Hire boat firm slashes cancellation times


When being in the open air and away from other people and busy places takes on a new importance, it seems canal boats may be the answer to a safe holiday this year – or even somewhere fun to self-isolate?

But the nature of the current crisis means customers may need to make last minute changes to their plans and now Norbury Wharf has brought in a special, no-quibble policy so that customers can make those changes without worrying.

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The company runs a boat hire fleet based on the Shropshire Union Canal, and Director David Ray said: “Although boating holidays are now one of the best options this year, we know things are changing in ways none of us can predict.

“Our customers’ circumstances may change week to week and they may need to make last-minute alterations to their plans. So we have changed our cancellation policy so that we only need three days notice over the coming months.”

Norbury will allow anyone who books a holiday to start between now and June 16 to cancel with just 72 hours notice. Customers will either be able to change the date to another available date or receive a credit on any future holiday taken before the end of 2021.  They will look at later cut-off dates as the situation develops

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David Ray added: “In certain extreme circumstances, like flights being cancelled for foreign hirers or someone in the party contracting Coronavirus or being advised to self-isolate, we will even take a later cancellation and give a booking credit.

“Otherwise, please call us to make this amendment to your booking at least a full 72 hours before 2.00 pm one the day you are due at the boatyard. We can’t do this on our website.

“We are constantly following Government advice and act accordingly if the situation changes. We have already added to our robust cleaning programme, introducing new disinfectant materials to give an extra measure of confidence. We’ve also asked our staff to follow the government’s guidelines, and self isolate if they develop a cough or temperature.”

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“As a boating holiday can offer such a safe, attractive option at a time when countries are closing borders, cities are becoming hotbeds of infection and hotels and resorts bring you into contact with many strangers, we want to make it as easy as possible to take a break with us, without worrying about what might happen.”

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