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Terms & Conditions


We arrange bookings of boats as agent for the operators (the ‘Boat Operators’) and we also act as agent for transportation companies and other service providers. With the exception of our own package holidays (you will be made aware of this if such a package is booked) you are entering directly into a contract with the boat operator or service provider. Seabreaks Ltd. the 'Company', is registered in England, company number 4505987, and Registered Office at 10 Broad O'th Lane, Shevington, Wigan, WN68EA.  Seabreaks Ltd is a member of the Travel Trust Association (TTA - membership number Q1569). Under the strict rules of the TTA, all client monies received are protected in a trust bank account and cannot be released to Seabreaks Ltd until the holiday return date. This gives complete financial protection to all customers of Freewheel Afloat.

All bookings are made and accepted in accordance with the terms and conditions set out below.

1. Your booking and deposit
To book please call us directly on +44 (0)1983 299395, email us at, or send us your booking form together with your deposit. Deposits are : Barges & Linssen 30% ; Penichettes  40% ; Cruisers 35%. The first named person on the booking, who must be 18 years or older, will be deemed to be the party leader and, by us confirming this booking, will also be deemed to be authorised by all those named to be so, including any additional party members who may be added at a later date. The party leader is responsible for all necessary payments to be made to us by the due dates and for providing any relevant information on behalf of others travelling.

Your booking is accepted by us when we issue and send you a confirmation invoice. If a booking cannot be confirmed, the deposit will of course be returned. It is your responsibility to check the confirmation invoice to see that all details are complete and correct, especially the spelling of all passenger names. We regret we cannot accept any responsibility if you do not tell us about mistakes within ten days of our sending it out (five days for tickets). We will do our best to rectify any mistake notified to us but you may need to meet any costs involved in doing so.

Once a booking has been confirmed, offers and discounts which may subsequently become available cannot be applied retrospectively.

2. Balance of payment
The balance of your payment is due 10 weeks prior to the start of your holiday and bookings made within 10 weeks of departure must be paid for in full at the time of booking. Failure to pay the balance by the specified time will result in the cancellation of your holiday and the imposition of the relevant cancellation charge as set out below. Please note we accept payments by bank transfer, cheque, and Visa, Amex or Mastercard credit cards. We charge €75 Euros per person booking fee.

3. If you wish to alter your booking
Subject to availability, and an administration fee of €50 Euros per booking, you may change your holiday arrangements after the issue of a confirmation invoice, and subject to you covering any associated costs of the amendment imposed by our suppliers. Please note a confirmed booking for one person does not necessarily imply availability for another. Any transfer to another holiday within 10 weeks of departure will be treated as a cancellation and rebooking.

4. If you wish to cancel your booking
Should you or any member of your party wish to cancel the holiday you must telephone us at once. Such notice of cancellation is effective only when received by us in writing. As we incur costs from the moment we receive your booking, we charge cancellation fees on the following scale:

over 70 days prior to departure:                       loss of deposit

56-70 days prior to departure date:                  50% of holiday price

fewer than 56 days prior to departure date:   100% of holiday price.

Any amendment charges are not refundable when you cancel.

5. If we alter or cancel your holiday plans
(i)  We reserve the right to make changes to your holiday arrangements after we have confirmed your booking, and if we do so we will use our best endeavours to inform you before departure and make suitable alternative arrangements.

(ii)   Modifications will not be accepted by the Company as grounds for cancellation by the Hirer, unless the changes occur as a result of the following:

- Change of boat to one that is of a lesser standard than originally booked
- Change of region in the country booked
- Change of departure date
- Cancellation of the holiday by the Company or the Operator

In any of these circumstances the Company will attempt, on the instructions of the Hirer to alter the booking, with any refund or extra charge being accepted by the Hirer, or refund the hire charge already paid, whereupon its liability to the Hirer will cease. We strongly recommend that you provide us with an emergency contact telephone number in case of any unexpected changes that need to be made to your holiday at short notice.

6. Surcharges
The price of your holiday is fully guaranteed and will not be subject to any surcharges.

7. Our liability to you
(i)  We accept liability under Regulation 15(1) of the Package Travel, Package  and Package Tours Regulations ("the Regulations") subject to the defences in Regulation 15(2) of the Regulations, set out at sub-paragraph (ii) below, the limitations set out in sub-paragraphs (iii) to (v) below, and the condition precedent set out in sub-paragraph (vi) below.

(ii) When you suffer any loss, damage, personal injury or death as a result of our failure to perform or improper performance of the holiday contract, we shall be liable to pay you compensation, except where the cause of the failure is not our fault or that of our servants, agents or suppliers, and is your own fault, or the actions of someone unconnected with your holiday arrangements, or due to unusual or unforeseeable circumstances or events which neither we, nor our servants, agents or suppliers could have reasonably anticipated or reasonably avoided even with the exercise of due care.

(iii) We are permitted to limit the amount of compensation we will pay you in the event of a claim. Where any claim arises out of loss or damage suffered during the course of rail travel, sea travel, road travel or hotel accommodation, the amount of compensation you will receive will be limited in accordance with the provisions of any relevant International Conventions, namely the Berne Convention 1961, the Athens Convention 1974, the Geneva Convention 1973 and the Paris Convention 1962. Copies of these Conventions are available for inspection at our offices.

(iv) Under Regulation 15(4), we are entitled to limit the amount of compensation we will pay you in the event of a claim, where that claim concerns non-personal injury. It is impossible to assess in advance the exact sums which may be payable to you. We will do our best to assess the appropriate sums due to you in the circumstances of your particular complaint.

(v) Any sums received by you from suppliers will be deducted from any sum paid to you as compensation by us. Further, if we pay you any compensation, you shall, if required by us in writing, assign to us any rights of action that you may have against any third party who was in any way responsible for the failure to perform or improper performance of the holiday contract.

(vi) Finally, it is a condition precedent of such acceptance of liability that you follow the procedures for the notification of complaints set out below in condition 8.

(vii) Other than as set out above, and as is detailed elsewhere in these booking conditions, we shall have no legal liability to you in respect of personal injury or death (unless caused by our negligence), or in respect of any other damage which you suffer arising directly or indirectly from any aspect of holiday arrangements booked with us.

8. Complaints
If you have a complaint during your holiday, you should contact the Operator  so that matters can be resolved immediately. If the Operator cannot assist, the Hirer should contact the Company. If the Hirer wants to make a claim against the Company once the holiday has been completed, this must be done so in writing within 28 days of the end of the holiday.

9. Accuracy
We reserve the right to change prices, services or other particulars at any time before we enter into a contract with you. If there is any change, we will notify you before we enter into such contract. Boat layout plans, specifications and illustrations in the brochure are for general guidance. Some boats within classes may have variations. The Company accepts no liability for any minor errors in the boat layouts and descriptions.

10. Suppliers' Conditions
Transport and accommodation providers have their own booking conditions or conditions of carriage and you will be bound by these as far as the relevant supplier is concerned. Some of these conditions may limit or exclude liability on the part of the relevant supplier. Where relevant, copies of such conditions may be available for inspection at our offices, or at the offices of the relevant supplier.

11. Transport Delays
There is no guarantee that flights or other transportation will depart at the time specified, and we do not have any liability to you for any delay which may arise. Where such delay does arise, the relevant airline or other transport provider may provide refreshments and take any further appropriate action, but we will not have any responsibility to do so.

12. Client Aptitude, Behaviour and Boat Navigation
The Hirer must be over 18 and is responsible for the Boat and its equipment during the period of hire. The Hirer must inform the Company of any medical condition which may affect their ability to either cruise or live on board a boat for the duration of their holiday. The Operator reserves the right to refuse to hand over a boat to any Hirer, who in the opinion of the Operator is not suitable to take charge. The Operator reserves the right to repossess a boat from a Hirer who in the opinion of the Operator is not suitable to continue the cruise. The minimum number of people required to hire a boat is two adults. For larger boats we recommend 3-4 adults so the boat can be handled comfortably. The number of passengers on board may not exceed the maximum number for which the boat is licensed.

The Hirer must conform to the laws governing inland waterway navigation as well as to the instruction given by the Operator and by the navigation authorities. If advised of an infringement of this condition the Operator may repossess the boat and the Hirer will be responsible for all expenses incurred even in excess of the damage deposit. All navigation at night, racing, or towing of other vessels, or subletting or loan of the boat, is strictly forbidden. The Company accepts no responsibility and will make no refunds for any interruption to the Hirer’s cruise due to repairs, flooding, drought, strike or any cause classified as ‘force majeure’ and beyond the Company's control. The Company or the Operator reserve the right to recall the boat or restrict cruising areas if unusual or hazardous conditions prevail. No minor can control the boat without the supervision of an adult.

13. Hire Periods and Routes
Boats can be accessed from between 14.00 and 16.00 on your arrival day, and must be returned to the correct base by 09.00 on the final morning. Late return of the boat will be charged at 100 Euros per hour or part thereof (Barges and Linssens), at 500 Euros (Cruisers), and at the operator’s discretion to cover the additional expenses caused by a late return (Penichettes).  By special arrangement and for the payment of additional fees, earlier start times and/or later return times can be pre-booked (Cruisers only).

The Company reserves the right, should it be necessary for operational reasons, to alter the place of embarkation and/or disembarkation, and to change a one way cruise into a return cruise  or vice versa. Such changes will not be accepted as grounds for cancellation. For one way cruises the boat must be returned to the base advised by the Operator. The confirmation of the departure base and return base for one way cruises on Barges and Linssen vessels will be confirmed by the Company 14 days prior to departure, and for Penichettes this information will be confirmed in the final week before departure. For Cruisers the direction of travel and base names are confirmed on booking. Transfers of clients' vehicles (in connection with one-way cruises) are undertaken under the Hirer's own insurance. The Hirer must ensure that adequate insurance is in place to cover the Operators and that the vehicle is in a fit and safe state to be moved.

14. Accident
The Boat must be returned to the Operator in the same state that it was handed over to the Hirer. The Hirer must inform the Operator of any loss, damage, breakage or theft. In the event of an accident, damage to the boat, to other boats, or to the waterways, the Hirer must obtain the names of all the boats involved, the names of the people involved and the names of any witnesses, and inform the Operator of all details of the damage as soon as possible. No repairs are to be undertaken without the prior agreement of the Operator. The Hirer is responsible for any fines issued by the authorities for loss of water or damage to the waterways. Neither the Operator nor the Company accepts any liability for lost time or damage or expenses incurred by the Hirer as a result of any accident.

15. Boat Delays or Curtailments
The Company will not accept liability for loss or damage or expenses resulting from any defect or breakdown unless it is proved to be caused by the Operator's failure to adequately maintain the boat in a fit condition for navigation. All Operators  have a breakdown service which responds to any problems encountered as soon as possible within normal working hours seven days a week. The Hirer must inform the Operator immediately of any breakdown, failure of the engine or equipment for which the Hirer is responsible so that remedial action can be taken as necessary. The Hirer has no right of recourse against the Operator or the Company if the Hirer does not comply with this condition, or if the breakdown is caused by the Hirer's negligence or in ignorance of the instructions given.

16. Baggage and personal effects
All baggage and personal effects are at all times at your risk. We will not be responsible for any loss, damage or accident to any luggage or personal property.

17. Insurance, Damage Deposits and Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) Policies
Each Operator has insured comprehensively all boats and equipment under policies which cover any incident caused by the Hirer or the Hirer’s crew.  To contribute to the cost of excesses charged under these policies and to encourage a duty of care, the Hirer is obliged either to leave a refundable damage deposit or to purchase a Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) policy on arrival at the base. The damage deposits and CDW vary by boat and by holiday duration.  The damage deposit and CDW are paid for in local currency either by credit card or cash deposit. For Cruisers a CDW policy can be purchased at the time of booking.

The damage deposit is refunded in full if the boat and its equipment are returned at the pre-arranged time and place undamaged and in a good overall state of cleanliness. The deposit will be retained in part or in full only if the boat is returned damaged or an accident has resulted in its loss as well as costs of any accidental damage or injury to any third parties. The extent of your liability in respect of damage to the boat will be limited to the damage deposit, except where there is evidence of gross neglect, in which case you will be expected to cover the full extent of any repair costs. Loss of or damage to any item of inventory or boat equipment will be charged at replacement cost.

The Collision Damage Waiver policy premium is non-refundable.  With this option you will be fully covered if the boat is returned damaged, or an accident has resulted in its loss, as well as costs of any accidental damage or injury to third parties. However, if there is evidence of gross neglect you will not be covered and will be expected to cover the full extent of any repair costs. Loss of or damage to any item of inventory or boat equipment will be charged at replacement cost.

Reasonable exclusions which remove the limitation of liability under the damage deposit and CDW provisions, as explained above, include but are not limited to : wilful damage, gross negligence, persons being under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or failing to obey the instructions of a member of the Operator’s staff.

18. Cleaning
You are expected to return the boat in a reasonably clean state with rubbish bagged up, crockery and utensils cleaned and re-stored, beds stripped and decks mopped.

For Barges and Linssen boats you will be asked to leave a refundable cleaning deposit at the base on arrival (€80-€100), which is returned to you if the boat is handed back in a clean condition.  For Cruisers you may pay for a cleaning service (£65-£125 / €75-€140), in which case you will only have to bag up your rubbish. This service can be ordered when booking or on arrival at the base. If you have not paid for the cleaning service and your boat is returned in an unsatisfactory condition, you will be asked to pay the cleaning service fee. For Penichettes you can order a cleaning service on arrival at your base (€50-€95, according to boat size).

19. Fuel and Fuel Deposits
Fuel is charged according to market rates and is subject to fluctuations in diesel prices. Fuel is charged for in accordance with the number of hours the engine has been running , with the exception of England where it is charged according to the number of litres used. The current engine hours on your boat will be agreed before you start and you will be informed of the current hourly charge.  In England you will start with a full tank of fuel and you will be informed of the current cost of fuel per litre.

For Cruisers and Penichettes you will be asked to leave a fuel deposit in local currency at the base. For a one-week hire period this deposit will be approximately £200-£250. At the end of your holiday you will either pay an additional fuel cost to cover the amount of fuel actually used, or you will be due a refund if your fuel consumption is less than the deposit paid.

20. Pets
To allow for additional cleaning, a pet supplement is charged per pet to a maximum of two pets per boat  (Barges/Linssens €20 ; Penichettes €25 ; Cruisers €45 / £40 pre-booked). You are required to bring a basket/blanket for pets to sleep on and to refrain from letting pets lie on bedding or seating. Please do not leave pets unattended on your boat. If, despite paying the pet supplement, the base manager feels extra cleaning is required on the return of your boat, you will be asked to pay an additional boat cleaning fee.

It is your responsibility to comply with all current regulations concerning the transit of animals across national boundaries.

21. Privacy Policy
At Freewheel Afloat we are committed to protecting your privacy. This privacy statement sets out how we will treat your personal data after it has been collected by us through your use of our website, brochures, speaking to our customer services staff or otherwise. Any changes to this policy will be posted on this page. Where ‘you’ are referred to in this policy, this shall mean you and every member of your party. You should ensure that all your party members have read this policy and agree that you may act on their behalf in dealing with us.

Our full company name is Seabreaks Limited and our registered office is at 10 Broad O'th Lane, Shevington, Wigan, WN6 8EA, United Kingdom. For your protection, we are registered under the Data Protection Act 1998 and have given all appropriate notifications to the Information Commissioner. We also hold a compliance certificate from the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council concerning our secure handling of client payment card information.

What we collect and why
When you make an enquiry, join our mailing list or book a holiday with Freewheel Afloat we may need to collect information about you, including but not limited to, your name, contact details and company name and position (if applicable). We may also collect such data if you enter competitions, register for promotions, take part in surveys, or provide us with feedback . We may also collect payment details and/or relevant health information to process bookings.

Some of the information we collect may be “sensitive personal data” (for example 'special requirements' data relating to disability, diet, health or religion) in which case we will only collect, retain and pass it on with your positive consent.

We require this information to understand your needs and provide you with the service you have requested. We use it to advise you of information concerning your holiday booking, enquiry or other transaction.

We and the companies in our group may use the information to advise you of our new services, products, promotions, special offers and/or other information which we think will be of interest to you and for the other purposes set out in our notification to the Information Commissioner's Office. We may use your data for our business management and operation and for monitoring, marketing and customer care purposes in order to achieve our aim to provide you with the highest standard of quality and service and increase our customers’ choices wherever possible.

We may also send you details of products and/or services provided by carefully selected third parties whom we think may be of interest to you.

You will be given the opportunity to give your consent or object (as appropriate) to us using the data for such purposes on all written information we send to you.

Who else do we give your details to?
We may disclose your information to our credit checking companies, public authorities (e.g. customs/immigration), to any companies who process data on our behalf, to our professional advisers and when we are required by law to make a disclosure.

We may pass on your personal details to those companies or organisations that need to know them in order that your holiday or other service or product can be provided. For example, the tour operator, the airline, hotel or credit card company. This may include the transfer of information outside the European Economic Area where data protection controls may not be as strong as in the UK. When you make a booking or enter into a transaction this means you consent to our passing on such details. We may also pass your personal information on to carefully selected third parties who may contact you with details of their products and/or services which may be of interest to you.

On all of our direct marketing and email communications you will be given the opportunity to opt-out of receiving such communications in the future. If you do not wish us to use your data for direct marketing and email purposes or to pass your details to carefully selected third parties, please contact us at Freewheel Afloat, 10 Westway, Cowes, Isle of Wight, PO31 8QP.

‘Cookies’ - What are they? How do we use them?
Many websites use "cookies" to help to improve the service provided on the website.

‘Cookies’ are small pieces of information that are stored by your browser on your computer's hard drive. We use cookies only to gather statistics about your use of our website such as how long our users browse on each section of our website and products and services viewed and booked. This information enables us to better design areas of our website. Other than this, we do not store information in the cookie and use it for any other purpose, or pass on personal data to any other parties without your consent.

With most internet browsers (for example Microsoft Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator) you can erase cookies from your hard drive, block all or some cookies or receive a warning before a cookie is stored. Please refer to your browser's help screen to learn more about these functions. Denial of a traffic log cookie should not prevent you from using one of these sites. You can delete the files that contain cookies that you have already accepted from your hard drive.

Other web sites
Our website may contain links to enable you to visit other websites of interest easily. However, once you have used these links to leave our site you should note that we do not have any control over that other website. Therefore, we cannot be responsible for the protection and privacy of any information which you provide whilst visiting such sites and such sites are not governed by this privacy statement. You should exercise caution and look at the privacy statement applicable to the website in question.

We are committed to ensuring that your information is secure. In order to prevent unauthorised access or disclosure we have put in place suitable physical, electronic and managerial procedures to safeguard and secure the information we collect on line. We use encryption when collecting or transferring sensitive data such as credit card information.

Your consent
By disclosing your personal data to us, whether using our website, telephone services or otherwise, you consent to the collection, processing and use of your personal information by Freewheel Afloat in accordance with the terms of this privacy policy.

Data Subject Access Request
You are entitled to ask us by letter what details of yours are being held or processed, for what purpose and to whom they may be or have been disclosed. There is a maximum charge of £10 for this service and we will respond to legitimate requests within 40 days of receiving your written request and fee.

22. Passports, Visa, Health Requirements
A full passport is required for all the countries we visit, with the exception of England for UK and Republic of Ireland passport holders. There are no compulsory health formalities for the countries we visit. It is your responsibility to check your passport is valid. We cannot accept responsibility for any delays or expense incurred through irregularities in your documents. Travel advice issued by the British Government can be viewed via this link:

23. Financial Protection
In order to comply with the financial protection requirements of the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992, we place all receipts from clients in a Trust Fund in the name of Seabreaks Ltd which is controlled by the Travel Trust Association (TTA). Release of funds to Seabreaks Ltd is not permitted until customers have returned from holiday. This gives complete financial protection to customers in the event of our failure to provide a holiday or our insolvency.

24. Law and Jurisdiction
Your contract with us and any matters arising from it shall be subject to English law and to the jurisdiction of the Courts of England and Wales.

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