Biblical Tours - Terms and conditions

Client Obligations    Conclusion of Contracts    Industrial Property Rights    Liability    Payment    Place of Jurisdiction    Prescriptive Period    Price Increases    Provision of Services by BiR    Reservation Procedures    Scope of Contract    Status of the Client and BiR    Termination and Cancellation    Terms and Conditions   

Terms and conditions of business of Biblische Reisen GmbH / department Biblical Tours for incoming service contracts

The contract language is German. If Biblische Reisen / Biblical Tours has these terms and conditions of business translated, the German text nevertheless remains the authoritative version for legal purposes.

1. Scope of contract, applicable legal provisions, contract language

1.1. These terms and conditions of business govern the entire contract and legal relationship between Biblische Reisen GmbH - hereinafter referred to as "BiR" - and the Client - hereinafter referred to as "the Client" - with respect to the provision of tourist services by BiR in its capacity as a service provider and the Client's direct contract partner and with respect to the procurement of tourist services.
1.2. These terms and conditions of business apply only to commercial and/or business enterprises, legal persons under private law, and public law entities. They do not apply to consumers within the meaning of Article 13 of the German Civil Code.
1.3. The entire contract and legal relationship between BiR and the Client is governed primarily by the contract terms agreed in individual cases, followed by these terms and conditions of business, and alternatively the provisions of Articles 631 and 675 of the German Civil Code on the transaction of business in return for payment.
1.4. The entire contract and legal relationship shall be subject to German law only.
1.5. The contract language is German. If BiR or the Client has any contract documents, correspondence, or these terms and conditions of business translated, the German text nevertheless remains the authoritative version for legal purposes.
1.6. The Client's general terms and conditions are not applicable; this is the case even if the Client states that they are applicable or refers to them or if BiR does not oppose them individually or as a whole.
1.7. These terms and conditions of business are valid for all future contracts between BiR and the Client, even if BiR does not explicitly state that they form part of a contract or refer to them.

2. Status of the Client and BiR, services provided by BiR

2.1. BiR has the status of a service provider for the Client. BiR does not enter into any contract relationships with the Client's customers.
2.2. Performance of the contract on the part of BiR consists in the provision of the tourist services contracted for.
2.3. Provided that it is agreed in general or with respect to individual services, BiR has the status of a travel agency only. In this case, BiR is not liable for descriptions of services, prices, and services, or personal injury and damage to property of the Client and/or the Client's customers in connection with the services procured. BiR's liability resulting from an infringement of its procurement duties remains unaffected by this provision.
2.4.Under no circumstances is BiR a tour operator within the meaning of Articles 651a-m of the German Civil Code. These provisions are applicable neither directly nor by analogy to the contract relationship between BiR and the Client.
2.5. The Client is expressly prohibited from describing BiR to its customers as a tour operator and/or a direct customer contract partner and/or submitting legal statements to its customers on behalf of BiR.

3. Conclusion of contracts

3.1. BiR submits an offer to the Client in accordance with the Client's specifications, based on these terms and conditions. The offer may be submitted in writing, by fax or by e-mail.
3.2. A contract is effected if the Client accepts this offer (within the specified time period, inasmuch as a time period is specified) in writing or by fax by returning the acceptance form provided by BiR without making any modifications, additions, deletions, or extensions to the offer. The Client may use e-mail to inform BiR in advance of its intention of accepting an offer and to meet a deadline. An offer may not be accepted by e-mail.
3.3. BiR informs the Client in writing or by fax when a contract has been effected as a consequence of timely receipt of the Client's acceptance by BiR.
3.4. If an offer made by BiR as per the above provisions does not immediately lead to the conclusion of a contract, especially as a result of the Client requesting changes or additions, or if correspondence or negotiations take place regarding the services contracted for, the contract is effected by BiR sending a reservation confirmation in writing, by fax or e-mail without the Client having to send a return acknowledgement. 2This reservation confirmation has the same function as a formal letter of acknowledgement. 3Accordingly, the reservation confirmation, including the attached description of the contract services and details of the tour, is authoritative, regardless of any preceding phone or face-to-face negotiations regarding the terms of the contract, provided that the Client does not immediately raise an objection to the reservation confirmation.
3.5. Any modifications, additions, extensions and supplements (including any amendments to this provision) must be set down in writing; this may take the form of an ex parte statement by BiR to which the Client raises no objections. Section 3.3, sentences 2 and 3 apply accordingly.

4. Provision of services by BiR, modifications

4.1. BiR's contract performance obligations are based exclusively on its offer and/or the reservation confirmation and any supplementary written agreements.
4.2. Service providers (for example, hotels, transportation companies) are not authorized by BiR to conclude agreements, supply information, or make any assurances that amend the terms of the contract agreed with the Client, exceed BiR's contract performance obligations or do not correspond to the description of the services provided by BiR.
4.3. Locality and hotel brochures not published by BiR are not binding with respect to BiR and its contract performance obligations unless BiR and the Client expressly agree that such brochures form part of BiR's contract performance obligations.
4.4. Changes to the services contracted for that become necessary after conclusion of the contract and are undertaken by BiR in good faith are permissible, inasmuch as such changes are not substantial and do not affect the overall character of the tour.
4.5. BiR is not obligated to give the Client any legal advice about the Client's activities in those countries in which the contract is to be performed or about the Client's rights and duties with respect to the tour participants in its capacity as tour operator or in any other respect.
4.6. BiR is obligated neither toward the Client nor toward its tour participants with respect to safeguarding customer payments and presenting a risk coverage certificate. If the Client is acting as a tour operator, the Client alone is obligated to safeguard customer payments, inasmuch as the respective provisions of the EU directive and Article 651 k of the German Civil Code are applicable to the tour operator and the tour operator is governed by them.
4.7. BiR is not obligated to provide the Client with any information about passport, visa and entry regulations or customs regulations in the countries in which the contract is to be performed.

5. Price increases

5.1. BiR is entitled to increase its prices on an individual basis subject to agreement.
5.2. Irrespective of the foregoing, BiR is entitled to raise its prices with respect to the Client to the same extent as BiR's service providers increase their prices with respect to BiR.
5.3. In the event of a price increase by a service provider as per section 5.2 above, BiR is not obligated to subject it to a legal examination with regard to its justification, provided that the price increase does not represent an obvious breach of contract or of the law. BiR undertakes, however, to inform the Client prior to paying or accepting any price increases and to agree appropriate action with the Client. If so requested by the Client, BiR will accept a price increase subject to a legal examination only and reserve the right to demand the return of any payments rendered. In such instances, BiR further undertakes to assign any claims for repayment of unjustified price increases to the Client.
5.4. Provided that BiR meets its obligations under section 5.3 above, the Client is obligated to pay such price increases to BiR upon BiR's first request. The Client is not entitled to offset or withhold such payments.

6. Reservation procedures

6.1. BiR's offers contain details of the relevant reservation procedures, especially the Client's obligations and any deadlines.
6.2. The Client is obligated to communicate to BiR, by the deadlines specified in the offer, the names of the tour participants, room lists, the tour participants' personal data inasmuch as it is required for reservation procedures, and other relevant details. If such information is not communicated or not communicated in time and/or is incomplete or if the Client does not fulfill other agreed obligations to assist BiR in connection with the reservation procedures, or does not meet them in full or by the due date, BiR is entitled to cancel the contract, having issued a warning and given the Client an appropriate time period to fulfill its obligations, and to file a claim for damages on the grounds of non-performance in accordance with these contract provisions and the legal regulations.

7. Client obligations

7.1. The Client is obligated to comply with all legal requirements, especially the legal regulations of the countries where the contract is to be performed, with respect to all its activities in performance of the contract.
7.2. If the Client transfers the rights to contractually agreed services to third parties, the Client remains in all instances without exception the contract partner of BiR. If BiR becomes cognizant of such a transfer of rights and does not explicitly raise an objection thereto, neither this nor any other action of BiR constitutes consent to an assignment of contract rights and/or a change of creditor/debtor with regard to the Client's rights and duties, especially its payment obligations.
7.3. The Client is obligated to inform BiR immediately of any apparent deficiencies and to require that such deficiencies be remedied. It is not sufficient for a complaint to be lodged with the service providers concerned. If no complaint is lodged with the service providers, the Client is not entitled to claim any rights in this regard, inasmuch as a remedy would have been possible and reasonable.
7.4. The Client may only terminate the contract or cancel some of the services contracted for due to apparent deficiencies if the deficiencies are substantial or if the deficiencies make it unreasonable for the Client to perform the contract for specific reasons that can be demonstrated and that BiR acknowledges. In addition to a complaint being lodged as per section 7.3 above, the contract may only be terminated after an appropriate time period has been set for the deficiencies to be remedied.
7.5. If the Client's customers file claims against the Client and the Client wishes in turn to file claims against BiR as a result of these customer claims, the following provisions apply:
a) The Client is obligated to inform BiR immediately of any claims filed by its customers and to provide BiR with all the associated correspondence, information, and documentation.
b) The Client is obligated to communicate with its customers in accordance with BiR's instructions.
c) The Client must obtain BiR's consent prior to making any payments to customers arising out of such claims or reaching a legal agreement on the discharge of such claims.
d) If a customer's claim, substantiated by documentation submitted by the customer or based on objective considerations in accordance with warranty claims under travel legislation, is expected to exceed €500 or if the customer's claim arises out of personal injury or damage to property, BiR may require the Client to engage in legal proceedings with the customer and BiR may serve a third-party notice. BiR undertakes to support the Client's action in such cases. BiR has the exclusive right to terminate legal proceedings by acknowledging the plaintiff's claim or settling out of court and the exclusive right to decide whether or not to appeal.

8. Payment, payment arrears, right of retention

8.1. The individual contracts govern the dates on which down payments and payment of balances become due.
8.2. Unless otherwise agreed, following expiration of the time period specified in the offer during which the contract can be terminated at no charge (normally three months), a down payment becomes due equal to 15% of the total cost of the services contracted for.
8.3. Unless otherwise agreed, payment of the balance in full becomes due no less than 30 days before contract performance is due to begin.
8.4. Payments are to be made in euros, exclusive of costs and expenses, to the account specified by BiR only.
8.5. Provided that BiR is willing and able to perform the contract and the Client is not entitled to any legal or contract right of retention, the Client has no claim to the provision of travel services or travel documents until and unless it has paid the price in full.
8.6. If the Client does not make a down payment or pay the balance by the agreed dates, BiR is entitled to cancel the contract, having first issued a warning and set a deadline for payment, and to charge the cancellation costs to the Client as per the contract terms and these terms and conditions.

9. Termination, cancellation, cancellation expenses, termination due to force majeure

9.1. The Client is only entitled to terminate, cancel or withdraw from the contract or to refuse services without incurring any payment obligation or to reduce the number of tour participants provided that an express agreement exists to this effect.
9.2. Cancellation or termination in accordance with trade practices is excluded, as are implied termination or cancellation rights. This applies in particular when the services to be performed under the contract include accommodation quotas in commercial accommodation facilities.
9.3. The Client is only entitled to terminate the contract or cancel it in part or in full, to reduce the number of tour participants, or to modify services and quotas subject to the terms of BiR's offer. The Client's legal rights, which cannot be waived even in transactions between commercial enterprises, remain unaffected hereby. Similarly, the Client's warranty rights under these terms and conditions and the legal regulations remain unaffected hereby.
9.4. Under the terms of the contract, the Client is not entitled to modify the tour program. If the requested modifications are feasible, BiR will inform the Client of the associated costs but will not make any modifications until it has received the Client's agreement.
9.5. If performance of the contract is substantially impeded, endangered or impaired by force majeure that could not be foreseen when the contract was concluded, both BiR and the Client may terminate the contract ex parte subject to the following provisions:
a) If the contract is terminated prior to its performance, the Client is not obligated to pay for the services contracted for. The Client is not entitled to any other claims.
b) If the contract is terminated after BiR has begun its performance, BiR is entitled, independently of the Client's claims to remuneration by its customers, to remuneration for the services rendered prior to termination as well as any costs incurred by BiR for unscheduled transportation of the Client's tour participants back to their point of departure in accordance with BiR's obligations under the contract.
c) BiR and the Client will share in equal proportions any additional transportation costs associated with performance of the contract that are incurred by termination of the contract. Any other additional costs will be borne by the Client.

10. Industrial property rights

10.1. The Client is obligated to respect all industrial property rights owned by BiR, especially its trademark rights, pictorial rights, copyright and rights to domains. This applies in particular to catalog texts, requests for bids for tours, tables, logos, forms, photographs, and terms of business.
10.2. Inasmuch as the Client is permitted to use the respective items or other elements as per section 10.1 above, this permission is restricted to a specific contract and to the Client alone. The Client may not use such items in the future, permit third parties to use them, or acquiesce in their use by third parties without BiR's express written consent.

11. Liability of BiR

11.1. BiR's contract liability for damages, excluding personal injury, is limited to triple the value of the package tour, provided that:
a) Any damage suffered by the Client or its customers is caused neither deliberately nor by gross negligence, or
b) BiR's responsibility for damages suffered by the Client or its customers is due solely to a fault attributable to a service provider.
11.2. BiR's liability in tort for damage to property that is caused neither deliberately nor by gross negligence is limited to triple the value of the package tour.
11.3. BiR is not liable for deficient services, personal injury, damage to property, or information about prices and services in connection with third-party services that BiR merely procures (for example, excursions, sports events, theater visits, exhibitions, and transportation services to and from contractually agreed starting points and destinations, in particular connecting flights and transportation by rail).

12. Prescriptive period and statute of limitations

12.1. The Client's contract claims arising out of fatal, personal or health-related injuries, including contract claims for compensation for immaterial damage caused by gross breach of duty on the part of BiR or deliberate or gross breach of duty on the part of a legal representative or vicarious agent of BiR, are subject to a limitation period of 2 years. This also applies to claims for compensation for other damage caused by gross breach of duty on the part of BiR or deliberate or gross breach of duty on the part of a legal representative or vicarious agent of BiR.
12.2. All other contract claims as per Article 651c to f of the German Civil Code are subject to a limitation period of 1 year.
12.3. The limitation period as per sections 12.1 and 12.2 above begins on the date when the tour was scheduled to end under the terms of the contract.
12.4. If negotiations are in progress between the Client and BiR with respect to the claim or the circumstances giving grounds for the claim, the limitation period is suspended until the Client or BiR discontinue the negotiations. The limitation period comes into effect no less than three months after cessation of the suspension.
12.5. The legal limitation period regulations governing the Client's claims for damages, especially as per Article 199 paragraph (2) and Article 199 paragraph (3) of the German Civil Code, remain unaffected by the above provisions.

13. Place of jurisdiction, miscellaneous provisions

13.1. Stuttgart, Germany, is the sole place of jurisdiction for disputes of any kind arising out of the entire legal and contract relationship between BiR and the Client.
13.2. The Client may only offset admissible or legally established monetary claims against monetary claims by BiR.
13.3. If any contract provision or any provision of these terms and conditions is or becomes invalid, the validity of the other terms and of the contract as a whole will not be affected thereby.

© Biblische Reisen / Rainer Noll, Stuttgart, Germany, April 2008.
No part of this terms and conditions may be reproduced, copied, or distributed in any form. All rights reserved.