We understand this is a difficult time for everyone and want you to know we will support our customers as best we can.
Published: 12th March 2020:
We have contacted our customers who have bookings in April and May 2020 and told them that we are prepared to offer no quibble refunds to all of those that have booked with us prior to the WHO pandemic announcement of 11th March 2020.
If you booked directly with us after that date, use this contact form or email us, quote your booking details and we will cancel for you, ensuring a full refund. This must happen at least two weeks before the check-in date or the selected terms will apply.
If you booked with an OTA, please contact the relevant Online Travel Agency you used as they control their own refund and cancellation policies, many of which have policies in place to support refunds due to the proximity of bookings to current dates. (OTA’s, such as Booking.com, Airbnb, Trip Advisor and Expedia)
All bookings are subject to ongoing review and may be cancelled depending on government directives, by which time we’d expect all OTA’s to have supportive policies in place and the Government to have proper legislation.
Many have already cancelled and have been refunded. We’ve also offered our customers great incentives to book again! We hope to welcome all of our customers back once the emergency is over.
Update: 21st March 2020
Kintyre is a small community with limited resources. To reduce the risk of burdening the local health and food supply services, we are closing our availability as follows:
Gowanlea B&B – closed to bookings until
1st June 1st August 2020
Cuilidh self-catering – closed to bookings until 1st August 2020
Without any official guidance, we have chosen these dates as they seem to make sense with regard to current circumstances. This is in line with the recent comments of the Scottish Tourism Minister and both UK and Scottish government guidelines advising essential travel only.
This arrangement is subject to extension or change according to legislation and government directives.
Again, there is no supporting legislation as yet which makes things difficult for everyone. Without legislation, accommodation providers and customers alike are currently being penalised for cancelling advance bookings made months ago through OTA’s. Not just through loss of income or inconvenience, but actual penalty charges levied by the OTA’s! What is needed is specific Corona Virus government policy regarding accommodation providers similar to “close down the pubs”.
In the good news bracket, we hope this will be corrected then customers and accommodation providers will be able to cancel using OTA’s without penalty. In preparation, we have written to all customers with bookings up to August advising them of this, urging they contact their booking agencies for support.
It is also likely accommodation providers will be legislated to close to all but essential travelers only.
We have created a telephone and email booking process specifically for essential workers only. Call us on 01586 643404.
Update: 22nd March 2020
Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, gave this speech. The salient advisory points being:
- From now on ferries will be for those who live on our islands, who have an essential need to travel to or from the mainland and for essential supplies or business. Nothing else.
- To our hotels, B&Bs and self-catering accommodation – you should not be accepting visitors. Provide accommodation for your staff and make yourselves available to help essential workers and support essential services – that is all.
Update: 23rd March 2020
- PM Boris Johnson has announced a lock-down of the UK for the next three weeks which will be reviewed on or around 13th April.
- This is the full guidance on what can and can’t stay open: Government Guidance
Last week, the Government had ordered certain businesses – including pubs, cinemas and theatres – to close. The Government is now extending this requirement to a further set of businesses and other venues, including:
Hotels, hostels, bed and breakfasts, campsites, caravan parks, and boarding houses for commercial/leisure use (excluding permanent residents and key workers).
We will continue to cancel bookings as the check-in dates approach and we remain closed to all except essential/key workers due to the pandemic.
The absolute priority we have is for everyone’s health and well-being and we remain totally committed to that. We’re proud to have been one of the first accommodation providers in the area to respond to the crisis way back at the 12th of March.