How long has Countryside been in adventure travel?
‘Countryside Outdoor Programmes Pvt. Ltd’ was started in 1993 by few outdoor enthusiasts for whom designing various outdoor programs was a natural extension to a passion for outdoors. Years of tramping in areas of wilderness, mountaineering expeditions, including one to the world's third highest mountain, and an experience in Outdoor Management Development Programs provided a sound base for setting up Countryside.
2) Why should I travel with Countryside?
Countryside offers tours that take you away from the normal tourist haunts, to remote, un-spoilt places. The tours are exclusive and carefully designed to accommodate people with various needs and aspirations. Our tours are a judicious mix of comfort and challenge. Our commitment is to give you a memorable experience that you will treasure for life.
3) What if I have no previous camping or trekking experience?
No Problem. Our trips are designed for all kinds of travelers who have little or no experience in the outdoors. However, there are a few trips, which are physically challenging and not recommended for the beginners.
4) If I have a substantial amount of outdoor experience, is there a Countryside tour that's right for me?
Definitely. We have various grades of treks to suit your requirements. Please refer to our brochure and the trip itinerary to choose an ideal trip. If you would like to get more information about any of our trips or you would like to speak to us, please feel free to call our office or write a mail to us.
5) How fit do I need to be?
Most of our tours are carefully designed and are fit to be undertaken by anyone with an average physical fitness. All the tours are rated with grades, from soft to strenuous allowing you to choose a suitable tour. Regular exercise before the tour for few days on recommendations with your physician & physical trainer will help you enjoy the physically challenging tours.
6) How big are the fixed departure groups?
The average group size for most of our fixed departure tours is 15-18 pax. In fact we prefer to travel in smaller group size to retain the personal touch. But on certain easy tours the group size can go up to 30 pax.
7) How safe are Countryside tours?
COUNTRYSIDE organizes regular ‘refresher’ courses for its guides / tour escorts wherein we review, upgrade and redesign existing safety systems in an effort to make all our programme safe; these are supplemented by annual first aid programme/course.
8) Can I organize my own group?
If the scheduled dates do not suit you or you would like to have a variation in the itinerary we would be pleased to customize a similar tour as per your requirements. However, the cost for such a customized tour will be reworked depending on your requirements.
9) Who will lead my tour?
Countryside team of escorts /leaders comprises of professionally trained and experienced mountaineers and outdoor enthusiasts, experienced in various aspects of the outdoors & travel. If you are a small group our local guides/ escorts / leaders / drivers accompany the tour they are efficient, knowledgeable & experienced.
10) What does the tour price include?
We try and incorporate most of the costs of transport, food and accommodation and avoid out of pocket expense while you are on the tour. However we would advise you to read the tour information thoroughly to know the exact inclusions and exclusions.
Countryside Backpacking Tours B are on Bed & breakfast basis in hotels & guesthouses.
11) Where do we stay?
In the cities the accommodation is in neat & clean good hotels. In remote places the accommodation will be in neat & clean guesthouses with basic facilities. We try and provide best possible camping arrangements on twin sharing basis…. in comfortable camping tents, dining tent, separate kitchen tent and dry toilet tents. All these facilities would vary depending on the nature of tour & they are specified in the tour details.
Countryside Backpacking tours B, include budget hotels & the facilities & amenities are basic.
12) What level of comfort can I expect while camping?
We try and make camping extremely comfortable by providing foam mattresses and pillows (unless specified). All personal luggage is carried by porters / mules (unless specified). Our camping & cooking staff set up the camp and prepare meals for the group. While on tour, our leaders try and meet your day-to-day needs even during your stay in hotels, guesthouses, etc.
Countryside Backpacking tour B are without any luxuries of pillows, foam mattresses & dinning tents. The participants are expected to enjoy the experience of roughing out!
13) What kind of food will be available?
Food during the stay at hotels / guesthouses is usually pre – decided & food during camps will be simple sumptuous vegetarian & non-vegetarian food. Most of the meals will be with a choice for continental, Chinese or Indian food.
14) What if I have dietary restrictions?
We will try and accommodate your special dietary requirements. We need to be notified about the special requirements well in advance.
15) Will we be able to shower and do laundry on our tour?
You will be able to shower and do laundry only during your stay in hotels / guesthouses. This will not be possible while camping.
16) Are there any hidden costs that are not included in the cost of your itineraries?
Our tour costs mainly exclude the airfares, airport taxes, insurance, evacuation charges, personal medical expenses; expenses of personal nature and Government service Tax wherever applicable. All costs inclusions / exclusions are specified in the detail itineraries.
17) How do I prepare for the tour?
In case of trekking tours, basic exercise like brisk walking or light jogging before the tour is recommended after proper consultation from physician.
18) What all things do I need to carry on the tour?
Upon registering for the tour you will receive a detailed tour itinerary along with a recommended comprehensive kit list for that particular tour.
19) Do I need travel insurance?
All travelers are recommended to buy insurance from their country of residence. For Indian nationals, there isn’t any travel insurance available for travel within India. We also advice you to take an insurance for evacuation & medical emergencies.
20) Will my friends and family be able to contact me during my tour? Alternatively will I be able to contact anybody while on the tour?
We try and forward the contact numbers of hotels, etc wherever possible for your family members to get in touch with you. Alternatively, they can be in touch with our Mumbai administrative office for any group information.
21) Can I book train / air tickets through you?
We can assist you with your train and air bookings by charging an additional nominal service fee. We do not have an in-house train and air-ticketing counter; we have a network of agents through whom we get these bookings done. Alternatively you may contact these agents directly.
22) How do I register for a tour?
You can register for a tour by sending us a completed booking request form* along with initial deposit of (non refundable) amount of 20% of tour cost, in addition to the charges such as air, rail fares, etc.
*Link for booking request form.
23) How and when do I make the payment for the tour?
The tour booking will be confirmed only upon receipt of:
24) Can I pay in cash, cheque, US dollars, and credit?
- Non-Refundable amount of 20% of tour cost, in addition to the charges such as air, rail fares, etc along with completed personal information form.
- 50% of the tour cost to be paid 45 days before date of departure &
- Balance 30% of the tour cost to be paid 15 days prior to the departure.
- The tour will be considered confirm only if there is no default in the above payment procedure
Payment can be made either in,
2. By cheque / Demand Draft in favour of "Countryside Outdoor Programmes Pvt. Ltd." payable in Mumbai and to be dispatched on the following address:
COUNTRYSIDE OUTDOOR PROGRAMMES PVT LTD
35 WAWDA BUILDING, 252 L.J.ROAD,
OPP: SENA BHAVAN, SHIVAJI PARK
DADAR, MUMBAI 400028.
3. Direct to our ICICI Bank A/c No. 032005001028
4. For international fund transfer,
ICICI BANK LTD.
Zehra Manzil, Ground Floor,
L.J. Road, Mahim (West)
Current A/C No: 032005001028
Swift Code: ICICINBB
STATE BANK OF INDIA
Mahim Branch Code 3837
Vijan Apartments, Opp: Paradise Cinema,
L.J. Road, Mahim (West)
Current A/C No: 10892939460
Swift Code: SBININBB522
25) Many activities are weather dependent, what happens if I’ve paid for an activity that has to be cancelled due to bad weather?
In case of activities, we try and refund the amount but in case of any third party involved it may depend as per their conditions. In case of any hotel / transport / air & rail reservation, we may or may not be able to refund or adjust the amount, since it would be considered as a no show / last minute cancellation.
26) What are the chances of the tour being cancelled?
The minimum number of people required to make a group feasible is usually small for most of our scheduled tours. Hence the chance of a tour getting cancelled is rear. However if we need to cancel the tour due to not having the requisite group size we would keep the members well informed (minimum 30 days in advance, unless specified).
27) What is the cancellation policy?
CANCELLATION BY YOU:
In the event of any cancellation by you, the initial deposit amount paid, shall stand forfeited and further cancellation shall be levied as per the following terms:
- 46 days before date of departure: 20% of tour cost + Air / Rail cancellation charges
- 45 to 31 days before date of departure: 50% of tour cost + Air / Rail cancellation charges
- 30 to 15 days before date of departure: 80% of tour cost + Air / Rail cancellation charges
- 15 to 0 days before date of departure: 100% of tour cost + Air / Rail cancellation charges (Will be considered as no show)
28. What happens if the tour is cancelled by Countryside?
CANCELLATION BY ‘COUNTRYSIDE’ & REFUNDS
- ‘Countryside’ reserves the right to cancel a tour if the minimum numbers of persons as specified, do not book on the tour.
- ‘Countryside’ reserves the right to refuse or cancel any booking if we consider it necessary. In such cases, we shall refund all the money that you have paid.
- If cancellation or alteration by COUNTRYSIDE OUTDOOR PROGRAMMES PVT. LTD. is caused by events including war or threat of war, strikes, civil strife, natural disaster, technical or political difficulties affecting air or ground transport, or events amounting to force majeure, this will naturally limit our liability. If such events occur before the departure date, we will do our best to make alternative arrangements.
We hope to have replied all relevant questions about your Travel. However, if you have any further queries, please forward the same to us and we will reply you at the earliest.
We look forward to serving you in the near future.