Terms and Conditions
Juche Travel Services, as Official Booking Agents for and on behalf of the Korea International Travel Company, look forward to welcoming you on a tour of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. We would like to draw all customers’ attention to our terms and conditions as set out below.
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 payable via international bank transfer within seven days from the receipt of the Juche Travel Services confirmation email which is sent by us sixty (60) days before the commencement of the tour (‘Day 1’ as stated in the tour itinerary). The remaining tour fee is 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 tour balance. Please ensure that all transfers are made with any costs being paid by the sender (your) account.
Please note that all our tours are advertised in EUROs. 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.
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-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 themselves are run and hosted 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.
What information do we collect?
We collect information from you when you book any tour with us. This includes your name, e-mail address, mailing address, phone, passport information, employer name, address and telephone contact details, tour preferences and special requirements e.g. medical or dietary. For specialist tours such as our Working Holiday Volunteer Programme we may also ask for additional information including copies of your qualifications and/or curriculum vitae. Your information may also be collected when contacting us through email, phone, or via our social media. When browsing our site you may visit anonymously.
Why do we collect this information?
Such information is necessary for us to book your tour and to make the necessary arrangements for your tour including the processing of your DPRK visa, hotel bookings, and flight tickets. Your information is only shared with trusted third parties when necessary and local law permits for the purposes of your tour booking. Your information is never exchanged, sold, or otherwise given to any other third parties unless specifically required, such as the legal cooperation with criminal or other legal procedures, dispute resolution and/or litigation cases.
We may also store your personal details for the purpose of future marketing, making improvements to our future tours, or to send future correspondence and marketing emails (unless you have specifically indicated that you do not wish to receive such emails) highlighting new tours or special offers which you may be interested in. If you do not wish to receive these emails you can request this by contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your information is kept safe and confidential through the use of a secure server and Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology.
Occasionally, your Juche Travel Services tour leader may take photos or videos of your experience in the DPRK, including photos or videos of you, the customer, for the purposes of future marketing and use in our social media. If you do not wish for your image to be used or taken in this way then please inform your JTS tour leader at the start of the tour.
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.
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”, “STATEMENT OF INTENT”, and “CUSTOMER DECLARATION” agreements which confirm that you are aware of and in compliance with DPRK-specific travel arrangements.
Unfortunately, we do not accept the following persons on any JTS tour:
- South Korea Passport Holders;
- United States Passport Holders;
- 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. Customers who have already signed this agreement prior to tour departure will be notified about such changes. All tour prices are subject to change up until the receipt of the confirmation email which is sent sixty (60) days before the tour start date. Customers will have seven (7) days from the sending of this email to settle the booking fees as detailed in the confirmation email. Only when the booking fee has been paid is the tour fully confirmed.
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 12 February 2018