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Your Questions Answered

Your Questions Answered (FAQs)

  1. Why should I book a walking holiday rather than organise it myself?
  2. What is included in the price of a Footscape holiday?
  3. What is not included?
  4. Does Footscape offer discounts or gift vouchers?
  5. Is my advance payment protected?
  6. Do I need travel insurance?
  7. How do I book and pay for a Footscape holiday?
  8. Can you book extra nights for me at the beginning and/or at the end of the holiday?
  9. What if I want Footscape to organise a tailor-made walking holiday or tour?
  10. What sort of accommodation can I expect?
  11. What about meals that are not included in the cost of the holiday?
  12. Are your holidays vegetarian friendly?
  13. What if I want to change my holiday after I have paid the deposit?
  14. What happens if I cancel my holiday?
  15. If I am rather unfit, should I go on a Footscape walking holiday?
  16. What if I want to skip a day’s walk altogether?
  17. Are your walking holidays suitable for children?
  18. Can I bring my dog(s) with me?
  19. What gear do I need to bring with me?
  20. What information will I receive about my holiday and how do I get to the start?
  21. Do you move my luggage on an Inn to Inn walking holiday?
  22. What happens if I have an accident or get lost?
  23. What languages are spoken?

1. Why should I book a walking holiday rather than organise it myself?

If you want to arrange a walking holiday for yourself in England, it can be difficult. There’s often no public transport at all in remote areas; so you might have problems getting to and from the trail each day. If you have been able to arrange accommodation at different places along the trail, with a daily routine of packing and unpacking, you will either have to carry all your belongings on your back or find a way of sending them on each day. It can be quite a hassle, which is not what you want, when you are on holiday.

If you decide to stay in one place and plan to do some hiking from there each day, how will you find the most beautiful footpaths in the area? It is possible to buy some books that give directions for walks in Dorset, but these walks are very seldom restricted to a very localised geographical area, and their walking directions are also seldom up to date or detailed enough to be a reliable guide.

With Footscape, you will not have to worry about any of these problems. Everything is arranged so that you can concentrate simply on enjoying your walking holiday.

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2. What is included in the price of a Footscape holiday?

  • The local presence of the owner-manager, who will ensure that you have a hassle-free holiday.
  • A choice of good accommodation with en suite or private bath/shower in an attractive village or small town
  • A full English breakfast every day
  • All information required for the holiday
  • All taxes.

In addition:

    • For those on a walking holiday:
      • the Footscape Trail Guide for your chosen trail, providing detailed walking directions, distances, times, the degree of difficulty, practical information on the pubs, restaurants and village shops along the way and descriptions of the history, legends and personalities of key places on your trail
      • the relevant ordnance survey map(s) of the area (1:25000) with the trail highlighted
      • Luggage transfers (inn to inn holidays only).
    • For those on a Thomas Hardy and Dorset Garden tour:
      • a person to accompany you in the Footscape vehicle to and from the various sites
      • a guidebook describing the tour.

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3. What is not included?

      • The cost of travel to and from your holiday venue
      • Any meals other than breakfast, except if specifically included in the holiday
      • Entry tickets to the sites on the Thomas Hardy trail or tour as most of these are National Trust properties.

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4. Does Footscape offer discounts?

Yes, we offer a 10% discount to groups of three people or more on all holidays except for inn to inn hiking tours and custom holidays. For groups of 10+, please contact us.

Why not think of offering a Footscape gift voucher as a Christmas, birthday or anniversary present towards the cost of a walking holiday or heritage tour? The value of the voucher can be from £50 and in any multiple of £5. A voucher is valid for 12 months from the date of issue and can be renewed. For all enquiries about a Footscape voucher, please contact us.

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5. Is my advance payment protected?

Yes, Footscape is fully compliant with the EC Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992. Please see booking Information for details.

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6. Do I need travel insurance?

Although we do not insist on it, we strongly recommend that you take out travel insurance to cover cancellation of your holiday, personal accident, illness and loss/theft of personal possessions and/or money.

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7. How do I book and pay for a Footscape holiday?

It is very easy. Please go to booking information for details.

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8. Can you book extra nights for me at the beginning and/or at the end of the holiday?

Yes, subject to availability. Or else you can do so yourself after you have received confirmation of your accommodation from us. Please note that your holiday includes the night before the first day’s walk or tour and the night of your final day.

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9. What if I want Footscape to organise a tailor-made walking holiday or tour?

Please look at our custom tour page for information.

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10. What sort of accommodation can I expect?

Please visit our accommodation page for details.

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11. What about meals that are not included in the cost of the holiday?

Whilst on the trail, you will usually be able to have lunch at village pubs. Alternatively, if you prefer, you can arrange to take a packed lunch with you. You will find information in your Trail Guide.

As for your evening meal, you can choose to eat where you like. If your accommodation does not offer an evening meal, there will be at least one good restaurant or pub within easy walking distance or, if you have a car, within easy driving distance.

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12. Are your holidays vegetarian friendly?

Yes, all our hotels, inns and B&Bs cater for vegetarians. Please let us know if you are a vegetarian when you complete the enquiry form. If you have any other special dietary requests, please inform us, and we will ensure that they are respected.

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13. What if I want to change my holiday after I have paid the deposit?

Please go to booking information for details.

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14. What happens if I cancel my holiday?

Depending on the date when we receive your cancellation by email, fax or mail, you may be liable to pay cancellation charges in addition to forfeiting your initial deposit. Please see booking a holiday for details.

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15. If I am rather unfit, should I go on a Footscape walking holiday?

If you have opted for a walking holiday, it is always best to take some regular exercise for a few days before you leave. There are a few steep climbs on the longer trails, but you will have plenty of time to reach each day’s destination. You also have the opportunity to do fewer miles each day on many of our holidays, if you so wish. However, it is only you who knows whether you are fit enough to go on a walking holiday.

If you are on a tour, walking distances are less, and on two of our tours you can walk as much or as little as you want.

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16. What if I want to skip a day’s walk altogether?

If there’s a day when you don’t want to walk at all, that’s fine. You are free to do whatever you like. If it is an Inn to Inn holiday you will need to take a local bus or taxi to your next accommodation.

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17. Are your walking holidays suitable for children?

Yes, we actively promote family walking holidays, and provide special services to match. Please look at Footscape for Families.

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18. Can I bring my dog(s) with me?

Very few hotels and B&Bs accept dogs, sometimes with restrictions and often a small supplementary charge. Please mention that you want to bring your dog(s) when you complete our enquiry form.

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19. What gear do I need to bring with me?

The weather in Dorset is generally about as good as it gets in Britain, and there should be sunshine, especially during the summer months. But you cannot count on rain-free days throughout your holiday. Bear in mind that, depending on the trail or tour you have chosen, you may walk through (possibly wet) grass and woodland, and up and down some steep slopes. The trails have been carefully chosen to avoid long muddy sections, but you may find some mud in places.

The most important thing is that your clothing, especially your footwear, should be comfortable and preferably waterproof. Some people like to wear strong walking boots, with good ankle support. Others prefer light walking shoes. It is up to you, but, if they are new, you really must break them in beforehand, to make sure that they don’t give you blisters or worse. Thick walking socks do improve the comfort quite a lot and can prevent blisters. Bring clothes for hot and cold weather. It’s unlikely to be cold between June and September, but March, April, May and October can be unpredictable. A light, breathable, fully waterproof jacket is an essential precaution. You will probably also need a small waterproof backpack, which can hold the things you might want to take with you on your walk, such as a camera, binoculars, suntan lotion, antihistamine cream (in case of any nettle stings), your waterproof jacket (and trousers), swimwear, a water bottle or thermos flask, a picnic, a first aid kit, …. .

Some people hate having anything on their back, and therefore wear shorts or trousers that have enough pockets to hold everything they need. It is quite possible to do this on a Footscape trail. On most of our walking routes, there are places where you can stop for drinks and snacks at least once during the day (usually in a pub); so there’s no need to carry large quantities of water or food on these days. You will discover what eating places there are on each of the daily hikes by reading your Trail Guide.

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20. What information will I receive about my holiday and how do I get to the start?

If you have booked and paid for a self-guided walking holiday, we will email you your Trail Guide (in A4), so that you can do some reading in advance. Later on, you will receive a smaller, bound and illustrated Trail Guide for easy reference when you are on the trail. We will also let you know about good places to eat in the evening, and those on an independent walking holiday will be given all the information they require for their stay and their walk.

Whatever type of Footscape holiday you have booked, you will be given detailed travel information (trains, buses, taxis, road directions, …) that you need to reach the hotel, inn or guest house where you will be staying for the first night, the first half or the whole of your holiday. Please note, however, that you are responsible for your travel to and from your holiday venue. If you would like us to arrange for a car or taxi to meet you at an airport, railway station, ferry port or hotel at a very reasonable rate, please contact us as soon as your travel plans are finalised.

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21. Do you move my luggage on an Inn to Inn walking holiday?

Yes, of course. Your booking will include the transfer of one bag per person. Please could you avoid bringing unnecessarily large suitcases or bags with you, our driver has to move quite a lot of bags each day.

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22. What happens if I have an accident or get lost?

Your tour organiser will always be in the area, and will give you telephone and/or mobile (cell) phone numbers where he can be contacted. In an emergency, you should dial 999 or 112. You are strongly advised to take out travel insurance for your holiday, which should include accident cover, since Footscape accepts no liability in such circumstances.

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23. What languages are spoken?

You will not find many people in rural England who speak foreign languages.

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