Terms and Conditions
This document outlines the contract between Juche Travel Services and the customer. Hereafter the terms “we”, “us” or “our” refer to Juche Travel Services whilst “you”, “your”, or “yourself” refers to the customer and the customer’s rights, responsibilities, and obligations. Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is used interchangeably with “DPRK”. “KITC” refers to the Korea International Travel Company. “JTS” refers to Juche Travel Services. All conditions detailed here apply whether booking a private, group, or special interest tour such as Working Holiday or Volunteering Tours.
Juche Travel Services is the trading name of Esher Enterprises Ltd., registered office at 2A Hight Street, Thames Ditton, KT7 0RY and registered in England and Wales, company number 11199569.
Booking and Cancellation Terms and Conditions
A booking fee is to be paid by international bank transfer at the time of tour booking. Instructions on how to make this payment will be sent via email after we have received your application. The remaining tour balance (the tour price less the booking fee) is then settled at the pre-tour meeting in Beijing in either US Dollar cash, Chinese Renminbi cash or Euro cash.
Please note that the booking fee is non-refundable except for the following cases:
- In the event that your DPRK visa is refused and this refusal is not attributed to any fault on the part of the customer, then the customer shall receive a full refund minus associated transaction costs. Please note such refusal is very rare and we have only had one situation in our six (6) year history where a visa was refused, and in this particular case it was justified;
- In the event of force majeure, including but are not limited to war, riot, civil strife, terrorist activity, industrial dispute, natural or nuclear disaster, adverse weather or road conditions, fire, bureaucratic obstacles, changes in schedules or mode of transport by airlines, train operators and all similar events outside our control;
If such an event or circumstance arises and said event or circumstance results in an inability to proceed with the tour, customers are entitled to a full refund minus transaction costs associated with this refund.
Any decision to cancel your tour prior to its commencement must be received by us in writing and you will be liable to pay the tour balance owed at the time of such cancellation as follows:
- 30 or more days in advance: 0% of the tour balance
- 15-30 days in advance: 50% of the tour balance
- Less than 15 days in advance: 100% of the tour balance
You and you alone are responsible for any transaction costs associated with paying of the booking fee or tour balance. Please ensure all transfers are made with any costs being paid by the sender (your) account.
Please note that all our tours are advertised in EURO. You have the right to transfer the booking fee to our POUND STERLING bank account in any currency however the transfer amount must be calculated using the EURO exchange rate given by xe.com on the day of transfer. Consequently, the amount we receive in POUND STERLING must be equal to that of the booking fee in EURO on the day of transfer. You are liable to pay any shortfall incurred as a result of currency fluctuations, bank charges, or any other third party fees.
We can help you to arrange your DPRK visa for collection at the pre-tour meeting in Beijing. The cost of this service is EURO 50 in addition to the advertised tour fee and paid in cash at the pre-tour meeting in Beijing. Please note that you and you alone are responsible for providing honest and accurate information regarding your DPRK visa which may be rejected if you provide inaccurate or intentionally misleading information. In such cases, you will automatically forfeit your booking fee.
You can also apply for your DPRK visa at the embassy in your home country. In this case, however, you assume full responsibility for making the necessary arrangements concerning your DPRK visa and we cannot be held responsible for any delays or errors incurred during this process. If you are unable to join the tour due to errors in your visa arrangements, then you will automatically forfeit your booking fee and you will also be liable to pay the remaining tour balance as per the booking and cancellation terms and conditions (above).
When booking a tour with us, you are required to purchase full travel and medical insurance which is valid for the entirety of your DPRK trip. It is your responsibility to check that your travel insurance is valid for travel to the DPRK, and is not otherwise invalidated by your own government’s travel advice.
Purchasing this insurance is your sole responsibility and you must ensure that it covers you against any and all delays, cancellations, political unrest and its associated risks, government intervention, loss or damage or mishap that may occur to yourself or your property, personal robbery, sickness, personal injury, medical expense (including emergency evacuation and/or repatriation), emotional distress, mental suffering, or psychological injury of any kind that may occur whilst on the tour. Any claims regarding these issues are to be directed towards your insurers as we cannot accept any responsibility for the above mentioned events or conditions.
Please note that it is your responsibility to check with your local health official or government agency regarding any vaccinations that you may need in order to safely visit the DPRK.
We maintain regular contact with local partners in the DPRK as well as the British Embassy in Pyongyang to ensure the safety of our tours. The United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office currently advise against travel to the DPRK. In light of such information, it is your own personal decision to use our services and to travel to the DPRK.
All British citizens travelling to the DPRK are requested to register their details with the British Embassy in Pyongyang by completing the consular information form available here:
It is your further responsibility to follow your own government’s travel advice when deciding to travel to the DPRK. By using our services and booking with us, you automatically therefore accept full liability with regards to any and all delays, cancellations, political unrest and its associated risks, government intervention, loss or damage or mishap that may occur to yourself or your property, personal robbery, sickness, personal injury, medical expense (including emergency evacuation and/or repatriation), emotional distress, mental suffering, or psychological injury of any kind that may occur whilst on the tour.
Items Not Included in the Tour Price
- We do not arrange any travel or international transportation prior to the starting point of the tour as advertised in the tour itinerary. For most tours this means Beijing Capital International Airport or Beijing Railway Station in Beijing, China however some tours may also begin in Dandong, China. In such cases, you must make your own arrangements to these tour start points as well as all onward travel arrangements following the end of the tour. Please note some tours may have different tour start and end points so please pay careful attention when making onward travel arrangements.
- We do not provide any assistance in arranging your visa requirements outside of the DPRK. This means that you must ensure you have the correct visas necessary to travel to the tour start point, usually in Beijing, China. In most cases this means that you apply for the correct Chinese visa (double entry Chinese visa or 72/144-hour Visa Waiver Scheme). Any errors or delays in making such travel arrangements which result in your failure to join the tour will cause you to automatically forfeit the booking fee and be liable to full or partial payment of the remaining tour balance as per our booking and cancellation terms and conditions (above).
- Whilst all tours include meals and one drink they do not include additional beverages or incidental expenses including, but not limited to, souvenirs, funfair rides, trip up to the top of the Juche Tower, flower offerings, gratuities for guides and driver, optional extras as mentioned in the itinerary, etc.),
Juche Travel Services is an administrative booking agent, licensed to re-sell and advertise KITC tours. All tours are managed and operated by KITC only. This means that due to local changes in the DPRK or by KITC, tour itineraries are subject to change at any time without prior notice. In such instances, we will however endeavour to ensure that items in the itinerary are replaced like-for-like where possible.
Third party associates including flight and train operators may also change, delay, or otherwise cancel their services at any time and we cannot therefore accept any responsibility for such changes. In such circumstances you must reclaim any expenses incurred with your travel insurer. JTS will however endeavour to help make the necessary arrangements to continue the tour as planned, providing it is safe to do so. Any extra costs paid by us for such matters will be invoiced to you directly. Do also remember that other third party service providers will have separate booking conditions to which you may also have liabilities for which we are not responsible.
One month, thirty (30) days, before the tour start date we will send you a pre-tour final confirmation email which will include information on the pre-tour welcome meeting (if any), contact information of local guides or representatives, further details or changes to the itinerary, as well as the do’s and don’ts of the trip.
The way tourism is arranged in the DPRK is quite different to anywhere else in the world. It is important for the enjoyment of our customers and the overall success of the tour that customers realise this and are fully aware of what this may entail. Customers are required to follow local laws and regulations at all times. If you knowingly or otherwise breach local law, we cannot be held responsible in any way. You must take full responsibility for any consequences, financial or otherwise, that arise from such actions.
Our website contains an extensive guide to DPRK tourism. You will also receive a pre-tour email from us detailing the finer do’s and don’ts of DPRK travel. You will be required to sign the “customer declaration” prior to travel which affirms that you are aware of these rules and regulations. Your tour leader will also be on hand to address questions you may have. You are also encouraged to contact us by phone or email at any time to ask any questions that you may have to ensure that you are fully aware of local laws and regulations. We strongly advise customers to read our “Travel Guide”, found on the Juche Travel Services website.
When travelling to the DPRK it is important to be aware that you have been invited as guests of the country and must therefore adhere to the following codes of conduct at all times. This will not only guarantee your personal safety, but that of your fellow tour members, JTS guides, and local guides. If you are not able to adhere to these guidelines we kindly request that you refrain from all DPRK travel. If you behave in an exceedingly disrespectful, violent, or otherwise unpleasant fashion, you may be excluded from the rest of the tour, both for the safety and pleasure of the other tour passengers.
- In the DPRK you will remain under close scrutiny from your guides and other officials at all times;
- You are not free to leave your hotel or the group unattended (unless escorted by your DPRK local guides) at any time;
- Photography and videography is restricted and express permission must be sought prior to taking images or video;
- At certain sites you may be expected to show respect towards the Leaders images or statues in the form of a bow. Any signs of disrespect towards the Leaders or their images such as posing in a humorous manner, non-conventional hand gestures or expressions, or other mannerisms may cause extreme offense towards your local guides. We therefore strongly advise against any such poses under all circumstances. When showing respect please note that it is best not to chew gum, wear sunglasses, or carry any bags or items. Please be aware that you are a guest in the country and you must therefore follow the local laws and customs as closely as possible.
Notes on photography
Photos of soldiers, checkpoints, poverty, construction sites, or locals (without express permission) may cause offense whilst in the country. Seemingly innocent pictures of the countryside or views from the bus may also be a problematic due to the fact that unseen or hidden military installations may be nearby. In such cases it is best to always seek permission from your tour guides beforehand. Maintaining a good relationship with your tour guides is key to the success of the tour and a trusting relationship will often encourage more photo opportunities. According to DPRK rules, cameras with lenses above 150mm cannot be taken into the country.
For more information on how DPRK tourism works, we have a comprehensive DPRK travel guide highlighting the main points of DPRK travel available on our website. If you have any questions, please contact us at any time by telephone or email.
Prior to travelling with us, all customers are required to sign and agree to the booking “TERMS AND CONDITIONS” and “CUSTOMER DECLARATION” agreements which confirm that you are aware of and in compliance with DPRK-specific travel arrangements.
We cannot permit travel in the DPRK using the following passports:
- Republic of Korea passports*;
- United States of America passports*;
*Note that dual citizenship holders of one of these passports can still travel to the DPRK. We can also not accept bookings, without prior discussion via email, from those who are professional:
- Journalists or;
- Photographers or;
- Those intending to sell, distributed, published or broadcast any photos, videos, notes, diaries, logs, or other media taken in the DPRK.
If you are a Journalist or Photographer and wish to visit the DPRK then you must contact us directly. If you are unsure whether you fit into these categories, please also contact us directly so we can advise on your individual circumstances.
There are serious consequences for infringing on these conditions for us, the rest of the tour group, the KITC tour guides, and yourself if discovered whilst in the DPRK. In such instances we cannot be held responsible for any action taken by the relevant authorities nor are we able to provide any further assistance. If you fall under one of these categories or suspect that you may, it is your duty to notify us before booking a tour. Failure to do so will result in the automatic forfeiting of your booking fee and you will also be held liable to compensate Juche Travel Services for any losses suffered as a result of such actions including, but not limited to, the loss of our Booking Agent license with KITC.
Juche Travel Services reserves the right to change these terms and conditions at any time. All tour prices and itineraries are subject to change up until either (a) the customer receives the official tour confirmation email which is typically sent sixty (60) days before the tour start date or (b) we successfully receive your booking fee, whichever comes first.
This agreement is governed by the laws of the United Kingdom and the parties submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the United Kingdom courts.
This document was last updated on 14 May 2018