Waiver: Acknowledgement of Risk, Waiver and Release
Outdoor adventure and travel companies all ask people to sign a waiver before participation, and we're no different. Acceptance of the terms and conditions contained within is necessary if you'd like to come on any hike or trip with us.
This is a long document, and the tone is serious and formal. Please know that our first priority must always be your safety and the safety of other participants. Our aim is for you to be totally happy in your experience with us, and, to be happy, you must first be safe.
We at Beijing Hikers run trips to the best of our abilities but without any liability, so we ask that you read this to gain an understanding of risks, our terms and conditions for participation, payment, and refunds, and your obligations as part of a group.
You'll sign a waiver before hiking with us. We'll pass it around on the bus, and you'll read it and sign your name. Acceptance of our waiver and terms and conditions is a condition of participation in our activities. By making a reservation for any of our activities, you agree to be bound by the waiver and terms and conditions below.
This is a legal document. Please read and understand this document before participating in any of our activities.
Document last updated: August 8, 2019 (wording changed to include those accepting the waiver and terms and conditions on behalf of their dependents)
Terms used in this document
We/Us/Beijing Hikers: Beijing Hikers (and associates, affiliates, present, former, and future partners and employees)
Participants/You/I: any person that participates in activities related to or organized by Beijing Hikers, including dependents of those accepting this waiver.
Activities: any activity organized by Beijing Hikers, from start to finish.
Understand that there are risks involved in participation
Beijing Hikers does everything possible within the budget of the trip to keep you safe. However, with hiking, trekking, adventure travel, and even transportation, there is always potential danger. The same things that make our activities interesting and enjoyable – for example, travel to remote areas, physical exertion, and adventure – can cause loss or damage to gear, injury, sickness, or death.
During the activities, you should have equipment and clothing appropriate to the conditions, you should carry enough water and food to last for the duration of the activity, and you should protect yourself from the sun or low temperatures. We will provide lists of recommended equipment and will answer any questions you have about this.
During the activities, you may cross difficult terrain: rough and exposed trails; occasional snow or ice; hill passes; brushy areas; trails where landslides or rock falls may be possible; river crossings by slippery rocks or makeshift bridges; steep stairs; exposure to heights. You risk slipping, falling, rock fall, landslides, and exposure.
Weather may bring other risks: hypothermia; heat stroke; hyperthermia; frostbite; strong winds; sandstorms.
You may encounter dangerous animals, dangerous plants, and dangerous insects. Any wild or domestic animal encountered is potentially dangerous, for example: snakes; dogs.
Access to hospitals and medical care may not be immediately available, especially in remote or rural areas. You may be several hours away from hospitals or medical facilities. Ambulance service or rescue helicopters are not typically available. Western-standard medical care is often not available outside of large cities.
For your own safety, you should not participate in the activities if you have any sort of medical condition that could require immediate treatment by medical professionals—for example, heart disease, allergies to bee stings.
Decisions made during the activities by us or other participants are based on a variety of factors and evaluations and may be erroneous due to the situation. During the activity participants are responsible for their own safety and must show consideration for the safety of other participants. We will travel as a group, cooperate as a team, and look after each other during the trip. The team leader has authority to make the final decision in any situation.
In remote or rural areas the roads can be rough or unfinished. Driving standards are a lot different—usually worse—than in western countries. Injury while using transport on the way to, from, or during the activities is rare but possible.
Your property may be damaged or lost. We will prioritise safety and minimisation of the effect on other participants over attempts to retrieve lost property during an activity.
We have listed examples of risks involved in participation. It is not possible to list all risks, injuries, or accidents that might happen while participating in an activity, or to predict what might go wrong or cause losses, damage or injury.
All participants choose to participate in Beijing Hikers’ activities at their own risk, and must be prepared to accept any and all risks associated with and potentially resulting from participation, whether it is foreseeable or not. Injuries during activities are extremely rare and you are not likely to encounter them, but you must be aware that there are risks involved in participation.
Terms and conditions of participation
Participants must read and understand this document, acknowledge that there are risks involved, accept the terms and conditions of participation, and sign the waiver and release form before participating.
If you are making a reservation for an activity on behalf of others, it is your responsibility to inform others of risks involved and to pass on this document to them.
It is your responsibility to choose an activity that is suitable for your condition and level of fitness. You should not participate if you are not in good physical condition, or have any history of heart problems. We will answer any questions you have about suitability.
We reserve the right to refuse any person that we judge to be unprepared or unsuitable to participate.
You will be responsible for costs incurred that are not covered as part of the package, for example, extra meals, additional purchases, tickets, extra transport, hotel upgrades.
You are responsible for your own safety and must show consideration for the safety of other members of their group.
You must accept that the team leader has authority to make the final decision in any situation.
You must act in an appropriate manner, and respect local law and customs.
Safety is the first priority.
Payment, Cancellation, and Refunds
We reserve the right to cancel or alter any itinerary at any time if we judge it necessary or are forced to by circumstances beyond our control, for example but not limited to: unsafe or dangerous weather conditions; acts of government; force majeure. We also reserve the right to cancel or alter any itinerary at any time if we do not have enough participants to proceed with the activity. (That said, we seldom cancel any activities.)
Individual activities may have their own terms and conditions for payment, cancellation, and refunds, which will be made available to you.
Typically, if we cancel the activity before departure, you will receive a 100% refund. If we are forced to cancel an activity before it is completed, you may receive a partial refund, at our discretion. You are not entitled to any compensation beyond a refund.
We do not give refunds for unused portions of activities, for example, meals, ticket purchase, hotel rooms, sightseeing trips. The price quoted is for the package, and credits are not given for services not used.
If you cancel your participation, you may incur a cancellation fee. You may also be charged for any expenses already incurred by us on your behalf.
For some of the activities, we require advance payment or a deposit to confirm your reservation. For other activities, we collect payment in Chinese Yuan Renminbi on the day of the activity.
If you do not have insurance, we are required to purchase it for you. We will inform you if there are any extra costs to purchase insurance.
Waiver, indemnification, and release from liability
I understand that my participation in this trip is at my own risk and I hereby and agree to indemnify, hold harmless, and release Beijing Hikers (and associates, affiliates, present, former, and future partners and employees) from all actions, suits, claims and demands that I or my heirs, executors, agents, administrators or assigns have or may have, whether known or unknown, arising out of my participation in this trip. In the event that some manner is found in which to make a claim of any sort, I am not entitled to collect any money.
I understand that there are risks involved in my participation. I have read and agree to be bound by the stated terms and conditions, and assume full responsibility for myself for bodily injury, death and the loss of or damage done to personal property and any expenses incurred during the activity as a result of accident or of my negligence or the negligence of the organizers.
I agree that if the Beijing Hikers (and associates, affiliates, present, former, and future partners and employees) are forced to defend any action, lawsuit or litigation by myself, my executors, my heirs, or anyone acting on my behalf, my family's behalf, or on behalf of anyone else for any reason associated with my involvement with Beijing Hikers, that the party initiating the legal action agrees to pay the organizers all costs and legal fees if they successfully defend such action, lawsuit or litigation.
I declare that I am in good health and have good physical fitness, and I am free of any illnesses that inhibit my ability to travel or that may be triggered by participation in an activity, for example, but not limited to, heart conditions or allergies.
I authorize Beijing Hikers to transport me to any medical facility or hospital and I authorize any guide or medical personnel to render emergency medical care to me.
I agree that the site of any attempted claims and the law governing any such claims shall be that of the Peoples’ Republic of China. The terms of this agreement shall continue from the time this document is signed and will remain in effect indefinitely after the trip has ended.
I agree that the purpose of this agreement is that it shall be an enforceable release of liability and indemnity as broad and inclusive as permitted by law. I agree that if any portion or provision of this agreement is found to be invalid or unenforceable, then the remainder will continue in full force and effect. I also agree that any invalid provision will be modified or partially enforced to the maximum extent permitted by law to carry out the purpose of the agreement.
I have fully informed myself of the contents of this document before agreeing to be bound by it.
Thanks for reading all the way through, and sorry we've had to be so formal here. If anything you've just read is not clear, please get in contact with us.