Legal seat, jurisdiction, applicable law
- Secret Lanka (Pte.) Ltd. (''Secret Lanka'') has his legal seat in Negombo in the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka (''Sri Lanka'') and is a company registered with The Department of the Registrar of Companies of Sri Lanka (www.drc.gov.lk).
- Within the jurisdiction of Sri Lanka Secret Lanka operates as an independent tour operator registered with the ''Sri Lanka Tourism Board'' (www.srilanka.travel).
- If requested, Secret Lanka does offer flight booking in the Client's name to and from the Republic of the Maldives (''the Maldives'') in cooperation with undertakings under the laws of Sri Lanka and/or the Maldives. Outside the jurisdiction of Sri Lanka (including territorial waters in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea), Secret Lanka co-operates with tour operators registered with the Ministry of Tourism of the the Maldives (www.tourism.gov.mv) and/or with authorized airlines, ferries and/or other undertakings offering means of travel between Sri Lanka and the Maldives. When organizing and reserving for both travel and stay within the jurisdiction of the Maldives Secret Lanka shall act as an agent for the Client. The undertakings mandated by Secret Lanka within the jurisdiction of the Maldives in accordance with Client's requests shall be specified to the Client at the time of the Final Offer (''the Final Offer''), depending from the specificities of the package requested by the Client.
- Except from what stated in the preceding clause, Secret Lanka does not offer travel to and from Sri Lanka, but merely arranges for accommodation and travel-related services within the jurisdiction of Sri Lanka (including territorial waters in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea). As a matter of principle, Secret Lanka does not offer services outside the jurisdiction of Sri Lanka and all services offered in the jurisdiction of the Maldives and all transportation services to and from the Republic of the Maldives, shall be offered by third parties. Withnin the Maldives contractual relationships shall exist between the Client and the involved third party only. The latter shall apply also in case where Secret Lanka - as in the preceding clause - should intermediate specific services and/or products for the Client and make a Final Offer, consisting of a combined tour between the jurisdictions of Sri Lanka and the Maldives (''Combo Tour'').
- In case of disputes arising from the Travel Services Agreement (''the TSA''), of which these General Conditions of Contract (''the GCC'') are a part together with the provisions contained within the Final Offer, unless modified within the Final Offer itself, Secret Lanka will attempt to reach a mutual agreement in a diplomatic and friendly way with the involvement of the Commercial Mediation Center of Sri Lanka. Failing this, law Court shall be Colombo (Sri Lanka).
- Sri Lankan law applies to all services rendered by Secret Lanka. Should Secret Lanka should offer services directly and in its own name within the jurisdiction of the Republic of the Maldives, then the competent Courts of Colombo shall apply the laws of Sri Lanka. No extra-territorial ''package travel'' provisions of law (eg the European Council Directive 90/314/EEC) shall be applied by the competent court of Colombo or any other Court affirming its own competence in any matter related to the TSA.
- Once a pre-packaged (''standardized'') tour has been selected by the Client from the services presented by Secret Lanka on its homepages (www.secretlanka.com ? www.secret-lanka.com ? www.secretmaldives.com ? www.secret-maldives.com), or once a customized tour has been assembled by Secret Lanka in accordance with the Client's specific needs and requests, a non-refundable Acceptance Payment (the ''Acceptance Payment'') in the amount of 10% of the Final Offer (the ''Final Offer'') is due to be wired to Secret Lanka's bank account. The Acceptance Payment shall be deployed by Secret Lanka in order to pay for reservations made for the Client's account.
Reservation process, Acceptance Payment, Final Payment, cancellation
- In order to be keep the Final Offer legally valid and binding, the Acceptance Payment must reach Secret Lanka's bank account within a 5 working days acceptance period (the ''Acceptance Payment Period''). The Acceptance Payment Period begins with the e-mail delivery of the Final Offer by Secret Lanka (the ''Offer Delivery Day''). The Offer Delivery Day itself does not count as a working day, but only the first following working day in accordance with Sri Lankan Laws. For the determination of the Offer Delivery Day, Sri Lankan time applies (UTT/GMT+5:30 hours), at the moment of the sending of the e-mail containing the Final Offer. The e-mail containing the Final Offer is supposed to be delivered within the next 30 seconds after the e-mail has been sent. If the Acceptance Payment Period elapses without due payment until 11:59 PM of working day number 5, the Final Offer shall expire. Secret Lanka reserves itself the right to accept payments done after the Acceptance Payment Period at the conditions stated in the Final Offer.
- Under specific circumstances (eg when the Client chooses ''5 star'' (''*****'') or ultra luxe accomodations (''5 star +'') accommodations within a customized tour) an Acceptance Payment of 20% can be requested di Secret Lanka. Secret Lanka shall inform the Client about this Special Acceptance Payment (the ''Special Acceptance Payment'') at the latest with its Final Offer and request the accrued payment within the Acceptance Payment Period. When the Special Acceptance Payment is set at 20%, then the percent terms expressed under articles 14, 15 and 16 below, shall change as follows:
- 20% to 30% (art. 14 letter a);
- 35% to 45% (art. 14 letter b, art. 15 letter a);
- 50% to 60% (art. 14 letter c, art. 15 letter b, art. 16 letter a);
- 75% to 85% (art. 14 letter d, art. 15 letter c, art. 16 letter b) and
- 90% to 95% (art. 14 letter e, art. 15 letter d, art. 16 letter c).
- If the Special Acceptance Payment should be higher than 20%, then the percent terms expressed under articles 14, 15 and 16 shall not applied and the special conditions shall be indicated to the Client at the latest with the Final Offer.
- Full Payment (the ''Full Payment'') must reach Secret Lanka's bank account at least 45 days before the Client's expected arrival, portended in the Final Offer, in accordance with the Client's scheduled day of arrival.
- Payments shall be done to Secret Lanka bank account with the following specifications:
Name and address of the beneficiary:
Secret Lanka PLC
46, Katuwapitiya road
Account Number: 013033452750101
Name and address of the Bank:
Seylan Bank PLC
141, Rajapaksha Broadway
BIC/SWIFT Code: SEYBLKLXXXX
- Alternatively, the due amount shall be wired to the bank account of Secret Lanka's collecting agent, acting as a factor:
IBAN: CH69 0900 0000 6518 6839 1
c/o Postfinance Ltd., Berne
In this latter case Secret Lanka's credits against the Client shall be assigned to the collecting agent (acting as a factor) in advance to the Client's payment.
- All payments shall be registered by the Client under the ''our costs'' condition (ie full payment must reach Secret Lanka's account with all bank and transfer bank costs borne by the Client).
- Under usual circumstances (i.e. when Full Payment reaches Secret Lanka's account at least 45 days before the Client's expected arrival) charges for cancellations (''Last Minute Cancellations'') are as follows:
- a. Cancellation up to 30 days before the expected Client's arrival: charge of 20% of the total bill (=refund of 80%).
- b. Cancellation up to 15 days before arrival: charge of 35% of the total bill (=refund of 65%).
- c. Cancellation up to 5 days before arrival: charge of 50% of the total bill (=refund of 50%).
- d. Cancellation up to 3 days before arrival: charge of 75% of the total bill (=refund of 25%).
- e. Cancellation less than 3 days or ''non presentation'': charge of 90% of the total bill (=refund of 10%).
- All refunds shall be registered under the ''beneficiary cost'' condition (ie Secret Lanka account shall be debited in accordance to the charges defined under articles 14, 15 and 16 and all bank and transfer bank charges shall be borne by the Client).
- During high season or in case of special events (ie festivals, sport events, etc.) different provisions may apply. In this case, Secret Lanka shall inform the Client about the special terms and conditions at the latest with the Final Offer.
- Secret Lanka will endeavour to secure the hotels listed in the itinerary presented as ''pre-packaged'' through its official homepages (www.secretlanka.com ? www.secretlanka.com ? www.secretmaldives.com ? www.secret-maldives.com) or portended within the Final Offer. Though, because of the nature of the Sri Lankan travel industry (misbookings, overbookings, double-bookings, other inconveniences, etc.), it will not always be possible to secure the hotels and lodges listed in the Final Offer. Thus, Secret Lanka reserves itself the right to secure the next best available option, or an upgrade, in the event that the originally booked hotels should not be available.
- Secret Lanka's Clients are herewith made aware that hotel standards in Sri Lanka and the Maldives may not be the same as in Europe or the USA and that Secret Lanka cannot be held responsible or liable for the differences between European or the US-American standards and Sri Lankan or Maldivian standards. Should there be any complaints about hotels or local service providers, Secret Lanka shall do its best in order to solve the issues arising, though there is and will be no warranty that these issues shall be solvable in part or in full and/or solved in part or in full during the stay.
- Secret Lanka accepts responsibility only on agreed services, eg car rental, entrance fees, etc.
- In the event of disruption, cancellation or changes caused by events outside Secret Lanka's control, including force majeure, Secret Lanka will do its best to organise an equivalent alternative program. However, Secret Lanka does not offer any reimbursement for payments made. Additional costs shall be borne by the Client.
- Should the Client decide to interrupt the tour for whatever reasons (health, business, family affairs, etc.) Secret Lanka will not reimburse any left part of the tour. Should the Client ask for changes to the itinerary agreed within the Final Offer, supplementary handling fees will be charged to the Client, besides additional costs that might occur for the adapted itinerary and/or accommodation. Secret Lanka is under no obligation to accept any changes to the itinerary contained in the Final Offer.
- Secret Lanka cannot be held responsible and does not accept liability whatsoever for any loss or damage to personal property. Secret Lanka highly recommends the Client take out insurance against such eventualities.
- The official General Conditions text shall be maintained by Secret Lanka in English, Italian and French. In the event of any conflict between the English and other language versions, the English version shall prevail.