GUEST HOSTING AND AGENCY CONDITIONS FOR HOSTS IN RHINELAND-PALATINATE
Rheinland-Pfalz Tourismus GmbH, hereinafter abbreviated to RPT, acts as an agent for accommodation from hosts and private landlords (hotels, guest houses, B&Bs, private rooms and holiday flats), hereinafter referred to jointly as "hosts" in Rhineland-Palatinate as per the current supply. The following conditions become, if effectively agreed, part of the contract if a booking is established between the guest and host for a host/accommodation contract and in addition to the statutory regulations they regulate the contractual relationship between the guest and host and the agency activity of RPT. Please read these conditions through carefully.
1. Position of Rheinland-Pfalz Tourismus GmbH, scope of these guest hosting conditions
1.1. If nothing further has been explicitly agreed, RPT simply holds the position of an agent. It is not liable for the information provided by the host on prices and services. Any liability of RPT from the agency contract is unaffected by this.
1.2. These guest hosting conditions, if effectively agreed, apply to all bookings of accommodation for which the basis of the booking is the host directory issued by RPT and for bookings based on the relevant offers on the internet.
2. Conclusion of the contract, travel agent, information in hotel guides
2.1 With the booking, the guest offers, if necessary after prior, non-binding information from the host about the accommodation and its actual availability, to conclude the guest hosting contract in a binding manner with the host. The basis of this offer is the description of the accommodation and the additional information in the basis for the booking (e.g. description of location, classification notes) if these are available to the guest when booking. If nothing further has been agreed, the guest is bound by the booking (the offer to conclude a contract) for 5 working days.
2.2 The guest's booking may be made by any of the methods offered by the host, i.e. orally, in writing, by telephone, fax or email.
2.3 The contract comes into existence with the receipt of the host's acceptance declaration (booking confirmation) or that of RPT as their representative. The acceptance declaration does not require a particular form and therefore oral and telephone confirmations are legally binding for the guest and host.
2.4 The host will normally send the guest a written copy of the booking confirmation for oral and telephone bookings. The legal effectiveness of the hosting contract for such bookings does not however depend on receipt of the written copy of the booking confirmation.
2.5 If the host or RPT as the agent offers the option of a binding booking and arrangement of accommodation by electronic means via an internet platform, the following applies to the conclusion of this contract:
a) The online booking process is explained to the customer using appropriate notifications. The exclusive contract language is German.
b) The customer may correct or delete each individual piece of information provided or reset the complete online booking form using a correction option that is explained during the booking process.
c) After completing the selection of the accommodation services requested by the customer and entering the personal data, all of the data including all key information on prices, services, booked additional services and any booked travel insurance is displayed. The customer has the opportunity to reject the whole booking or make a new one.
d) When pressing the "Book and pay" button the customer offers to make a binding guest hosting contract with the host. The customer is bound by this contract offer for 3 working days after it is sent. Pressing this button means that if the host or the RPT as the agent receives confirmation of booking within the binding period a travel contract with an obligation to pay is concluded. . Making the online booking and pressing the "Book and pay" button does not create an entitlement of the customer to the existence of a guest hosting contract. The host is free to accept or reject the contractual offer (booking) by the customer.
e) If no booking confirmation is received in real-time, the host or RPT as the agent will inform the customer without delay by electronic means of the receipt of the booking. This confirmation of receipt does not represent a booking confirmation and does not establish an entitlement to the existence of a guest hosting contract as per the customer's booking request.
f) The travel contract comes into being with the receipt of the booking confirmation by the customer that the host or RPT as the agent sends to the customer in the form stated in the booking process by email, fax or post.
2.6 If the content of the booking confirmation varies from the content of the booking this represents a new offer from the host. The contract comes into existence on the basis of this new offer if the guest declares acceptance by an explicit declaration, advance or full payment or utilises the accommodation.
2.7 Travel agents and booking organisations are not authorised to make agreements, provide information or make assurances that modify the agreed content of the contract, contractually go beyond the services agreed by the host or contradict the host's description of accommodation and services.
2.8 Information in hotel guides and similar directories that are not issued by RPT or the host are not binding for the host and its obligation to provide services if they were not made part of the content of the services that the host is obliged to provide with the explicit agreement with the guest.
3. Non-binding reservations
3.1 The guest may withdraw from non-binding reservations free of charge but these are only possible with the relevant explicit agreement with RPT or the host.
3.2 If the guest has not explicitly agreed a non-binding reservation, the booking is conducted as stated in Number 2. (conclusion of contract) of these conditions and is always a legally binding contract for the host and guest/client.
3.3 If a non-binding agreement has been agreed for the guest, the host must keep the desired accommodation available for the guest's booking until the agreed time. The guest must notify RPT or the host at this time if the reservation should also be treated as a binding booking for him. If this does not occur, the reservation lapses without an additional duty of notification by RPT or the host. If the notification is provided in time, on its receipt by the host a legally binding guest hosting contract comes into force between the host and the guest.
4. Prices and services, rebookings
4.1 The prices stated in the brochure or online property description are final prices and include statutory value-added tax and all subsidiary costs if nothing further is stated concerning subsidiary costs. Spa taxes and fees for consumption-dependent services (e.g. electricity, gas, water, firewood) and for optional and additional services may be incurred and are shown separately.
4.2 The services to be provided by the host arise exclusively from the content of the booking confirmation in combination with the valid brochure or property description and any additional agreements explicitly made with the guest/client. It is recommended that the guest/client makes additional agreements in writing.
4.3 For rebookings (changes to accommodation type, arrival and departure dates, duration of stay, catering type, booked additional services and other supplementary services) for which there is no legal obligation, the host may request a rebooking fee of €15 per change. This does not apply if the change is minor.
5.1 The due date for the advance and final payment depends on the agreement made with the guest or client and the provision noted in the booking confirmation. If no special agreement is made, the total accommodation price including the fees for subsidiary costs and additional services is due for payment at the end of the stay and must be paid to the host.
5.2 After the conclusion of the contract the host may request an advance payment. If nothing further has been agreed, it is 15% of the total price of the accommodation services and additional booked services.
5.3 Payments in foreign currencies and by cheque are not possible. Credit card payments are only possible if this is agreed or the host publicly states that these are possible. Payments at the end of a stay cannot be made by bank transfer.
5.4 If a guest does not make an agreed advance payment or not in full in spite of a reminder by the host and setting an additional period, the host is permitted, if he is willing and able to provide the contractual services and if the guest has no statutory or contractual right of retention, to withdraw from the contract with the guest and to charge withdrawal costs as per Number 6. of these conditions.
6. Withdrawal and non-arrival
6.1 In the event of withdrawal or non-arrival, the entitlement of the host to the payment of the agreed accommodation price including food and the fees for additional services remains.
6.2 The host must make efforts within his normal business operation, without the obligation for special efforts and when considering the special character of the booked accommodation (e.g. non-smoking, family room) to use the accommodation by other means.
6.3 The host must offset other occupancy and, if this is not possible, costs saved.
6.4 According to the percentages recognised by jurisprudence for measuring the saved costs, the guest or client must pay the host the following amounts, each related to the total price of the accommodation services (including all subsidiary costs), but without including any public fees such as tourism fees or spa taxes:
For holiday homes/accommodation without food: 90%
For overnight accommodation/breakfast: 80%
For half board: 70%
For full board: 60%
6.5 The guest/client explicitly reserves the right to demonstrate to the host that the saved costs are significantly higher than the deductions taken into account above or that the accommodation or other services were used in another way. In the event of such evidence the guest or client is only obliged to pay the lower amount.
6.6 It is urgently recommended that insurance is taken out to cover travel cancellation costs.
6.7 The withdrawal declaration is to be directed to RPT (not the host) for technical booking reasons and should be in writing in the interests of the guest.
7. Arrival and departure
7.1 The arrival of the guest must take place at the agreed time; if no specific agreement is made at the latest by 18:00.
7.2 The following applies to later arrivals:
a) The guest is obliged to inform the host at the latest by the agreed arrival time if he will arrive later or will not utilise the booked accommodation until a subsequent day, for stays lasting for several days.
b) If notification is not received in good time, the host is permitted to utilise the accommodation in another way. The provisions in Number 6. apply accordingly to the period of non-occupancy.
c) If the guest notifies later arrival, he must pay the agreed fee minus any saved expenses by the host under Number 6.4 and 6.5 for the occupancy period not used unless the host is responsible under contract or law for the reasons for the later occupancy.
7.3 The guest must vacate the accommodation at the agreed time; if no specific agreement is made, at the latest by 12:00 on the date of departure. If the accommodation is not vacated in good time, the host may request an appropriate additional fee. Further damage can still be asserted by the host.
8. Obligation of the customer to notify defects, use by animals, termination by the host
8.1 The guest is obliged to notify the host about defects and faults without delay and to request resolution. It is not enough to inform RPT about the defect. If the fault is not notified and the guest is at fault, the guest's rights may lapse in full or in part.
8.2 The guest may terminate the contract only if the faults or defects are significant. Prior to this he must set the host as part of the notification of defects an appropriate resolution period unless resolution is impossible, refused by the host or immediate termination is factually justified as a result of the recognisable interest of the guest or continuing the stay is objectively unreasonable for such reasons.
8.3 The following applies to use by pets:
a) Pets can only be accommodated if this is permitted by an explicit agreement on this matter and if the host envisages this option in the description provided.
b) The guest is obliged to provide truthful information about the type and size when making such agreements.
c) Infringements of this may result in the extraordinary termination of the guest hosting contract.
d) Unannounced use by pets or incorrect information on the type and size permit the host to refuse access to the accommodation, terminate the guest hosting contract and charge the withdrawal costs under Number 7. of these conditions.
9. Limitation of liability
The host is not liable for faults associated with the services that are clearly arranged during the stay for the guest/client as third-party services (e.g. sports events, theatre visits, exhibitions etc.). This also applies to third-party services that are already arranged when booking the accommodation if these are explicitly marked as third-party services in the description or booking confirmation.
10. Limitation of claims
10.1 Contractual claims by the guest/client against the host from the guest hosting contract or RPT from the agency contract relating to injury to life, limb or health, including contractual claims for pain and suffering based on the negligent infringement of a duty or a deliberate or negligent infringement of a duty by their legal representatives or vicarious agents, lapse after three years. This also applies to claims for the reimbursement of other damages based on the grossly negligent infringement of duty by the host or RPT or on malicious or grossly negligent infringement of duty by their statutory representatives or vicarious agents.
10.2 All other contractual claims lapse after one year.
10.3 The limitation periods under the provisions stated above each start at the end of the year in which the claim was created and the guest/host obtained knowledge of the circumstances that form the basis for the claim and of the host or RPT as the party liable or should have known about them without gross negligence. If the last day of the period falls on a Sunday, a state-recognised public holiday at the location of the declaration or on a Saturday, it is replaced by the next working day.
10.4 If there are negotiations between the guest and host or RPT about the asserted claims or circumstances that give rise to the claim, the limitation period is stopped until the guest or host/RPT refuses to continue the negotiations. The limitation period stated above of one year comes into force at the earliest 3 months after the end of the stoppage period.
11. Choice of law and court of jurisdiction
11.1 Exclusively German law applies to the contractual relationship between the guest or the client and the host or the RPT. This also applies to the remaining legal relationships.
11.2 If for permissible lawsuits by the guest or client against the host or RPT, German law is not used for liability in another country, exclusively German law is used for the legal consequences, in particular the type, scope and level of claims by the guest or customer.
11.3 The guest or client may only start legal proceedings against the host/RPT at their location.
11.4 The residential location of the customer is authoritative for lawsuits of the host or RPT against the guest or client. For lawsuits against the guests or clients who are businesspeople, legal entities in public or private law or people who have their normal place of residence/business or location in another country or whose place of residence/business or normal location is not known at the time the lawsuit was started, the court of jurisdiction is the one covering the host's head office.
11.5 The provisions stated above do not apply if and to the extent to which applicable, non-mandatory provisions of the European Union or other international provisions are applicable to the contract.
© Copyright; RA Noll, Stuttgart (2013)