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Kirker bookings and coronavirus

09 June 2020

Although travelling abroad for holidays is currently not practical, it is a very good time to start thinking about plans for the future, whether that be later this year or perhaps 2021.  Overall the Kirker team continues to keep a close eye on the situation in the UK and elsewhere as authorities adjust their policies to take account of the diminishing number of cases, with some relaxation of the most stringent of lockdown rules within the UK, whilst at the same time our European neighbours are taking more positive steps to welcome back visitors to their hotels, restaurants and museums.  Clearly travellers to Europe will need to follow the stipulated guidelines including appropriate use of face masks and 1m social distancing amongst other practical measures – and we all understand that it will still take a little while before the protocols for leisure travel in the brave new world are fully established.  However, there are now clear signs that airlines and other transportation services are working closely with the authorities to define the new guidelines and etiquette around the relevant precautionary measures, and progress is now being made with the very real prospect of there being travel opportunities in August and September.  We understand that each customer’s perspective will be different, and whilst we were delighted to have taken one or two new bookings last week for travel to Italy in August, we know that some clients will wish to be more cautious and can reassure you that the Kirker team is here and ready to look after your every need. It is interesting to note that one of the most popular requests at the moment is for summer and autumn holidays with travel by private car using our Eurotunnel contracts, combined with a tailor-made driving itinerary to 3 or more carefully chosen Kirker hotels – this style of self-drive holiday is very relaxing with civilised hotels, excellent restaurants and carefully planned stays at countryside properties and visits to selected sites such as Loire Valley châteaux – please call 020 7593 2288 for further details.

We are, of course, very sorry for any frustration that has been caused by the disruption of an existing holiday booking – and would like to reassure you that we are working as fast as possible to amend bookings as required, and are keeping a close eye on any changes in legislation and taking account of the latest news updates. We are currently contacting clients due to depart in June and July – and apologise if we are not able to respond as quickly as usual. If you have a query about an existing booking please email direct to the consultant who booked your original holiday (or via your travel agent). We shall endeavour to make it as easy as possible to amend to a later date and, as ever, your postponed holiday arrangements will be tailor-made to suit each individual’s situation. If there are any extra costs for elements such as air fares or hotels (and we do expect 2021 prices to increase) – we shall try to absorb these costs if we possibly can. Occasionally there may be some extra expense (e.g. if you are moving from a low season date to peak season date) but we can assure you that any extra costs will be kept as low as we can. If you are unable to amend to a later date we will liaise with you to discuss appropriate credit note or cancellation arrangements.

The Kirker Team is currently working from home – but normal office hours Monday to Friday still apply, with telephone lines routed through to each teams. For ease of communication, it is usually better to email directly to the individual who is looking after your booking This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. – please provide us with your preferred telephone contact number and someone will call you back as soon as they can.

It is a challenging time for all of us – but we can assure you that we shall be doing our utmost to look after every client according to each individual’s needs. If you would like further guidance, Kirker is a member of ABTAAITO and we also have an ATOL licence – please do look at their websites for supplementary information. Many thanks for your patience and understanding – your help is much appreciated. Please do note that a number of clients have been very pleasantly surprised to find that their insurance policy has covered their cancellation costs where their decision not to travel has related to a medical reason rather than on account of FCO restrictions. Please be aware that we are currently experiencing significant refund delays from many airlines – a number of whom leave flights ‘live’ on their booking systems for longer than we would expect. This may mean that holidays will remain live on the Kirker booking system for longer than we originally anticipated, and could result on a knock-on delay in our own cancellation and refund process – please be patient, but don’t hesitate to let us know if you have a particular concern. 

Finally, if your call is about a Cultural Tour or Music Holiday please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or telephone 020 7593 2284. New tours, including Christmas 2020 and spring/summer 2021 departures are being added all the time, so please click here for details.

If you don’t have the relevant email address, please telephone one of the numbers below (office hours Mon-Fri 0900-1800):

General Enquiries: 020 7593 2288
Cultural Tours: 020 7593 2284
Operations: 020 7593 2280
Finance: 020 7593 2285

 

Ted Wake & Andrew Layard
Joint Managing Directors

To make an enquiry please speak to one of our experts on 020 7593 1899, or enquire online

Our expert reservations team regularly travel to a wide range of destinations to explore new cities, visit hotels and to research museums, galleries and restaurants so that we can offer the most up-to-date advice and recommendations.

Praha