0118 966 8888
Terms and Conditions
Pacata (UK) Limited
County Minibuses, Reading
1.0 Our Service Delivery
As a fleet of minibuses and coaches, we promise to provide every customer with a suitable driver(s) for every individual journey, along with a suitable vehicle that meets all expected standards, including the number of seats required to suit the specific booking. This will insure that the work can be followed through safely and legally. The driver will choose the route, depending on external conditions such as road work, weather or any other factors that may affect the route chosen. The only exception to this rule would be if the customer agreed to a specific route in writing beforehand, to which the driver agreed to. Though the driver will try to choose the shortest route, sometimes external factors can hinder this, however no discounts will be given if the shortest route is not chosen, as this is not in our hands. During all journeys, stops can be arranged, both for the satisfaction and ease of the customers and, for longer journeys, to abide by the law and allow breaks and rests for the driver too. If there is a return journey required, the vehicle(s) may not stay at the same destination so it/they are be accessible to passengers unless it is scheduled to happen beforehand.
We will venture to complete journeys in the expected time, and reach destinations on time, and we will, if asked to do so, give the most accurate estimates for destination times and journey times, especially for journeys that require specific timings such as airport bookings and weddings. Regardless of that, we are not able to take responsibility for any delays, if they are out of our hands, in cases where there are unexpected problems on the motorways or roads, or any weather conditions, as these situations are out of our hands completely. We do recommend that if the timings for the journey are especially important for the event, one should ensure against the risks beforehand by perhaps leaving earlier, as customer satisfaction and happiness is a priority.
As mentioned in 1.0, we cannot in any circumstance take any responsibility for circumstances out of our control. This includes: traffic on the roads, accidents between vehicles on the roads, extreme weather condition such as heavy rain/hail or snow or any other events that occur outside of our control, though this is very rare. Our drivers insure that they reach the pick-up destination on time every time, however, again, if any delays are caused due to adverse conditions outside of our control, we will try to help the situation as much as we can, however delays’ consequences cannot be something we can take responsibility for.
If for any reason, a minibus or coach is delayed for more than an hour to the destination, a refund may be an option, depending on the circumstances, however the likelihood of these sorts of extreme delays are very slim. If we cannot bring in any replacement for a delayed minibus within 4 hours of the expected time and so to continue with the journey, the customer arranges different transport from another company, they will be entitled to a full refund for that part of the journey (if it is a return journey, and one leg of it was delayed, that half will be refunded).
If a larger minibus is available, then we do have the right to send the larger minibus in, at no extra cost to the customer, unless the minibus arrives in a bigger size due to an increase in the number of passengers.
We take as much care of passengers’ luggage as we can, ensuring there is enough space on the minibus for the planned amount for luggage. Regardless of this care, however, we cannot take responsibility for any damage caused to the luggage, as this is not in the drivers’ hands. We do tell customers to never leave any valuables on the minibus, as any theft of luggage is not our responsibility, so to be on the safe side, we do not allow anything valuable to be left on the vehicle.
We strongly recommend insurance of valuables that are of high value, as we do not want anything to be lost or stolen from our customers. If anything is left on the minibus after the passengers have left, they will be collected and safely stored, and will be kept there until they are claimed by the passengers.
1.3 Drivers’ Working Hours
There are specific time periods that a driver can work for, and this is a legal requirement that drivers must work in. It is totally against the law for drivers to work beyond these specific hours. County Minibuses will always arrange the journey schedules so that minimal delay is caused to the journey, and rest stops are considered when giving passengers time frames for each journey. The customer cannot, under any circumstances, move away from the planned timings, unless arranged beforehand, as we cannot take responsibility for any delays caused due to this. If delays are caused by the customer, we have the right to change the journey or alter it slightly to adapt, in order to follow the law, so that our drivers are not working for excess hours, against the law.
Second driver charges can be used when the first driver has driven for more than 9 hours in one day, has worked for 15 hours on shift per day (regardless of if it is through driving or not), a driver worked for more than 6 days in a row and/or if the driver stops working very late, for example, in the early hours of the next day, thus disabling him from working the next day.
2. Customer Responsibilities
County Minibuses will always expect the passengers to behave and be respectful on journeys, and any abusive or intoxicated behaviour will under no circumstances be tolerated. The driver is allowed to refuse or eject any passenger from the vehicle if, under his own choice, he considers them in poor condition to travel for whatever reason. The Driver can also leave a journey incomplete if he truly believes he considers any customer to be behaving in any way that could be dangerous for the other persons on board, the driver or the fleet vehicle. The driver can decide if drinking on board the vehicle is allowed, preferably decided beforehand, however, for some sporting events drinking in the vehicle is legally prohibited and all passengers must abide to the decision of the driver.
2.1 Vehicle Damage
We put a lot of effort into keeping all of our vehicles clean and at a high standard. Due to this effort, the customer will have to be responsible for any damage done to the vehicle, be it inside or outside of the vehicle. If the vehicle, due to the customers’ actions, requires extra cleaning, the customer will be expected to pay the sum required to clean the vehicle again.
2.2 Security Deposit
A Security Deposit may be imposed at the sole discretion of County Minibuses up to 48 hours before your trip for late night club/pub runs and other ‘social’ events. Once the vehicle(s) have returned to the depot any costs incurred in cleaning and/or repairing the vehicle(s) will be subtracted from the security deposit before the balance, if any, is refunded.
3. Payment, Cancellation and Additional Charges
All charges quoted to the Customer shall be exclusive of VAT which County Minibuses shall add to its charges at the appropriate rate. Currently coach hire is zero rated for VAT.
3.2 Payment by Invoice
At the point of booking each Customer will be asked for their preferred option for payment. For Companies, Schools, Government bodies and Institutions (or any other organisation agreed in writing by County Minibuses from time to time) payment on receipt of a valid invoice may be acceptable. If the booking is for more than 7 days into the future a 20% deposit should be paid at the point of booking, with the balance to be paid no less than 7 working days before transport, unless agreed otherwise.
Please note that during our peak season (June and July each year) bookings will be cancelled at 14 days’ notice in the event of non–payment, except if expressly agreed in writing with County Minibuses.
3.3 Payment by Credit/Debit Card
If the customer decides to pay by debit/credit card and the booking is for more than 7 working days before departure then the customer must pay a 20% deposit on booking with the balance to be paid 7 working days before travel. We do not store credit card details nor do we share customer details with any 3rd parties.
3.1.1 Alternative payment methods
Such as BAC’s, cheque or an alternate card are acceptable as long as this is agreed in writing with County Minibuses in advance.
Irrespective of the payment method chosen – unless it has been specifically agreed in writing by County Minibuses – the customer must pay for the services in full and in cleared funds 7 full working days prior to the performance of the services. Any service which has not been fully paid for 7 days prior to departure will be AUTOMATICALLY CANCELLED in line with the cancellation charges as outlined in these terms (see below).
Please note that during our Peak season (June and July each year) bookings will be cancelled at 14 days’ notice in the event of non–payment, except if expressly agreed in writing with County Minibuses Reading.
3.4 Cancellation Policy
If a booking is cancelled in writing by the Customer with more than 7 working days left before the date of travel, other than the initial deposit paid by the customer, the customer will have no further costs to pay.
If a booking is cancelled by the Customer with less than 7 working days’ notice, payment in full will be due to County Minibuses from the Customer.
Deposits are not refundable on bookings cancelled by the customer.
No cash refunds. Any refund due will be issued as a credit note.
There are no refunds for ferry, tunnel or toll fees.
3.5 Additional Charges
Unless, it has been otherwise agreed, the hire price will not include any group catering, tickets, admission charges, ferries/tunnels, road tolls or parking. At your request we may make these types of arrangements for you, but we would do so as your agent. This means that any terms and conditions applicable to that transaction by that supplier (e.g. relating to payment, cancellation, etc.) would be as binding on you as they would if you had made these arrangements yourself. We will seek your acceptance of any such terms and conditions and not expend any money on your behalf until you have made similar payment to us.
County Minibuses reserves the right to charge the customer for driver’s accommodation at the time of the booking should the length of a trip go beyond 24 hours. It is at the sole discretion of County Minibuses to apply the costs of the accommodation, whether or not the driver utilises the accommodation, or if for operational purposes the driver is required to drive back to the coach depot and return the following day to collect the passengers. County Minibuses will not be held liable for any request for a reimbursement from the customer in the event the accommodation is not used.
For longer trips in terms of hours/mileage County Minibuses needs to comply with all regulations with regards to driver’s hours. The booking quote that you will have received (unless agreed in writing) specifically excludes the requirement for a second driver or driver accommodation. Our operations team will work with you to produce an agreed itinerary which will minimise as far as possible, the need for any additional costs. If such costs are unavoidable we will advise the customer of them (if at all possible) more than 7 days prior to travel thus allowing the customer the option of cancelling the booking at no further cost. If bookings are made less than 7 days before travel we will advise of additional costs within 48 hours of booking. In terms of understanding potential additional costs a second driver costs approximately £150 per day, however this can vary both ways.
See also 1.3 for special circumstances which may require a second driver.
Ferries and Eurotunnel can only be booked on receipt of cleared funds. Please be aware that these bookings are subject to 3rd Party availability on receipt of cleared funds.
3.6 Booking Confirmations and Amendments
It is the responsibility of the Customer to check the Booking Confirmation, once received, for its accuracy and completeness. This is the document that County Minibuses relies upon for the trip and it is important that any errors are notified to us as soon as possible.
If a customer requires an amendment to a booking, the amendment will only be considered as implemented when the Customer has it confirmed in writing by County Minibuses in terms of a new, replacement, Booking Confirmation. If an updated Booking Confirmation has not been received by the customer with the updated details, then the customer must assume that the existing booking has not been amended.
It is the customer's responsibility to ensure with County Minibuses that all trip details are complete and correct and at no time should verbal amendments be considered as confirmation of a change to an existing booking.
If Customers have a complaint about their booking or trip they should contact County Minibuses as soon as possible in writing (either by email or by using the contact form on our website) and County Minibuses will try to resolve the issue as well as possible. Customer Service office hours are from 9am until 5pm Monday – Friday. Our office is unable to assist with this type of enquiry on Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays. If you’re writing to complain please provide your booking reference number on your e-mail, and include your daytime and evening telephone numbers. Any resolutions or compensatory measures offered (if any) by County Minibuses are at the strict discretion of the management of County Minibuses.
Any issue must be raised within 14 days of the initial travel date.
No cash refunds. Any refund due will be issued as a credit note.
By placing a booking with County Minibuses, customers are confirming that they have read, understood and agreed to abide by the above published Terms and Conditions. Please ensure you understand them fully prior to placing a booking with County Minibuses.
No part of these Terms and Conditions affects your rights as a consumer. These Terms and Conditions are in addition to your rights as a consumer.
CUSTOMERS SHOULD NOTE THAT THIS COMPANY OPERATES A STRICTLY NO SMOKING POLICY ON ALL COACHES. WOULD CUSTOMERS PLEASE BRING THIS CONDITION TO THE ATTENTION OF ALL PASSENGERS INTENDING TO TRAVEL.
Any booking entered into based on these terms and conditions, or any dispute or claims arising from same shall be subject to the jurisdiction and laws of England and Wales.
Minibus Hire with driver