 'groupless tours.

A 'groupless tour' is a very different travel experience to a typical group tour.

You have much more freedom and independence on our groupless travels, and many fewer fellow travelers.

For more information, see Our Groupless Philosophy.

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Standard Terms and Conditions


Here's all the stuff that our lawyers make us say.  But we wrote it ourselves, to try and make it more understandable!

We've attempted to create this 'fine print' in a manner that is fair and understandable.  Basically, we expect you to act fairly, and in turn, we'll act similarly.

If you have any questions or concerns, please ask.

Tour Operation

Tours are offered conditionally, and are subject to receiving a minimum number of participants.  Deposits are fully refundable until the tour becomes 'guaranteed'.

If the needed minimum number of people do not confirm, you have the choice of canceling and receiving a full refund of any monies paid, or of enjoying a similar itinerary on a 'self-drive' or 'FIT' basis - staying at the same places, with the same inclusions, but driving yourself by rental car rather than as a passenger on a coach.

In such a case, we would provide you with a mid-sized automatic rental car, touring maps, directions, and itinerary notes in lieu of coach transportation and guides.

A decision to confirm the group tour or to offer a self-drive substitute will be made at least four months prior to tour commencement, and of course sooner if tour registration numbers so indicate.  Tour participants will be immediately advised as soon as the tour status changes from conditional to confirmed.

We reserve the right to alter an itinerary at any time for any reason, although we will at all times attempt to ensure that any changes or substitutions are of equal value and interest.

If an included item needs to be omitted for any reason and can not be compensated with what we consider to be a fair equivalent item, then you will be refunded our underlying cost of that omitted item.

Payment and Pricing

Prices are quoted on the basis of per person, with two people sharing a room.

A $500 per person non-refundable deposit is required to confirm your place on any tour.

The balance is due 90 days prior to tour commencement and if not received by that date your booking will be automatically cancelled.

Full payment is immediately due for tour reservations made with 90 days of tour commencement.

A $100 per person rush fee applies to payments made in the last fourteen days prior to tour commencement.

Price reflects a 3% discount for cash/check.  If you wish to pay by credit card, then you will be advised the base tour price (ie the discounted price plus 3%).

Tour prices include both US and foreign currency costs and are based on a stated range of wholesale exchange rates.  If the wholesale exchange rates move outside of this range prior to full payment being received, then the tour price will be adjusted (either up or down) to fairly reflect the change in the cost of tour components.  If the price of the tour increases by more than 10%, you will be offered a no cost, no penalty opportunity to cancel and receive a full refund of all monies paid.

Our Experience is Your Protection

We have been operating Travel Insider tours since 2003, and have been in the travel industry since 1989.

We can't guarantee that nothing will go wrong, but we can offer to do all we can to help in the event of problems.

Occasionally we've had challenges and problems in the past, because we are always dependent on actual providers and the services they provide in the countries we travel to, and if, for example, a train is late or cancelled, there's nothing we can do about that except wait for the next train.  If someone's luggage is lost by an airline, or stolen from a hotel, that's again something that sometimes happens and the key thing is to take it in your stride, to buy some replacement clothes, and then to move forward with the rest of your travel enjoyment.

We ask that you understand we will do all we can to make your travels as positive an experience as possible, but any time we step out our front door, we introduce variables into our lives, and the key part of the success of any tour is to not let the inevitable problems that come our way interfere with our enjoyment of the rest of the tour.

Special Rates for Singles, Triple Shares, Seniors and Children

We offer a matching program for singles who wish to share a room with another solo traveler.

If you do not wish to share a room, or if no suitable room mate is found, we can offer a single supplement.

Some of the hotels used on some tours do not have triple share rooms and so triple share rates are not always available.

Sometimes we are able to pass on additional 'senior' discounts offered by some of the places we visit.  If this is the case, and you qualify, we'll advise you accordingly.

Child discounts are usually not available.

Photographs and Information

The photographs shown and information provided on this web site and related promotional materials depict typical scenes commonly experienced, but the subject matter may not necessarily be experienced or seen while on our tour.  No warranty is made concerning weather.


Assuming full payment is received 60 days prior, a full souvenir itinerary, stay-behind itineraries to be left with friends, relatives, and workmates, travel vouchers and other materials will be sent to you three weeks prior to tour commencement.

If you have registered for the tour closer to departure, documents will be sent no sooner than two weeks after full payment is received.


You can change the names of participants at any time prior to document issuance for a $50 per name change fee.

You can change the travel arrangements we have made for you at any time prior to full payment being made, subject to applicable cancellation and change fees, which vary depending on the travel products affected and their applicable policies, and will in all events also include an administrative fee on our part of not less than $50. If you anticipate the need to make changes between booking your tour and actually taking the tour, please discuss with us the likely feasibility and costs of any changes or cancellations.

Subsequent to full payment being made, changes of any type may or may not be possible, and would require the payment of a higher fee plus courier fees for documents to be returned to us and to suppliers then sent back to us and on to you.

Once payment has been received, if you cancel your participation prior to one month before tour commencement, you will receive a 50% refund upon the return of all tour documents, unused.

If you cancel after that time, or do not return all tour documents, unused, our ability to refund depends on if we can resell your space to other travelers.  If we can, you'll still get a 50% refund; if we can't, no refund will be paid.

No refund is given for cancellations subsequent to 48 hours prior to the start of the advertised 'Day 1' of the tour, and/or for any unused portions of a tour.

Cancellation and change fees may be reimbursable by a travel insurance policy, depending on circumstances.  For this and all other reasons, we recommend you purchase travel insurance accordingly.

Inclusions and Exclusions

Only those items specifically stated to be included are included in the tour.  All other items not so specifically stated are not included and if you choose to avail yourself of them would be at extra cost.

Tour Variations

Unexpected things happen to us all, everywhere, and may happen to us when we are touring, too.  Weather, special events, traffic, closures, mechanical problems or who knows what else may interfere with the planned tour itinerary and require us to make changes as best we can.

We will do the best we reasonably can to present the tour to you as described, and/but if circumstances beyond our control require us to make changes to the tour, we will do the best we reasonably can to provide alternate inclusions of similar value and hopefully of similar interest.

If a tour component is cancelled and that results in us obtaining a refund, then we will either allocate that money towards other touring items or refund the money on to you in turn, whichever, in our opinion, will make for a better tour experience.

Activities, Health and Meals

You should be in good health and reasonably fit in order to participate in the walking components of this tour (eg be able to conveniently climb 75 steps or walk a mile at a normal average climbing/walking speed).

Please note that seating on coaches can not be reserved and all passengers are expected to take fair turns in the front, middle and rear of the coach.  We typically do not fill coaches more than three quarters full, so you'll usually always have plenty of seats to choose from.

Unless advised otherwise, special vaccinations are not mandatory, but you may consider it prudent to check with your healthcare professional and to follow any courses of protective vaccinations he/she recommends prior to traveling with us.

If you have any special dietary or other preferences for meals, please let us know prior to when you make final payment so we can advise the hotels accordingly.  We will help you to meet your needs, but can not guarantee that this will completely and consistently occur.

Your Responsibilities Include

It is your responsibility to get yourself to the tour commencement place at or prior to the tour commencement time, and to observe the tour timetable during the course of the tour.

It is your responsibility to ensure you have the necessary travel documents that may be required (a current passport not due to expire until six months after the end of your travels, and with sufficient blank pages in it for visa stamps), and to obtain any necessary visas authorizing your travel to the countries in the tour.

It is your responsibility to have arranged any vaccinations that are either mandatory or recommended by your healthcare professional.

It is your responsibility to comply with the reasonable requirements and requests of the tour leader and tour guides, and if you don't understand any such requirement, it is your responsibility to request and obtain the necessary clarification.

Our tours leave promptly at the advised times from each stop.  It is your responsibility to be on the vehicle/vessel on or prior to each departure time.  If you miss any departure time it is your responsibility to make your own arrangements to catch up with the tour, and no refund will be given either for missed tour components or the costs you incur after so missing any part of the tour.

It is your responsibility to obey all local laws while on tour.


If you encounter any problems, you agree to immediately advise us of these problems so that we can mitigate and resolve them.

If you do not notify us of problems in a timely manner, then our subsequent liability and obligation to you is limited to that which would have applied if you had advised us in a timely manner, and if such redress is now no longer available to be offered to you due to the passing of time, we have no obligation to offer you alternate compensation instead.

Limitation of Our Liability

We act only as agents for the principals offering the services and products included in this tour and have no control over their products and services.

David M Rowell, 'The Travel Insider', dba Travel Insider Touring and Adastra Tours, and the various companies involved in providing services offer no warranties express or implied and reserve the right to amend this tour in any way at any time as they may choose in their sole and unfettered discretion. Participation on this tour is on an “own risk” basis and participants are responsible for ensuring that they act in a prudent and appropriate manner.

We are not liable for any matters outside our control, including acts and omissions of suppliers, and matters related to war or terrorism or natural disaster or civil disorder and or the fear of war or terrorism or natural disaster or civil disorder, whether reasonable or not, and any other Acts of God.

You agree we are not liable for any acts or omissions, and agree to indemnify us and hold us harmless from any matters arising from your own acts or omissions.  You further agree that in any case where liability may be found, our liability will in no case exceed that reasonable amount of profit we earned from your payment to us that relates to the loss or damage or other problem suffered by you.

Acceptance of these Terms and Conditions

Your forwarding payment to us is your act of acceptance of our terms and conditions.  You have conveyed these terms and conditions to all people traveling with you, and the payment for each of the people traveling, whether it be paid directly or jointly, is evidence of each person's acceptance.

Any disputes or other matters arising from the operation of these tours or involving David M Rowell, 'The Travel Insider', dba Adastra Tours, will be heard within the jurisdiction of King County, Washington, and will be interpreted under US law and practice.  All parties agree to accept binding arbitration.  In the event that any term or condition is varied or voided, the remaining terms and conditions will remain binding on you and us.

Other Tour Terms and Conditions

Each tour may have additional terms and conditions that specifically relate to that particular tour.  In such cases, if the additional terms conflict with these terms, then the tour specific terms will over-ride these generic terms.

Originally published 5 Jan 2004, last update 21 Jul 2020

More Information
Our Groupless Tour Philosophy
Why You Should Choose a Travel Insider Tour
Standard Terms and Conditions
Scotland's Islands Tour June 2011
Detailed Daily Itinerary for Scotland's Islands Tour June 2011
Trip Diary from the 2010 Tour


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