|FRECUENTLY ASKED QUESTION - FAQ
Do I need a visa to enter or visit Ecuador?
Check with your local Ecuadorian Embassy or Consulate. However, most visitors are allowed to stay up to 90 days, renewable for an additional 90 days. You do need a valid passport and it should be carried with you at all times. Top
What language is spoken in Ecuador and on the Galapagos?
Spanish is the official and main language spoken. All people involved in tourism, however, speak English. Top
What is the local currency?
US dollars are used both in mainland Ecuador and on the Galapagos.
Traveler’s checks are accepted and can be safer than cash. You can also withdraw cash from ATMs with VISA and MASTERCARD only.
Banking hours are: Mon – Fri 9:00am – 16:00 pm, Saturday 9:00 am to 12:00 noon.
How safe is it to travel in Ecuador?
It is wise to watch your belongings at all times. Never leave your camera or other personal items unattended.
Ecuador is considered one of the safest countries in the Andean region; however, it is always a good idea to be cautious during your visit, especially the main cities, Quito and Guayaquil, which can be more dangerous than the countryside.
• If you are not visiting the city with a tour guide,find out about unsafe sectors and avoid them. Also make sure that you know what the best times are to visit tourist sites.
• Walk confidently with your head up, look around every so often, never “act lost”.
• Avoid people who are too friendly too quickly, or who offer to show you around.
• Don't wear expensive jewelry or wristwatches when walking around the cities.
• Keep your cameras inside your bag or out of sight.
• It is recommended that you carry shoulder bags and purses in front of you in crowded places.
• Keep all bags and other valuables where you can see them in restaurants, buses and other public places. Top
Should I carry my passport with me while visiting Ecuador?
It is recommended to make two photocopies of your passport, airline tickets, tour documents, traveler’s check numbers and airline itinerary, so you can leave one copy at home with a friend or relative, and bring one with you separately from the originals.
It is essential that you carry your passport at all times in Ecuador. However, you can leave the original in the safe box at your hotel and carry copies when on a day trip. While you are in Galapagos you can leave all your belongings in your cabin. However, if you plan to use traveler’s checks in Puerto Ayora you will need your passport. Top
Is it customary to tip in Ecuador?
If you are satisfied with the service. Top
What’s the climate like in the Galapagos Islands?
There are two main seasons on the islands: wet and hot, and dry and cool.
December to May (inclusive) are hot and humid (28°C / 82.4°F average temperature); even though it is warm during the day there might be heavy rain showers that can last for 20 minutes or more. That is why the islands can be very lush and green at this time of the year. Consider using insect repellent while visiting the islands. The water temperature is perfect for swimming and/or snorkeling. It is a wise to use a T- shirt or dive top while in the water to prevent sunburn.
Between June and November, it is cooler and windy (24° C/ 75.2°F average although at noon it can reach 33°C / 91.4˚F). It is also the “garua” season (local term for occasional light drizzle) especially around the southern islands. You might want to consider bringing a light rainproof windbreaker.
The water temperature is also cooler (20°C / 68˚F) at this time of the year. This means it is the best time for snorkeling, since the cold waters are rich in nutrients for the marine ecosystem, but you might want to have a wetsuit to keep warm. Top
Do I need to get any vaccinations to visit Ecuador?
There are no vaccination requirements to enter Ecuador. However, you should be aware that in some specific regions, mosquitoes that transmit diseases do exist. If you are visiting the jungle, contact your local health center for information on preventive measures to take against malaria. Top
What should I pack for Ecuador?
What to pack depends on where are you going, since one can experience all types of weather in Ecuador’s different regions. So we have prepared a list of things that you want to pack according to region:
General Packing List: Passport, traveler’s checks, medical prescriptions if needed, your usual health and toiletry supplies, sun hat with brim, sunglasses, plenty of high-factor waterproof sunscreen and/or block, insect repellent, moist towelettes, anti-bacterial gel for hands, clothing for warm and cool weather if traveling between regions, sandals or Teva-like sandals, raincoat, small backpack, money belt, watch with alarm, flashlight, plastic bags for dirty clothes and shoes, cameras, cassettes if DVD filming, extra batteries, and light comfortable, easy-to-wash clothing.
Andes: In many parts of the Andes, you can experience all four seasons in one day. Be prepared for chilly nights and cold rain. Warm, fast-drying clothes are recommended (avoid cotton especially directly against the skin). Good hiking, water-resistant boots are highly recommended with warm socks and warm water-resistant jacket and overpants.
Galapagos: Sun hat with brim, sun glasses, good walking shoes, Teva-style sandals (for wet landings), swimsuits, plenty of high-factor waterproof sunscreen or block, snorkel and mask, windbreaker, light sweater or sweatshirt (especially from June to December), shorts and T-shirts, extra film, memory cards, DVD cassettes, batteries for cameras, underwater camera, binoculars, motion-sickness pills or bands, anti-histamine tablets or cream, EpiPen autoinjector for people with serious reactions to stings.
Coast: The same as for Galapagos, malaria-prevention drugs may also be necessary.
Oriente (Amazon rainforest): Insect repellent, malaria pills, anti-histamine tablets, EpiPen autoinjector for people with serious reactions to stings/bites, oral hydration packets, binoculars, plastic bags to keep clothes dry, swimsuit, lightweight quick-drying clothes, one long-sleeved shirt, loose-fitting pants, light windbreaker or sweatshirt (especially on boat trips), rainproof poncho that fits over you and your pack, plenty of clean socks, Teva-like sandals (find out if your hotel provides rubber boots), Ziplock bags or sport drybags for things you want to keep dry.
All clothing should be loose fitting to help keep you cool and to reduce chances of being bitten or stung by insects. Top
|BOOKING AND CANCELLATION POLICIES
When do my reservations become valid?
From the moment ATH Ecuador confirms in writing of available space and gives a deadline for you to confirm your acceptance. Top
Do I need to make a down-payment to confirm my reservation?
Yes. We need a 10% deposit within one week of written confirmation to guarantee your reservation. Full payment is due in 30 days before your trip start date. Top
01.Termination of the travel contract
Following the agreement of tour itinerary and costs, the client will be asked for a prepayment for the tour. On receipt of this payment, ATH ECUADOR will send written confirmation, by fax or email. This confirmation will serve as a legally binding contract for the services requested as per the agreed tour itinerary and details (unavoidable changes withstanding) once the balance tour payment has been received (see section 2).
If the applicant registers for several travelers he is responsible for all of their contractual obligations as if his own. With the conclusion of the contract the customer agrees to the storage of his/her personal data for use by Surtrek to facilitate the tour and its itinerary only. Your personal information will not be sold or misused for any commercial gain. Top
To confirm the agreed travel contract, a pre-payment of 50% of the total ammount per person must be paid for all travels. The remaining balance must be paid no later than 30 days before departure of the tour for all Ecuador mainland tours and 90 days before departure for all travel to the Galapagos Islands.
If the client concludes his travel arrangements with ATH ECUADOR less than 30 days before the departure date for the Ecuador mainland travel, or 90 days for the Galapagos Islands, the tour must be paid in full immediately.
If a client fails to pay for his/her tour in full before the agreed final payment dates (30 days before departure for mainland travel in Ecuador and 90 days before departure for Galapagos Island travel the client risks losing his/her tour. Equally, by failing to make the full payment before the due date, the client will lose his/her deposits for all travelers included in the reservation.
If the tour fee has not been paid in full before the arranged travel start, ATH ECUADOR will be released from its service obligations and may require the customer to pay any appropriate resignation costs. Top
03. From ATH ECUADOR results performances
The scope of services is detailed as per our descriptions, illustrations and quotations as presented on the ATH ECUADOR web page and in your agreed contractual terms
ATH ECUADOR reserves the right to modify tour information (by email or detailed on the web page) prior to confirming the tour with the client through a contractual written agreement as per section 1. However, once a tour is confirmed and payment received, ATH reserves the right to modify the tour only as a result of legitimate and unforeseeable circumstances.
Such circumstances include; modifications or deviations from the travel descriptions during the tour due to road conditions, severe weather and official arbitrariness among others; the travel process indicated in the travel description can not be guaranteed though under all circumstances ATH ECUADOR will only make changes to the tour with consideration to the best interests of the client. The agreed travel descriptions only represent the planned travel process, without guaranteeing the details of the exact operational sequence. ATH ECUADOR will not be liable where circumstances occur outside the control of ATH ECUADOR or it’s providers.
If clients request special arrangements prior or during the tour, e.g. modification of the tour due to severe weather, once agreed, a written contract must be signed by both parties. Top
04. Cost modifications
04.1 Performance and price adjustments
Modifications and/or deviations of the itinerary or program due to unforeseen and/or exceptional circumstances out of ATH ECUADOR control, any additional costs incurred will be charged to the client.
ATH ECUADOR cannot be held responsible for any changes to transportation costs, airport taxes, park entrance fees or the like that are subject to variation and are outside of ATH ECUADOR control. We will endeavor to inform passengers of any changes as soon as possible.
ATH ECUADOR is entitled to increase the travel price after conclusion of the travel contract as a result of increased transportation costs or charges for certain performances, port or airport taxes or modification to the exchange rates that may affect final costs; any such changes can occur up to 4 moths before the agreed departure date. If this should be the case, the customer will be informed immediately, but no later than 21 days prior departure. Price increases thereafter are not admissible.
04.2 Extra charges
All extra charges that arise due to the modification of the itinerary caused by the client will be debited to the client for immediate payment. The aforementioned charges include; late arrival of the customer to the airport or port resulting in missing embarkation, late arrival to trekking tours, a premature exit of the country for whatever reason (health, personal, legal etc), illness or accident costs incurred during the trip (e.g. helicopter evacuation, hospitalization, hotel stay for a chaperon or companion).
If ATH ECUADOR need to advance money to meet an acute emergency then the amount laid advanced must be refunded to ATH ECUADOR immediately after the termination of the journey. Top
05. Resignation and notice by the tour operator
05.1 Resignation before travel start
ATH ECUADOR can withdraw the tour offer up until 14 days before the travel start date if the number of required participants for the tour isn't met, but only if the travel description for the corresponding tour refers to a minimum number of participants.
The assertion that the minimum number of participants is not achieved and that the journey is therefore cancelled, must reach the customer at the latest 14 days before the travel start date. The customer will receive an immediate refund for any payments previously made, but is not entitled to any compensation or further reclamation.
05.2 Resignation after travel start
ATH ECUADOR can withdraw its services after the travel start date if it is deemed that the client in any way is disrupting the tour or causing distress to other group members, staff or providers. This applies also if the customer fails to meet specific requirements for the tour in question (physical and/or mental health, general capabilities, technical skills where applicable etc).
If ATHE ECUADOR cancels the tour, the costs incurred up and until that date, including advanced payments for contracted services for the tour, will not be refundable. The client will only be entitled to refunds as decided by ATHECUADOR in consideration of incurred tour costs. Top
06. Resignation by the customer
The customer can withdraw from the contract at any time before beginning the tour however this must be done in writing.
Refunds can only be made under the following cancellation guidelines as pre-tour costs will be incurred and cannot be recuperated by ATH WORLD.
Therefore the following cancellation fees will be charged for cancelled tours:
a) For mainland tours in Ecuador
a) 30 days or more before travel start date pre-payment
29 to 21 days before travel start date 30% of the total amount
20 to 15 days before travel start date 50% of the total amount
14 days previous until departure date 100% of the total amount
b) For journeys that include the Galapagos Islands and/or mainland tours in South America less Ecuador:
b) 90 days or more before travel start date pre-payment
89 to 60 days before travel start date 30% of the total amount
59 to 30 days before travel start date 50% of the total amount
29 days previous until departure date 100% of the total amount
NB: Please note that for Galapagos Charters the cancellation fees can vary according to the chosen boat and therefore will be confirmed individually. Top
If travel services are not performed according to the contractual agreement, then the liability of ATH ECUADOR depends on the national laws. The customer can request compensation for which ATH ECUADOR has the right to refuse if deemed unreasonable. ATH ECUADOR will try and rectify any situation to provide an equal quality of tour.
In the case of reoccurring poor performance the customer is obliged to immediately complain to the agency or its representative, usually the guide, stating the problems experienced. If the customer does not raise the issue to the agency or its representative, he/she cannot later claim any contractual compensation.
The cancellation of the travel contract by the customer due to quality issues that substantially impair the tour is only permissible if ATH ECUADOR has not carried out reasonable attempts to rectify any shortcomings. Top
08. Log-on of requirements
If the customer wishes to file a claim against ATH ECUADOR for compensation due to failure to comply with contractual obligations, then the customer must announce to ATH ECUADOR there intentions within one month from the termination of the contractually agreed tour. Service providers, tour guides or other local agencies are not authorized to the receive claims.
Claims being made for unlawful actions by ATH ECUADOR must be submitted within 3 years of the termination of the tour contract as per international law. The place of jurisdiction for any claim is Quito, Ecuador. Top
09. Limitation of liability
The contractual liability of ATH ECUADOR for any personal injuries is limited to a maximum value of the tour price, assuming negligence on behalf of ATH ECUADOR.
Compensation sought for damage to persons or property due to negligence by service providers must be directed at the service provider and is not the responsibility of ATH ECUADOR.
Please note that for mountain climbing, trekking and expeditions there is an increased risk of accidents due to the nature of these adventure sports (e.g. avalanches, falling rocks, column fall, water travel, river crossings etc.). These risks are ever present and cannot be reduced or excluded even by the most prudent and precautious care of the assigned guides/tour leaders. Therefore the participation in adventure activities like mountain climbing, trekking, horseback riding, rafting, mountain bike tours and general expeditions or tours involving even minimal elements of danger, are always at the clients own risk and responsibility. Top
10. Contract adjournment with unusual circumstances
If the journey is substantially difficult or dangerous and incorporates risk of any nature due to unusual circumstances (e.g. war, strike, unrests, epidemic diseases, sovereign arrangement, among others), then both the customer and ATH ECUADOR can withdraw from or cancel the travel contract.
In the case of emergency procedures for unforeseen circumstances the client is liable for the full extent of the incurred costs (e.g. hospitalization, additional accommodation and food) with the exception of emergency transportation to which ATH ECUADOR Tour Operator will contribute up to 50% of the total cost. Any further demands are excluded. Top
11. Entry and health regulations
The traveler is responsible for meeting any entry and health regulations, passport, customs requirements, visas, and currency import regulations on their own and at their own costs. All disadvantages and charges which arise from disregard to these regulations are accountable to the client even if regulation changes have been modified after the reservation was made. If at all possible, ATH ECUADOR will inform customers of important modifications to the general regulations as described in the travel descriptions of the tours before the start of the tour. Top
12. Individual contractual regulations
The invalidity of single regulations within the travel contract does not stipulate the invalidity of the entire travel contract. Top
1. Requisitos para emision del pasaporte ecuatoriano
Requisitos generales para primera vez y en todos los casos
1. Presencia del solicitante
2. Original y copia a color de la cédula del solicitante
3. Original y copia a color del certificado de votación o CONADIS
4. Original y copia a color de la carta de naturalización (en caso de extranjeros naturalizados ecuatorianos)
5. Partida o inscripción de nacimiento (en caso de ecuatorianos nacidos en el exterior)
6. Original y copia a color de la credencial (en caso de ser militar o policía)
7.- $70 dólares americanos.
Requisitos para reemplazar el pasaporte del anterior
1. Requisitos generales; y,
2. Original y copia a color del pasaporte anterior
3. Partida de nacimiento marginada (en caso de existir divergencias en la información registrada en la cédula y/o pasaporte anterior)
Por pérdida o robo
1. Requisitos generales; y,
2. Denuncia de pérdida de pasaporte
3. Movimiento migratorio
4. Declaración juramentada del hecho (debe ser realizada ante un notario)
5. Tarjeta dactilar del Registro Civil
6. Récord policial
Menores de edad
1. Presencia del menor con cédula original y copia a color
2. Presencia del padre o representante con cédula original y copia a color
3. Presencia de la madre o representante con cédula original y copia a color
4. Original y copia a color del certificado de votación o CONADIS (padre ecuatoriano)
5. Original y copia a color del certificado de votación o CONADIS (madre ecuatoriana)
6. Original y copia a color del pasaporte (en caso de ser padre extranjero)
7. Original y copia a color del pasaporte (en caso de ser madre extranjera)
8. Poder especial para otorgamiento de pasaporte (en caso de venir de una provincia, certificado por el consejo nacional de la judicatura), (si fue conferido en una notaria en el exterior, deber estar legalizado o apostillado)
9. Autorización consular para emisión de pasaporte para menores de edad (en caso de padres residentes en el exterior)
10. Partida de defunción de padre o madre
11. Adopción: sentencia del juzgado autentificada por consejo nacional de la judicatura o ente superior
12. Copia a color del pasaporte anterior o expediente del anterior libretín
13. Autorización de salida notarial o judicial (en caso de que el padre o madre adoptante este fuera del país)
14. Carta de autorización (de los padres o apoderados)
- Las cédulas deben estar en buenas condiciones (no deterioradas o reemplasticadas) caso contrario no serán aceptadas por cancilleria (Reina Victoria y Roca, Esquina).
Todo trámite es personal y NO se necesitan fotos
Más información en www.mmrree.gov.ec/representaciones/indice_ext.asp Top
2. Países que requieren el certificado de vacunación contra la fiebre amarilla
Todo pasajero que viaje hacia estos destinos debe presentar su carnet. Adicional a este requisito les recordamos que Venezuela requiere de la Vacuna Bivalente Viral (Sarampiòn / Rubeóla ) para el ingreso.
Para poder sacar este carné en la ciudad de Quito pueden hacerlo en:
Centro de Salud No. 1 Calle Rocafuerte y Venezuela atención de 08h00 a 14h00. Top
3. Visado países de la comunidad schengen
España, Grecia, Portugal, Alemania, Austria, Bélgica, Dinamarca, Finlandia, Francia, Grecia, Holanda(Antillas Holandesas), Islandia, Italia, Luxemburgo, Noruega, Portugal y Suecia.
Permanencias inferiores a 90 días por turismo, visita familiar, negocios, actividades culturales, visita médica, etc. Tener en cuenta que los documentos exigidos deben ser presentados en original y copia, que se quedará en el consulado
Más información en: www.mmrree.gov.ec/representaciones/indice_ext.asp Top
4. Información de embajadas y consulados extranjeros en el ecuador
Consulte la información de contacto de Embajadas y Consulados extranjeros en el Ecuador por medio del web site del Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores.. Top
5. Regulaciones para los turistas que visiten galápagos
Si planea visitar las islas galápagos sin requerir los servicios de un guía naturalista, usted necesitará aplicar siempre las siguientes reglas y regulaciones:
- no remueva ninguna planta, roca o animal de las islas.
- no transporte cualquier material vivo de las islas, o de una isla a otra. Verifique su ropa por semillas e - insectos antes de desembarcar a la orilla.
- no toque a los animales.
- no alimente a los animales.
- siempre permanezca dentro del sendero designado para su caminata.
- siempre permanezca con su guía.
- no tome ningún animal de su nido o lugar de descanso.
- sea extremadamente cuidadoso con las colonias que están siendo alimentadas.
- no desvíe su camino a través de arbustos densos. Esto destruirá las plantas y las semillas podrían pegarse a su persona.
- no arroje basura a tierra o al mar desde su embarcación.
- no compre artesanías elaboradas con partes de animales nativos, corales o plantas; excepto cierta madera.
- no escriba graffiti, no desfigure las rocas y plantas en las islas.
- no vacile en demostrar su actitud conservacionista y explicar las reglas a otros.
- conservar es tarea de todos. Por favor, mantenga su actitud e conservación siempre.
- utilice solamente lo estrictamente necesario de energía y agua.
No olvide que cuidar el medio ambiente es tarea de todos porque la naturaleza no la heredamos de nuestros padres sino que la tomamos prestada de nuestros hijos. Top