Rental contracts are made in the name and on behalf of the owner of the house or the person responsible for it, at the prices and under the conditions stated on the web site www.discover-sicily.com. 2. HOW AND WHERE TO BOOK
Clients may make reservations (and services related to them) only through the web site www.discover-sicily.com
. A completed reservation implies an understanding and acceptance without restriction of the terms and conditions included in this document.
3. PAYMENTS - RENTAL VOUCHER
After receiving an e-mail confirming availability of the property, the client is obliged to pay via bank transfer a deposit equal to a maximum of 30% of the total amount payable. Upon receipt of such payment the client will receive a booking confirmation via e-mail.
For villas and apartments, payment of the full rental amount must be received at least 60 days prior to commencement of the rental period. For hotel, B&B and farmhouse reservations payment of the balance will normally be made upon arrival. Some hotels, B&Bs and farmhouses, however, may require payment in advance or credit card details in order to guarantee the reservation.
Upon receipt of the remaining balance (or the deposit for hotels, B&Bs and farmhouses), the client will receive a voucher and travel documentation via e-mail. For reservations made less than 60 days prior to the beginning of the rental period, the entire rental amount must be paid immediately or the deposit in the case of reservations for hotels, B&B and farmhouses. Only if reservations are made less than 72 hours prior to arrival is it possible to pay the entire amount upon arrival and only then with prior confirmation from discover-sicily.
4. RENTAL FORMALITIES - PRICES
The minimum rental period for villas is generally one week, from Saturday to Saturday (if not otherwise mentioned in the description of the property). For other properties it is generally a minimum of 3 nights but this may vary from property to property. Discover-sicily reserves the right to accept reservations for shorter periods under particular circumstances and at its own discretion. Prices indicated on the web site are determined with reference to the general market and are agreed between discover-sicily and the owner or person responsible for the property. The published rental prices are per day or per week according to the type of property, as clearly indicated in the table of prices. All prices are inclusive of the services specifically described on the web site as being included in the rental price and are linked to the season.
Any other extra services not included in the published price but which are obligatory, must be paid for in advance if requested or, in some cases, directly to the owner or person in charge of the keys in cash (Euros) upon arrival.
Discover-sicily reserves the right to vary the prices of the houses at their discretion and at any time.
No additional sum will be charged to a client who has already paid the fee for a property whose rental rates have subsequently increased. 5. CHECK-IN AND CHECK-OUT
For weekly rentals the date of arrival and departure is Saturday.
must be completed between the hours of 3 pm and 8 pm.
The exact arrival time MUST be communicated to discover-sicily at time of reservation on the information form the client will receive via e-mail so that the owner, or his representative, can make necessary arrangements for the guests’ arrival. Failure by the client to stipulate an arrival time may result in difficulties or problems (such as non-availability of the keys to the property) for which discover-sicily, the owner or person responsible for the property are in no way responsible. If the client arrives after 8 p.m. having not previously informed the owner or his representative, they may have difficulty taking possession of the property.
In certain cases, as indicated on the web site, an additional charge is payable for arrival outside the stipulated time. Payment of this additional charge must be made directly to the owner or person in charge of the property in cash (Euros) upon arrival. Check-out
for villas and apartments must be completed before 9.00 a.m. on the agreed departure date. Clients must, without fail, leave the property within this time unless specifically agreed otherwise on site with the owner or person in charge of the keys. The non-observance of the departure time causes substantial problems for incoming clients. For this reason, clients who leave the property after the specified time will be subjected to a penalty of up to Euros 200 for inconvenience caused to the incoming clients. For properties where a security deposit has been taken, this amount will be deducted from the security deposit.
for hotels, farmhouses and B&Bs must be completed within 10 a.m., unless specified otherwise by individual establishments.
6. CANCELLATION POLICY
After making a reservation, any change of arrival date must be communicated to discover-sicily and approved at least 7 days in advance. For villas and apartments where payment is required in advance, no refund will be given for any reduction in the rental period.
In case of unforeseen delay on the day of arrival, the client must send an e-mail or call the owner or his representative to inform him about the delay and make a new appointment.
If the owner or his representative have not been informed in advance and cannot be contacted to inform them of a different day of arrival, or if the owner or their representative is unable to accept this change, the client is responsible for any expenses related to spending the night in alternative accommodation.
The cancellation of a reservation for a villa or apartment by the client, even if replaced by a new one, requires payment of the following penalties: if cancellation occurs more than 70 days prior to the commencement of the rental period, the total amount of the advanced deposit will be forfeited; if cancellation occurs 70 prior to the commencement of the rental period or less, the total rental amount will be forfeited.
For hotels, farmhouses and B&B reservations, in accordance with our general cancellation policy, if cancellation is confirmed more than 30 days before the beginning of the stay the remaining balance need not be paid, however, the initial deposit will not be refunded. If cancellation is made from between 30 and 15 days prior to arrival, 50% of the total price is payable. If cancellation is made 14 days prior to arrival or less, 100% of the total price is payable.
In the case of no-show, clients must pay the total price required.
In the case of early departure which has not been communicated at least 7 days in advance, clients must pay for the total amount of the stay.
In certain cases individual properties have their own specific cancellation rules which are published on the web site. In such cases, the specific rules relating to the individual property take precedence over the general policy indicated above. 7. ARRIVAL FORMALITIES
Upon arrival at the property the client must give the voucher to the owner or representative, even if not specifically requested to do so.
Failure to present the voucher may result in poor service for which the owner or his representative will not be held responsible. 8. SECURITY DEPOSIT
If specified in the details of the property and indicated on the voucher, the client has to pay a security deposit, in cash, in Euros, to the owner or his representative. Such sum will be returned upon departure. From it will be deducted the cost of repairs to or the replacement of any articles that have been damaged by the client. In cases where the damage is not immediately quantifiable or both parties are unable to reach agreement, the owner/person in charge of the keys will keep the entire amount of the security deposit and will then send to the client a detailed list of the eventual cost of repairs to or replacement of the damaged article requesting of the client, if necessary, additional money to cover the expenses or returning to the client the remainder of the security deposit after deduction of the aforementioned expenses. A security deposit is required only if expressly stipulated in the particulars of the property published on the website and on the voucher. However, the client is nevertheless always responsible for any kind of damage caused to the property or to its contents during their stay. In case of damage, discover-sicily reserves the right to charge the client for the relative sum. If a client leaves earlier than the agreed date or in the case of a disagreement between the parties, the owner or his representative is authorised to return the security deposit by mail or by bank transfer (after deducting expenses for any kind of damage that may have been caused in the property or other extra expenses), only after having checked the property and its contents. The sum will be returned to the client within 60 days from departure. In cases where return of the deposit after departure is necessary through fault of the client, any costs associated with return of the deposit will be deducted from the amount to be returned.
Some properties are covered by insurance which covers accidental damage caused to persons or items inside the house; it’s the client’s responsibility to ask the owner for a copy of the insurance and to check its terms and conditions; if the house is not covered by an insurance policy the owner will not be responsible for any damage to persons or items during the client's stay. Children’s care and safety is the express and exclusive responsibility of the parents/guardian. Under no circumstances can the owner or the person in charge of the property be considered responsible or liable.
Discover-sicily declines all responsibility in the case of disputes arising between the client and the owner relating to the security deposit. Eventual quantification of damage and subsequent agreement must be made between the client and the owner or person in charge of the house. 9. NUMBER OF PERSONS – SUBSTITUTION OF PERSONS – DOMESTIC PETS
Only the number of persons written on the voucher is permitted to stay in the property. No more persons (adults or children) than the number of beds indicated in the description of the property are permitted to stay in the house, except for children up to 2 years old, unless previously arranged with discover-sicily, who will ask permission of the house owner and then confirm it to the client. Any substitution or addition during the rental period of persons not declared at the time of reservation is strictly forbidden unless previously arranged with discover-sicily. In this case the owner or person responsible for the property reserves the right to refuse entry to persons not previously declared and under such circumstances the client has no right to claim from discover-sicily or from the owner of the property or their representative the restitution, in part or in full, of the rental amount already paid.
The person making the reservation is considered for all intents and purposes the leader of the group, will act as representative of the persons that will stay with him/her in the house and is responsible for the whole group. In certain cases the owner of the property or person responsible for the keys may, at their discretion, request proof of identity of one or more persons in the group upon arrival. In properties where domestic pets are allowed clients must communicate on the information form how many and what size they are. The client is responsible for the behaviour and cleanliness of the animal. If the pet should cause any damage whatsoever to the property or cause sanitary problems to subsequent guests, the owner of the pet will be fully responsible and will be asked to pay the cost of any damage caused to persons or property. In certain cases domestic pets are allowed on condition that they remain outside the property in a specific area (garden, cellar, etc.) and in such cases entry of the pet to the inside of the property, for whatever reason, is strictly forbidden.
10. CLEANING and ELECTRICITY
Houses are generally handed over to clients in clean and working order. Usually the rental prices include a cleaning service at the beginning and at the end of the stay. If the service is not included then the client has to pay to the owner or his representative the required sum, in Euros in cash as indicated on the website, to clean the house. Such sum does not include, in any case, garbage disposal and/or removal of bulky objects (plastic sacks, plastic pools, toys, inflatable objects, boxes, bottles, etc…), which is the exclusive responsibility of the client. Failure to ensure complete disposal of garbage may result in the owner or his representative charging at his discretion an extra sum of up to €100 to cover additional expenses which will be withheld from the security deposit (for properties where a security deposit is required) or, alternatively, requested directly from the client.
Sometimes electricity consumption is not included in the rental price (if mentioned in the description of the property) or a maximum amount of consumption per day or per week is stipulated as being included in the rental price. In such cases it is necessary for the client to pay directly to the owner or his representative and amount which corresponds to the client's consumption during the rental period which will be charged at the rate stipulated by the Italian power company ENEL (generally Euros 0.20 kw/hour) or at the rate stipulated on the website under the list of extras applicable to the particular property.
Due to the regulations covering energy supply and laws currently in force, the use of heating (period for turning on or off, temperature) is ruled by provisions which vary from one town to another. Generally heating systems may operate from November to April. Consequently, even when heating is included in the rental price, it is intended to be used during that period. If heating is charged according to consumption or as an extra and has not been paid for in advance, the client will pay directly to the owner or his representative in Euros in cash upon arrival.
12. INDOOR AND OUTDOOR MAINTENANCE
The owner or the owner's representative reserves the right to allow personnel to enter the property to carry out necessary maintenance work and/or cleaning at times of their choice or, wherever possible, at times agreed with the client if specifically requested by them in advance. At certain properties, where indicated on the web site, personnel responsible for cleaning or maintenance of the property live on the premises.
Each property has been visited and inspected by discover-sicily. Descriptions shown on the web site are correct and drawn up in good faith; discover-sicily therefore declines all responsibility for any eventual changes made without prior notice by the owners, unless the problem/s is/are of such a serious nature as to make it impossible to take possession of the property. In case problems arise, the client is obliged to do his best to resolve and/or minimize them himself, in order to avoid prejudices which could arise subsequently. In the event that the client is unable to take possession of the property for serious reasons of unfitness for use, the client must immediately call discover-sicily to inform us of the reasons why the property is unfit for use. Moreover, the client will allow discover-sicily the necessary time to try to solve the problem and, if necessary, find alternative accommodation. In case clients don’t give notice to discover–sicily of the situation as required above or for reasons other than unfitness for use, clients who leave their accommodation before the expected date will forfeit any right to obtain an eventual refund of the rental amount paid. For any complaint made after the end of their stay, the client is not entitled for any reason whatsoever to compensation of any kind. No refund or change of property is permitted for reasons other than serious reasons of unfitness of use of the property. If discover-sicily should be forced, due to force majeure or for any other reason beyond its control, to cancel a reservation for a particular property, then, in agreement with the client, alternative accommodation of the same class or better will be offered, on condition that discover-sicily is able to offer such a solution. If the price of substitute lodging should be lower, discover-sicily will refund the difference to the client. In cases where it is not possible to find an alternative property, Discover-sicily will refund to the client only the price paid for the rental, excluding all other expenses. Such refund will be made within 60 days from the date of stay.
Important notice for clients:
The categories (stars) of the properties are not always and only linked to the rental price of the property -evaluation has been made with reference to the qualities of the property itself and also to the context in which it is located. Proximity to the sea, tranquillity, the surrounding landscape, proximity to cultural sites, tourist attractions and services are the most important features in allocating a category. Some of the properties proposed by discover-sicily are private houses. They have no standards or internationally-recognized categories applied to them, but rather reflect in their architecture and furnishings local traditions and their owners’ own personal tastes. Choosing one of these properties provides clients with an opportunity to experience local culture at first hand by living for a few weeks in the same environment as the locals. To really enjoy such an experience in the proper way clients need not only accept but also appreciate possible differences that the lodgings may present in comparison with the ones where they normally live. For its part discover-sicily takes a great deal of care selecting a range of properties with different qualities which can provide a considerable amount of satisfaction to citizens from all around the world. However discover-sicily doesn’t exclude that possible differences may sometimes cause minor discomforts which – being related to the features of the property itself – will not be accepted as complaints.
14. CONTRACT CLAUSES
Compilation and transmission of an information form and reservation and payment of the sum requested for the property implies knowledge of discover-sicily’s General Conditions and their unconditional acceptance. If some conditions of this contract were or should turn out to be not valid or in cases of an omission, the validity of the remaining conditions may not be called into question. 15. PROTECTION OF PERSONAL DATA
In conformity with the law 675/96 concerning the protection of personal privacy and handling of personal data, Discover-sicily confirms that the personal data of clients will be used for the purposes connected to the company's business, that is:
(a.1) drawing up of rental contracts through the reservation procedure; fulfilment and proper execution of relevant contractual obligations; management and resolution of judicial and /or jurisdictional disputes;
(a.2) information about the promotion of our holiday programs; mailing of catalogues; survey on the satisfaction of discover-sicily clients
the ordinance of personal data is necessary to fulfil the contractual, administrative and fiscal obligations provided for by law.
Non-consent to the handling of data in reference to the above mentioned point a.1) will result in discover-sicily being unable to fulfil its contractual obligations.
As for the above mentioned point a.2), denial to the handling of personal data will have no consequences.
The handling of data will be carried out with modern computer systems by personnel in charge for this purpose.
The data will not be communicated and/or publicized to anybody else if not in conformity with the Law and/or with contractual obligations.