|Frequently Asked Questions|
Nothing below replaces the legal content set out in the Booking Conditions printed on the back of the Booking Form. By signing the Booking Form you are stating that you have read the Booking Conditions and accepted them in full.
Bookings: Tenants book through Kingfisher Holidays but the actual Booking is made with the Owner of the chosen property.
Provisional Bookings: Kingfisher Holidays will hold a booking for up to 7 days until we receive your signed Booking Form and 25% Deposit. If there is any delay, you must contact us or we have to reserve the right to accept another booking and cancel yours.
Prices: are shown as per property per week, up to the maximum number of people allowed. Some properties offer reduce prices for smaller parties details of which are shown under a different reference number relevant to the number of tenants.
Specific requests : Please let us know in advance of your arrival if you have any specific requests or the Manager after arrival. We and the Manager will do everything we reasonably can to try to help.
Confirmed Bookings: Once we have received your signed and completed Booking Form and 25% Deposit, we will confirm your booking in writing. Thereafter you will be liable for the full amount of the rental and any money received will be lost if you do cancel subsequently.
Cancellations: No refund will be made in the event of a cancellation unless a replacement tenant can be found. If a refund can be made in such circumstances, the amount will reflect any discount given to a replacement tenant. Kingfisher Holidays also reserve the right to collect any unpaid rental payable.
Number of Guests staying at the property: The property details on our website show the maximum number of people who may stay in each property and this must not be exceeded. Unauthorised or undeclared guests may not stay in the property as this nullifies the insurance and overloads the facilities such as Septic Tanks etc. For the same reasons, camping or caravans etc are not permitted in any circumstances. Kingfisher Holidays reserve the right to cancel the remainder of your tenancy without compensation if the numbers staying exceeds the number on the Booking Form.
Payment: You will be invoiced 3 months before the start of your Booking. Payment in full must be received by us 2 months before your arrival at your chosen property. We accept cheques and bank transfers but not credit cards. Your final invoice will include an amount known as a Security Deposit.
Security Deposits: Under our agreement with the Owners, we have to ask all tenants to pay us a security deposit against any damage that your party might cause. We also have to bank this money. After your holiday the Manager will let us know, normally within a week of your departure, whether any deduction has to be made. We endeavour to return your security deposit or any balance to you within 2 weeks. Deductions are rare but we do ask you to let the house Manager or us know if you know that you have caused any damage.
Confirmation of Booking and Directions to the property: Once your payment has been received, we will send you details of how to find the property, where the key is hidden and details of how to contact, if required, the Manager of your property. Some properties are reached along rough or uneven roads or tracks which can also be steep. The directions should refer to this if relevant but if you are particularly concerned about driving on unmade roads, please check with us regarding suitability of access. Kingfisher Holidays cannot be responsible for an increase in traffic noise near a property.
Personal travel insurance is required and you must ensure that you and all members of your party are covered for cancellation, any accidental damage and personal liability during your holiday. Some Owners require proof of adequate insurance.
Local Information: You will find information in your property on arrival giving you details of medical contact, local events, restaurants and cafes and so on. Please also CLICK HERE for further information about the area and what's on etc.
Arrival 4pm : Unless agreed in advance you should not arrive before 4pm at your holiday property. Cleaners are very busy on Saturdays preparing your holiday home and if you arrive early you will delay them though you may be allowed to leave your luggage at the property. They often clean several houses on a changeover weekend and may not even have prepared your property. By previous arrangement some Managers will agree to tenants leaving cases at the property or, for example, using the pool area before 4pm but please don't delay the cleaner or Manager by asking questions or getting in their way. If you arrive at your property after 8pm, you may not be able to gain access until the following day or will have to make special arrangements. This does vary from property to property, so please check your key collection details.
Facilities in a property: Most facilities are explained on our website. Many properties offer ping pong and sometimes other games such as Boules and Badminton nets. Directions to nearby tennis courts will be in your property. Indoor games may be available. Video, music, DVD and Television are described on our website. Unless otherwise stated, Television will usually tuned (whether by aerial or Satellite) to local French channels only. Kitchen equipment will normally be described on our website. Most kitchens include a hob, an oven, a microwave, kettle, fridge, freezer, adequate cooking utensils, crockery, cutlery, glasses and basic household equipment adequate for your party size. Irons and ironing boards are usually provided. Washing Machines and Dishwashers are usually supplied (please see our website). It is the tenants responsibility to follow the instructions for the use of any equipment with normal and reasonable care taken. Please check with us if you wish to know more about a property in advance of your arrival.
Beds Cots Linen High Chairs: Unless specifically mentioned in the description of the property, beds are often French beds which means they are smaller and sadly sometimes less comfortable than many English beds (sometimes only 4 to 4feet 3 inches for a double). Bunk beds are mostly only suitable for children and teenagers. Where Cots or High Chairs are available (often at an extra charge of £10 per item), we cannot guarantee these will comply to UK Standards. The Owners will not be liable and we strongly recommend that you bring these with you. Cot linen is not available for hire or supplied because of the risks associated with cot deaths and these must be brought with you. Linen can normally be hired from the Owner but quality will inevitably vary. Linen includes Sheets, Duvet Covers (where available), Pillow Cases, Bath Towels, Bath Mats and Kitchen Towels but does not include Swimming Towels. Oblong English pillowcases do not always fit square French square pillows. When linen is supplied or hired, beds are normally made before your arrival.
Gas, Electricity and other services: Most Kitchen hobs use bottled gas. A spare gas bottle should be on site and Managers will assist if required. Hot water is normally heated by electricity and may take time to heat up after use. Electricity supplies are based on normal use per house and therefore if too many appliances are in use at the same time the cut off switch can be triggered. If this happens, you can switch it back on but please restrict the number of appliances in use. Details of the main switch (or disjuncteur) will be in each house. This switch can also switch off all the electricity to a property during an electric/thunder storm. This is a safety measure and, once the storm has passed, it can be switched on again. Remember you will be in rural France and services (water, telephone, electricity etc) can fail on rare occasions. Generally the suppliers will work fast to reinstate supplies. In very dry weather conditions (a very rare occurrence) water to the property could be rationed or cut off. The Owner cannot be held responsible in such circumstances even if the Swimming Pool water levels fall and/or the pool cleaning systems have to be switched off by the Manager. Lakes etc might in rare circumstances become dry. Heating (in the property or, if available, in the Pool) can, where available, be arranged in advance and at an additional cost.
Telephones: Most properties allow tenants the use of the fixed telephone on a restricted service, but see property details on our website re individual properties. Calls can be received from anywhere but can only be made to the local area – usually only to numbers stating with ‘05'. Some owners will lift this restriction by arrangement in advance subject to an increased Security Deposit. Mobile phones work at most properties and it is recommended that tenants bring these phones with them. Please ensure your service provider arranges for European use. E-mail access via an ‘05' number should work but otherwise prior agreement is necessary. Owners make no additional charge for local calls made except in exceptional circumstances.
Televisions, Video and DVD: Most properties offer televisions and some also offer Video and DVDs. Please check this on our website in the individual details of each property. Unless stated otherwise, televisions will only offer French Channels. Where Video or DVD is available, we recommend tenants bring tapes and DVDs with them.
Baby Sitting: Local babysitters may be available and tenants can make your own arrangements on site. Kingfisher Holidays can try to supply some names for you to contact and pay direct if available but cannot be responsible if no-one is available.
Swimming Pools: The approximate size of the pool will be shown on our website. Diving is not permitted and no claim for injury arising from diving or accidents in the pool can be accepted. Information about the pool and safety will be in your property on arrival. Please read this carefully and ensure that proper care is taken at all times. Pools are usually opened at the beginning of May until late September or October. It is sometimes possible for us to arrange for a pool to be available in low season though heating is not available unless specified at an additional charge. Chemicals in pools are carefully regulated, however in certain weather conditions (such as thunderstorms) the balance can be affected and pools may go green. Please contact the Manager immediately, if this occurs. The water can take 2 or 3 days to return to the correct balance. This is of course beyond the Owners' or our control. The Manager or Owner will do their utmost to ensure a speedy resolution, we and the Owners cannot be liable for compensation for adverse pool conditions. Pool liners can be damaged by hard or sharp objects or other abuse whether accidental or abuse. The cost of replacing a pool liner can be £3,000 or more and, subject to any relevant insurance, can become your liability if you can be shown to be responsible. France has legal regulations regarding swimming pool safety and security. Please be aware that although all properties will have an appropriate security system, the type currently indicated may change. Many French pools will not have depth markings and tenants should always check pool depths, especially where depth markings are missing or unclear. Diving is strictly forbidden as the pools are rarely deep enough. Kingfisher Holidays will seek to offer impartial mediation and assistance between tenants and the owner with whom the Booking Contract made.
Gardens: Due to weather conditions and the type of grass, the grass locally tends to be rougher than in the UK. A gardener may have to visit the property during your stay and your understanding will be appreciated. Most properties supply BBQs for use subject to the tenants responsibility. Outside furniture is normally provided as set out in the details of the property on our website. Garden table and chairs are normally provided in most properties though not necessarily loungers or cushions/mattresses. Please note the outside furniture may not be that shown in the photograph.
Pets: Some properties will accept pets if arranged in advance provided the tenant agrees to ensure that no sign of the pets (in the house, garden or property) have been at a property remains at the end of the holiday. You can find information in respect of travelling with pets on the Government's website at www.defra.gov.uk/animalh/quarantine/index/htm or on www.dogsaway.co.uk
WCs and septic tanks: Most properties are not connected to Main Drains and rely on Septic Tanks and chemicals that the Manager will organise between lettings. For this reason tenants must follow the rules shown in the property – and must not put anything such as nappies or other manufactured items down the WC. Please take this seriously. Blockages are inconvenient and expensive to clear and you may be charged if a specialist has to be called due to the abuse of the system.
Washing Machines, Dishwashers etc: Please follow the instructions for using these appliances where they are available. You will be liable if any damage caused by misuse of any such appliances. Clients are expected to provide appropriate detergents for use of these appliances during their stay.
Privacy: The Owners want you to have a peaceful uninterrupted holiday and will respect your privacy as far as is possible. Where an Owner lives on site the owner will not use the Swimming Pool or allow his/her presence to be felt when you are in the property (though they might take a quick dip hen they know you are out!). Owners, Managers (including gardeners and Pool men) do have to visit properties on rare occasions (and particularly after a storm) to ensure the property remains up to standard. They will try not to cause any interruption to your privacy where at all possible.
Hazards: Every effort is made to ensure that tenants are aware of any natural hazards (such as a steep drop in the land near the property, steep stairs, open sided mezzanine floors overlooking for example the sitting room, windows that allow children to climb out in a dangerous manner etc) that might affect your use of a property. Tenants must inspect their property on arrival and ensure that they identify any such hazards and ensure that all members of their party are aware of anything they consider a risk. It is the responsibility of the person signing the Booking Form to warn everyone in their party. Failure to do so may void your holiday insurance and the Owners insurance. It is also understood that obvious hazards such as a pool, open well, access to a road, etc. will incur the same responsibility on the tenants part, whether or not a warning is stated in the description.
Wildlife in or outside the property: Being in rural France you may find a wide variety of wildlife that might not be a normal experience at home. Owners cannot be responsible for such things as they can be commonplace in France and cannot be controlled. Spiders will create webs overnight. Ants are attracted by crumbs or food left lying around so it is in your own interests to keep your property as clean as possible. Small bushy tailed doormice (Loir) or the larger Foin may be heard or seen in the roof or beams and you are asked not to feed these (or leave food out to attract them!). They are rarely found actually in a house but in certain weather conditions this is possible. There is no treatment available other than poison but this cannot for legal reasons be administered during the holiday season as poison cannot be left where children might find it. The presence of wildlife in or around the property cannot be accepted as a valid complaint though every reasonable effort is made to minimise their presence where possible.
Decoration, furniture in your property: The properties we let through our agency are privately owned. Owners may be French or might create very different styles of décor or furnishing to those you are used to! We try to encourage Owners to cater for as many of the tenants' tastes and needs as we can but we do ask you to accept that you are borrowing an owner's home. Furniture and equipment may be more limited or basic than you might be wish. As someone who has probably visited France before, you will be aware that the French often close their shutters during the day to keep the heat out. They also like brown colours. We try to allow you to identify décor by including as many internal photographs as possible on our website. TVs, unless otherwise stated, may only receive local channels.
Rubbish and Cleaning: You are expected to leave the property is the same state that it was when you arrived. There will be details in your property of where to throw away any rubbish. By prior arrangement with the Manager, you can request additional or final cleaning. Payment should be made direct to the Manager. If you do not arrange such cleaning or leave the property in the same order as you found it, we reserve the right to deduct the additional cost from your security deposit. Details of rubbish collection points will be in each property.
Behaviour while at the property: Please remember that your holiday property is someone else's home and please look after it as you would your own home. We are bound under our agreement with the Owners to ask a tenant to vacate a property without notice or compensation if members of your party abuse the property. This includes having more people staying at the property or using tents or caravans etc. Responsibility: The person signing the Booking Form is responsible at all times for the behaviour of their party. This includes controlling children's behaviour in particular whilst using the Swimming Pool. Under French Law Owners now have to install an approval form of Pool security (alarm or fence or cover etc) but the Law states categorically that the prime responsibility for children's safety rests with the adults in your party. It is your responsibility if any safety system to be switched off of left open. You must arrange suitable and adequate insurance. Tenants, except in respect of pool safety, must not touch or adjust any of the Swimming Pool equipment of machinery. A pool man will normally visit the property during your stay in order to ensure everything is properly operational. Your co-operation will be appreciated.
Problems: In the event of any problems, please contact the house Manager (phone number supplied with directions to the property and in the house on arrival) immediately. If you are not satisfied please contact Kingfisher Holidays (05 53 40 7113) so that we can ensure things are dealt with urgently and avoid delays and potential claims for compensation. Failure to inform the Manager or us as soon as possible will negate any subsequent claim for compensation.
Disputes or Complaints: If any problem arises in connection with the actual booking arrangements, Kingfisher Holidays is responsible. However any Complaints in respect of the property itself, the pool, cleanliness and so on are the responsibility of the Owner or his appointed Manager. Complaints about the property must be raised immediately with the Manager so that he can correct anything that may have gone wrong. If the Manager cannot resolve the problem, please let Kingfisher Holidays know and we will try to act as an intermediary to resolve matters amicably.
Departure 10am: Unless agreed in advance with the Manager you must leave your property by 10am on the morning of your departure. Cleaners are very busy on Saturdays preparing the holiday home for the next tenant and if you leave late you will delay them. They often clean several houses on a changeover weekend. By previous arrangement some Managers will agree to tenants leaving cases at the property or, for example, using the pool area after 10am but please don't delay the cleaner or Manager by asking questions or getting in their way.
Help : If you encounter any problems with your holiday property, you should contact the Manager whose name and telephone number will be included with the directions to the property. Please remember that some of our properties have non-English speaking Managers. However Kingfisher Holiday will do everything possible available to help with communication if required.