Milford Sound

The Fine Print

We like to be very open and transparent about what to expect when you book with us. But if you’re the kind of person that likes to dig deep into the details, you’ll find that here. And if you still cant find what you’re looking for, give us a call. We love to chat!

Booking Agreement Terms and Conditions


  1. The Real New Zealand Limited, trading as New Zealand Trails (“the company”)
  2. You (“the client”)


  1. Agreement for Operation of Tour
    1. The company agrees to operate the tour or tours booked by the client.
  2. Payment
    1. The client agrees to pay the company a deposit of 15% of the tour fare
    2. The deposit shall include New Zealand Goods and Services Tax of 15%
    3. If the client has not already paid the balance due, this payment will fall due 60 days prior to the tour (“the deadline”).
      1. The company will remind the client of the need to pay the balance in full at least 14 days prior to the deadline, and provide various options to pay (noting that credit card payments attract a 2.5% surcharge).
      2. Should the client fail to pay by the deadline, the company may elect to treat the booking as cancelled by the client, with the implications below.
  3. Cancellation by the client
    1. The client may cancel the agreement with the company in writing at any time.
    2. The costs of cancellation will be as follow:
      1. 60+ days from the scheduled date of departure: loss of deposit or transfer to a future departure date should the client elect deferral in place of cancellation.
      2. 30 – 59 days from the scheduled date of departure: half of all monies paid by the client to the company, or loss of deposit (whichever is greater).
      3. 29 days or less from the scheduled date of departure: loss of full balance paid by the client to the company.
      4. Covid-19 deferral: Inside 60 days before trip departure, in the event that the New Zealand Government, or the Government of the client’s primary place of residence, announces changes to compulsory travel restrictions the result of which prevent the client’s attendance on a scheduled tour, the client will be entitled to defer their tour to a later date without penalty provided that the deferral is outside of the client's control.
  4. Cancellation by the company
    1. In the rarest of circumstances, the company may be forced to cancel a scheduled tour. Unless there is a “Force Majeure” (which is also called an “act of God”) the company will always give the client more than 30 days notice of cancellation.
    2. If there is a Force Majeure which prevents the company from providing a scheduled tour, the client will be entitled to transfer their booking to a future tour, or another tour being held at a similar time if this is an option.
    3. In the extremely unlikely event the company cancels a tour for reasons other than a Force Majeure, the client will be entitled to a full refund.
    4. In any event, the company will not be held liable for any “consequential loss” that occurs as a result of a cancellation by the company. This means that if the company cancels a tour, the associated travel costs and any other expenses incurred to attend the tour will be borne by the client.
    5. In the unlikely event that the company becomes unable to provide a significant proportion of the services the client has booked after the tour departs, the company will make alternative arrangements for the client at no extra charge, or, if this is impossible, the company will provide the client with transport back to the point of departure and a pro rata refund for the cost of the remainder of the tour less any unrecoverable expenses the company has incurred. “Unrecoverable expenses” shall be calculated by the company at its sole discretion.
    6. The company will operate all trips that are not cancelled, and if the client is unable to join their trip for any reason at all, the trip shall be considered to be “cancelled by the client”.
  5. General Terms of New Zealand Trails Tours
    1. While NZ Trails considers the safety of guests as paramount, as this activity is in the outdoors, it includes an element of risk. The client waives any claim against the company, to the fullest extent permissible by law, arising out of personal injury, harm, or any loss whatsoever during a tour. The client binds their successors and representatives by this waiver. Considering this:
      1. The client is responsible for their own insurance, and warrants that they have valid and comprehensive travel insurance that includes health care and specifically covers this sort of activity.
      2. While New Zealand Trails guides are all thoroughly trained and subject to audited safety procedures, ultimately, the client is responsible for their own health and safety, and warrants that they are in good health, with a suitable level of fitness to experience the tour they are scheduled to participate in. Any medical conditions that may impact the safety of the client during the tour must be disclosed in advance.
      3. The guide responsible for the tour may give instructions from time to time. These are required (for example) to ensure the safety of all participants, preservation of the environment, and enjoyment of the experience by all. The client agrees to abide by guide’s instructions, and accepts that a failure to do so may result in termination of services with no refund due.
      4. The company may terminate the client’s participation in a tour where there are reasonable grounds to believe that a failure to exclude the particular client from the balance of the tour will:
        1. present a risk to the safety of any person;
        2. cause harm to the environment, or
        3. negatively impact the enjoyment of other tour participants.
        Where such termination occurs, the client will not be entitled to any refund, and will be responsible for their own travel from the point of termination.
      5. The safety of our guests and team is our ultimate priority. Accordingly, while the current COVID-19 pandemic continues, all our team and all our guests will be required to be have a current vaccination for COVID-19, unless you have a medical exception. You may be asked to provide evidence of your COVID-19 vaccination status or medical exemption in order to participate in the tour and/or activities operated by others that are part of your tour, so you should carry official evidence of your vaccination status with you at all times. If you can not or are unwilling to provide evidence of your vaccination status, your participation in the tour or those activities may be refused, and you will not be entitled to a refund in such cases.
    2. Special requests (such as dietary needs) must be made no less than 14 days prior to departure. The company cannot guarantee special requests, but we will try our best to meet them. The company prides itself on its level of service, and a failure to satisfy a special request will not be a breach of contract.
    3. Itineraries are to be treated as indicative only. The company reserves the right to amend itineraries before or during any tour. This is sometimes necessary due to the unforeseen aspect of the New Zealand great outdoors, for example. The company is dependent on some external suppliers and the cancellation or substitution of any given activity does not give rise to a breach of contract.
    4. The client is wholly responsible for their own travel documents, including passports and visas.
    5. The client grants and the company reserves the irrevocable right to use any photographic or video images of clients or any written reviews for promotion purposes. This may include but is not limited to images used online, in printed material or events.
    6. Any complaints relating to the tour should be raised while on the tour.  We will try our best to resolve any issues and the sooner we know about any complaint the more easily a solution can be found. Failing that, they must be raised within  14 days of the incident, in order to trigger an investigation into the complaint in order for the company to remedy any issues. The company has a robust complaints procedure, and considers unwarranted public complaints where these procedures have not been utilised as defamatory. The client acknowledges that airing complaints in the public domain without utilising the complaints procedures first may attract legal action by the company.
  6. Whole Agreement
    1. This agreement is an entire agreement. It supersedes any previous agreements between the parties, whether made orally or in writing, and operates as a legally binding contract.
    2. If any provision of this contract is deemed to be invalid, that will not impact the validity of the balance of the terms, which must then be read without the offending clause.
  7. Choice of Law and Jurisdiction
    1. The parties agree that this contract, and any dispute relating to the company’s provision of services to the client, be it arising from an allegation based in the laws of tort or contract, is to be determined in accordance with New Zealand law in the exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of New Zealand.