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Independent Journeys

First Class Independent Travel

Let BattenKill Canoe Design a Private Trip for You.

Independent Journeys with BattenKill are based on our experience and existing itineraries are modified for people who like to travel on their own, but who still want to experience the superb itinerary design, great accommodations, unique experiences that are the signature of traveling with BattenKill. We have been creating unique small group adventures since 1983. They are perfect for honeymoons, birthday and anniversary celebrations, or reunions of family and friends. We can adjust departure dates and walking distances and add special, unforgettable activities. Nothing compares to an adventure vacation - arranged solely to enrich your occasion. The beauty of a Custom Tour is that you are free to immerse yourself in the activity without the hassle of transportation, lodging, equipment, guides, and logistics.
For most of our destinations we can custom design an itinerary that offers the same high standard of operation and leadership we use on our regular trips. You choose your preferred standard of accommodations, travel dates and the amount of time to spend at the various sites along the way. With advance planning we can match a specific guide to your group's interests.

Planning this type of trip for a few people is usually 20-50% more expensive than a group departure for 8-12 people. Our custom private arrangements are often less expensive than other companies' large group departures. You will find incomparable value in the personal service we provide, the knowledgeable experience we apply to designing your trip and in the flexibility you will enjoy in the final itinerary carefully tailored to your own interests.
To help us assist you in planning your trip we have developed a set of FIT Custom Trip Planning Guidelines. We like to establish a sequence of planning for private departures that efficiently uses your time and resources. These procedures are rooted in our commitment to provide the best service and value possible. As you describe your dream, we'll begin to design your adventure.

  1. General Feasibility and Estimated Costs.
    We will attempt to identify the feasibility and approximate cost of the itinerary in which you are interested in our first consultations. We share, free of charge or obligation, information about specific components such as airfares and schedules, visa or immigration formalities, seasonality, festivals or other specific knowledge we have readily available in our office. We will send you background material so that we can discuss more clearly your options
  2. Just What Would You Like to Do?
    Tell us as accurately and completely as you can about your interests and preferences. If you know in advance, inform us of specific sites you want to visit, the level of activity you prefer (ie whitewater, flatwater, trekking or easy day hikes), dates and number of travel days, type of accommodations and any other details. Give us an idea for the kind of experience you want and if you have any special interests we can plan into your trip. You may prefer a different balance of paddling and non-paddling activities than our regular departures. Or, you may be coming with a friend or spouse with different interests and you may need to add an additional guide to support parallel activities. If some are not paddlers or hikers, we can visit with you to determine which of area's attractions they wish to visit, and activities they may wish to enjoy. First review our regular itineraries to get an idea to see some of the choices that are available. Then fill out our preliminary FIT WorkSheet, and give us an idea of what is most important to you, and what you'd like to try. The next step is usually spending some time on the phone to fill us in on some of the details. As you describe your dream, we'll begin to design your adventure. We'll suggest hotels, forests, beaches or volcanoes, based on your priorities. We need your guidance to determine the lodging you would prefer. Generally we start with our FIT Worksheet so that you can give us an idea of what you are thinking. It is always better if one person acts as the spokesperson to make itinerary decisions on behalf of the group and with whom we can expect to communicate. We will then outline a rough itinerary and estimated trip cost.
  3. Develop the Itinerary
    If you decide to have us go ahead and plan a private trip, you will authorize us to begin by sending a $500.00 non-refundable custom trip planning deposit by check or credit card charge. This charge is applicable as credit to your final trip cost. At this stage we need your firm dates, preferred itinerary, and accommodations. This can be done by phone although it is preferable to send it in writing by email or fax. We will then finalize a day-by-day itinerary, probable lodging along with a price quote for land and air arrangements, with a statement of what is and what is not included in the trip. If you decide that the prospective trip itinerary you receive requires modification we will revise the itinerary and cost and return it to you for final approval. If for any reason the trip is not suitable, while the deposit is not refundable, it can be applied to other services of BattenKill Canoe Ltd.
  4. Finalize the trip with your deposits
    Once we capture the details of your proposed trip and you accept the itinerary and ask us to confirm the reservations, you need to submit a deposit of $500 per person. This, plus your $500 custom trip planning fee, will be credited toward your total trip costs.
    If after receiving the first itinerary you do not wish to pursue the trip, or wish to postpone further consideration, you and Battenkill Canoe will have no further obligation. If we do not hear from you within 15 days of sending the initial prospective itinerary, we will cancel any tentative arrangements or scheduling that we may have made. We will re-quote the same itinerary for you at any time in the future at no additional charge, though we cannot guarantee cost estimates or space availability.
  5. Confirm Reservations:
    After we have received your $500 per person deposits, we will act immediately to secure land and air arrangements for your trip. Acceptance of a deposit is not a guarantee that we can confirm all reservations, though usually we are able to do so. Please be aware that unless you send your per person deposits immediately after approving your itinerary, space may become unavailable between the time we initially formulate an itinerary and when we receive your deposit to confirm reservations. In the event we are unable to confirm land and air reservations according to the proposed itinerary, or otherwise to your satisfaction, we will either revise the itinerary and trip price, or cancel the trip retaining only a $100 planning fee, and refund all other moneys previously advanced. Should you choose to cancel your trip for any reason, cancellation fees apply as outlined in our Terms and Conditions. We offer cancellation insurance that covers various contingencies.
    After we receive your per person deposits we will prepare a pre-departure packet for you. This will include the following items which pertain to your trip:
    o Custom itinerary
    o Trip insurance application
    o Balance due invoice
    o Flight schedule/fares
    o Destination background
    o Equipment or packing checklist
    o Health and immunization information
    o Any required visa forms
    o Other materials to help you prepare for your trip
  6. Pre Departure Consultations
    Call us toll-free any time regarding your trip and preparation for departure. We can help you recruit friends to join you, offer advice on additional extensions and help you complete any forms needed. Of course, we make any ongoing changes in your itinerary as may be necessitated by changes in airline schedules, confirmation of primary reservations that might have been waitlisted, or for the addition of more individuals to the itinerary.
  7. Itinerary Revisions
    Should you or a member of your party wish to revise any aspect of the itinerary that has been confirmed, it may be possible to do so. Itinerary revisions after an itinerary has already been confirmed by a $300 deposit and signed Reservation Form are subject to a $25.00 revision fee along with other costs associated with the proposed change. It may not be possible to confirm all requested revisions.
  8. Let's Go
    It is actually very easy working with us to design your custom trip. It takes effort, creativity and persistence to make reliable individual arrangements. But if you give us enough lead time, and a clear sense of your travel goals, we can make your travel dreams a reality. The fun part is dreaming the impossible to make it your reality.

Contact Us
BattenKill Canoe, Ltd.
800.421.5268 or 802.362.2800 fax--802.362.0159

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