I have never been on a riding holiday before. Will I be able to cope?
We have holidays available for all levels of rider, including some dedicated programmes for those who have never ridden before. If you are having trouble finding the right holiday for you then we can happily talk to you about your worries, your abilities and try to find the right destination for you. We are a small team and between us have managed to visit most of the destinations that we offer on our site. We will be able to advise you on the requirements of each ride and discuss your needs so that we can give you all the help you will need to make the best trip choice for you.
I would love to go on a riding holiday but I have no one to travel with and am worried I will be on my own.
The vast majority of our customers are solo travellers and most of our holidays are perfect for those travelling on their own. For most rides you will be travelling with the same group of like minded people and we can arrange for you to be collected at an airport, bus or train station on arrival. Although many holidays require a supplement to be paid by those needing a single room, There are many holidays that do not implement single supplements, particularly if you are willing to share a room with another traveller of the same gender. Our partners and hosts for these rides are lovely people and will make you feel welcome throughout. Above all, you will certainly make new friends on your horse riding trip.
How will we know that all the horses are well looked after and fit enough to cope with the riding?
You can be assured that the health and wellbeing of the horses is paramount to us, our partners and suppliers. Horse care practices do differ from country to country but the welfare of the horses on our trips is one of our top priorities, particularly as we are a company of horse owners and riders ourselves. We make it our aim to try to visit all of our partner rides or at least work with rides that already have a very good reputation for the welfare of their animals. In the unlikely event that you should have a welfare concern regarding the horses you encounter on your holiday, then please contact us immediately on the numbers provided in the holiday information you received before your departure. Any and all welfare concerns on rides will be handled with the utmost care and attention.
Do I need my own riding hat and how can I ensure the one I purchase is suitable?
We strongly recommend riders wear their own hard hat at all times when riding. In the interests of safety this should always be fitted by a qualified person and comply with current safety standards. All major saddleries in the UK should offer a hat fitting service for customers. We would always recommend that riders bring their own helmet for trips so that you know it is of a good standard and fits you comfortably. For those who do not regularly ride or do not own their own helmet, then some of our suppliers do have hats available to hire or borrow. However, we cannot guarantee the fit or safety standard of these. For more advice on what to take with you on your riding trip, please read our article on what to pack for a horse riding holiday. We will also send all of our guests a suggested packing list after you have confirmed your holiday booking with us. These lists include items specific to the destination and ride you are taking part in.
I have never ridden a horse before. Can I still book a riding holiday?
Yes, you certainly can. This is not the case for all of the rides we work with, but some of our partners do offer programmes dedicated to the complete beginner equestrian. If you are interested in learning to ride whilst on your holiday then please do get in touch with us to discuss the options available to you. Hopefully you will finish your holidays feeling confident that you have learnt some new skills and have a new found passion.
I ride frequently but my partner or other members of my family do not. Can you offer a holiday to suit all of our requirements?
We certainly do work with destinations that cater for both riding and non riding guests. Many of our partner rides offer activities and facilities for non-riding guests, so if you are a couple or family with a mixture of riding and non-riding guests, you can also be catered for. Some of our partners may also offer the chance to 'have a go' should any non-riding guests wish to try riding. Please do get in touch with us to discuss your options!
Can we take our children with us?
Yes you can. Many of the destinations we work with are suitable for the whole family. Some even offer dedicated riding programmes for children and young riders. It is important that you discuss your family’s needs and requirements before booking as not all our destinations will be suitable for all members. We can help you to find the right destinations for all of your family.
I would really appreciate a holiday without children. Is this possible?
Certainly - whilst we do offer destinations suitable for families with children, we also have a range of rides which are suitable for adults only. If you have any requirements like this then please do just mention them to use before booking so that we can advise you on the suitability of the destination for you.
A riding holiday sounds like a fantastic experience but also expensive. Is this true?
A riding holiday is indeed a fantastic experience and a highlight of many equestrian bucket lists! The cost for a trip depends on many factors, including the type of ride, level of remoteness, quality of experience, country, hours in the saddle, cost inclusions and so on… But it does not have to be expensive. Our rides are competitively priced as commission is not added onto your holiday and you are paying the same price as if you booked direct with the operators, but with the added bonus of knowing the holiday has been tried and tested by us and the stress of booking arrangements has been handled by experts. If you have a limited budget in mind for your stay then please don’t be shy to let us know this from the get go! We have a range of rides available to suit most budgets and we can help you to find suitable options within your price range.
What sort of holiday insurance do I need?
Your insurance is very important and we will need full details of your insurance cover before departure. You must check that the insurance covers the riding activities that you are participating in as, for example, if you are choosing a jumping or polo holiday then you may need to pay extra to add these activities to your premium. You should also check whether wearing a riding helmet is a condition of your insurance. Your insurance should cover any medical expenses you may incur, repatriation to your home country if required, and pre-trip cancellation. We are happy to advise you on appropriate insurance cover, so please do ask us.
What sort of financial security do I have when booking my holiday with you?
As a member of the Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT), Far and Ride has provided a bond to meet the requirements of the Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018. In the event of insolvency, protection is provided for non-flight packages commencing in and returning to the UK and other non-flight packages excluding pre arranged travel to and from your destination. Please note that packages booked outside the UK are only protected when purchased directly with Far and Ride. In the above circumstances, if you have not yet travelled you may claim a refund, or if you have already travelled, you may claim repatriation to the starting point of your non-flight package.
I have special dietary requirements. Is this a problem and can they be catered for?
Many of our suppliers are able to cater for special dietary requirements, but some, particularly those in remote locations, do struggle to obtain specialist foods. We always check this ability thoroughly with our supplier so please do ask us if you have any specific dietary requirements which need to be catered for. All of our suppliers will need to be notified in advance of any dietary requirements (particularly allergies) so that they can ensure your needs are met.
What is included in the price?
Generally speaking, the majority of our ride packages are inclusive of riding & accommodation as standard. Many also include a certain level of board, be it either B&B, half board, full board or self-catered, as well as transfers inclusions. For each ride itinerary you will find a specific inclusions and exclusions section to detail what is and is not included with that particular stay. Some extra costs such as transfers or gratuities will need to be paid locally and sometimes these can be paid in advance of arrival. We will always aim to inform you of any extra costs before booking so that you have no surprise costs when you arrive.
Does the price include flights?
No, none of our ride prices include flights. We find that because of the many excellent and competitive deals available through most airlines these days, it is often cheaper for you to book your own flights than it is for us to book these for you. However, we are always happy to help you arrange your own flights and can advise you on some suitable options for your destination.
How do we pay for our holiday?
We ask for a 20% deposit to secure the booking. The balance is due eight weeks before departure. If booking within that time then the whole payment is due at once. You have several payment options - by cheque, bank transfer, credit or debit card. Please note that there are no additional charges for payment made by credit card, but we cannot, unfortunately, accept payments by American Express. We are also pleased to announce that we have euro and US dollar accounts alongside our GBP Sterling account, so can accept payments by bank transfer in both of these currencies too.
What currency will my holiday be charged in?
All rides can be paid in GBP sterling, euro or US dollar. Once we have quoted a price in a certain currency and the booking has been accepted, you will not be able to change the currency you pay in. For example, you will not be able to pay your deposit in one currency and then choose to pay the balance in another currency. The exception for this will be for card payment, which all need to be charged in GBP sterling equivalent at the time of payment processing.
Is it cheaper if I book the holiday directly with the operator?
No - the price you pay to Far and Ride is the same as if you booked direct with the ride and you have the added advantage of our ABTOT bonding, which means you are covered in the unlikely event of financial failure. We also handle the foreign payment to our ride operators on your behalf, liaise with our partners and suppliers in each country, organise any additional transport or requirements you might need and ensure that all the paperwork for your stay is in place.
If I cannot take my holiday because of travel restrictions relating to the Coronavirus pandemic, what are my options?
Bookings made with Far & Ride Ltd are covered by the Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018 which provide you with important protection. This means that if you cannot go on your riding holiday due to government-imposed restrictions caused by COVID-19 then in accordance with the law we will offer you the choice of: - postponing your holiday to a later date - accepting credit with Far & Ride Ltd which can be used against any holiday - accepting a full refund These choices become available to you 21 days or less before your holiday start date if it is clear that your holiday definitely cannot go ahead. If you choose to cancel and obtain a refund, the law allows us up to 14 days to process this payment to you. Please note that if your trip can take place as normal but you cannot travel due to testing positive for COVID-19 yourself, this counts as a standard cancellation and you would then need to claim on your travel insurance.
Will the horse I ride on my holiday be suitable for me ?
Before you reach the stage of booking your trip, we will take every step we can to ensure that the level of riding required and the temperament of the horses available on a trip is made clear. All guests will be asked to complete a riding experience questionnaire and the details from this will have been forwarded to our supplier well in advance of your arrival. This will then give them time to assess which of their horses may suit you best. Most of our partners also offer a short test ride on arrival which will confirm if they have made a suitable choice for you and check to see that you feel happy and confident on your mount too. If you are not happy, or do not feel comfortable at any time then do tell your host or guide and they will happily make arrangements to change your horse. We are, of course, always happy to discuss any worries or specific requirements you may have in your riding, so please don’t hesitate to bring this up with us before booking.
Are the rides safe?
We try our best to ensure that all of our rides are assessed by a member of our team or we choose to work with rides that already have a very good reputation for a high level of safety. We work closely with all of our ride suppliers and ensure that they work to keep our guests safe through all of their trips. However, our rides do vary greatly in pace, terrain and level of difficulty so it is essential that guests are accurate and honest when completing their riding experience forms to ensure safe choices can be made. We give comprehensive details of the terrain encountered, speed of the ride and the ability required for all our rides. We are very happy to discuss all safety aspects of rides and we do, of course, recommend you wear a properly fitted hard hat which complies to current safety standards.
Are there any weight and age restrictions on rides?
For the health and safety of both horses and riders all of our rides do have weight restrictions in place. These vary by ride and depend on the size and build of horses available. Weight limits are clearly displayed in the ride descriptions and should be strictly adhered to. Many of our ride operators reserve the right to deny riding to anyone who is found to be over the weight limit for their horses - this is a welfare concern for the horses and we ask that guests be honest at the time of booking in order to avoid this sort of situation. Some of our rides are able to offer more flexibility in weight restrictions than others, particularly for those riders who are over the limit but are experienced, regular riders. We are happy to discuss this with you. Provided a rider is in good physical shape, then there are usually no upper age restrictions for riding holidays. However, some of our more remote or challenging rides will ask for evidence of good health (eg. a doctors letter).
Are all of the rides accompanied by a guide or is it possible to go on an unguided trail?
Most of our rides are fully accompanied by an experienced and knowledgeable guide. However, we do also offer a small number of rides where it is possible for experienced riders, who are also competent map readers and capable of taking care of their horse, to ride without a guide. Unguided ride options offer a unique and novel experience for experienced riders who will enjoy the chance to be able to explore at their own pace.
Will I be expected to groom and tack up my own horse?
This largely depends upon your choice of ride and level of experience. On many of the rides we offer, those wishing to take part in the grooming and tacking are more than welcome to do so. Some rides ask that guests don’t get involved, at least initially, because they may have unusual tack which you might not be used to. However, other rides require that everyone helps to tack up and untack their own horse, being personally responsible for their mount throughout their stay. Some packages, such as those aimed at beginner riders, will include instruction on horse care and how to tack up for those who would like to learn. Please check with us if you particularly do, or do not, want to be involved with the horsecare side of the rides. We can then ensure that we recommend the right ride options to suit your requirements.
Will I be required to mount unaided?
For some rides, particularly those aimed at experienced riders, it is preferable that riders are able to mount and dismount unaided at any time. On trail rides, you will often be required to ride through challenging terrain and you may need to dismount and walk beside your horse in the most difficult stretches. In these instances such requirements are usually stated on the ride itinerary pages. On the majority of rides, help will be available for both mounting and dismounting if it is required. However, should you have any injury or condition which would make either mounting or dismounting from the ground difficult we advise that you discuss this with us so that we can make necessary arrangements to ensure that your needs are accommodated on the ride.
Do I need vaccinations?
We advise you to check with your doctor, medical professional or travel vaccine clinic for up to date vaccination/health requirements as we are not medical professionals. Many countries do not require additional vaccinations beyond the standard routine inoculations. However, other countries do require that you have received a course of vaccinations for specific viruses or diseases which are prevalent there, or that you show evidence of having received inoculations for certain diseases if you have travelled to other countries where disease prevalence is high. We are happy to advise on specific health requirements or point you in the right direction to find the information you require, so please do ask if you have any queries.
Do I require a passport to travel?
Almost all travellers are required to provide valid photographic identification whilst travelling over national borders between countries or flying into and out of international airports. A passport is the most commonly required and accepted form of identification for international travel. However, some agreements do exist between certain countries meaning that a national photo identification card can be used alternatively. Please do check with your nearest embassy or foreign consulate about passport requirements for travel to certain countries. You will generally find some very helpful information online about these.
Do I need a visa?
Most of our rides are based in countries where visas are not required for travellers entering for tourism purposes and staying for fewer than 30 days. However, in the instance of countries that do require a visa for tourism, we will aim to inform you at the time of booking and will also be available to help you with your application. Please do note that some visas are able to be applied for online, whereas others will require that you either apply in person or through a secondary visa application agency. In all cases, you will need to have an up to date passport with a certain level of validity and number of free pages available.
I do not speak the language of the country I'm visiting. Will this be a problem?
Not at all. Many of our hosts and guides speak fluent English or will provide a translator in the cases where the main guide is not fluent. Many of our partners also speak several languages fluently, with the most widely spoken languages being French, Spanish and German. Should you have any queries regarding the languages spoken at your chosen destination please feel free to discuss this with us.
I am unsure of the currency I will need in many countries. Are you able to advise me on the currency of the country I am intending to travel to? And how much will I need?
We are more than happy to advise all clients of the currency in their chosen destination and we are also able to inform you of how much spending money you might need to bring with you. Many of our ride prices are all-inclusive and so very little additional spending money is required for the most part. We will always detail at the time of booking any extra or supplementary costs which will need to be paid locally to the operator. Other costs might include discretionary tips, some drinks & meals (if not included), some entrance fees, tours and transfers which have not been included, as well as souvenirs or other personal expenses too.