2020 Argentina Total Solar Eclipse 2018-04-23T17:13:16-05:00

2020 ARGENTINA TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE

RING OF FIRE EXPEDITION #51

December 10-15, 2020

Total eclipse of the Sun as seen from Nebraska USA August 21, 2017. Photo by W. Chapin.

A grand total eclipse will be visible from South America at the end of 2020.  You will have the opportunity to join one of the following tours that have been specially prepared for you in order to enable you to get a glimpse of Argentina as well as to see this remarkable celestial phenomenon. These adventures are organized and coordinated by Paul D. Maley of the NASA Johnson Space Center Astronomical Society and Phoenix Astronomical Society and it will be his 51st group expedition.

BASIC INFORMATION

The path of the December 14, 2020 total solar eclipse crosses the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and makes landfall in both Chile and Argentina. At maximum eclipse about 2 minutes 9 seconds of totality can be seen if the sky is clear.

Overview map showing the eclipse path. Courtesy X. Jubier.

Our trip begins and ends in Buenos Aires, Argentina with internal air flights to locations in the central part of the country.  There is no requirement to have observed any previous solar eclipses and no need to bring any equipment or have a technical knowledge of astronomy—only to enjoy watching the daytime sky grow dark and envelop you in a cloak of amazement as the outer atmosphere of the Sun explodes into view and your eyes absorb this canopy of sights.

ITINERARY TOUR#1

This particular tour will be led by Paul D. Maley.  Except for our time in Buenos Aires, this is a remote area of Argentina so accommodations are described as basic.  Meals shown below are defined as follows: B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, BL=Boxed Lunch, D=Dinner.  Times listed below each day may be changed if needed.

Tour 1 area overview map

December 10, 2020 (Thursday)-Buenos Aires

Arrive today at Buenos Aires International Airport (airport code EZE) where you will be met by our local representative who will transfer you to your hotel.

2:00pm Explore the highlights of the “Paris of South America” in a city tour escorted by one of our experienced guides who will introduce you to the history and culture of this magnificent city.  The tour will include the historical areas of Buenos Aires (meaning “good air”) including Plaza de Mayo, the political heart of the city laid out by Don Juan de Garay in 1580 during the second founding of Buenos Aires.  You will also pass through the neighborhood of San Telmo with its cobblestone streets; this is the area where the original inhabitants settled in the early days.  Continue to La Boca (the mouth), the colorful working class port neighborhood and walk along Caminito Street, where local artists display their artworks at the tunes of Tango being performed on the street.  Pass through Puerto Madero and see this new area where red brick warehouses were transformed into trendy restaurants and bars.  Finally, you will visit Recoleta and its world famous cemetery and see mausoleums of the most important personalities from Argentine history.

3:00pm In the San Telmo district you will stop at El Zanjon (“the rivulet”–small stream), a fascinating underground trip into the origins of the city.  From outside a beautifully restored house from the 1830’s; from the inside it is a journey into the past of Buenos Aires.  In a private visit you will descend into a spectacular labyrinth of wide vaulted brick tunnels that were walled off in the past.  All of this is buried underneath the house.  Located where some historians place the first settlement in 1536 you get an unusual glimpse into five centuries of urban archaeology.  Listen to the tales left to us by the old storytellers and enjoy the unexpected.

8:00pm This evening enjoy dinner at one of the best Argentina steak restaurants in Buenos Aires: Cabana Las Lilas or similar. Note about Argentina beef likely the best tasting in the world! Here cows are grass fed and not corn fed. The technique of Argentine “Asado” is the equivalent but very different from traditional barbecuing.  It is far slower and puts more emphasis on slightly smoking the beef than sealing it, which according to new research doesn’t “keeps the flavor in”.  They do not use propane but only briquettes to start the fire. Wood is the standard, and the oven structure is a real parrilla (grill) made with ceramic thermal bricks or volcanic stones to make Asado.

Overnight at the Casa Sur Hotel.

Typical room at the modern Casa Sur Hotel

Casa Sur Hotel is located in the heart of the distinguished and emblematic Recoleta area on Callao Avenue.  It is only a few steps away from luxurious art galleries, well known commercial centers, green spaces and interesting tourist circuits.  Casa Sur is a botique hotel and stands out due to its personality, the concept of its rooms, innovation and quality of the services offered.  The combination of textures and noble material stands out in each one of the 36 neoclassic style rooms. (D)

December 11, 2020 (Friday)-Buenos Aires to Trelew

An overview of our tour route upon arrival in Trelew on December 11. It does not show Buenos Aires.

5:00am After an early breakfast, transfer to the domestic airport (airport code AEP) for your flight to Trelew.  On arrival you will be met by our local representative who will transfer you to the Provincial Wildlife Reserve Peninsula Valdes, a UNESCO World Heritage site.  Peninsula Valdes is a protected natural area that was designated a UNESCO site in 1999 and is composed of a headland of 4000 square kilometers that sticks out about 100km into the Atlantic Ocean with many gufs, rocky cliffs, and shallow bays with a marked difference in tides, sandy beaches, and islands.  It is attached to the continent by a 25km long strip of land called the Ameghino Isthmus.

Peninsula Valdes sea lion colony

Because of its unusual geographic charateristics the peninsula has become exceptionally valuable. It has been selected as reproductive territory by a number of sea mammals and sea birds, thus concentrating such a biodiversity that makes it the main attraction of the Patagonia coastline. Its gulfs shelter an important school of Southern Right Whales. About 50% of this type of whale from around the world reaches the clear and calm waters every year from June to December.  In addition, there are colonies of elephant seals, sea lions and penguins, birds and land mammals; it is also a place to watch orcas (killer whales)–a real nature sanctuary.

8:00am   Upon arrival at the Trelew airport (REL) you will be met by our local representative who will transfer you to the Provincial Wildlife Reserve Peninsula Valdes, UNESCO World Heritage Site. After a 2 hour drive arrive in Puerto Piramides, a tiny village on the way to Península Valdés.

10:30am  Boat tour (shared boat with other visitors) to go whale watching for the Southern Right Whales (Eubalaena australis) between June and December, and of Southern Sea lions (Otaria flavescens) and cormorants between January and March.

1:00pm   Lunch at a local restaurant

2:30pm  After lunch visit the Punta Norte Wildlife Reserve, where you may view Sea lions. Continue to Punta Cantor to observe elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) and Caleta Valdes, a large inlet that stretches along the peninsula’s Atlantic coastline. Following this you will drive to the hotel.

5:30 pm  Arrive at the hotel and check-in

Overnight at Faro Punta Delgada Hotel.

Faro Punta Delgada Hotel

The hotel has 27 rooms and is located on the southeast coast of Valdes Peninsula, 70km from Puerto Piramides along a gravel road.  It has 27 comfortable rooms, a pub, boutique and exclusive restaurant with excellent gastronomic service, typical Argentine dishes and a gourmet kitchen.   The hotel is divided into 4 sectors: the restaurant, pub and boutique; a building with 12 rooms and a private living room area where you can find everything to relax or to drink something during the afternoon. On the third sector called El Cruzado there are also 12 rooms with their own living room (ideal for meetings); finally a separate area called “The Little House” with 3 rooms and a separate living room. (B, BL, D)

December 12, 2020 (Saturday)-Estancia San Lorenzo, Land of Penguins

10:00 am   Depart the hotel to San Lorenzo,  a sheep farm located 160 km/100 miles from Puerto Madryn and 17 km/10 miles from the Punta Norte Wildlife Reserve within the Provincial Wildlife Reserve Peninsula Valdes, UNESCO World Heritage Site. It stretches over 5, 134 hectares, and has a 4, 600 m/3 mile – long coastline on the San Matias Bay.

11:00 am   On the property, there is an awesome breeding colony of Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus Magellanicus) with approximately 500,000 penguins including adults and juveniles. You will also have the chance to see elephant seals (Mirounga leonina), the world’s largest seals.  The activities offered by Estancia San Lorenzo will not just bring you closer to nature; fossilized giant oysters, the rests of an ancient Sea lion factory.

1:00pm    Enjoy the taste of a Patagonian lamb barbecue will also give you an insight of our local history and customs.

2:30pm    Transfer back to your hotel and free time to enjoy the view of the Atlantic Ocean and the Elephant Seal colony on the beach close by.

The coastline near the hotel

The property was built in 1905. It held originally the Post Office and Navy’s facilities… yes, away from everything… here the navy instructed lighthouses operators, then assigned to other destinations along Argentina’s extended shores.  The lighthouse, as every night for more than a century, fulfills its mission, guiding boats. The hotel is a basic accommodation given the remoteness of the area.  Overnight Faro Punta Delgada Hotel (B,L,D)

December 13, 2020 (Sunday)-Peninsula Valdes to Las Grutas

10:00 am  Depart  the hotel to Puerto Madryn where we will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant.

1:00pm   After lunch drive to Las Grutas, almost 370 km north along Route 3.

Las Grutas is a beach resort located in Northern Patagonia with a stable population of 8,000 inhabitants. Its beaches are known for having relatively warm waters in spite of their location in the Patagonia, due to the wide tidal amplitude, and the protection of the San Matías Gulf.  Las Grutas’, meaning “The Caves” in Spanish, comes from the caves created by the erosion of the sea on the cliffs that separate the city from the beach.  In some areas there are pools artificially carved in the stone that change their water in every tidal cycle. When the tide is low, the water in the pools is quickly warmed by the sun which makes them very attractive in colder weather.

5:00pm   Check into the Hotel Portovenere.  Briefing on the following days activities in the dining room at the hotelWe have blocked the entire hotel for our group.

8:00pm  Dinner at the hotel

Preparing and testing your scope before the eclipse is important.

Overnight at Hotel Portovenere.

The hotel is a 3 star property with an outdoor pool and free wifi with 21 rooms.  It is located 100m from the beach AND CLOSE TO THE CENTER LINE OF THE ECLIPSE PATH!  Rooms have a private bathroom and flat screen TV.  A casino and commercial area is about 300m away. (B, L, D)

Hotel Portovenere

December 14, 2020 (Monday)-Eclipse day!

A composite set of solar eclipse images from right to left by David Agard.

From our hotel you can view 2 minute 8 seconds of eclipse where the Sun elevation will be 72 degrees above the northern horizon. It will take about 2 hours 51 minutes for the entire eclipse process.  Consider the above image showing a series of partial eclipse photos from right to left leading up to the total eclipse itself.   If the sky is clear there will be no reason to go anywhere. Nevertheless, a bus will be at our disposal to travel along the eclipse path to seek out a clear location for viewing if needed. This can be a leisurely day if staying at the hotel where the partial eclipse begins at 1155am, totality occurs at 1:18pm and the partial phases end at 2:45pm.

One of our possible eclipse sites

The road along our route

8:30 pm Dinner and overnight at Hotel Portovenere with a discussion of the results of our efforts. (B, L, D)

December 15, 2020 (Tuesday)-Depart Las Grutas for Buenos Aires

8:00am This morning your guide will meet you in the lobby of the hotel and escort you to the Viedma Aiport located well to the east of Las Grutas.

9:30am From there we board our flight in the afternoon to Buenos Aires domestic airport; then transfer to the international airport. Since most international flights leave at night, you will then be able to transfer for your flight home or extend on an optional cost tour. (B)

An OPTIONAL COST  extension tour follows the core tour. DETAILS OF THIS TOUR WILL BE ANNOUNCED LATER IN 2018.

The program includes:

  • Domestic air from/to Buenos Aires
  • Services of English speaking local guide during the sightseeing tours only
  • Services of our representative at airport on arrival/departures
  • All present applicable taxes
  • Eclipse briefing
  • Transport to/from eclipse site(s)
  • Hotels and meals shown above (hotels are as known today and may be changed later on)

The program does not include:

  • International airfare
  • Meals other than mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Any services during leisure time.
  • Airport taxes
  • Visa fees and processing if required (we recommend getting an online visa for single entry)
  • Insurance
  • Tipping/gratuities (range of tipping will be defined later)
  • Necessary inoculations
  • Items of personal nature such as visa fee, telephone, laundry, beverages. Any items not listed above.

PRICES FOR TOUR#1-ONLY DOUBLE ROOMS ARE AVAILABLE!!

TOUR#1

$   4944.*(cash discount price is $4708.) each with two persons sharing. Land prices are fixed but internal air price has been estimated. A final price for the air component will not be known until January 2019.

*Based on paying by credit card

We highly recommend travel insurance for the following reasons.  There have been unexpected health problems for either participants or family members of participants that has caused some people to cancel in the weeks and months prior to tour departure.  In addition, work related conflicts, weather and airline mechanical issues have caused unacceptable flight cancellations and missed days or connections. To be on the safe side it is our recommendation that all tour participants consider to arrive ONE DAY EARLIER than shown in the itinerary just to insure you do not misconnect on your way to the trip start.

REGISTRATION FORM TOUR#1

IMPORTANT NOTE: Before you sign up be aware of the following point.  Argentina is experiencing inflation, the rate of which cannot be guaranteed.  Prices shown here have been estimated to account for the current rate of inflation; but there is always a chance that may increase slightly before the tour begins and after nonrefundable deposits have been sent to the ground operator.  Future Travel has done their best to project the cost for 2020. However, should a price incur they will be obliged to pass it on to everyone on the trip. Deposits are absolutely required for Future Travel to confirm the ground space due to the very limited hotels.

There are very few hotels in the eclipse zone and if you want to see this eclipse, we invite you to take the risk that prices will not increase very much (if at all) between now and early 2020. This is an unusual situation to be sure but we have tried to adjust the deposit/cancellation fees below to account for this within reason. 

To sign up for this tour, first, click HERE to fill out the registration form.  Complete a form FOR EACH PERSON in your party.  You will not be considered unless both a registration AND deposit have been received by Future Travel. Participants are chosen in order of receipt of both of these items. 

Then send in payment by one of the methods outlined below under DEPOSITS AND CANCELLATIONS

 

ITINERARY TOUR#2

This tour will be led by Dr. Patricia Reiff of Rice University.  Meals shown below are defined as follows: B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, BL=Boxed Lunch, D=Dinner.

Tour 2 overview map

 

Overview of our tour route.

December 10, 2020 (Thursday)-Buenos Aires

Arrive today at Buenos Aires International Airport (airport code EZE) where you will be met by our local representative who will transfer you to your hotel.

Explore the highlights of the “Paris of South America” in a city tour escorted by one of our experienced guides who will introduce you to the history and culture of this magnificent city.  The tour will include the historical areas of Buenos Aires (meaning “good air”) including Plaza de Mayo, the political heart of the city laid out by Don Juan de Garay in 1580 during the second founding of Buenos Aires.  You will also pass through the neighborhood of San Telmo with its cobblestone streets; this is the area where the original inhabitants settled in the early days.  Continue to La Boca (the mouth), the colorful working class port neighborhood and walk along Caminito Street, where local artists display their artworks at the tunes of Tango being performed on the street.  Pass through Puerto Madero and see this new area where red brick warehouses were transformed into trendy restaurants and bars.  Finally, you will visit Recoleta and its world famous cemetery and see mausoleums of the most important personalities from Argentine history.

In the San Telmo district you will stop at El Zanjon (“the rivulet”–small stream), a fascinating underground trip into the origins of the city.  From outside a beautifully restored house from the 1830’s; from the inside it is a journey into the past of Buenos Aires.  In a private visit you will descend into a spectacular labyrinth of wide vaulted brick tunnels that were walled off in the past.  All of this is buried underneath the house.  Located where some historians place the first settlement in 1536 you get an unusual glimpse into five centuries of urban archaeology.  Listen to the tales left to us by the old storytellers and enjoy the unexpected.

This evening enjoy dinner at one of the best Argentina steak restaurants in Buenos Aires: Cabana Las Lilas or similar. Note about Argentina beef likely the best tasting in the world! Here cows are grass fed and not corn fed. The technique of Argentine “Asado” is the equivalent but very different from traditional barbecuing.  It is far slower and puts more emphasis on slightly smoking the beef than sealing it, which according to new research doesn’t “keeps the flavor in”.  They do not use propane but only briquettes to start the fire. Wood is the standard, and the oven structure is a real parrilla (grill) made with ceramic thermal bricks or volcanic stones to make Asado.

December 11, 2020 (Friday)-Buenos Aires to Bariloche

This morning transfer from the hotel to the domestic airport for your flight to Bariloche.  Guarded by majestic mountains and the impressive Lake Nahuel Huapi, Bariloche stands as the gateway to the stunning Lake District of Argentina.  This city has strong ties to central Europe as many families immigrated from Germany, Switzerland and northern Italy to this region in the previous century.  Their influence is easily found in the local culture and in the European traditional mountain architecture style you will see along the way.

Bariloche is one of the most important tourist resorts in the country located at 770 meters above sea level and 1650km from Buenos Aires. It offers the typical activities of a mountain resort with high quality services. Each season in this district has its own charm. Summer is the best season for trips and outdoor activities for sports such as trout fishing, horseback riding, rafting, trekking and hiking.  Long days at the lake and river beaches can be enjoyed as well as mountain climbing.  Temperatures can rise to 30 deg C in the day but becoming quite cool at night.

Tour 2 routing. The eclipse path passes over Pilolil (top center) and Bajada Colorada (top right)

Upon arriving at Bariloche airport you will be met by your local host who will drive you to the hotel. This afternoon enjoy a panoramic view adventure that will help you learn about the surrounding areas, lakes and history.  We will visit one of the main attractions in the region: the woodlands. Explore Patagonia’s best kept secret spots.  We will walk for about 40 minutes on even terrain, a low intensity activity with our guide interpreting and listening to the sounds of the forest such as the call of the chucao and regular pecking of a woodpecker. We suggest you wear trekking shoes, synthetic warm clothing, small backpack for personal belongings, sunglasses, warm hat, gloves, sunscreen.

Check in to your hotel, Design Suites Bariloche. Located 2 km out of town with fabulous views of the lake and forest this hotel features a combination of avant-garde design and affection to detail. It has a total of 54 guest rooms.

Design Suites Bariloche

December 12, 2020 (Saturday)-Bariloche

Transfer in the morning to Isla Victoria, a universe of natural attractions and unique places.  From the hotel we go to the pier where we will board a motorboat to cross the cold and crystal waters of Lake Nahuel Huapi up to the millenary island in about 45 minutes travel time.  We will then hike through the woodlands through inner trails to watch the varied flora and fauna and learn about its history.  Centennial cypresses and coihues woodland and native and exotic plants line the trailways. The trail are easy and the walk will last about 2 hours.  It may be possible to spot deer or pheasant in these woods.  Lunch will consist of a mountain lunch meal.

After lunch we continue our walk to Puerto Pampa, a different part of the island. Enjoy the fragrant and pleasant landscapes before embarking for the return trip back to port.

This evening enjoy dinner at the hotel. After dinner plan to have an evening of sky watching of southern hemisphere constellations and objects overhead. With a nearly New Moon, there will be no interference from it during our trip.

Overnight at Design Suites Bariloche.

Typical room configuration at Design Suites Bariloche

December 13, 2020 (Sunday)-Road of the Seven Lakes

This morning we depart on one of the most beautiful journeys around the country: the Seven Lakes’ Road. Nature slowly comes back to life, flowers show up as a miracle that has remained hidden under the snow, the forest wakes up filled with colors and the sound of singing birds.  All that beauty is there, waiting for you, framed by a road that joins Villa La Angostura with San Martin de Los Andes. Starting at Lake Nahuel Huapi you will be able to see the following lakes along the way: Espejo, Correntoso, Villarino, Falkner, Machonico and Lacar.  Stop along the way for a picnic lunch were your guide will explain the origins and history of Patagonina cheese.

In the two images below, the lower one shows Bariloche and road 40 leading north. The lower photo shows road 40 connecting to the upper photo leading eventually to San Martin de los Andes. Also in the upper image you can see the closeness of the path of totality in the upper right corner.  If you do not stop, the entire journey takes 5 hours 14 minutes.

 

 

 

Map of Bariloche region

Arrive at Loi Suites Chapelco. Located in San Martin de los Andes, this 5 star property is the most exclusive lodge in the area.  With an unparalleled setting in the heart of Chapelco Gola and Resort mountain golf community the complex has 85 rooms and suites facing the Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course. It features a wine bar, two gourmet restaurants, spa, internet access, reading room, business center, gym and two swimming pools.

Loi Suites Chapelco Hotel

Overnight Loi Suites Chapelco.

December 14, 2020 (Monday)-Eclipse day!

A composite set of solar eclipse images by David Agard. The eclipse progresses from right to left.

After breakfast, depart for our eclipse site. The site will be selected based on local weather forecasts and observations.  Here the partial eclipse begins around 1145am with totality occurring around 108pm and partial phases ending at 236pm.  The Sun during totality will be located at 72 degrees above the north northeast horizon.  After the eclipse, return to Bariloche.

Preparing equipment and testing it is vital to photo success.

Dinner and overnight at Hotel Loi Suites Chapelco with a discussion of the results of our efforts.

December 15, 2020 (Tuesday)-Bariloche to Buenos Aires

Your guide will meet you after breakfast in the lobby of the hotel and escort you to your waiting vehicle for the direct transfer to Bariloche airport.  Upon arrival your guide will be on hand to assist with check-in formalities.  The two hour flight will end at the Buenos Aires domestic airport where again the local host will drive you and your luggage to the international airport and assist with the flight check in back home.   Since most international flights leave at night, you will then be able to transfer for your flight home or extend on an optional cost tour to Iguassu Falls.

An OPTIONAL COST  extension tour to Iguassu Falls follows the core tour. DETAILS OF THIS TOUR WILL BE ANNOUNCED IN 2018.

The program includes:

  • Domestic air (price of all tours and domestic air are ESTIMATED as of 2018 and could increase!)
  • Services of English speaking local guide during the sightseeing tours only
  • Services of our representative at airport on arrival/departures
  • All present applicable taxes
  • Eclipse briefing
  • Transport to/from eclipse site(s)
  • Hotels and meals as outlined above

The program does not include:

  • International airfare
  • Meals other than mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Any services during leisure time.
  • Airport taxes
  • Visa fees and processing if any (we recommend getting an online visa for single entry)
  • Insurance
  • Tipping/gratuities (range of tipping will be defined later)
  • Necessary inoculations
  • Items of personal nature such as visa fee, telephone, laundry, beverages. Any items not listed above.

PRICES FOR TOUR#2

TOUR#2

$5529 .* (cash discount price is $5266.) each with two persons sharing 

$6080.* (cash discount price is $5790.) for a single room 

*Based on paying by credit card

We highly recommend travel insurance for the following reasons.  There have been unexpected health problems for either participants or family members of participants that has caused some to cancel just before departure.  In addition work related problems, weather and airline mechanical issues that have caused unacceptable flight cancellations and missed days or connections.

REGISTRATION FORM TOUR#2

IMPORTANT NOTE: Before you sign up be aware of the following point.  Argentina is experiencing inflation, the rate of which cannot be guaranteed.  Prices shown here have been estimated to account for the current rate of inflation; but there is always a chance that may increase slightly before the tour begins and after nonrefundable deposits have been sent to the ground operator.  Future Travel has done their best to project the cost for 2020. However, should a price incur they will be obliged to pass it on to everyone on the trip. Deposits are absolutely required for Future Travel to confirm the ground space due to the very limited hotels.

There are very few hotels in the eclipse zone and if you want to see this eclipse, we invite you to take the risk that prices will not increase very much (if at all) between now and early 2020. This is an unusual situation to be sure but we have tried to adjust the deposit/cancellation fees below to account for this within reason. 

 

To sign up for this tour, first, click HERE to fill out the registration form.  Send a form AND deposit FOR EACH PERSON in your party.  You will not be considered unless both a registration AND deposit have been received by Future Travel. Participants are chosen in order of receipt of both of these items. 

======================================================================

DEPOSITS AND CANCELLATIONS

HOW TO PAY

All payments are in US Dollars and can be paid in the following ways:

The fastest and safest is by electronic check instead of using the mail to get a check to Future Travel.  Go to https://houstonwebsolutions.formstack.com/forms/ach_authorization and it can be debited directly from your account IF YOU LIVE IN THE USA.

Alternately the price above is quoted as if you pay by credit card. Hence the cash discount is less as Future Travel is charged 5% more by the card companies. To pay by credit card go to https://houstonwebsolutions.formstack.com/forms/credit_card_authorization_form

IF YOU LIVE OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES you may pay by one of these methods: 1) credit cards, 2) money order; or 3) electronic check transfer from a bank in the United States. Please contact Judy Shaw at shawj@travelleaders.com to make arrangements.

PAYMENT SCHEDULE:

$1500 deposit PER PERSON due immediately with registration form

Balance due December 1, 2018

CANCELLATION PENALTIES:

Future Travel must send nonrefundable deposits to Argentina to secure the limited hotel space.

$750 penalty from the moment you sign up until December 1, 2018 with this caveat:  No penalty until August 1, 2018 ONLY IF you find someone to substitute in your place should you cancel. 

100% penalty if canceled after December 1, 2018

Deposits and cancellation penalties are driven by the terms and conditions provided to us by our ground operator(s).

 

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Your signature on our reservation form will signify your agreement with the following terms and conditions. These are the terms and conditions applicable to the Land Expeditions offered by Future Travel, Inc. a Texas corporation (“we”, “us” and “our”).  The terms “client” “you” and “your” refer to each person who purchases and/or participates in the Cruise.

1. Solar eclipse tour 2020 ITINERARY: The itinerary on the Solar eclipse tour 2020 Website and any other materials is hereby included in this agreement. However, the Tour Operator, reserves the right to make changes to the itinerary as explained in this agreement.  For more information: (281) 480-1988 or (800) 929-9004 or email futuretravel@travelleaders.com.

2. Solar eclipse tour 2020 PRICE: Prices are based on two persons sharing accommodations. There is additional cost for a single accommodation (single supplement) or an extra person in the room if either of these features is available.  Prices may be subject to increase as described in this agreement.

3. DEPOSIT AND FINAL PAYMENT REQUIREMENTS: If you sign up before the dates posted on the Solar eclipse tour 2020 webpage, a deposit in the amount stated on the webpage is due along with your signed reservation form in order to secure your reservation, which is subject to availability at the time we receive the form and deposit. Dates and deposit amounts vary depending upon the trip. Failure to meet those deposit dates will result in cancellation of your reservation and loss of deposit as defined under the cancellation penalties portion of the webpage. If the Tour is sold out at the time we receive your reservation form and deposit, we will contact you and ask if you wish to be added to a waiting list. We reserve the right to accept or decline any prospective participant for any nondiscriminatory reason in our sole discretion. All reservations must be paid in full by the date specified. Spaces not paid in full by this date are subject to cancellation without refund and will be charged a $250 late-payment fee.

4. Solar eclipse tour 2020 CANCELLATION BY YOU: We are  making arrangements with travel suppliers that require us to incur very substantial costs of operation. Therefore, if you cancel, we will retain all of your payments as liquidated damages. However, if you find a replacement for yourself or any other members of your traveling party, we will charge a change fee of  $250  as specified on the Solar eclipse tour 2020 webpage.   We must receive the written (email is sufficient) notice of the change and a signed/scanned reservation form from the new participant. If we receive notice of the change after specified date, we will not provide a refund. There is no refund for unused portions of Solar eclipse tour 2020 once it has commenced. You are solely responsible for costs incurred by you due to missed, canceled or delayed transportation. Your decision not to participate on Solar eclipse tour 2020 due to State Department/other US or foreign government warnings, fear of travel, illness, or any other reason will be deemed a cancellation.  If a flight or other delay for any reason prevents you from joining Solar eclipse tour 2020 on the departure date and time, you will be considered a no-show, and we cannot provide a full or partial refund or credit toward a future Tour, but you may join Solar eclipse tour 2020 late at your expense. There are NO exceptions to our cancellation policies.

5. OTHER  CHANGES: There will be a change fee of $75.00 per person charged for any change in travel arrangements made after ticketing and at least 30 days prior to departure in addition to charges incurred by our suppliers. No changes will be allowed within 30 days of the departure date.

6. INSURANCE: We strongly recommend that you purchase insurance in case of trip cancellation and medical problems, as well as medical evacuation insurance to cover the cost of a private jet to return home.  We will send you insurance information if you request it from us. However, any questions about what travel insurance does or does not cover should be addressed directly to the travel insurance company.  If you decline insurance coverage, you will personally assume full responsibility for any financial loss associated with your travel arrangements, and you could lose your travel investment and/or have to pay more money to correct the situation. For example, you will suffer a loss if:  (i) your flight has been cancelled and your hotel and Tours are nonrefundable; (ii) you need to cancel your trip due to illness; (iii) a hurricane, volcano or earthquake occurs while traveling and you are stranded; (iv) your cruise line, airline, or Tour operator files for bankruptcy, unless you have paid by credit card; (v) a terrorist incident occurs at the destination you planned on visiting; (vi) you have a medical emergency in a foreign country and need medical attention or evacuation; (vii) your bags are lost and your medication is in them, and you need to have an emergency prescription filled; or (viii) your passport and wallet are stolen, and you need emergency cash and a replacement passport.  We offer Travel Guard Travel Insurance to residents and will provide costs associated with insuring your trip, both at time of deposit and final payment. If you live in another country, you must buy such insurance there.

7. Solar eclipse tour 2020 PRICE INCREASES:  In the event that the cost of any aspect of Solar eclipse tour 2020 should incur an unexpected cost increase, Future Travel is obliged to pass on these increases. While rare, they can occur and are beyond the control of Future Travel.  When such increase is known, Future Travel will alert all participants and provide the amount and reason for the increase. It will be required that all Tour members provide payment by the date due per communication from Future Travel.  Prices are also subject to increase for currency fluctuations and the cost of supplier services.

8. Solar eclipse tour 2020 AIRFARES:  Airline arrangements are usually optional and not included in the tour price unless specifically stated. Airlines and airfares included in your trip are subject to change without notice.  Please check with us for conditions applicable to your airline ticket. Airfares are subject to price increases until you have paid in full. Even after you have paid in full, airfares are subject to supplemental price increases imposed by governments, and you hereby consent to any such price increases. We will not change your requested seat assignments on commercial aircraft without permission.  However, airlines often change seat assignments to satisfy their loyalty members or because of equipment changes (aircraft type). We are not notified of these changes in advance, and often clients are not made aware of these changes until they arrive at the airport.  We are not responsible for seat assignment changes made by the airline. Frequent flyer programs are private agreements between airlines and passengers, and we cannot be held responsible for mileage discrepancies involving airline loyalty reward programs.    

9. Solar eclipse tour 2020 ECLIPSE (or other astronomical event) VIEWING: We understand that you have decided to participate based on your ability to view the astronomical event advertised as the highlight of Solar eclipse tour 2020. While we will do our best to arrange for the viewing, we cannot guarantee that there will be no cloud cover, that the group will be in the planned position, or that there will not be another reason beyond our control that prevents viewing. Therefore, we will not be liable or responsible for any loss, damage, cost, or expense of any kind in the event that such viewing is not possible for any reason including but not limited to any act of God, war, fire, collision, directions of underwriters, arrest, order or restraint by any government agency or official acting under color of authority, acts of terrorism, labor disturbances or disputes, civil commotion, weather conditions and considerations of the safety of the ground transportation being used, (for which the Ground Operator shall be the sole judge),   breakdowns of or damage to the transport vehicle, requisition of the vehicle by governmental authority, illness, death of a family member or other cause or circumstance beyond our control.

10. Solar eclipse tour 2020 CHANGES OR CANCELLATION BY GROUND OPERATOR OR US: 
The Ground Operator in its sole discretion may cancel, advance, or postpone any part of the tour, change the itinerary, and may (but is not obligated to) substitute another transport vehicle, and we will not be liable for any loss whatsoever to passengers by reason of such cancellation, advancement, postponement, or substitution. If the Solar eclipse tour 2020 is completely canceled by our Ground Operator, we will provide a full refund, or, if the Solar eclipse tour 2020 is partially canceled, we will provide a partial refund depending on any refund provided to us by the Ground Operator. Under such circumstances, Future Travel shall have no further liability for damages or compensation of any kind. We reserve the right to cancel the Tour for inadequate participation, in which case we will provide a full refund of the Solar eclipse tour 2020 price and shall have no further liability for damages or compensation of any kind. Please note that the availability of any refund for travel insurance and/or other travel products (airfare and hotel), even if purchased in conjunction with Solar eclipse tour 2020, will be determined in accordance with the applicable cancellation policies for such other products or services. Sightseeing is subject to change due to weather conditions, accessibility, border crossing limitations, and hours of operation. Sightseeing will be by motor coach or other transportation as stated in the itinerary.

11. OTHER  RIGHTS OF Ground Operators: You may request a copy of the Ground Operator’s  Passage Contract, which constitutes your agreement with the Ground Operator. The contract provides that the Ground Operator may exercise its rights in a variety of matters. We have no liability for a full or partial refund of the tour fare, or for any lodging or transportation expenses, as a result of the Ground Operator’s exercise of its contractual rights.

12. SAFETY WHILE ON Solar eclipse tour 2020: You assume sole responsibility for your own safety during Solar eclipse tour 2020.  We do not guarantee your safety at any time. You acknowledge that all Excursions /Tours, however conducted, airline flights and ground transportation,  are operated by independent contractors. Future Travel neither supervises nor controls their actions, nor makes any representation, either express or implied, as to their suitability. These services are provided only as a convenience for you, and you are free to use or not use them. You agree that Future Travel assumes no responsibility, does not guarantee performance and in no event shall be liable for any negligent or intentional acts or omissions, loss, damage, injury or delay to you and/or your property in connection with these services.

13. PASSPORTS AND VISAS: International travel requires a passport valid 6 months beyond your intended return travel date. In many cases, you will also need to have multiple consecutive blank visa pages within your passport (the number varies depending on the destination(s)). Many destinations also require that visas be obtained prior to travel. Please speak with us if you are unsure about the visa requirements for your travel destination, but you are solely responsible for complying with passport and visa requirements. Your name, as listed on your travel documents, must exactly match your name as listed on tour or airline documents. Citizens of other countries must make their nationalities known to Future Travel at registration and are responsible for obtaining proper documentation to enter the U.S. and any other countries involved.

14. MEDICAL CERTIFICATION AND PASSENGERS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS: By booking the Solar eclipse tour 2020, you certify that: (a) you are in good general health and capable of performing normal activities on the Solar eclipse tour 2020; (b) you are capable of caring for yourself during any expedition and will not impede the progress of the trip or enjoyment of other Solar eclipse tour 2020 participants; (c) you understand that any expedition may take you far from the nearest viable medical facility; and (d) all expedition members must be self-sufficient; and (e) you have not been recently treated for, nor are aware of, any physical, mental or other condition or disability that would create a hazard to yourself or other Solar eclipse tour 2020 participants. Any condition that may require attention or treatment must be reported in writing at the time your reservation is made. Transport may be refused to any person whose state of health or physical conditions render them, in the opinion of the Ground Operator, unfit.  Participation in this or any other Solar eclipse tour 2020 will be denied to any person who will enter her third trimester (twenty-seventh week) of pregnancy by the time of the Solar eclipse tour 2020 or during the Solar eclipse tour 2020 and to children under the age specified on the Solar eclipse tour 2020 Webpage—usually 16. You must notify Future Travel at the time of booking of any disability or other medical or physical condition that may require special assistance during the Solar eclipse tour 2020. Your failure to do so will release Future Travel from any liability for loss, damages or other compensation arising from or related in any way to such disability or condition. Future Travel and our Ground Operator(s) reserve the right to require that any passenger who is not self-sufficient must travel with a companion who takes responsibility for any assistance needed during the Solar eclipse tour 2020 and in case of emergency.  You understand that if you fraudulently represent yourself as fit for this tour, you may be removed prior to or during the Tour at your own expense.

15. CONDITION OR BEHAVIOR: We may exclude you from participating in all or any part of the trip if, in our sole discretion, your condition or behavior renders you unfit for the trip or unfit for continuation once the trip has begun. Unfitness may include, without limitation, any behavior that, regardless of its cause, is inappropriate or offensive or interferes with the delivery of our services, or may constitute a hazard or embarrassment. In such case, our liability shall be strictly limited to a refund of the recoverable cost of any unused portion of the trip.

16. CHILDREN: We normally accept children if they are the age of 16 and older (thought the minimum age may vary by Tour), although some Tours are for adults only and are specified as such. Children must be accompanied and supervised by parents or guardians, who will bear ultimate responsibility for their actions, and are expected to display proper decorum while the group is together, especially at the observation site and on all transport vehicles.

17. LUGGAGE ON BOARD: Each guest may bring on board a reasonable amount of baggage. It is recommended that participants do not bring expensive jewelry or like possessions with them. Telescopes and observation equipment should be securely packed; insurance on expensive items is highly recommended. All luggage must be stored in the passenger’s accommodations. Pets, dangerous or illegal items such as weapons, explosives, combustible substances, non-prescription controlled substances, or illegal drugs may not be brought on Solar eclipse tour 2020. Any such items shall be surrendered to security at embarkation and may be disposed of at the sole discretion of the cruise line. All luggage hand-carried or checked, and your person are subject to security inspections that may involve physical search. Curbside porters are available at the pier during embarkation to take luggage to the vessel. Please be sure each piece of luggage is locked and has a tag listing your name, and contact information. We assume no responsibility for checked or carry-on luggage. Any luggage left anywhere on Tour will be forwarded at the guest’s expense if discovered. IF YOU ARE BRINGING A TELESCOPE OR ANY UNUSUAL EQUIPMENT, YOU MUST PROVIDE A LIST OF SUCH ITEMS TO FUTURE TRAVEL SO THAT WE CAN DETERMINE THEY ARE ALLOWABLE. WE WILL PROVIDE INSTRUCTIONS RELATED TO CUSTOMS FORMALITIES.

18. TRANSFERS: When transfers between hotels and airports and the pier are included on the Solar eclipse tour 2020 price, transportation of participants and their baggage is provided only when participants travel with the rest of the group. If your schedule is different from this, private transfers are available at extra cost and must be requested in writing. Carry-on bags must be carried by Solar eclipse tour 2020 participants. Porterage may be included AFTER passing through the customs area upon arrival if so indicated in the inclusions. Porterage is generally not included unless otherwise stated in the individual itinerary inclusions. In some situations, porterage may not be possible. Be sure to consult the cruise information to be sure.

19. TAXES AND TIPS: If a land package is involved, tips are not included (unless stated), but taxes for hotel accommodations and airfare are generally included. Departure taxes within foreign countries are NOT included since they vary widely. Each airport departure may require a separate departure tax which will have to be collected from each participant prior to boarding an airline or ship.  Tips are NOT included for guides, or drivers.  Future Travel will provide guidance on tips, when they should be given and how collected.  Although the amounts and timing may differ, this is left to each person’s discretion. There will be times when the Tour escort or guide will alert participants as to whom and how much to tip.  These actions are necessary in order to maintain good service and assure that all promised services will occur as scheduled.

20. WHAT ELSE IS NOT INCLUDED ON OUR TOUR: Cost of passports or visas, excess baggage, meals and beverages not specified in the itinerary, phone calls, voluntary changes in  flights or other methods of transport, laundry, insurance costs, and items or services of a personal nature not specified in the cruise itinerary.

21. MEDICAL CARE:  You assume all risks associated with travel and transportation on the Tour. While on the Solar eclipse tour 2020 or along the way to/from the Solar eclipse tour 2020, the availability of medical care may be limited and/or delayed. You acknowledge that all or part of the Solar eclipse tour 2020 may be in areas where medical care and/or evacuation may not be available. You agree to indemnify and reimburse Future Travel and its ground operators in the event that these entities by their sole discretion, advance to you the cost of emergency medical care, including medical evacuation and/or medical care provided ashore, as well as transportation and/or lodging in connection therewith. Future Travel shall have no responsibility to advance any such costs.

22. ROOMMATES:If you are traveling by yourself but wish to share a room with someone else, we will attempt to match men with male roommates and women with female roommates, along with smoking/non-smoking preferences.   However, the ground operator prohibits all smoking on tour. If we cannot find a roommate for whatever reason we will advise you and have to charge you the single supplement fee. You may wish to look for a roommate from your local astronomical society, family or friends. Your decision to accept a roommate for the tour is at your own risk. Future Travel is not responsible or liable for any and all claims or cause of action arising out of or in connection with your acceptance or selection of a roommate for the tour, including, without limitation, any injury or damage to persons or property which may be caused, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from such request or selection.

23. SMOKING: Smoking is prohibited on  our Solar eclipse tour 2020 buses, the astronomical event observation site, and in briefing and lecture rooms as well as in hotel rooms and any other places where the group is congregating.

24. INFORMATION: Information that we publish in our Solar eclipse tour 2020 brochures, collateral material and the Solar eclipse tour 2020 Website is believed to be accurate and reliable. We make no representations or warranties regarding such information or any information provided by a third party. Unless expressly stated in writing, we do not endorse the products or services offered by any company or person identified in our brochures, collateral material or Website, nor are we responsible for any content published by a third party.

25. RESPONSIBILITY: We act only in the capacity of agent for the suppliers of the travel services named in your itinerary or otherwise providing services or goods in connection with the tour (the “suppliers”), such as airlines, hotels and other lodging providers, local hosts, sightseeing tour operators, bus lines, car rental companies, driving services, restaurants, and providers of entertainment. We assume no responsibility for any personal injury, property damage, or other loss, accident, delay, inconvenience, or irregularity which may be occasioned by reason of any act or omission of any of the Suppliers.

26. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY: In no event will we be liable for any injury, loss, claim, damage, or any special, punitive, exemplary, direct, indirect, incidental, or consequential damages of any kind, whether based in contract, tort, strict liability, or otherwise, that arise out of or are in any way connected with the tour even if advised of the possibility of such damages. In no event will our aggregate liability exceed the total tour price set forth in the itinerary for any occurrence including, but not limited to: (1) injury, death or delay of passengers, or loss, damage or delay of or to passengers’ baggage or other property, which may be caused, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from participation in the Solar eclipse tour 2016 including, without limitation, passenger’s use of or participation in any excursion, on  concession or athletic or recreational activity; (2) your request for or selection of a roommate for the tour; (3) emotional distress, mental suffering or anguish or psychological injury of any kind under any circumstances (except when such damages were caused by Future Travel’s negligence and resulted from the same passenger’s sustaining actual physical injury, or having been at risk of actual physical injury, or when such damages are held to have been intentionally inflicted by Future Travel); (4) any change in scheduled Solar eclipse tour 2020 events and/or celebrity appearances; (5) the Tour Operators’ exercise of its contractual rights; or (6) or (if you are entering into this agreement on behalf of yourself and your, group, party, or traveling companions) any claim arising out of their assertion that you were not authorized to agree on their behalf.  You further agree that Future Travel shall not be held vicariously liable for the intentional or negligent acts of any persons not employed by Future Travel, nor for any intentional or negligent acts of Future Travel’s employees committed while off duty or outside the course and scope of their employment. In the event that a court of competent jurisdiction holds any of the foregoing to be unenforceable, then Future Travel’s liability shall be limited to the maximum extent permitted by law. In addition to the restrictions and exemptions from liability provided in these Terms and Conditions, Future Travel shall have the full benefit of any applicable laws providing for limitation and exoneration from liability, and nothing in contained herein is intended to operate to limit or deprive Future Travel of any such statutory limitation of or exoneration from liability.

27. FORCE MAJEURE: We assume no responsibility for any personal injury, property damage, or other loss, accident, delay, inconvenience, or irregularity which may be occasioned by reason of any matter beyond our exclusive control including but not limited to a delay or cancellation that causes you to miss all or any portion of the Solar eclipse tour 2020, acts of God, acts of government, war, terrorist acts, riots, disaster, weather extremes, or strikes. We have no special knowledge regarding the financial condition of the suppliers, unsafe conditions, health hazards, weather hazards, or climate extremes at locations to which you may travel. You understand that health care standards, facilities, and services abroad may be different or even inadequate for treating health conditions.  It is the responsibility of each Tour participant to obtain health and medical certificates, inoculations and vaccinations. For information concerning possible dangers at foreign destinations, we recommend contacting the Travel Warnings Section of the U.S. State Department at (202) 647-5225 or www.travel.state.gov, and click on “Travel Warnings.” For medical information, we recommend contacting the Centers for Disease Control at (877) FYI-TRIP or www.cdc.gov/travel.

28. DISPUTES: Except where prohibited by law, you (the Lead Passenger and all members of your party) expressly agree that: (1) any and all disputes, claims and causes of action against Future Travel arising out of or connected with the Tour shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, and exclusively by the appropriate court located in Houston, Texas, U.S.A. to the exclusion of the courts of any other state, territory or country; (2) you waive any venue or other objection that you may have to any such action or proceeding being brought in any court located in Houston, Texas; (3) any and all claims, judgments and awards shall be limited to actual out-of-pocket costs incurred, including costs associated with the Solar eclipse tour 2020, but in no event attorneys’ fees; and (4) you waive the right to claim any other damages whatsoever, including, but not limited to, punitive, consequential, direct or indirect damages. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Terms and Conditions shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Texas, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules which would cause the application of the laws of any jurisdiction other than the State of Texas. You agree to present any claims against us within 30 days after the Solar eclipse tour 2016 ends and to file within one year of the incident, and you acknowledge that this expressly limits the applicable statute of limitations to one year. NEITHER PARTY MAY INITIATE OR BE PART OF A CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT OR LEGAL PROCEEDING AGAINST THE OTHER.

29. INDEMNIFICATION: You shall indemnify, defend and hold harmless us and our officers, employees, directors, suppliers and agents, in their individual capacities or otherwise, from and against any losses arising out of: (i) your negligence; (ii) your failure to comply with applicable law; or (iii) your failure to comply with these terms conditions.

30. ASSUMPTION OF RISK:You acknowledge that you have voluntarily applied for the Solar eclipse tour 2020. You understand that you may travel to countries and areas that are inherently risky. You are prepared to assume risks associated with Solar eclipse tour 2020 including forces of nature, terrorism, civil unrest, war, accidents, and transportation including land vehicles, boats, and aircraft that are not operated and maintained to the standards found in North America, and you hereby assume such risks. You also assume risks associated with altitude, illness, disease, physical exertion, and alcohol consumption, knowing that access to evacuation and/or suitable medical supplies and support may not be available. You agree to take full responsibility for your own actions, safety and welfare. You also understand that you will be a member of a group and will conduct myself in a way that will not endanger the group or yourself.

31. MISCELLANEOUS: We may assign our rights and/or delegate all or a portion of its duties under these Terms and Conditions to any third party at any time without the consent or permission of any parties to these Terms and Conditions.  If there is a conflict between these Terms and Conditions and one or more terms contained in another agreement between you and us, these Terms and Conditions will control. No alteration, cancellation, variation of, or addition to these terms and conditions shall be of any force or effect unless reduced to writing and signed by us. If there is a conflict between any part of these terms and conditions and any present or future law, the part that is affected shall be curtailed only to the extent necessary to bring it within the requirements of that law.You hereby consent to our use of pictures or video of you in our marketing materials without compensation.Facsimile or scanned transmission of any signed document shall be deemed delivery of an original.