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Travel Update

Dear Customers,  

The health and safety of our customers when travelling on one of our tours is our highest priority.

We have trust and confidence in our local partners and tour leaders to keep us regularly informed of any on-tour issues, concerns and change in conditions. Their understanding and on-the-ground knowledge is vital and the duty of care they have for our customers is of equal importance.

The team at Inspiring Vacations monitor conditions and official government websites regularly. We will make decisions based on informed advice from several sources and any decision we make is in the interest of our customers.

Due to unprecendented COVID-19 event, our team have been inundated with emails and calls from our customers. We appreciate your patience, though to avoid disappointment please expect a delay in response to any communication sent. We are working hard to ensure we get back to everyone as soon as possible. 

COVID-19 Latest Updates:

All tours departing up to 30 June 2020 postponed
 
Latest Update: 30 March 2020 

Dear Valued Customer, 

We hope you are keeping safe and coping as best you can with what life is throwing at us every day. I’m sure you’re looking forward to a return to “normal” as much as we are! 

We wanted to reach out to you as we think it is important to stay in touch with our customers to provide them with as much reassurance as we can during this uncertain time.

As you may know by now, we had previously advised that we had suspended all tours scheduled for departure up until and including 30 April 2020. In response to increased government-imposed travel restrictions and total travel bans, we have decided to extend this suspension to all tours due to depart up until and including 30 June 2020.

While we remain optimistic that the impact this event is having on our customers and the industry will subside, we think it is important to put our customers’ minds at ease and their safety first. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause, though we hope you can appreciate that the health and safety of our customers’ is our highest concern and we are doing everything we can to support and assist those affected by this pandemic. All those impacted by this change will be notified via email by Friday 03 April and issued with a credit note to the value paid on their booking, allowing them the time to rebook their trip at a later date. 

For anyone travelling from 01 July 2020 onward, we are planning for your tour to proceed as normal until advised otherwise. In the interim, our focus will remain with assisting those affected by the suspension of their tour and providing them with the information that they need to rebook their trip. Therefore, if you are scheduled to travel beyond 01 July 2020, we kindly ask that you reach out to us via email, as we will not be able to assist you over the phone at this time. 

With this being said, we would also like to share an important update in relation to our operating hours. One of our most valued and proud propositions as a business was our ability to operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, providing us with the opportunity to immediately service anyone who may be in transit or required our overseas assistance. We remain committed to maintaining this level of service and care you’ve come to expect from us, however, with all travellers now returned and as this situation continues to evolve, including the upcoming suspension of our tours until 30 June 2020, we endeavour to do so during revised operating hours.

With full travel bans in place and so that we can best serve our customers going forward, we have temporarily amended our hours of operation to be 9 am - 5 pm AEST, Monday through to Friday. During these times, we will be available to you via email and phone, with email being the preferred method of contact.

When calling our team, the interactive voice response message will encourage you to refer to our website for any frequently asked questions or to email us for assistance. We will continue to adapt to the changes that our industry is experiencing and so we are working incredibly hard to ensure that our customers have all the information they need readily available for them online and will ensure that we continue to provide a seamless customer experience. 

Furthermore, with these reduced hours, we would greatly appreciate your patience and understanding in allowing us the time that we need to work through all customer email enquiries. We get back to all customer queries, but some response times can expect to be a little longer than normal.

If you are yet to do so, we encourage you to interact with our community on Facebook, who continue to share their stories and experiences with each other. Despite their travel plans being postponed, our community has remained strong and continues to be inspired by one another, and we will continue to be here to inspire you. If you are not already a member of one of our destination groups, please send our Social Media team a direct message to our main Facebook page, and they will send you an invitation request to join. Look out for an exciting travel giveaway over the coming weeks in which you can show the Inspiring Vacations community how we’re all keeping the travel dream alive, even if we can’t actually travel! 

We are passionate about travel and inspiring our customers to have the best experience possible. We look forward to the time you will be able to travel the world with us again. 

As always, thank you for your ongoing support during this time and we look forward to taking off again to our inspiring destinations. Remember to take care of yourselves, your loved ones and the vulnerable around you during these unsettling days and hold a special thought for those who go to work every day in our hospitals and clinics.

Kind Regards, 

 

Inspiring Vacations

Postponed tours up to and including 30 June 2020

If you were booked on a postponed tour that was scheduled for departure up until 30 June 2020, you will be contacted with details pertaining to a credit note for your booking, allowing customers to rebook at their convenience online. 

We are urging customers whose tours are impacted to hold off from calling our Customer Service team. We are currently experiencing significant call volumes. We will be contacting all customers who were scheduled to travel before 30 June 2020 as soon as possible. Please wait to hear from us. We are looking forward to reconfirming your travel plans for a later date.

Tours departing from 1 July 2020

All tours scheduled from 01 July 2020 are planned to proceed as normal, until advised otherwise. If you wish to voluntarily change or cancel your booking, we will abide by our standard terms and conditions. Please email our team at support@inspiringvacations.com.

As the situation continues to evolve, we encourage you to keep your booking in place, as we remain hopeful that your tour will proceed as anticipated. Should anything change that impacts your travel destination, we will be in touch with you to discuss further.

As always, we are grateful for your support through this challenging time and appreciate your patience while we work together to assist those affected.
 
A letter from our CEO, as seen in today's Herald Sun, Adelaide Advertiser, Courier Mail and Daily Telegraph. 

Dear Valued Customers, Travel Partners and Friends,

As we continue to navigate our way through this temporary period of instability, I wish to share with you how Inspiring Vacations is looking after our treasured customers, partners, and staff. 
Office Visits

Latest Update: 26 March 2020

Following the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s press announcement on Tuesday March 24, regrettably, the Inspiring Vacations office is temporarily closed to ensure the health and safety of our employees and customers. This being said, please do not visit our Head Office, as our team will be working remotely for the foreseeable future.

We expect the progressive restrictions on movement and gatherings will have little effect on the Inspiring Vacations team delivering excellent customer service to our current and future customers. Our team has complete telecommuting capability and can perform their role from any location. No matter how restricted movement becomes, we're confident we can continue assist our customers as expected, via phone, email or our online chat service. Email and chat are the preferred method of communication during this time.

You can keep in touch with us via our Facebook page, too. Over the coming weeks you’ll get to know our staff better and perhaps be introduced to their animal companions, who are no doubt, extremely pleased they have their owner home with them all day! 

Once again, thank you for your understanding and support during this time. We can't wait for normality to return, to get travelling again, and most importantly, inspiring you to travel again, too.

Repatriated customers 

Affected bookings: 

On-tour prior to 15 March 2020

If you were on-tour any time prior to 15 March 2020 and have decided to return home early, please ensure that you claim any unexpected costs through your travel insurance provider. Any limitation with your policy must be discussed with your provider directly. 

For those still on-tour, we are working to get you home as quickly as possible, as the situation is becoming increasingly unpredictable and your health and safety is of the utmost importance. We will be in touch with you to assist in changing your flight. 

For those who departed the tour prior to the scheduled conclusion, should there be any partial credit available for the unused portion of your tour from our third-party suppliers, we will be in touch with you to discuss further. Please allow a few weeks for this to be determined, and we will be in touch with those affected as soon as we can. Where no costs have been recoverable, we can provide you with an insurance letter to assist in making a claim.

Morocco - 17 March 2020 update: 

We understand that the Moroccan government made the decision to close their borders and suspend all inbound and outbound flight services affective immediately. Regrettably, we had two groups in country when this news was released and the government gave us little time to make arrangements, with all flights suspended and no availability to be found on any flight across the network.

We have two groups of Inspiring Vacations travellers that we are in regular communication with via email. They are both currently in Casablanca. DFAT and MFAT have been advised of the passengers we currently have in Casablanca. We will continue to work with our local team, who are taking care of our customers on the ground. We are sourcing chartered flight options, as well as awaiting advice from airlines should they commence operation again. As soon as something presents itself, we will work tirelessly to confirim this for all concerned. 

We understand that this is an extremely stressful situation for all involved and please rest assured that we our doing our utmost to have people return safely. 

If you are a loved one that is concerned, please register with Smart Traveller (AU) or Safe Travel (NZ) to receive the latest travel advice. We have been inundated with emails so kindly ask that you refrain from emailing us with regular updates, as this will only impact the time that we can spend on assisting those currently overseas. If you wish to be kept informed, please call our team to provide your email address and we will be in touch with you once a resolution has been found. This is an extremely painstaking process, and we will continue to do what we can for those involved.

We appreciate your patience and understanding. 

Latest Update: 23 March 2020

We're very pleased to announce that our efforts to return our customers home quickly and safely have been successful. Thanks to the team, our tour guides on location and to all of our customers for their patience during this very challenging time. Details for our travelling groups are as follows:

Sri Lanka:
All customers are now home safely. Welcome home!

Egypt:
All customers are now home safely. Welcome home!

Mexico:
All customers are now home safely. Welcome home!

Morocco:
All 14 customers part of our small group tour in Morocco are safely home via London. 

Spain:
We had 37 customers who were part of our Spain, Portugal and Morocco tour, with 31 of those safely home via London. Welcome home! 6 customers have made their own arrangements.

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Government travel advisories

We recommend customers subscribe to their government travel advice website for updates. You will be regularly informed should the level of advice change:

Before you travel, we also recommend that you talk to your doctor if you are feeling unwell or may be predisposed to becoming unwell on-tour. They can also provide advice on any vaccinations required. Furthermore, remember to read the foreign travel advice for your destination before you go and always take out comprehensive travel insurance and ensure your level of cover is appropriate. 

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