Covid19 - Customers FAQs
Updated: 19 July 2021
If you are looking to book a holiday, and would like to know what might happen if it is impacted by Coronavirus restrictions, please visit our Book with Confidence page for details on how we’ll be ready to help you move or cancel your booking. You can also find out more about the steps we’re taking to ensure you can have a safe and enjoyable holiday on our Safety First page.
As a family-owned business, people are at the heart of everything we do, so your safety and health has been, and continues to be, our top priority. In order that we all do our bit to look after one another, we ask all of our guests to familiarise themselves with and adhere to the Government restrictions in place.
The Government rules in relation to Covid are constantly being updated and are therefore subject to change. We will continue to update this page with more information as and when we can, but in the meantime, we would like to thank each and every one of you for your understanding and support. You are the reason our teams come to work every day and love what they do - so we thank you for working with us to ensure we can continue to provide you with the best UK holidays again in the future.
There are now a number of different legislated restrictions in place in England, Wales and Scotland. Please rest assured that we will contact all guests affected by the different restrictions with instructions on what their options are and how to access these options.
If your booking is affected, you will be able to take action quickly and simply online (following the link sent to you in an email), and you are likely to find this the quickest way to change your booking.
There are currently no government restrictions in place in relation to holidays in self-catering properties in England.
Please rest assured that if it is impossible for you to take your booked holiday due to legal restrictions in place at the date for your booking, then the options set out below will be available to you. If there are no legal restrictions in place at the date your booking is due to start our normal terms and conditions will apply.
Holidays in self-catering properties are now able to go ahead for single and extended households and groups of up to 6 people (not including children under 11) from up to 6 households. An extended household is one that has formed a bubble with another household. Two households, plus a further household with a single adult or single carer, can holiday together as an extended household, provided that 10 days has elapsed since either of the households were part of a different extended household.
If your holiday is due to start after 7 August 2021, we politely request that you wait and see what the position is nearer the time. If there are further restrictions put in place, we will contact all affected guests as soon as possible and let you know what your options are.
Please rest assured that if it is impossible for you to take your booked holiday due to legal restrictions in place at the date of your booking, then the options set out below will be available to you. If there are no legal restrictions in place at the date your booking is due to start our normal terms and conditions will apply.
We will do our best to contact all guests we believe are affected by the legal restrictions, however, it remains the responsibility of guests to ensure they are complying with the law.
Any customers unable to take their booked holidays due to Covid-related legal restrictions have the following options:
- Transfer your holiday to new dates, free of charge.
- Get a credit voucher for the amount previously paid for your booking, to spend on any Original Cottages break, to take place before the end of 2022.
Further, to the above, you would also be entitled to cancel your booking and receive a refund of the amount already paid for the holiday.
If you are only able to take part of your holiday you would be entitled to a partial refund.
Due to the volume of bookings affected by the restrictions, in order to ensure we can look after all of our customer requests as best we can, our team will prioritise queries based on holiday start dates. However we are working through all queries as quickly as we can and therefore will come back to you on your request as soon as possible.
If you have not yet heard from us, please complete the contact us form to advise us which of the above options you wish to choose and we will get back to you as soon as we can.
We advise all our guests to keep up to date with the latest Government rules and guidance on travel (https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus and https://gov.wales/coronavirus) and take this and their own personal circumstances into account before booking and deciding whether to travel.
We have put measures in place to ensure you can have a safe and enjoyable holiday. To read more about this, visit our Safety First page. Furthermore, you can book without worrying about what may happen in the event of further restrictions. You can see the details on our Book with Confidence page.
- The Original Cottages Family
The property details pages on our website provide information about individual properties and you can find the answers to other Frequently Asked Questions below. We hope that this information is helpful. It includes the information our teams will be able to give you if you do contact us.
If there are legal restrictions in place preventing me from taking my holiday, what options do I have?
When you book with Suffolk Secrets, you can be assured that our team will be ready to move or cancel your booking if the need arises.
Booking with us gives you the reassurance that if you are unable to go on holiday because:
There are UK Government restrictions on travel due to the Coronavirus outbreak in place at the date your holiday was due to start which make going on your holiday impossible, and/or the property or location you have booked is legally closed to visitors due to the Coronavirus outbreak at the date your holiday was due to start, then you will be able to choose one of the following options:
- Transfer your holiday to new dates, free of charge. Alongside our property owners, we shall do everything we can to help you transfer your holiday to another date. If you decide to transfer your holiday to a different (non-equivalent) date, any difference in the price of your new dates will be applied or credited as appropriate at the time of transferring.
- If you are not in a position to decide on new holiday dates now you can choose to receive a Credit Voucher for the amount previously paid for your booking, to spend on any Original Cottages break, to take place before the end of 2022. Terms and conditions can be found here.
- We encourage all our customers to transfer your holiday to another date and alongside our property owners, we shall do everything we can to help you to do this. If you do not wish to do this, you will be entitled to cancel your booking and receive a refund of the amount already paid for the holiday. If you are only able to take part of your holiday you would be entitled to a partial refund.
All other booking terms and conditions remain unchanged.
How do I know what Tier of local Covid restrictions apply to me or the property I am due to go to?
What if the restrictions in the area in which my holiday property is located changes during my stay?
What is the position where the Government has issued guidance which means I may not wish to travel?
We appreciate that some guests may have bookings that are affected by Government guidance (as opposed to legal restrictions). Since this guidance is subject to regular review and updates, we recommend you wait until closer to the start of your holiday before deciding whether to change your arrangements.
However, if you would like to make a change to your holiday, because the property is legally available and because you are not legally restricted from travelling, then our normal terms and conditions apply. We are happy to approach the homeowner to try and find you a suitable alternative or a refund, however this remains at the discretion of the homeowner. To request a change to your booking outside of legal lockdown restrictions, please contact us on 0333 2020 899.Log-in to My Account
NHS QR codes
As part of the Government’s measures to mitigate the risk Covid-19, there is a requirement for certain businesses in England (including self-catering properties) to collect data from all customers over the age of 16 for NHS Test and Trace purposes. All guests over the age of 16 are legally required to provide the required information (which includes name, telephone number or email or postal address) at the start of their holiday. The easiest way of providing this information is by using the NHS COVID-19 app to scan the NHS QR poster displayed in your holiday property. In order to do this you will need to make sure all members of your party over the age of 16 have the NHS Covid-19 app downloaded on their phones, you can get help to do this here. This will ensure the property owner has the required information available to support NHS Test and Trace.
As the collection of this data is a legal requirement, failure of all guests over the age of 16 to provide the required information would mean the property owner has the legal right to refuse entry into the holiday property.
I’ve got an E-Voucher, how do I redeem it?
In order to redeem your e-voucher, please follow these steps:
- Log in to your customer account via the 'My Account' link at the top of this web page. If you have not yet registered an account please select 'Create an account' and follow the instructions.
- Select 'Vouchers' in the main menu. Voucher terms and conditions can be found here.
- You’ll then see a list of all your vouchers and can click on each one to see more details, including the holiday dates that the voucher is valid for.
- Select the voucher you want to use and click 'Use this voucher'.
- You’ll be taken to our website where you can select the property and dates you’d like, and make your booking.
- The voucher will be automatically applied to the booking and you’ll see it deducted from the total cost. If the value of the voucher is less than the cost of your new booking, you’ll need to pay the remaining amount. (Deposit payments are due immediately and balance payments are currently due 12 weeks before your holiday starts.)
- If the value of the voucher is more than the cost of your new booking, the balance will stay on the voucher and you can use it towards another holiday.
- If you have any issues, please contact us here.
What happens if I or one of my party feels unwell during my stay?
If you or a member of your party show symptoms that could be related to coronavirus you must follow the appropriate government advice. In addition, please contact us and we will be able to assist you. When contacting the NHS, please specifically state that you are staying in a holiday property. If you are advised by the NHS to remain at the property, we will work with the owner to facilitate this as best we can and you will be required to pay the amount due for an additional stay in addition to any related costs.