Terms and Conditions

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Active Expeditions

RESPONSIBILITY

National Geographic Expeditions (as defined herein) will provide educational enrichment for trips as outlined in its catalog or website (natgeoexpeditions.com) (each an “Expedition”) and has licensed Mountain Travel, its owners, directors, officers, employees, parents, subsidiaries and affiliates (collectively, “Mountain Travel”) to organize and administer such Expeditions. With the exception of certain transportation and other equipment in Alaska and Idaho owned and operated by Mountain Travel, as well as certain personnel employed by Mountain Travel on Expeditions operated in the United States, all suppliers of services connected with these Expeditions, such as hotels or other lodging facilities, airline, vessel, bus, van or other transportation companies, local ground operators, providers or organizers of optional excursions, food service or entertainment providers, etc. (collectively, “Other Providers”), are third-party contractors and are solely responsible and liable for providing their respective services. The passenger tickets in use by the carriers and/or other suppliers shall constitute the sole contract between the carriers and the passenger; the carriers are not responsible for any act, omission, or event during the time the participants are not aboard their conveyances.

National Geographic Partners, LLC, d/b/a National Geographic Expeditions, its parents, subsidiaries and their respective employees, affiliates, officers, directors, successors, representatives, assigns (collectively “National Geographic”) and Mountain Travel (for purposes of this Responsibility Statement and the Terms and Conditions, National Geographic and Mountain Travel may be collectively be referred to as “we”, “us”, or “our”) are not liable for any negligent or willful act or failure to act of any Other Provider. Without limitation, we are not responsible for any injury, loss, or damage to personal property, death, delay or inconvenience in connection with the provision of any goods or services occasioned by or resulting from, but not limited to, acts of God, acts of government, weather, force majeure, acts of war or civil unrest, insurrection or revolt, strikes or other labor activities, criminal or terrorist activities or the threat thereof, of any kind, epidemics or the threat thereof, illness, overbooking or downgrading of accommodations, structural or other defective conditions in hotels or other lodging facilities, mechanical or other failure of airplanes or other means of transportation or for any failure of any transportation mechanism to arrive or depart timely or safely, dangers associated with or bites from animals, pests or insects, marine life or vegetation of any sort, dangers incident to recreational activities such as scuba diving, zip lining, snorkeling, paddle boarding, surfing, swimming, kayaking, sailing, canoeing, rafting, hiking, bicycling, rock climbing, etc., sanitation problems, food poisoning, lack of, access to or quality of medical care, difficulty in evacuation in case of medical or other emergency, negligence of shipboard or other physicians or medical personnel of for any cause beyond our direct control. In addition, the participant releases National Geographic and Mountain Travel from their own negligence and assumes all risk thereof.

By registering for an Expedition, the participant certifies that he/she does not have any mental, physical, or other condition or disability that would create a hazard for himself/herself or other participants. National Geographic Expeditions and Mountain Travel reserve the right in their sole discretion to accept, decline to accept, or remove any participant on an Expedition. National Geographic Expeditions and Mountain Travel reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in their judgment, conditions warrant or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of the participants.

Neither National Geographic nor Mountain Travel shall be liable for any air carrier’s cancellation penalty or change fee incurred by the purchase of a nonrefundable ticket to or from the participant’s departure city. Baggage and personal effects are at all times the sole responsibility of the participant.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE “ARBITRATION AGREEMENT” SECTION BELOW CONTAINS PROVISIONS THAT REQUIRE (i) WITH LIMITED EXCEPTIONS, ALL DISPUTES ARISING BETWEEN YOU AND NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC AND/OR MOUNTAIN TRAVEL UNDER THIS AGREEMENT TO BE RESOLVED IN BINDING ARBITRATION, AND NOT IN COURT, AND (ii) YOU AND NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC AND MOUNTAIN TRAVEL WAIVE THE RIGHT TO BRING OR PARTICIPATE IN A CLASS ACTION IN CONNECTION WITH SUCH DISPUTES. PLEASE BE SURE TO READ AND REVIEW CAREFULLY THE ENTIRE SECTION LABELED “ARBITRATION AGREEMENT” BELOW. BY ACCEPTING THIS AGREEMENT, YOU AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE ARBITRATION AGREEMENT.

Basis of Rates: All prices are per person based on two persons sharing a room or cabin. All prices and fares are quoted in U.S. dollars. The rates are based on tariffs, currency values, airfares and third-party charges as of catalog publication date and are subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances. While National Geographic will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, if it is necessary to levy a surcharge, National Geographic reserves the right to do so, and notification will be given at the time of final invoicing.

Eligibility: Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian for the entire Expedition. Some itineraries have minimum age requirements—call for more information.

Voluntary Participation: By registering for an Expedition, the participant acknowledges that he/she has voluntarily applied to participate on this Expedition and that he/she has read the description of the Expedition as it appears in the current National Geographic Expeditions catalog or website.

Responsibilities of Participants: The participant is responsible for understanding the conditions as described in the Expedition Itinerary and selecting an Expedition in consultation with us that is appropriate to his/her interests and abilities. In addition, the participant should prepare for the Expedition by reading the Expedition Itinerary and supplemental Expedition information in the pre-Expedition communications and for bringing the appropriate clothing and equipment as advised in those communications. The participant should also consult his/her physician to determine his/her suitability for the Expedition and to discuss any over the counter or prescription medicines he/she should consider taking relative to the demands of the Expedition (e.g.  in the case of Expeditions which travel to higher altitudes). Screening for fitness (for Expeditions rated “Strenuous” or “Maximum”) is made by Mountain Travel during the confirmation of booking.  We reserve the right in our sole discretion to accept, decline to accept, or remove any participant on an Expeditions at any time during the Expedition. In the event of removal from an Expedition, refunds are not given.

Included in Expedition Cost: Accommodations and meals as indicated in the itinerary (B = breakfast, L = lunch, D = dinner); educational materials; pre-Expedition information; entrance fees, excursions, and sightseeing noted as included in the itinerary; all gratuities except those for adventure guides, unless otherwise noted on the itinerary page or in pre-Expedition communications; ground transportation during the Expedition; transfers to and from group flights where applicable; services of adventure guides and/or local guides, lecturers, and any other staff; and taxes, port charges, baggage handling, and service charges. Please note: the “B, L, D” notations apply to the period during the Expedition only and do not include any meals on flights to/from the Expedition. Internal airfare is included on some international Expeditions as indicated in the itinerary. For itineraries that include camping, camp and cook staff tents, and dining tents and necessary Expedition equipment (e.g. sea kayaks, rafts, personal floatation devices, etc.) are provided and included in the Expedition cost.

Not Included in Expedition Cost: Air transportation and related fees (except as indicated in the itinerary); activities noted as optional in the itinerary; gratuities for adventure guides, unless otherwise noted on the itinerary page or in pre-Expedition communications; passport, visa, and permit expenses; medical expenses and immunizations; baggage/accident/cancellation insurance; personal expenses, such as laundry, telephone calls, and alcoholic beverages; and any other items not specifically noted as included.

Single/Shared Accommodations: A limited number of single rooms/cabins/tents are available at an extra cost on a first-come, first-served basis. National Geographic Expeditions and/or Mountain Travel will assist persons requesting a roommate. The participants will be notified if a suitable roommate is not available, in which case the single rate will be charged.

Payments, Cancellations, and Refunds: To reserve space on an Expedition designated as an “Active Expedition”, a $750 per-person deposit is required. Final payment is due no later than 95 days prior to departure. Expeditions designated as “Private Departures” or “Custom Active Expeditions” require a nonrefundable per-person deposit of $1,000 or 20% of the applicable Expedition cost, whichever is greater. A $100 deposit is required for any extension. Payments must be made by credit card. A participant’s reservation may be canceled if full payment has not been received by 90 days prior to departure. For reservations made within 90 days of departure, full payment is required when the reservation is accepted. All cancellation notices must be received in writing and will become effective as of the date of the postmark. If a participant cancels 120 days or more prior to departure, a refund less an administrative fee of 50% of the deposit will be made. Per-person charges for cancellations that occur less than 120 days prior to departure (“Cancellation Penalty Period”) are as follows: 91-119 days prior to departure: 100% of the deposit amount; 45-90 days prior to departure: 50% of the Expedition cost; 44 or fewer days prior to departure: 100% of the Expedition cost. This policy also applies to pre- and post-Expedition extensions. Any revisions made within the Cancellation Penalty Period, such as a change in departure date or choice of Expedition, are subject to this cancellation policy. Any airline tickets issued are subject to the carrier’s refund policy. Arriving late or leaving an Expedition in progress, for any reason whatsoever, will not result in a refund, and no refunds will be made for any unused portions of an Expedition. National Geographic Expeditions reserves the right to cancel any Expedition because of inadequate enrollment that makes the Expedition economically infeasible to operate or because of good-faith concerns with respect to the safety, health, or welfare of the participants. If an Expedition is canceled prior to departure, Mountain Travel will provide the participants with a full refund of monies paid to Mountain Travel; except in the event that the cancellation is due to a significant event that makes it infeasible to operate the Expedition as planned, in which case Mountain Travel will provide the participants with a refund and/or credit toward a future Expedition equivalent to the amount paid to Mountain Travel. If National Geographic Expeditions cancels the Expedition in progress, the participants will receive a prorated refund based on the number of days not completed on the Expedition.  Except as outlined above when National Geographic Expeditions cancels an Expedition, National Geographic and Mountain Travel have no responsibility for any expenses, including any non-refundable expenses, incurred by the participants in preparing for a cancelled Expedition or for any additional arrangements should the participants embark prior to the scheduled group departure date.

Trip-cancellation insurance is available at an additional cost and is strongly recommended. For more information about and to enroll in an option available through Travel Insurance Services, visit the “Travel Insurance” section of our website at natgeoexpeditions.com.

Itinerary Changes: The itineraries and staff presented in the catalog and/or on the website are subject to modification and change by National Geographic Expeditions or Mountain Travel. Every reasonable effort will be made to operate Expeditions as planned, but alterations may still occur after final itineraries are sent.

Documentation: Participants are responsible for obtaining any documents required for their participation in the Expedition such as a valid passport, all visas, vaccination certificates, and any other documents.  Failure to obtain documents does not negate the Terms and Conditions, and any extra costs incurred for rerouting due to travel without the necessary documents will be the participant’s responsibility.

Delays & Cost Increases: We will not be responsible for providing any reimbursement for delays in the Expedition due to bad weather, trail conditions, river levels, road conditions, transportation delays, or government intervention. The prices are based on tariffs, currency values, airfares and third-party charges as of catalog publication date and are subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, if it is necessary to levy a surcharge, as permitted by law, we reserve the right to do so, and notification will be given at the time of final invoicing.

Health Requirements: Participants must be in good physical and mental health. Any physical condition, diet, or treatment requiring special attention must be reported in writing when the reservation is made. National Geographic Expeditions encourages participants to consult a doctor for specific medical advice about any activities or destinations. Certain Expeditions may require that the participant obtain medical consent prior to departure as a condition of participation.

Medical Authorization and Coverage: In the event the participant becomes sufficiently incapacitated as to be unable to direct his or her own care, there is no one on the Expedition who can direct participant’s care, and National Geographic Expeditions is unable or does not have time to contact participant’s emergency contact, the participant, by registering and paying a deposit for an Expedition, authorizes any medical treatment deemed necessary in the event of any injury or illness while participating in the activity including, but not limited to, X-ray, examination, anesthetic, medical or surgical diagnosis, or treatment and hospital care which is deemed advisable by, and is to be rendered under the general or specific supervision of, any physician and/or surgeon licensed in the United States, or, if in a foreign country and no physician licensed to practice in the United States is reasonably available, by a duly licensed physician deemed competent to render the necessary care. In addition, the participant certifies that they have medical insurance which will cover personal accidents, medical expenses, medical evacuation, air ambulance, loss of effects, repatriation costs and all other expenses which might arise as a result of loss, damage, injury, delay or inconvenience occurring to the participant, or that in the absence of this medical insurance coverage, the participant agrees to pay all costs of rescue and/or medical services as may be incurred on the participant’s behalf.

Photography: National Geographic Expeditions and Mountain Travel and the adventure guides reserve the right to take photographs or videos during the operation of any Expedition or part thereof and to use the resulting photography, videos, or recordings for promotional or commercial use. By making a reservation on an Expedition, the participant agrees to allow his/her likeness to be used by National Geographic, National Geographic-authorized third parties, and Mountain Travel without compensation to the participant. If the participant prefers that his/her likeness not be used, he/she must notify National Geographic Expeditions and/or Mountain Travel in writing prior to departure of the Expedition.

Copyright in all photographs, video, and related materials created by the participant (“Expedition Materials”) will belong to the participant upon creation. The participant grants to National Geographic a non-exclusive, worldwide, irrevocable license to use any Expedition Materials provided to National Geographic and/or Mountain Travel in any media for the following limited purposes: editorial use, promotion of this editorial use, promotion of National Geographic’s travel programs, or promotion of the mission of National Geographic.

Assumption of Risk: By registering for an Expedition, the participant acknowledges that he/she is aware that travel such as the Expedition he/she is undertaking involves potentially dangerous activities, some in remote areas of the world, with a risk of illness, injury or death which may be caused by forces of nature, illness, or by willful or criminal conduct of third parties or by terrorism. The participant further acknowledges that weather conditions may be severe, adverse and/or unpleasant and that medical services or facilities may not be readily available or accessible or consistent with standards in the United States during some or all of the time during which he/she is participating on the Expedition and that when available may not be of the quality which exists in the United States.

Arbitration Agreement:  National Geographic, Mountain Travel (collectively “Tour Provider”), and you agree that any and all disputes and claims that each of you and Tour Provider may have against the other that arise out of or relate to this contract or to the Expedition, including the breach, termination, enforcement, interpretation or validity of this Agreement, including the agreement to arbitrate (the “Arbitration Agreement”) and the scope or applicability of this Arbitration Agreement (collectively, “Disputes”), including but not limited to the arbitrability of any and all Disputes, and even if the events giving rise to Disputes occurred before this Arbitration Agreement became effective, will be resolved in a binding, confidential arbitration process, and not in court.  Each of you and Tour Provider agrees to give up the right to sue in court.  Each of you and Tour Provider also agrees to give up the right to have Disputes heard by a jury and the ability to seek to represent, in a class action or otherwise, anyone but each of you and Tour Provider.  The only exception to this Arbitration Agreement is that each of you and Tour Provider retains the right to sue in small claims court.

This Agreement evidences a transaction in interstate commerce, and thus the Federal Arbitration Act, 9 U.S.C. §§ 1-16, governs the interpretation and enforcement of this Arbitration Agreement.  This Arbitration Agreement shall survive termination of this Agreement.

Any arbitration between you and Tour Provider will be conducted by the Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services, Inc. (“JAMS”) pursuant to the applicable JAMS rules.   The JAMS Rules are available on its website at https://www.jamsadr.com/

The arbitrator is bound by the terms of this Agreement. Regardless of how the arbitration proceeds, the arbitrator shall issue a reasoned written decision sufficient to explain his or her findings and conclusions. Any arbitration (or court proceeding pursuant to the last paragraph of this Arbitration Agreement) will be governed by substantive (but not procedural) California law and without regard to the California Arbitration Act. The arbitrator and not any federal, state, or local court or agency shall have exclusive authority to resolve any dispute relating to the interpretation, applicability, enforceability, conscionability, or formation of this contract, including but not limited to any claim that all or any part of this contract is void or voidable, and the arbitrator’s determination not to enforce any severable provision of this contract, other than the class action waiver, shall not affect enforceability of the remainder.

JAMS charges fees to conduct arbitrations.  Ordinarily, the claimant has to pay that fee to start a case, but if you wish to commence an arbitration against Tour Provider, and you are seeking to recover less than $10,000 (inclusive of attorneys’ fees), you will not have to pay this filing fee; Tour Provider will pay it on your behalf.  If you are seeking to recover $10,000 or more, you will have to pay the filing fee charged by JAMS, but Tour Provider will reimburse that fee if you win the arbitration.

Each of you and Tour Provider may incur attorneys’ fees during the arbitration.  In addition to whatever rights you may have to recover your attorneys’ fees under applicable law, if you prevail in the arbitration, winning $10,000 or less, and if Tour Provider failed to make a settlement offer to you before the arbitration or the amount you win is at least 25% greater than Tour Provider’s highest settlement offer to resolve the Dispute, then Tour Provider will pay your reasonable attorneys’ fees in addition to the amount the arbitrator awarded.  If you prevail in the arbitration, winning more than $10,000, or if Tour Provider wins the arbitration, you will be responsible for your own attorneys’ fees.

The arbitrator may award relief only in favor of the individual party seeking relief and only to the extent necessary to provide relief warranted by that party's individual claim.  The arbitrator may not order Tour Provider to pay any monies to or take any actions with respect to persons other than you, unless Tour Provider explicitly consents in advance, after an arbitrator is selected, to permit the arbitrator to enter such an order.  YOU AND TOUR PROVIDER AGREE THAT EACH MAY BRING CLAIMS AGAINST THE OTHER ONLY IN YOUR OR ITS INDIVIDUAL CAPACITY AND NOT AS A PLAINTIFF OR CLASS MEMBER IN ANY PURPORTED CLASS, REPRESENTATIVE OR MULTI-CLAIMANT PROCEEDING, except that members of a family may bring a single arbitration.  Unless Tour Provider agrees, the arbitrator may not consolidate other persons’ claims with yours, and may not otherwise preside over any form of a representative, multi-claimant or class proceeding.

You and Tour Provider agree to maintain the confidential nature of the arbitration proceeding and shall not disclose the fact of the arbitration, any documents exchanged as part of it  proceedings of the arbitration, the arbitrator’s decision and the existence or amount of any award, except as may be necessary to prepare for or conduct the arbitration (in which case anyone becoming privy to confidential information must undertake to preserve its confidentiality), or except as may be necessary in connection with attorneys, accountants or in connection with a court application for a provisional remedy, a judicial challenge to an award or its enforcement, or unless otherwise required by law or court order.

To the extent this Arbitration Agreement is found to be unenforceable, or a court or the arbitrator permits any claim to proceed in a court of law (other than a small claims court), you and we agree that all such disputes, claims or litigation arising from or in any way related to this agreement, the Expedition, or our relationship with you, will be litigated only in a court of competent jurisdiction located in the City and County of San Francisco, California.  You agree to be subject to personal jurisdiction and venue in that location.

Privacy Policy: Our privacy policy can be found at nationalgeographic.com/community/privacy/

Mailing List: If you are receiving duplicate catalogs, have address updates, or would like to be removed from future National Geographic Expeditions mailings, please call toll-free 1-888-966-8687.

Other: The applicable Terms and Conditions may vary from those listed above based upon the specific Expedition selected by the participant.  A copy of the final Terms and Conditions applicable to each participant will be sent in pre-Expedition communications.