The Social Group Terms & Conditions
Social Group Terms & Conditions
HOW THE SOCIAL GROUP CAME TO BE
In the 1990’s it became apparent there was a need for some sort of mechanism to enable people to connect, interact, and socialise – making friends and meeting people was not easy.
Aiming to provide something better than the tired old-fashioned ‘pen pal’ or ‘singles club’ or ‘dating agency’ ideas that existed at the time, an innovative new concept was devised. The Social Group was first conceived by Andrew Haglington in 1995, was up and running as an informal ‘group of friends’ by 1997, and saw Cathy coming on board with Andrew in 1999.
It was Andrew Haglington who decided to use the word ‘social’, with this being billed as a ready-made ‘group of friends’ set up that anyone could join in with, to go out to the organised events / services. The aim was to provide socialising opportunities where people could come together, enjoy themselves, and meet people. An easy way to make new friends.
People who joined were called ‘Members’. The get-togethers Andrew & Cathy decided to refer to as ‘events’. The office was run by the ‘Admin Team’. The people in charge of everything were ‘Organisers’. The Social Group became an independent 'social enterprise' at the heart of the community. In March 2003 local family-run business ‘Social Group Enterprises Ltd.’ was set up to run The Social Group on a more professional basis, aiming to cover the costs of an office and the wages of full time staff.
Founder Andrew Haglington is quoted as saying, "We spent a decade trying to explain to puzzled faces what we meant by the word ‘social’ in this brand new context. It wasn’t until after our use of the word ‘social’ was copied around the world that our terms for ‘all things social’ suddenly became everyday phrases, with the press labelling me as ‘the man who invented social networking’. Of course, today people can easily connect via the internet, but my wife Cathy and myself have always felt there’s no substitute for getting together in person and enjoying good times, over a meal, at a party, on a holiday, or wherever. And of course this is a nicer, more respectable way to find romance and meet someone special. Cathy and myself met through The Social Group and over the years we’ve been invited to many weddings, proof of how successful this can be. Myself, Cathy, and all our team take a lot of pride in all The Social Group has done for people and all we have achieved, especially in the difference all the hard work has made to so many lives, with us helping countless thousands of people to be less lonely. Today, there’s all sorts of services on offer, but at it’s core, we still view this as a ‘group of friends’ that people can join in with, to go out to our events with us. More than anything, this ought to be an opportunity to have fun!"
The SG Admin Team now offer a wide choice of events / services (subject to availability). Events on offer have previously included a social occasions, dining out, dinner & disco parties, nightlife, live entertainment, murder mysteries, comedy themed dinners, quizzes, behind the scenes tours, days out, walks, indoor activities, outdoor activities, adventure sports, weekend breaks, and holidays.
THE SOCIAL GROUP - CONTACT DETAILS
Members are referred to the CONTACTS DETAILS page inside the back cover of Social Group Magazine.
SOCIAL GROUP TELEPHONE 03456 121 770
The SG Office telephone is open 12noon - 7pm, most days. For the convenience of Members, telephones are open until 7pm, but are not open for calls regarding bookings in the morning or late at night. Generally the best time to call is around 6pm, between day time and evening events. Calls to this customer-friendly 03 number are charged the same as to an 01 number. Many people on inclusive contracts, from either landlines or mobiles, will in effect be able to call for FREE.
Having someone in the office to take calls 24/7 is not a service we offer. If the SG Admin Team are not immediately available, Members are invited to leave one message and wait for a response, understanding this may not be the same day.
SOCIAL GROUP TEXT MESSAGING
The SG mobile number is listed on the CONTACTS DETAILS page inside the back cover of Social Group Magazine.
SOCIAL GROUP POSTAL ADDRESS
All local Social Group areas and Social Group Holidays share this one main admin address to help keep down costs.
SG Office, “Revelstone”, Mary Tavy, Dartmoor, Devon, PL19 9PF, England, UK
SOCIAL GROUP EMAIL email@example.com
Emails should be titled in the Subject / Title / Header line of the email in the format stated on the CONTACT DETAILS page inside the back cover of Social Group Magazine. Emails not sent in this format may not be received.
SOCIAL GROUP ONLINE
The SG Admin Team headed by Andrew & Cathy operate an extensive network of website and social media pages, with dedicated Twitter pages for local areas. Displaying lots of photographs of things on offer previously.
SOME OF OUR MAIN SOCIAL GROUP WEBSITES
SOME OF OUR MAIN SOCIAL GROUP TWITTER PAGES
@SocialGroupUK @Social_Events @SocialGroupMag @SG_Holidays
The Social Group - Terms & Conditions
0.01 WHAT IS THE SOCIAL GROUP?
The Social Group began on an informal basis in the 1990’s. Social Group Enterprises Limited was set up in 2003 to run The Social Group on a more professional basis. The Social Group is a trading name of SGE Ltd. and includes local area branches, such as Cornwall Social Group, Devon Social Group, Somerset Social Group, Bristol Social Group, plus Social Group Holidays, which are all trading names of SGE Ltd. Directors are Mr. Andrew B. Haglington B.A. and Mrs. Catherine J. Haglington.
The Social Group started as a ‘group of friends’ that people could sign up to and join in with. Over the years The Social Group evolved to offer a wide choice of events and services. What’s on offer is varied every month and seasonally throughout the year. Previously what was offered included a choice of social events, dining out, drinks evenings, parties, tribute bands, music festivals, beer festivals, live entertainment, murder mystery, theatre, cinema, behind the scenes tours, quiz evenings, outdoor activities (e.g. cycling, horse riding, canoeing, segway riding, treetop activity courses, karting, archery, gliding), walks, days out, weekend breaks, Social Group Holidays, experience days, concierge booking services, and a variety of bespoke services (including advertising in SG Magazine, online social media promotion, party planning, travel research, writing, editing, etc.). All events / services are offered (subject to availability) at Member rates to those who join as Social Group Members.
0.02 WHY JOIN THE SOCIAL GROUP?
People sign up as Social Group Members for a variety of reasons. People join looking to have fun. People join to meet and socialise with Organisers Andrew & Cathy. People join looking to make new friends. People join hoping to find a partner. Some are separated or divorced. Some are bereaved. Some are new to the area and don’t know anyone. Some are looking for more to do. Some enjoy evening dining out with company. Some just want to get together for lunch. Some fancy trying outdoor activities and adventure sports. Some enjoy a day out to a historic house or gardens. Some enjoy the party nights, live music, festivals, and weekend breaks. Some join specifically to take part on Social Group Holidays with The Social Group.
Other people make use of the bespoke services on offer. Some book ‘Bucket List’ thrills, such as Parachute Jumps, Flying Lessons, Learning to Ski, Scuba Diving, or Snorkeling with Dolphins. Some book experience days such as Spa Days or Behind The Scenes Tours. Some instruct the SG Admin Team for office / admin services, publishing / writing services, or publicity / social media services. Some make use of the Concierge Booking Services to book overnight accommodation. Some ask for help with party planning. Some ask for help putting together a group weekend with hotel and activities.
0.03 PRIOR TO JOINING
To enable people to make an informed choice prior to joining, there is abundance of information available online, on websites and Twitter pages, accompanied by large numbers of photographs of things offered previously. Unless booked in advance with the Social Group Office as guests of Members, people are expected to join as Social Group Members before taking part. People are expected to have understood what The Social Group is before becoming Members of The Social Group. Terms & Conditions are displayed online and can be viewed prior to joining.
0.04 APPLYING TO JOIN AS A MEMBER
All applicants pay the Join Fees, and must complete, sign, and post in a Join Form to join as a Social Group Member. The Join Form is a legally binding contract between the applicant and SGE Ltd. in which the applicant agrees to abide by the Terms & Conditions. All applicants confirm that the details given are true and correct. A signature is required on this contract between the applicant and SGE Ltd. The Join Form should be printed out, then signed and submitted by post - not by email.
All new applicants must submit photographs of themselves which show an accurate and recent likeness – either 2 recent passport photographs or as a digital image passport style (face only, looking at the camera) by email. One photograph is kept on file in the office, so Organisers know what everyone looks like, and the second is used to make a Member ID Card.
There is no standard time for responding to applications, as this can vary depending on the workload of the SG Admin Team. Applicants can normally expect to hear back from SGE Ltd. within 14 days of payment, Join Form, and photos being received, although this may take longer at busy times, or when the office is closed for holidays, or if there are specific problems e.g. staff illness, postal strikes, or printing problems. If there are delays in getting started, applicants are asked to be patient. Delays may be caused if applicants don’t provide everything required - payment, suitable photos, and a completed and signed Join Form posted to the correct address. If applicants have not received anything within 14 days, they should notify the SG Admin Team. If applicants have provided everything and do not hear back within 30 days of payment, applicants will be entitled to a full refund, unless already having booked for events, given instructions to the SG Admin Team, taken part in events, or used the services of SGE Ltd. in any way, in which case, all rights to a refund of Join Fees just because someone has changed their mind are nullified. This is in accordance with government guidelines.
PART 1 : JOIN FEE CONTRACT
1.01 JOIN FEES
Join Fees are paid to join. Applicants pay Join Fees for the SG Admin Team to do the work to join them into the group.
Membership of The Social Group entitles people to:
- Become a Social Group Member, with a photo-personalised Member ID Card (subject to approval from the Organisers)
- Member rates for events / services offered (subject to availability)
These are the two obligations which SGE Ltd. agrees to provide to Members. SGE Ltd. are not obligated to provide anything further under the Terms & Conditions of this contract and make no other promises. Join Fees cover the work to join applicants into the group and are separate contracts to booking contracts or other instructions, dealt with individually. Join Fees are not connected in any way to the availability of social events, parties, meals, activities, holidays, or any other services offered by SGE Ltd. Events on offer are listed in SG Magazine. Services also include bespoke services, experience days, booking services, any current discounts, media services, office services, publishing services, and anything else on offer from SGE Ltd. Members are asked to respect Organisers right to get paid for the work they do, with many months of work going into what is on offer. Organisers reserve right of admission to The Social Group, and may turn down any application.
1.02 NEW MEMBER WELCOME PACK - VIP MEMBERSHIP OR BUDGET MEMBERSHIP IN SOUTH WEST ENGLAND
Those who join as Budget or VIP Members are posted a Welcome Pack which includes one current copy of SG Magazine (SOCIAL + EVENTS) appropriate for the area people live in, with details of how things work, services offered, the planned programme of social events, parties, meals, live entertainment, activities, walks, and days out, plus UK Weekends and international Social Group Holidays, plus a photo-personalised Member ID Card with an individual Member ID Number.
Outside South West England, those who are wishing to be involved as UK Associate Members or International Associate Members should contact the office for details of how things work and what’s included. People living outside current Social Group areas are invited to apply to operate a Social Group franchise branch for their local area - enquiries welcome.
1.03 REFUNDS OF JOIN FEES
SGE Ltd. offer a 7 day cooling off period during which applicants can check everything over and make sure they are happy to proceed or decline. This means that at any time up to 7 days after receiving the Welcome Pack (deemed to be 3 postal days after posting by SGE Ltd.), applicants have the right to pull out for no reason. Applicants not wishing to proceed with Social Group Membership should notify the SG Admin Team in writing (in an email, text, or letter) within the 7 day cooling off period. Any refund of Join Fees requested within the 7 day cooling off period will be paid by SGE Ltd. within 30 days.
If applicants do not wish to proceed, they should return the Welcome Pack in the same condition which it was sent out. If the ID Card is not returned within 30 days, £18.50 will be charged. If SG Magazine is not returned in full within 30 days, £15.70 will be charged. If SG Magazine is returned damaged, torn, or marked (or looks read, thumbed, or creased) £15.70 will be charged. Payments for magazines and other publications are non-refundable. Photographs submitted cannot be returned. Join Forms submitted cannot be returned. No refunds can be given of payments for a list of contacts purchased from SGE Ltd. as this is a bespoke service. If applicants purchase a list of contacts, they are deemed to have used SGE Ltd. services and are not entitled to any refund of Join Fees. Applicants accept they are not entitled to any refund of Join Fees if they have used / benefited from SG Magazine in any way, if they have used / copied any of the information in SG Magazine, if they have made a booking for an event / service, if they have instructed the SG Admin Team to do any work for them, if they have attended an event, or if they have had the use of any services offered by SGE Ltd. Booking for an event / service or instructing any work to be done constitutes use of services. Use of services negates the 7 day cooling off period.
After the 7 day cooling off period, each person who has not given notice of cancellation and who has therefore decided to proceed with Membership, accepts the Terms & Conditions. After the 7 day cooling off period, if Members inform SGE Ltd. they are choosing to end their Membership, the SG Admin Team will do the work to revoke Membership, but Members accept that Join Fees cannot be refunded. After the 7 day cooling off period, Members accept they are not entitled to a refund of Join Fees if they simply change their minds and decide The Social Group is not for them. After the 7 day cooling off period, refunds of Join Fees will not be payable to Members who do not make use of services offered by SGE Ltd. Members accept they are not entitled to a refund of Join Fees simply because they do not enjoy an event they take part in, or if an event has low numbers or does not have a certain mix of people, or if an event cannot go ahead, or if events / services are not available.
1.04 JOIN FEE CONTRACT FULFILLED
Once applicants have paid to join, submitted a completed Join Form and suitable photographs, had the work done by the SG Admin Team to process their application, and had a Welcome Pack posted out, and had the benefit of a 7 day cooling off period or made use of services, with everything having been done properly by the SG Admin Team, the Join Fee contract is deemed to have been fulfilled by SGE Ltd.
PART 2 : BOOKING PAYMENT CONTRACTS
2.01 HAVING A GOOD TIME
The Social Group is about having fun. People are invited to sign up as Members, to book for services and take part on events. New Members receive a Welcome Pack through the post with a printed double-issue SG Magazine listing a wide choice of options. Members then contact the SG Admin Team to make bookings. Events are booked (subject to availability) with a view to going out and joining in, being good company, socialising with Organisers and other Members.
2.02 SOCIAL GROUP MAGAZINE
Information on what’s on offer is published in the printed SG Magazine in two parts...
- SOCIAL tends to contain news, features, photographs from previous events and holidays, and details of how things work.
- EVENTS tends to contain details services on offer, a programme of social events on offer, and how to book.
Additional copies of SG Magazine are available to purchase. For Members, an additional copy of just the SOCIAL section or just the EVENTS section costs £3.70, plus £2 UK p&p. For Members, an additional copy of SG Magazine (both SOCIAL and EVENTS sections together) costs £5.70, plus £2 UK p&p. The non-Member price of SG Magazine is £15.70, plus £2 UK p&p. Additional p&p costs if outside the UK. Prices of SG Magazine where sold may vary at the point of sale. If unforeseen circumstances prevent or delay SGE Ltd. from being able to produce / print / publish / distribute SG Magazine, no compensation or refund of Join Fees is due to Members.
2.03 GETTING STARTED
The term of Membership starts from the month people join. This is normally 12 months, unless otherwise agreed. The Social Group is structured to try to be customer-friendly, so as to make it easy to join and get started. People can see what Organisers Andrew & Cathy look like online and in SG Magazine, can telephone to speak to them in person, and there is a mobile number for texting on the ‘Contact Details’ page in the inside back cover of SG Magazine. The hope being that new Members will feel they know two people from the outset, with this personal and friendly approach making it easier to feel at ease and get off to a good start. For a first event, subject to availability, a free 'Meet & Greet' with Organisers Andrew & Cathy can be requested - if required, Members can telephone and see if this can be arranged when mutually convenient.
2.04 IMMEDIATE START BOOKING CONDITIONS
Occasionally, as a courtesy, applicants who have paid to join but who have not yet had time to submit a Join Form and photographs, may be allowed to book for an event or make use of services offered by SGE Ltd. straight away, with the SG Admin Team doing this as a special favour so that new Members do not miss out on something special. Anyone booking for an event at Member rates, or making any use of SGE Ltd. services, agrees Membership has commenced. Anyone booking for an event at Member rates, participating on any Social Group event, or making any use of SGE Ltd. services, agrees to abide by The Social Group Terms & Conditions. Issuing instructions / booking for something, thereby making use of services offered by SGE Ltd., immediately negates the 7 day cooling off period and any right to a refund of Join Fees. No Join Fees will be refunded at a later time should anyone change their minds. After this initial booking, SGE Ltd. retain the right not to accept any further bookings or participation on events / services until a signed Join Form and photographs are then received.
2.05 BOOKINGS FOR EVENTS / SERVICES
Events / services are selected from listings in SG Magazine. Bookings should be made well in advance of the stated booking deadlines, with Members stating full name and Member ID Number when booking.
Where payment is required, booking can be done over the telephone or via the post. Most people find the easiest way to book for events / services is to telephone the SG Admin Team in the SG Office on 03456 121 770. It is helpful if Members have a debit card or credit card to hand and their Member ID Card (with their Member ID Number on it) ready when calling. Telephones are open for bookings most days, 12noon - 7pm. Unless it is an emergency, Members are asked not to telephone outside these hours. The SG ‘Booking Hour’ 6pm – 7pm is usually the best time to call to make bookings (in between day time and evening events). Telephones are not open every single day. Telephone opening hours are the prerogative of Organisers. Organisers are entitled to take time off whenever they wish. If the SG Admin Team are not able to answer calls, texts, emails, or post (e.g. due to holidays, illness, or a family crisis), Members are expected to be patient and accept they do not have any right to compensation or refund of Join Fees. If unable to pay to book by telephone, bookings can also be made by post, to arrive before stated booking deadlines, with cheques payable to ‘SGE Ltd.’ Members are asked to use 1st or 2nd class post - not 'Signed For' (recorded delivery) mail. Booking by direct bank transfer may be an option for larger amounts.
When payment is not required, booking can be done by text messaging. Members are asked to understand the Social Group mobile may not actually be in the office where the SG Admin Team are dealing with bookings. When booking and leaving a message, either by text (or verbally on the answer phone), Members should wait for confirmation of the booking being received and accepted by the SG Admin Team and not assume it is in place unless hearing back.
2.06 ADVERTISED EVENTS / SERVICES
Every effort is made to ensure advertised details and prices are accurate at the time of going to print. Advertised prices are an invitation to treat. Prices at the point of sale cannot be guaranteed in advance. SGE Ltd. reserve the right to change, adapt, postpone, or call off things as necessary, with no compensation or refund of Join Fees due to Members.
There are numerous photographs in SG Magazine and online showing people enjoying previous events and making use of some of the services on offer. It is always hoped that there will be interest in all events / services on offer, but this cannot be guaranteed. It is made clear that services may not be available on certain dates. Booking as early as possible is encouraged. It is made clear that less popular things may not be able to go ahead. There is no guarantee that events will be able to go ahead. There is no guarantee that a certain percentage of events will be able to go ahead. There is no guarantee that there will be events every month. All events are offered subject to availability and Members are not entitled to a refund of their Join Fees if for any reason events / services are not available / not able to go ahead / are not well supported, as may happen sometimes. If a first choice of event is not available, Members are asked to be flexible and choose another event instead.
2.07 TAKING PART
All events / services must be booked in advance. Instructions are detailed in SG Magazine. Sometimes additional instructions will be communicated. Unless otherwise stated, on arrival at events, it is suggested that Members ask the staff at the venue for 'The Social Group'. At restaurant meals, Members should ask the staff for the table booked in the name of 'The Social Group'. If a restaurant has insisted on a personal name, as a back up Members are advised to ask for a table booked by either ‘Andrew’ or ‘Cathy’. At events not able to be booked in with the staff, to ensure meeting up with other Members, it is recommended that people turn up on time and hold something that says 'Social Group' in their hand, either a Social Group Member ID Card, a SG Magazine, or a piece of paper on which is written 'Social Group'.
SGE Ltd. does not provide transport to events and does not guarantee lifts / transport will be available. Unless otherwise stated, SGE Ltd. has nothing to do with how people get to events. Members are required to be able to get to events under their own steam, manage to take part in events under their own steam, to be able to cope with normal social situations.
All participants who book for events / services agree to abide by The Social Group Terms & Conditions. Participants are not expected to ignore Organisers, who may have important information that people need to listen to. Members must not involve themselves in the running of SGE Ltd. It is not for Members to decide which services should be available and which events go ahead, as this is entirely up to Organisers and, with all due respect, nothing to do with anyone else. Telling Organisers how to run their own business is not desirable. Members are welcome to make helpful suggestions for possible future events. Where Members are seeking romance, patience is advised, as that special someone might not even have joined yet.
2.08 CHECK MESSAGES BEFORE EVENTS
Prior to setting off to events Members are reminded to check messages (text, telephone, and email) in case there are late changes or an event is not able to go ahead. In the event of bad weather, travel disruption, emergency conditions, or other Members advising they are not able to make something, the SG Admin Team will attempt to let those who have booked know of any difficulties. If Members do not check messages, ignore messages, or do not receive messages and still turn up to an event which is not running, Members accept this is not grounds for a refund of Join Fees, with no additional costs payable by SGE Ltd. and no compensation due from SGE Ltd. If the SG Admin Team are not able to let Members know in time (e.g. if other participants do not give advance notice), Members accept this is not grounds for a refund of Join Fees from SGE Ltd., with no additional costs or compensation due from SGE Ltd. Members accept that SGE Ltd. is not liable for any additional costs incurred by Members, e.g. incidental and travel costs to an event, overnight accommodation booked separately by Members, etc. Members are reminded to make sure that SGE Ltd. have up-to-date contact details for them. Members should not ignore requests for them to contact the SG Office if asked to do so.
Organisers take pride in having successfully operated SGE Ltd. as a business since 2003 and doing everything properly and professionally. Organisers do their utmost to ensure the way things work is how the government have said things should. Everything has been checked by solicitors, so should be in keeping with the law of England & Wales. SGE Ltd. pass an annual bank compliancy test to ensure everything is done as it should regarding card payments. A respected firm of accountants look after the books. Terms & Conditions were put in place after extensive consultations with Trading Standards Officers, with the idea is to try to cover all bases and make everything clear so all parties know where they stand from the outset.
Organisers often work long hours in the office and afterwards like to enjoy socialising with Members. When acting as hosts, Organisers must not be excluded or ignored by Members. Members are expected to include Organisers with everyone else.
Organisers are on hand to host many Social Group events, but are not present at all of them. SGE Ltd. make no guarantee that Organisers will be on hand to host or welcome Members at the start of events. If Organisers are not present, Members accept they do not have any right to a refund of Join Fees, Booking Payments, incidental costs, or compensation.
2.10 IF NOT ABLE TO TAKE PART
If Members are unable to make something, Members arerequired to telephone the SG Admin Team in the SG Office on 03456 121 770 with at least 48 hours notice (if possible). It is preferred that Members don’t email or text to cancel bookings, especially as emails can be missed and the SG mobile is not always in the office where bookings are organised from, when the mobile signal sometimes patchy, with messages not immediately received. It is appreciated if the SG Admin Team can be given as much notice as possible, as this gives time to make any necessary adjustments to bookings and helps avoid anyone scuppering events for fellow Members.
Expecting people to telephone the office is standard procedure, as much as anything, to check that people are okay and make sure they will be turning up to forthcoming events, and is seen as part of managing bookings properly and professionally. Naturally, to be able to run events successfully, Organisers need to know that people are going to be reliable.
Members are encouraged to turn up to the things they book. It is not acceptable for Members to stand everyone up by not turning up. Members agree to make every effort to be at the events they have booked. Members are expected to understand they have a commitment not to let others down. Members are expected to recognise they would not simply let close friends and family down, and The Social Group expects the same courtesy.
Organisers don’t expect to be ‘stood up by text’ at the last minute, just before an event is due to start, thereby leaving everyone in the lurch. If Members are late or if there is an emergency en-route, a text notification may be helpful. But if an event is missed, Members are expected to call the office in person on 03456 121 770, within 48 hours if at all possible. One phone call should not be too much to ask. A message can be left if it is the answer machine. Failure to telephone 03456 121 770 to let the SG Admin Team know may put Membership at risk, especially if this causes significant disruption to events, spoiling things for other participants.
If Members decide not to attend something they have booked, Members accept they lose the whole of their Booking Payment. The loss of Booking Payments acts as an incentive for Members not to let others down. SGE Ltd will not give refunds of Booking Payments if Members cancel. If Members do not go to something and let everyone else down, Members forfeit Booking Payments. No exceptions. SGE Ltd. will not give a refund of Booking Payments if Members have a family crisis, if Members are ill, if a relative is sick, if the person who was giving a Member a lift lets them down, if Members have no transport, if Members have to work extra hours, if Members have double booked their diary, if Members forget about an event, or if Members simply decide to do something else - as, respectfully, none of this would be the fault of SGE Ltd.
Once cancelled, a booking contract ceases to exist and cannot be un-cancelled or reinstated. When a Member cancels a booking, SGE Ltd. cannot transfer money from one booking to another or one person to another. Members accept they cannot swap places or sell their places to anyone else. If Members cannot make an event, Members accept they lose their money and have no right to claim refunds of Booking Payments. If someone else turns up in a place of the Member who had booked, Organisers will view them as a gatecrasher and the Member who facilitated this may put their Membership at risk.
2.11 PROGRAMME OF EVENTS
The SG Admin Team spend months researching / planning / writing / advertising a range of events / services, which can be booked by Members (subject to availability). SG Magazine acts like a menu, from which events / services can be selected. Members are expected to take part in events organised by SGE Ltd. and join in with a positive attitude and do their best to be good company. Members are not expected to take part in everything, but it is hoped people will book to take part often and become part of Andrew & Cathy's ‘group of friends’ by participating. By offering a wide choice of things to do, it is hoped that there should be something to suit individual tastes and pockets. What’s on offer usually varies from month to month. Members accept Organisers are entitled to include whatever events / services they deem appropriate, as many or as few. SGE Ltd. is under no obligation to provide regular events in one particular area. Members in one area accept that events are included for Members in other areas. Members accept not everything can take place in their own area. Members accept that events further afield provide more choice. Members agree that what events take place, how many events go ahead, and who takes part in events is entirely at the discretion of Organisers. No guarantee of minimum numbers is made. No liability is accepted for other participants not turning up on the day. Members agree to make every effort to arrive on time. If Members turn up late, they accept they are not entitled to any pre-paid food courses already served and that no refund of Booking Payments or Join Fees is due. Members accept that entertainment being organised by the management of a featured venue is not anything SGE Ltd. has control over - in the event of no entertainment taking place, the event will simply become a purely social occasion instead, with no refund of Booking Payments or Join Fees due from SGE Ltd.
2.12 RENEW & RE-JOIN
There is an expiry date on individual Member ID Cards, which is when Membership normally ends. A bigger discount is offered to Members who choose to renew before expiry at the Renewal Price. After expiry, a lesser discount is offered to Ex-Members who choose to re-join at the Re-Join Price. Ex-Members wishing to take part in Social Group events are invited to re-join first. Ex-Members cannot take part as ‘guests’. Guests can only be people who have not previously been Members.
2.13 GUESTS WELCOME
In line with the 'The More The Merrier' philosophy, Members often invite work colleagues, family, and friends to book with them on events, at the discretion of Organisers, as non-Member ‘guests’, paying the 'guest price' listed for each event. The full name of each person wishing to take part as a guest must be stated when booking. Guests are the responsibility of the Member booking for them. Members must explain to guests that all participants accept and agree to abide by Social Group Terms & Conditions. If receiving last minute visitors, Members can ask the SG Admin Team if it is possible to book additional places, so that their visitors can join in, but must receive permission and not simply turn up on the day. Bringing along someone who has not had it confirmed they have a place booked by the SG Admin Team will be regarded as gatecrashing.
2.14 NO GATE-CRASHERS
No-one should go to events advertised in SG Magazine with the intention of joining in and socialising with SG Members unless they have booked a place in advance with the SG Admin Team in the SG Office. Gatecrashers are not welcome.
SGE Ltd. needs to charge Booking Payments to help cover office and admin costs, pay staff wages, and make finances viable - all Members accept and agree with this necessity. Unexpected participants turning up to events without booking in advance can be very disruptive and this is wholly unacceptable. Anyone not booked in advance should not just 'pop along' or just 'turn up' on the day. Anyone not intending to take part should not just turn up to watch, as events are for participants only, unless otherwise stated or agreed in advance. People will be regarded as gatecrashers regardless of whether they have made a payment to book or if there is no charge to book a place. Anyone who happens to be out at a restaurant / bar separately, or who has booked independently for a concert / show, or who has booked directly with a hotel / venue on a party night - not having booked with The Social Group - should not assume it is okay to join in and socialise with Social Group Members on the day. Anyone caught turning up to join in and take part with Social Group Members without booking in advance via the SG Office will be told to leave and any Members involved may have their Membership revoked. Anyone attempting to circumvent paying a Join Fee or the booking process will be viewed as engaged in an illegal act. Anyone attempting to take part in a Social Group event without paying the appropriate Join Fee or Booking Payment is trying to get something they have not paid for - this will be viewed the same as shoplifting or fraud, which are criminal offences.
2.15 CIRCUMSTANCES BEYOND OUR CONTROL
There are times when external circumstances may prevent some things from being available. Membership is on the basis of events / services being subject to availability. The Social Group is not an exact science. Because how things work relies on third parties and various external circumstances, it is not possible to make guarantees.
SGE Ltd. do not accept any liability for circumstances beyond our control, such as if a restaurant is full, if a cocktail bar has closed, if a hotel party has already sold out, if there are no more tickets available for a concert, if bad weather puts people off taking part, if extreme weather makes it unsafe to proceed with a walk or outdoor activity, which events Members choose to book for, if Members cannot make things, or if any of the expected participants do not turn up on the day.
Other Members not being able to make an event does not give Members any right to a refund of Join Fees. If other Members are not able to make an event, this is often for very good reasons and Members agree not to blame SGE Ltd. Refunds of Booking Payments will be available if SGE Ltd. cannot go ahead with an event due to lack of interest, but Members accept no refund of the Join Fee they paid initially for SGE Ltd. to do the work to join them into the group will be available.
People ask for more choice. The result of giving people what they ask for, offering more choice, tends to result in a ‘Goldilocks Effect’ with some events getting too many bookings, some events not getting enough, and some just right.
This is to be expected. It is not something Organisers are doing wrong. Quite the contrary. This should be seen as a positive. How things work has been structured this way in order to offer more choice. Looking after bookings is a major part of the work Organisers do, trying to attain optimum numbers via ongoing monitoring and management of bookings.
After offering a choice of events / services, Organisers have to wait to see who wants to book for what. It ought to be obvious that events are not able to go ahead until they are up and running with a suitable number of bookings. It is unrealistic to expect every Member to be at every last event. Members accept events / services may not be able to go ahead and they may be asked to make another choice and book for something else instead. Members accept Organisers are entitled to postpone, or call off, or make changes to any event / service at any time. Members accept Organisers may decide to call off events if something is no longer available, if events turn out not to be popular, or if other people drop out, reducing numbers. Or if there are problems as a consequence of illness or injury, problems with a venue, or problems which occur as a result of a natural disaster. If other Members do not attend events, book for events, or pull out of events and let everyone else down, and the event cannot go ahead or is spoiled as a result, Members accept this is not the fault of SGE Ltd. Members accept some social events will not be as popular as others and not everything will run. Members accept Organisers have the right to call off or make changes to events where necessary. SGE Ltd. will not give any refund if SGE Ltd. make changes to the details, times, or prices of an event. Any necessary changes will not be made unreasonably.
2.16 WHEN EVENTS / SERVICES ARE NOT AVAILABLE
Not everything will get exactly the perfect number of bookings. To expect such is unrealistic. Clearly, in an ideal world Organisers would like all events to get the perfect number of bookings, to be able to get everyone a place, and for everything to go ahead fine. However, as things turn out, apart from there being things in the wider world that can disrupt things, such as the weather, when it comes to bookings, sometimes there is too much interest and sometimes not enough. Some things can be affected by being overly popular and some by not being popular enough. Popular events can sell out well in advance, so to avoid disappointment, Members are encouraged to book early. At the same time, sometimes there is a problem with a venue or there is a lack of interest from other Members, so it is made clear things may not be able to go ahead.
If something is not available, Members are expected not to be ‘overly disappointed’, not get worked up about it, and not get disheartened or put off. If something is not available, Members are asked to simply make another choice. The SG Admin Team will often be able to offer alternative choices. If asked to move to a different event, it is helpful if Members make an effort to comply. Being flexible and happy to swap to an alternative booking is helpful. Members must not take frustrations out on Organisers or any of the SG Admin Team. Anyone sending unpleasant text messages / emails or making aggressive or angry phone calls will put their membership at risk and is unlikely to be included any further, with no refund of Join Fees due if Membership is revoked as a result. Bookings are taken on a first come, first served basis. If an event is sold out or not available, the SG Admin Team will try to contact Members to let them know. SGE Ltd. reserve the right to call off any event at any time. If an event cannot go ahead, the SG Admin Team will try to let participants know in good time, but Members accept this may not be possible, especially if problems occur late in the day or if other Members pull out last minute or are unable to get to a venue, e.g. due to a road accident / traffic congestion. SGE Ltd. are not responsible for third parties.
2.17 BOOKING CONTRACTS (FOR EVENTS / SERVICES) ARE SEPARATE TO JOIN FEE CONTRACTS
Booking contracts (made for events / services) are deemed to be individual contracts which are entirely separate from the initial Join Fee (paid to do the work to join people into the group). All events / services are offered subject to availability. Members accept that if events / services are not be available, this does not comprise grounds for any refund of Join Fee or any compensation. Members agree that no refund of Join Fee is due from SGE Ltd. should services not be available, events not be able to go ahead, if things are sold out due to being really popular, or if events cannot go ahead due to lack of interest.
2.18 REFUNDS OF BOOKING PAYMENTS (FOR EVENTS / SERVICES)
If events /services are not available or cannot go ahead, SGE Ltd. will refund Booking Payments. Or Members can leave the amount in credit to use against forthcoming events / services, which can save time and be more convenient.
The standard procedure is first of all to hold unused Booking Payments in credit until Members make it clear what they want to do with their money. The idea behind holding amounts in credit is to try to avoid paying extra charges to the bank. As a business, the bank charges SGE Ltd. each time a booking is made and each time a refund is made, so it makes sense to keep unused payments in credit, try to skip bank charges each time people book and get refunds, and avoid paying the bank more.
Members are entitled to a refund of Booking Payments for any events / services they are told are not available or for any amount held in credit. For security, Members must state full name, address, and a valid Member ID Number. For refunds of Booking Payments originally made by card, Members are asked to contact the SG Office by telephone during SG business hours, giving details of the card they used. 28 working days should be allowed for refunds of Booking Payments made back to cards. For refunds of Booking Payments originally made by cheque, Members are asked to contact the SG Office by post, and must enclose a Stamped Addressed Envelope. 28 working days should be allowed for refunds of Booking Payments returned.
No refund of Booking Payments will be due to Members if events are disrupted, called off, or abandoned due to an ‘Act of God’ such as a natural disaster, extreme weather, fire, storm, snow, heatwave, flood, earthquake, or circumstances beyond the control of SGE Ltd. such as death, injury, illness, power cuts, economic crises, strikes, criminal acts, war, or terrorism.
2.19 VIP MEMBERSHIP - REGARDING BOOKINGS (FOR EVENTS / SERVICES)
VIP Membership is intended to be a ‘more included’ style Social Group Membership, where more is included (e.g. new issues of SG Magazine posting out) and where there are bigger discount rates on things like parties, outdoor activities, weekend breaks, and Social Group Holidays (all of which must be paid for in advance in order to make the booking). For VIP Members, what are termed ‘Standard Events’ (e.g. many of the walks and dining out events) do not require any payment to book, simply a notification, which conveniently can be by text messaging. These are still ‘Booking’ contracts even though the charge for the ‘Booking Payment’ is zero. VIP Membership does not include the cost of events / services as part of the initial Join Fee and, in this, there is no provision to guarantee that any events / services will be available or go ahead. Where no Booking Payment has been paid, if events / services are not available or cannot go ahead, or are not enjoyed for whatever reason, there is no Booking Payment sum to refund, as none will have been made, with no compensation due, and no refund of Join Fee available.
VIP Members are asked not to regularly book and un-book ‘Standard Events’ on a whim, just because there is no penalty for letting everyone down, with no Booking Payment having been made.
2.20 THE SG ADMIN TEAM - MANAGING BOOKINGS (FOR EVENTS / SERVICES)
Running The Social Group involves far more work than most people realise. Members are asked to treat the SG Admin Team fairly, with courtesy and respect, with consideration for all the long hours of work and all the effort that goes in to managing bookings and monitoring numbers taking part.
Members are asked to recognise all the things the SG Admin Team and Organisers managing bookings do. Promoting things. Taking bookings from Members. Arranging bespoke services. Arranging group events. Putting together social meals, social entertainment, social activities, and social holidays. Keeping on top of all the admin. Booking in things with venues and suppliers. Asking more people to take part when numbers are low. Asking people to make another choice if things are already sold out or not able to go ahead. Encouraging people to take part and have a nice time. Adjusting things if there are late cancellations. Going out to host things, socialising with Members.
If the SG Admin Team contact Members to advise that something is not available or not able to go ahead, Members should not find fault with this, as this is not something the SG Admin Team are doing wrong, but is actually what the SG Admin Team are supposed to be doing – managing bookings, monitoring numbers, and asking people to move to alternative choices.
2.21 MEMBERS DO NOT CONTACT VENUES - SOCIAL GROUP ARRANGEMENTS ARE PRIVATE CONTRACTS
Staff at venues expect to deal with the SG Admin Team regarding Social Group bookings; not anyone else. Previously, when Members have contacted venues directly, this has caused confusion and disruption. Members must not contact venues where Social Group events are taking place regarding bookings. Members must only make bookings for anything being organised by The Social Group with the SG Admin Team at the SG Office. Members must not contact venues directly in order to try to add themselves an extra place if they are told an event is full or if they have not booked in time.
Members passing themselves off as a bona fide representative of SGE Ltd. will be seen as committing an illegal act. It will be viewed as illegal if Members investigate or interfere with the private contracts made between SGE Ltd. and other companies. Anyone looking into these or involving themselves in any way, contacting venues regarding Social Group bookings, finances, and contracts, is likely to have their Membership revoked and face legal action with SGE Ltd. seeking recompense.
The UK 2007 'No Smoking' law states that nobody is allowed to smoke in enclosed public places. In accordance with this, for everyone’s comfort, all Social Group events, activities, and holidays are designated as Smoke-Free. Anyone wishing to smoke is asked to do so well away from Organisers and other participants, including outdoor and international events.
2.23 DATA PROTECTION
In accordance with the Data Protection Act, personal details supplied by Members are kept safe and secure, locked away in a building the public does not have access to, and are never passed onto third parties for marketing. Information given to SGE Ltd. is confidential. Members can be assured of discretion. Members should always state their Social Group Member ID Number when they contact the SG Admin Team - this acts as a security measure for the benefit of everyone involved. Credit card and debit card security codes are shredded after payments are taken. Everyone who signs a Join Form contract and becomes a Social Group Member gives permission for their name to be cited by Organisers if required and if at any time there is clear journalistic need or if this is required by courts of law or the government.
If Members are happy for their name and telephone number to be disclosed to other Members when looking for friends and to share lifts / transport costs, Members can opt in by ticking the appropriate box on the Join Form. At a later date, Members can change preferences, and opt in or out of this by advising the SG Admin Team in writing, stating full name and Member ID Number. SGE Ltd. never give out the telephone number of a specific individual if someone asks, for obvious safety, privacy, and possible harassment reasons. Other personal details are never disclosed.
All Members when signing a Join Form Membership contract give consent for SGE Ltd. to take their photographs at events and publish their image online, in SG Magazine, and in publicity material at any time. A Join Form signature acts as a release form, giving consent. Bookings are only taken on condition that all participants on events give consent for their photographs to be taken and published. Which photographs are published is entirely at the discretion of SGE Ltd. Photographs submitted to The Social Group may be used in SG Magazine or online. The SG Admin Team would never knowingly wish to display photographs which they feel would embarrass anyone. However, where there is clear journalistic need, Organisers will cite the right to illustrate a point with photographs taken at our events, and participants accept this is the prerogative of Organisers. Members accept that all photographs taken by Organisers at our social events are wholly the property and copyright of SGE Ltd. All Members accept that it is illegal to copy, display, or use images from our web sites, online content, or SG Magazine without permission. Large size HD images are available to purchase.
2.25 CAUSE NO HARM
Members sign a Join Form which is a legally-binding contract to agree to abide by the Terms & Conditions. Members are not expected to break the Terms & Conditions. Participants are expected to be polite and well mannered. Members are not expected to cause stress to any of the SG Admin Team or treat Organisers with any discourtesy. Members accept that SGE Ltd. are not liable for the conduct of other people at events, including other Members, the general public, and staff at venues. SGE Ltd. is not liable for the negligence of Members or disputes between Members. Members accept responsibility for their own behaviour and social etiquette.
Members should understand they are representing The Social Group when they take part. Members agree not to do anything which might sour the atmosphere, or damage the success of SGE Ltd., or disrupt the running of The Social Group, or bring SGE Ltd. into disrepute. Racist, sexist, or offensive conduct, causing harm, or deliberately causing damage to venues or the environment, is unacceptable. Members must not do anything which reflects badly on The Social Group.
The Social Group attracts lots of people who are really nice, who join in and take part frequently, who make use of lots of the events and services on offer, and who are fun to socialise with. Unfortunately, there have been times in the past when a few bad apples have spoilt things for everyone else. Therefore, Organisers make it clear they can only include people who are supportive. Anyone not being supportive may put their Membership at risk. Members accept they have a responsibility not to spoil things for others. Members must not impede Organisers ability to offer social events / services. Members must not do anything to damage or undermine The Social Group, or anything which spoils participation for other people / lowers numbers taking part. There is no intention to restrict anyone's freedom of expression, just a reasonable and fair expectation that people will not cause any sort of trouble or upset or put off others with negative or anti-social behaviour.
The SG Admin Team arrange all Social Group events for Members. Members do not get involved in organising events for Members. Individuals publicising anything independently or doing anything to poach customers which significantly lessens attendance at any Social Group event, and anyone involved, may have their Membership revoked and be liable for damages.
Members agree not to compete directly or indirectly with SGE Ltd. Members agree not to promote or recruit for other social / holiday organisations or any other separate programme of events operating in the UK now and for a period of 24 months after they have ceased to be a Social Group Member.
In law, the exercise of freedom of expression and human rights carries duties and responsibilities, including the prevention of disorder or crime and the protection of the reputation of others. There is no right to cause harm to others. Members must not form cliques and must not gather to act against Organisers or other Members. Disruptive Members accept they will put their Membership at risk. Anyone acting against the interests of SGE Ltd. by plugging a non Social Group event, involved in any sort of clique which takes people elsewhere, or promoting any other social / holiday organisation at the detriment of SGE Ltd, unfairly damaging confidence in Organisers, or causing harm to The Social Group, may have their Membership revoked and may face legal action, with SGE Ltd seeking compensation. Members are prohibited from soliciting customers of SGE Ltd. to siphon off people to go elsewhere, lowering numbers taking part on Social Group events and damaging The Social Group, with this restriction in place for a period of 24 months after they have ceased to be a Social Group Member.
Confidence in The Social Group is important. Members agree not to spoil that confidence or sour the atmosphere at events by unfairly whingeing or giving a distorted bad impression, thereby putting other people off attending events. Members must not unfairly claim events / services have been ‘cancelled’ with the intention of trying to make the SG Admin Team look like they have done something wrong, especially when this is simply a case of some things not being popular or due to external circumstances beyond the control of SGE Ltd. Members must not unfairly mis-represent how things work with the intention of trying to make SGE Ltd. look bad. SGE Ltd. are not accountable for external factors or third parties.
2.26 BAD CONDUCT
Bad conduct from Members will not be tolerated. SGE Ltd. operate a strict policy of not tolerating any level of aggression or abuse, or disruptive, offensive, or discourteous behaviour of any kind. The Social Group should be seen as exclusive, with Membership regarded as a privilege. Right of admission reserved. Membership is entirely at the discretion of Organisers, who reserve the right to expel any Member at any time. This right will not be used unreasonably. It should not be necessary unless someone's conduct warrants it. Seriously undermining or damaging SGE Ltd. Being involved in the organisation of separate non-Social Group events or anything which lowers numbers at Social Group events. Being excessively rude. Treating Organisers in an unpleasant, unreasonable, threatening, offensive, disruptive, abusive, or aggressive manner.
Members agree not to do anything insult, embarrass, abuse, or endanger the Organisers. Members agree not to make angry, aggressive, abusive or offensive telephone calls. Members making angry, aggressive, abusive, or offensive telephone calls accept this will bring Membership to an immediate end, with no rights to any refunds of Join Fees or Booking Payments for forthcoming events / services. It is the policy of SGE Ltd. not to reward bad conduct with refunds or compensation. In serious cases, anyone deemed to have acted against the interests of SGE Ltd. may face legal action, with damages sought.
2.27 IF MEMBERSHIP IS SUSPENDED / REVOKED
A degree of loyalty to The Social Group is expected from Members. Subsequent terms of Membership are entirely at the discretion of SGE Ltd. Any Members who have been disruptive or who have made a nuisance of themselves may not be invited to apply to renew or re-join, or may be told they are not being allowed to continue, with membership revoked.
Organisers are entitled to suspend Membership pending any investigation of a breach of contract or something untoward going on, during which Members have no rights to Membership and must not attend any events. During suspension, Members must offer full co-operation. A civilised discourse with a written apology and assurance that no further breach of contract will take place is often enough to resolve any dispute which may arise, and Membership may then be able to resume.
No refunds of Join Fees or Booking Payments for events / services and no compensation will be due to anyone suspended from or thrown out of The Social Group. Anyone who is suspended pending an apology or who is expelled from the group, accepts they are not entitled to any compensation or refund of any monies paid either as Join Fees or Booking Payments.
Organisers reserve the right to protect themselves from defamatory comments, slander, libel, and malicious intent and reserve the right to their own freedom of speech, especially if it is necessary to protect themselves from any abuse or aggression. Anyone spreading unfair, untrue, or defamatory gossip may face legal action and a claim for compensation. Members must not air grievances in public, at events, or with other Members, which unfairly make Organisers or The Social Group look bad. Members agree to avoid being unfairly negative about The Social Group or about Organisers.
Anyone in breach of the Terms & Conditions, or found interfering with Social Group contracts with venues, or stealing, copying, or using Social Group information, ideas or property, or causing damage or disruption to The Social Group, or being abusive to any of the SG Admin Team, will have their Membership revoked. Anyone breaking the Terms & Conditions / anyone who has Membership revoked accepts that any bookings already made are null and void, and all monies which have been paid to SGE Ltd. are forfeit. SGE Ltd. reserve the right to charge a penalty or seek damages where appropriate. Anyone sending inappropriate or malicious emails to SGE Ltd. will be removed from email contact. Libelous, inappropriate, negative, or damaging content about SGE Ltd. posted on the internet will result in Membership being revoked and possible legal action with SGE Ltd. seeking damages. A reminder that malicious communication by email may comprise a criminal offence.
2.28 CUSTOMER SERVICE – CONCERNS & COMPLAINTS
SGE Ltd. operates a dedicated policy of fair trading and are committed to the highest standards of customer service.
If things are not as expected, as a first port of call, Members are asked to contact the SG Admin Team to seek clarification on any of the events / services on offer. Most problems seem to arise from misunderstandings, so it is hoped that people will talk to Organisers before getting worked up, so that efforts can be made to explain how things work, avoiding the need for anyone feeling upset. Concerns, comments, or complaints should be raised in a civilised, polite and calm manner; not by telephone, but in writing (email or post), stating name, address, and Member ID Number, with emails sent titled as stated in SG Magazine. Members agree to give SGE Ltd. a fair and reasonable opportunity to respond, which will be within 28 days.
2.29 KEEP IN TOUCH
The onus is on Members to keep in touch with what is happening, to book for events /services in good time, to turn up on the day, at the stated time. The SG Admin Team are under no obligation to chase people up and remind them to take part. If Members do not take part or do not make use of their Membership, Members accept this is their own choice. Members accept that not taking part and not making use of Membership does not give any right to a refund of Join Fees. It sometimes happens that people move away or go abroad for an extended period and forget to say. If Members never participate, are not responding to messages, or seem to have no further interest in taking part, Organisers have the right to not include them any further and not send them any further information, unless Organisers hear from the Members to the contrary. If Membership is not renewed before expiry, all bookings after expiry are deemed cancelled, all Booking Payments are forfeit, and any monies held in credit are void. Requests for refunds of money in credit must be made before expiry. After expiry, Members accept they have no right to any remaining unclaimed amounts held in credit.
Participants recognise and accept that they take part at their own risk. Participants are required to take out their own insurance as appropriate. Members agree that SGE Ltd. is not liable for any unforeseen circumstances, accidents, injuries, illnesses, extreme weather, changes, cancellations, and any other such problems. Members are always advised to dress as appropriate for the weather. The Directors of SGE Ltd. reserve the right to make changes to any aspect of The Social Group at any time, including prices, and including the social events, activities, and holidays advertised, and the Terms & Conditions which may need to be adapted occasionally. Updated Terms & Conditions will be published on the web sites and in new issues of SG Magazine. As a social media company that publish SG Magazine and an extensive network of websites and social media pages, SGE Ltd. reserve the right to journalistic need, when it is felt necessary to name individuals and illustrate with photographs. Members recognise the rights of Organisers and accept these Terms & Conditions.
Social Group Holidays - Terms & Conditions
3.01 WHAT ARE SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS?
Social Group Holidays are holidays / vacations / group travel experiences and services offered by SGE Ltd. Some who took part previously extolled the benefits of travel with a ‘group of friends’ for company, with experienced well-travelled tour guides / hosts, and it’s often been suggested that Social Group Holidays are ideal for single people / solo travellers, in having other people to go on holiday with. Many people have said that taking part on a Social Group Holiday is one of the best ways of making friends and meeting someone special.
3.02 SOCIAL GROUP TERMS & CONDITIONS
Participants accept that social occasions, meals, activities, visits, and excursions on Social Group Holidays operate in the same way that they do with The Social Group in the UK and the same procedures, format, and Terms & Conditions apply.
3.03 BOOKING FOR HOLIDAYS
Everyone is welcome to take part on a Social Group Holiday. People do not need to be a Social Group Member, but discounts on prices are available to those who do join as Social Group Members. As the holidays are with other people, they are ideal for single travellers looking for company. Holidays are also suitable for couples who enjoy socialising, and many people who have taken part previously have invited along family and friends.
If air travel is involved, participants can fly out with the group or from a convenient airport local to them, meeting up at the destination airport or at the resort hotel.
Participants can take part no matter where they live. Previously people have taken part who live in all parts of the UK, plus there have been others who have joined in who have been from as far away as Ireland, France, Canada, America, South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia.
3.04 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS - PAYMENTS
Anyone wishing to take part on a Social Group Holiday can telephone the SG Office on 03456 121 770. The SG Admin Team will be able to provide further information and advise.
Places on holidays are only booked once payment is received.
Methods of payment for Social Group Holidays…
- UK Bank Cheque / Postal Order - by normal 1st class post, made payable to “SGE Ltd.”.
- Direct Bank Transfer - contact Cathy at the SG Office for advice on how to do this via the internet.
In order to keep holiday prices lower, Social Group Holidays are not set up to take card payments for international holiday bookings. This avoids passing on additional costs to customers. Social Group Holidays must be booked with the SG Admin Team in the SG Office. Participants can go ahead and book with confidence, as holiday payments are protected in the event of insolvency by a separate Trust Account held at TSB Bank in Bedford Square, Tavistock, Devon, England (in accordance with government guidelines). Payment can be made in easy monthly installments (if required), if requested in good time. Places on holidays can be booked with a deposit as stated, if this is done in good time.
3.05 HOLIDAYS REQUIREMENTS
Participants on an international holiday must have a valid passport. This must have at least 6 months on it, which is a legal requirement. Participants must give their full name as it appears on their passport. Date of birth, home address, and phone number are also required, plus details of any significant medical problems.
Please advise of any special requests when booking. Sometimes a visa may be required for entry into the country of destination - if required, this is the responsibility of participants.
Everyone taking part on holidays must take out their own travel insurance, which should be put in place as soon as a booking is made.
As soon as possible after booking a holiday, participants agree to make sure they have adequate travel insurance cover in case they need to cancel their place on a holiday, which participants accept they will need to claim from if they decide they cannot take part and wish to recoup any of the money they have paid.
After the 7 day cooling off period offered on holidays (except on holiday bookings within 10 weeks of departure), people who decide to cancel a place they have booked on a holiday accept that Social Group Holidays cannot give refunds or cover their costs, and accept they must claim on their own travel insurance to get back any monies paid.
3.07 CHOICE OF ACCOMODATION
Social Group Holidays can usually offer a variety of different accommodation. Where two people are sharing a room, participants can request twin or double beds. Single occupancy rooms are usually available, which may be preferred by single travellers. On occasion Social Group Holidays can offer larger apartments with multiple bedrooms, where participants share a common kitchen / lounge area. Any other accommodation requests should be made when booking.
3.08 ROOM SHARING
Some people prefer to book a single-occupancy room. Others may wish to share a two person room in order to benefit from shared costs in order to save money. Room-share has previously proved popular. Organisers can often help find other people to room-share with.
Participants should make it known if they wish to room-share when they book. If Social Group Holidays cannot find another person to room-share, a single occupancy room option will be offered, subject to availability.
If the person someone was supposed to be sharing with lets them down, it is intended to try to protect the remaining person from incurring any additional costs. Where holidays are booked on the basis of sharing a room (whether just a deposit or full payment has been made), anyone pulling out and cancelling their own place agrees (i) they are liable for any shortfall or costs the person they were supposed to be sharing with may incur as a result of their actions, and (ii) they are liable for any shortfall or costs Social Group Holidays may incur as a result of their actions.
3.09 EXPIRY OF SOCIAL GROUP MEMBERSHIP
People who book for a holiday at Member rates will only be allowed to take part at Member rates if they are still a valid Member when the holiday commences. People who book for a holiday at Member rates who's Membership ends before the holiday commences will not be allowed to take part unless they pay the difference between Member rates and general public rates. If the additional amount is not received, SGE Ltd will have the right to cancel the holiday booking and no refunds of the holiday price or compensation will be due.
3.10 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS - WHILE ABROAD / LOCAL CUSTOMS
Participants on a Social Group Holiday recognise they are representing Social Group Holidays and The Social Group when abroad. Participants are expected to behave properly and not do anything which might reflect badly on SGE Ltd.
Racist, sexist, or offensive behaviour is not acceptable, as is doing anything which harms the environment. Participants are asked to respect local customs and standards of dress, as well as local laws. Social Group Holidays can take no responsibility for anyone falling foul of local customs or breaking the laws of other countries. Participants are always advised to dress as appropriate for the climate and take precautions with sun protection where necessary. In hot sunny climates, sun glasses, sun hats, and high factor sun screen are recommended.
3.11 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS - FLIGHTS
The price of flights are not included in advertised prices for Social Group Holidays, as Social Group Holidays do not sell flights. This avoids the need to pass on high costs, offers greater flexibility, and gives participants wider choice. Social Group Holidays do not sell package holidays including flights. Where air travel is necessary, holidays are not arranged as package holidays.
Social Group Holidays will usually research what appear to be the best available flight options in order to help participants. Those taking part are then advised what is available, and given the choice to book the same flights as others who are booked on the holiday, or to book their own separate flights and rendezvous with the group in the resort.
Participants are welcome to fly out from any convenient local area airport, at a time that suits them, subject to availability. Those wishing to travel with other participants will be advised when and how to book flights so as to be able to do this.
Participants book flights with airlines or travel agents - not with Social Group Holidays. Social Group Holidays are not responsible for the availability of flights and cannot guarantee any prices advertised by airlines or travel agents. If a suggested flight is no longer available at the same price, it is the responsibility of participants to book an alternative. Social Group Holidays cannot guarantee flights will be available from any particular airport on any particular date. Flights are the responsibility of participants. Social Group Holidays cannot be held responsible if flights are not available. If flights are not available from a specific airport, participants accept that no refund will be due, with participants expected to book flights from an alternative airport instead. With the nature of uncertainty in the travel industry and how flights are sold in recent years, it is suggested that participants try to be flexible on dates and are prepared to travel a few days either side if absolutely necessary, as sometimes changes do happen.
Participants are advised not to book flights until given the ‘go ahead’ by Social Group Holidays. Once Social Group Holidays give the 'go ahead', participants are advised to book flights as soon as possible.
3.12 HOLIDAY CANCELLATION POLICY - CANCELLATION BY SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS
Social Group Holidays will give participants a refund of holiday payments if, when a booking is received, a holiday is no longer available or sold out. Social Group Holidays will give participants a refund of holiday payments if Organisers decide a holiday cannot go ahead. If an advertised holiday turns out to no longer be available, Social Group Holidays will try to arrange a suitable replacement within 18 months.
If a holiday is not able to go ahead, participants accept they are not entitled to additional compensation extra to a refund of what they have paid to Social Group Holidays. In such a scenario, Social Group Holidays accepts no liability for additional costs which might have been incurred by participants, such as transport, airport car parking, or hotel accommodation not booked by Social Group Holidays.
Participants accept Social Group Holidays reserve the right to cancel or make changes to holidays and suggested itineraries where necessary. Participants accept the price of holidays is the prerogative of the SG Admin Team. Participants accept prices may vary depending on availability, exchange rates, and circumstances beyond the control of Social Group Holidays. Social Group Holidays will not give a refund or compensation if reasonable changes need to be made to details, dates, times, location, or prices of a holiday, as Social Group Holidays reserve the right to do so, where necessary. Any changes will not be made unreasonably.
Participants accept there is no guarantee or promise that a holiday will definitely go ahead. Participants accept that there is no guarantee or promise that a holiday will have a minimum number of people taking part.
Participants accept that advertised holidays, details and prices are all offered subject to availability. Prices of holidays cannot be guaranteed and may increase nearer the time of departure.
Exceptions to above: Social Group Holidays will not give a refund if a holiday is disrupted, cancelled, or abandoned due to an ‘Act of God’ such as a natural disaster, severe bad weather, fire, storm, heatwave, flood, volcano, earthquake, or tsunami - or due to circumstances beyond our control such as death, injury, illness, power cuts, strikes, economic troubles, currency fluctuations, criminal acts, riots, terrorism, or war.
3.13 HOLIDAY CANCELLATION POLICY - CANCELLATION BY PARTICIPANTS
Where a deposit is paid to secure a place, the holiday booking 7 day cooling off period is deemed to start as soon as the deposit payment is received and no further holiday booking 7 day cooling off period is offered when the balance is paid. After the holiday booking 7 day cooling off period, if participants decide not to take part, or if they decide to cancel their place on the holiday, they accept they lose all monies paid and no refund or additional compensation or amounts to cover incidental payments will be due. All bookings are accepted on this basis. Where applicable, where participants have paid a deposit and do not pay the balance by the stated deadline, the booking is automatically void and any money paid is forfeit. It is not the responsibility of Social Group Holidays to remind participants when a balance is due.
Full Payment - Prior To 10 Weeks Before Departure
For holiday bookings of 5 nights or more made prior to 10 weeks before departure, after payment is received, a courtesy holiday booking 7 day cooling off period is offered to participants to make sure they are satisfied and wish to proceed. During the holiday booking 7 day cooling off period, if participants change their mind and decide to cancel their holiday booking, a full refund is available - notification must be received in writing within 7 days of payment of the holiday booking.
Full Payment - Within 10 Weeks Of Departure
For holiday bookings of 5 nights or more made within 10 weeks of departure, the holiday booking 7 day cooling off period is not possible. Participants who book within 10 weeks of departure accept that no refunds can be given by Social Group Holidays if participants decide to cancel their place at any time. Notice of cancellation by participants is asked for in writing, by email or letter, by normal 1st or 2nd class post - not ‘signed for’ (recorded delivery) post.
3.14 SUBSTITUTE PARTICIPANTS
If participants cancel their place outside of 10 weeks prior to the holiday, it may be possible to transfer a holiday booking to another suitable person (subject to approval from the Organisers), but participants must find this person themselves and if such is possible, an admin charge of 10% of the full cost of the holiday will be due, covering any costs involved in making the necessary changes with suppliers.
Participants should note that due to security considerations, name changes may not be allowed by some of the companies SGE Ltd. deal with (for example, cruise companies), so in some circumstances, changes of those taking part may not be possible.
It is not the responsibility of Social Group Holidays to find people to fill up places for participants who cancel. No transfers are possible within 10 weeks of the holiday.
3.15 NUMBERS TAKING PART
Social Group Holidays cannot guarantee a specific number of people on any holiday. The number of people taking part on holidays can vary. On holidays, sometimes there are small groups of participants (previously 2 - 20 people). Other times, there are larger groups of participants (previously 20 - 54 people).
Participants are not entitled to a refund on the grounds there may be a smaller number of people taking part or a larger number taking part. If participants cancel bookings and let others down, reducing numbers, this does not entitle remaining people booked to any refund from Social Group Holidays, unless it is Organisers who decide to call off the holiday. No compensation is payable by SGE Ltd. if other people cancel their bookings. SGE Ltd. accept no liability for third parties.
3.16 EXTERNAL CIRCUMSTANCES (OCCURING AFTER BOOKING)
In the event of external circumstances (such as dramatic currency fluctuations or a sudden increase in the price of oil / fuel) causing a price rise amounting to more than 5% of the cost of the holiday (based on the currency rate the holiday pricing was worked on), participants agree to pay the difference in full within 21 days if asked to do so and no later than 7 days before the start of the holiday. All participants accept that it would be unfair and unreasonable to expect SGE Ltd. to have to stand the cost of significant price increases on their behalf. In such circumstance, participants will still be liable to pay any additional amounts should they decide not to take part on the holiday. If a cruise holiday is booked and the cruise ship is not able to sail (e.g. bad weather, norovirus), Social Group Holidays will not cover additional costs incurred by participants (e.g. hotel rooms, flights), but SGE Ltd. will seek a refund from the cruise company to pay back to participants.
3.17 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS - MISCONDUCT
Social Group Holidays attract lots of really nice people who join in and are fun to socialise with and go on holiday with. On previous holidays, people have mostly seemed to get on really well together and there has been a good sense of camaraderie.
It is always made clear that Organisers can only include people who are supportive and behave properly and politely. Social Group Holidays operate a policy of zero tolerance to disruptive behaviour of any kind. Any damage to the environment or accommodation booked by Social Group Holidays will be charged to those who cause it and additional compensation may be sought by Organisers.
Participants are asked not to be negative. Participants must not do anything which might disrupt the planning of or running of a holiday, sour the atmosphere, spoil the success of a holiday, be offensive, offhand, aggressive, or abusive towards Organisers, do anything which puts Organisers or other participants at risk, bring Social Group Holidays into disrepute, or causes any damage to SGE Ltd. Any such conduct will put participants in breach of contract and they are unlikely to be included further, either with The Social Group or on the holiday booked. Anyone causing serious problems prior to the holiday or upsetting any of the SG Admin Team may have their place on the holida y terminated, with no refund due. Anyone causing serious problems during the holiday may be asked to leave the holiday accommodation and told to depart, with no refund due. These rights will not be used unduly. If anyone is thrown off a holiday, participants accept they are not entitled to any refund, costs, or compensation, and will have to find and pay for their own alternative accommodation and make their own way home. In serious cases, misconduct may be reported to local authorities and legal action may be taken.
3.18 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS - GOOD COMPANY
While experiencing other cultures and foreign climes, with so much excitement and lots to see and do, and with there being ample opportunity to live it up, often indulging in lots of food and drink, everyone is asked to do their best to still remember to be polite and make an effort to be good company. All participants agree to do their best to contribute to an upbeat and enjoyable holiday mood. Participants accept they are taking part in a Social Group Holiday and will be expected to socialise with other participants / Organisers at least some of the time. Participants are asked to do their best to be courteous and to try to include everyone, making sure no-one feels left out. Participants agree not to spoil things for other people. Participants are expected not to form cliques which ignore other participants or sideline or undermine the Organisers.
3.19 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS - BUSINESS AND FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENTS ARE PRIVATE
It is viewed as illegal for participants to interfere with contracts made between Social Group Holidays and other companies. Participants must not investigate, check up on, disrupt, alter, or interfere with Social Group Holidays bookings, finances, or contracts, which are private matters between the parties concerned and are nothing to do with participants on the holidays. Participants must not pass themselves off as a bona fide representative of SGE Ltd. Participants accept they must not contact hotels regarding booking contracts and arrangements made by Social Group Holidays, or attempt to delve into the finances of SGE Ltd. Participants acting in an unethical way and getting involved in booking contracts, finances, or details between Social Group Holidays and hotels or doing anything which is illegal, or harmful in any significant way to Organisers, to The Social Group, or to Social Group Holidays, will be in breach of contract and may find legal action taken against them and damages sought.
3.20 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS – ORGANISERS
Where Organisers accompany a holiday, all parties accept that Organisers are in charge. Participants agree to treat Organisers with respect and courtesy at all times, and agree not to undermine their authority in any way. Where Organisers accompany a holiday, participants are required to be supportive of Organisers. Participants must not be rude to Organisers and must not exclude or ignore Organisers, who often have important information that people need to listen to.
Organisers do not guarantee to accompany participants on holidays. If Organisers pull out of hosting a holiday or are unable to travel, for whatever reason, no refund or compensation is due to participants, in part or in full. Those taking part can be reassured that Organisers pulling out is only going to happen in the most serious or unavoidable circumstances.
Social Group Holidays offer a quality service, with Organisers taking a lot of pride in going the extra mile to look after people, doing all they can to ensure all the ingredients for an enjoyable holiday are in place. When problems have occurred previously, every effort has been made not to let anyone down and alternative arrangements have always been organised.
One time when there was a heatwave, Organisers bought everyone bottles of water. Another time, when the accommodation in a resort was not as hoped, Organisers paid for an upgrade for everyone. When accidents have occurred, Cathy who is a Red Cross and St John’s Ambulance trained First Aider, has been on hand to offer assistance. And so as not to let everyone down, Andrew impressed everyone by being brave enough to accompany one holiday even though he had a broken leg and ankle and was in plaster.
Cathy, who grew up on Dartmoor in Devon, has had a long career in Customer Service, having done work for TSB Bank and National Trust, as well organising numerous Social Group Holidays for SGE Ltd. Her interests include travel, food, snorkeling, music, and horse riding.
Andrew, who grew up in Sheffield, has lived in Devon since 1991. Referred to by the press as ‘The Man Who Invented Social Networking’ he is recognised for his key role in the development of what has become social networking and social media.
He previously worked as a Ski Instructor and a Professional Artist. With a B.A. in Geography & Environmental Studies, he has organised numerous Social Group Holidays. His interests include travel, food, snorkeling, music, and sci-fi.
3.21 TIPPING SOCIAL GROUP ORGANISERS (INTERNATIONAL TOUR GUIDES)
On many of the organised tours and holidays, Organisers travel with the group as ‘international tour guides’ and look after the social side of things. The experienced and professional team put in a lot of effort to ensure memorable travel experiences and it is customary to tip them. Organisers work very hard on behalf of everyone, in getting a group of travel companions together, in researching and booking the holiday, in looking after everyone, and making everything possible. Everyone taking part on Social Group Holidays is invited to show their appreciation. Advisory tip for each Organiser / Tour Guide is an optional £2 per day (service charge) from each adult participant. This discretionary charge reflects all the hard work done on behalf of each participant and can be given during the holiday or following the holiday.
3.22 SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS - DISCLAIMER
Social Group Terms & Conditions apply to all participants. Social Group Holidays Terms & Conditions apply to all participants.
Terms & Conditions can be viewed online and in SG Magazine. Participants are required to be able to manage holidays under their own steam and be able to cope with normal social situations. Social Group Holidays accept no liability for the behaviour of individuals, for the negligence of participants, or for any disputes which may arise between participants. Participants accept responsibility for their own actions, behaviour and social etiquette.
Participants recognise and accept they take part at their own risk. Participants are required to take out their own travel insurance as appropriate at the time of booking.
Participants agree that Social Group Holidays is not liable for any unforeseen circumstances, accidents, injuries, diseases, weather, wars, economic problems, exchange rate fluctuations, cancellations, changes, and other such problems beyond our reasonable control.
©The Social Group 1997. ©Social Group Holidays 1997. ©Social Group Enterprises Ltd. 2003. All rights reserved. All Social Group material is protected by copyright laws. Anyone copying, stealing, or using Social Group original ideas, ways of operating, intellectual property, social events, information, text, or photographs belonging to Social Group Enterprises Ltd., or in breach of copyright laws protecting Social Group Enterprises Ltd., is likely to face legal action. Copying any part of SG Magazine or copying anything from our web sites without permission is an illegal act. Social Group Terms & Conditions do not affect statutory rights, and operate in accordance with the law of England & Wales.
THE SOCIAL GROUP TM © SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS TM © Social Group Enterprises Ltd. Registered Number 4690215. Directors Andrew B. Haglington B.A. and Cathy J. Haglington. The Social Group and Social Group Holidays are trading names of SGE Ltd. Registered Office: Harscombe House, 1 Darklake View, Plymouth, Devon PL6 7TL. Registered in England & Wales.
POSTAL ADDRESS: SG Office, “Revelstone”, Mary Tavy, Dartmoor, Devon PL19 9PF, England.
MORE ABOUT SOCIAL GROUP HOLIDAYS
Want to go on holiday? No-one to go with? Join in with Social Group Holidays, offering travel ‘with a group’!
Participants can benefit from the many years of travel expertise of the Organisers, who over many months will plan the holiday, put the holiday together, advertise and promote the holiday, get people together to take part, do the research, sort the logistics, and book the accommodation. People who want to take part then book a place, with all the hard work with the admin and organising everything done for them.
Participants do not need to be a Member of The Social Group in order to take part on Social Group Holidays. Some people invite family and friends to take part too. Participants on a Social Group Holiday have the opportunity to join in and have fun. Everyone is able to socialise with other Participants and with Organisers. The idea is to have other people to enjoy a great holiday with. Participants are expected to be good company and do their best to contribute towards making the travel experience enjoyable for everyone taking part. It is hoped everyone will have a good time.
With years of professional organisation experience, Social Group Holidays is a long-established name. There is also lots of information online and large numbers of photographs on display from previous Social Group Holidays, which have included France, Spain, Italy, Greece, Egypt, Dubai, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Australia, Mexico, USA National Parks, Wild West, Las Vegas, California, Florida, Miami, Caribbean, and many more of the world’s best destinations. Plus Winter Skiing Holidays, Cruise Holidays, and Snorkel Coral Reef Holidays.
For those who join as Social Group Members, further details of holidays can be found in Social Group Magazine, which is posted out free to all brand new Social Group Members when they first join, with discount prices on holidays offered to all Social Group Members. Previous discounts offered to Members on Social Group Holidays of 5 nights or more...
- £50 off public prices VIP Member
- £30 off public prices Budget Member
- £20 off public prices UK Associate Member
Details quoted in SG Magazine and online are accurate at the time of going to print, but prices quoted are subject to availability. Accommodation and flights can sell out, so to avoid disappointment, participants are advised to book early.
Choose from double occupancy or single occupancy of accommodation. Where two people share a room, participants should make it clear if they require twin or double beds when booking. Single occupancy accommodation is usually available, but single travellers are also offered the option of sharing a room to help keep down costs. It is usually possible for the SG Admin Team to help find single travellers someone else to share a twin room with. Many participants choose this option and enjoy saving money and having someone to share with and a ‘roomie’ to make friends with.
Taking part on a Social Group Holiday offers the opportunity to join in with other people, during the day on optional excursions and during the evenings for drinks, dinner, and socialising. Participants are welcome to opt out whenever they wish to do something different, but can generally expect to be with other people at least some of the time. Everyone is asked to do their best to be nice to one another and to Organisers. There should be plenty of opportunity to relax and chill, as well as plenty of time to do things and have fun. Single travellers should be able to enjoy having the good company of other people to be on holiday with.
First time travellers ought to find Social Group Holidays an ideal way to experience going abroad on holiday, with other people to offer assistance and advice, as well as good company. Anyone who has not travelled before and would like any advice or additional assistance is asked to contact the SG Admin Team and request the benefit of their experience.
HOLIDAYS WITH THE SOCIAL GROUP
“Social Group Holidays are the best thing you do - I really enjoyed myself and had a great time!”
“I know the holidays are open to couples and singles, but with me being on my own with no-one to go on holiday with, going away with Social Group Holidays was the solution. Thanks for all your hard work!”
"Loved seeing such wonderful places, off the beaten track, that I would never have found or experienced by myself. Cheers."
“Thanks Andrew & Cathy for all your kindness in looking after me when I was not well - much appreciated.”
“Loved having it all organised for me - made the whole process of going abroad so much easier!”
“Loved our Social Group Holiday!! What an adventure!! Very much looking forward to next time!!”