Southern Discoveries Limited (SDL) is a wholly owned New Zealand company which has operated for over 50 years.

1. Insurance

SDL carries full Public Liability Insurance for all passengers travelling on any SDL vessels or vehicles.

2. Liability and Indemnity

Passengers travel at their own risk (to the extent permitted by law) and SDL is not responsible for any loss, damage, cost, expense or injury suffered by passengers or loss or damage to a passenger’s property.
Without limiting the foregoing, the following conditions apply:
a. In respect of all passengers, SDL is not liable for any loss, damage or delay caused by or arising from an event beyond the control of SDL, including any act of God, inevitable accident, riot, civil  commotion, strike, lock-out, stoppage or restraint of labour, regardless of the cause and whether partial or general.

b. SDL does not warrant that SDL services are available at any particular time or at all. SDL is not liable to a passenger or any other person:
(i) for any consequences arising from any variation or delay in the time of arrival or departure from any stop of any vehicle;
(ii) for any loss or damage as a result of a cancellation or any variation of the time of arrival or departure from any stop of any vehicle;
(iii) for damage to any property of a passenger; or
(iv) for the death of any passenger or other person or for injury, harm, disease or damage to health, whether physical, mental or otherwise (including mental or nervous shock or distress) suffered by a passenger or any other person.
c. If there is contributory negligence on the part of a passenger or other person, SDL’s liability is subject to the law relating to contributory negligence.

d. SDL may vary or cancel wholly or in part the scheduled services shown in SDL timetable or may vary the point at which SDL will pick up and set down passengers.
The passenger indemnifies SDL at all times against any loss, damage or cost suffered or incurred by SDL as a direct or indirect result of a breach by the passenger of its obligations under these terms and conditions.

3. Health & Safety

Health, safety and comfort is SDL’s primary concern. Prior to every cruise departure, the skipper either shows a safety video or gives clear safety instructions over the public address system. Passengers should listen carefully to these messages and comply with all aspects of safety advice. In the unlikely event of an emergency, passengers must obey all instructions from the SDL fully trained skipper and crew.

New Zealand has a ‘no fault’ government-backed medical injury treatment scheme administered by the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC). Under ACC legislation, passengers are prevented from suing the operator for any mishap or misadventure. Should there be a medical incident or injury SDL will do everything in its power to organise prompt medical assistance. In the case of injury the cost of that assistance will be borne by the ACC scheme. The nearest medical centre to Milford Sound is located in Te Anau (120 kilometres away).

All passengers while in an area controlled by SDL must:
a. Act in a safe and reasonable manner
b. Cooperate with, and observe all instructions from SDL staff
c. Follow all signs and notices
d. Not smoke
e. Not consume alcohol unless available on SDL service
f. Not interfere with or use emergency equipment or emergency exits except in an emergency
g. Not behave in an unsafe, noisy, violent or antisocial manner
h. Not litter or tamper with or damage any property of SDL

4. Disabled Passengers

The Milford Sound Cruise Terminal, toilets, promenade decks and wharves are all wheelchair accessible.

New Zealand Maritime law dictates that all external vessel doors must be water tight and this includes a door sill to prevent seawater entering the vessel. Disabled passengers may need some assistance to negotiate the door sill.

All vessels comprise either two or three deck levels accessed by internal and external stairs. Wheelchair accessibility is confined to the main boarding deck only.

Toilets on the vessels are not wheelchair accessible.

The Milford Underwater Observatory chamber is not wheelchair accessible as it is 10 metres below the water and accessed by stairs. For health and safety reasons, staff are not permitted to participate in carrying of passengers on and off vessels.

Please seek further advice at the time of booking.

5. General Terms and Conditions

SDL reserves the right to amend timetables, cancel cruise departures and substitute vessels at any time for safety or operational reasons including due to unsafe weather conditions or vessel maintenance.

Minimum numbers apply on all trips.

Milford Sound is a natural environment so wildlife sightings cannot be guaranteed.

Booking amendments, cancellations or refunds cannot be processed online. Please email reservations@southerndiscoveries.co.nz or phone +64 3 441 1137 or 0800 264 536.

All prices are listed in New Zealand dollars (NZD) and are inclusive of GST. Unless otherwise specified, prices are valid from 1 October 2017 until 30 September 2018 and may change without notice.

6. Amendments/Cancellations/Refunds

Reservations may be amended to another date or time subject to space and availability. No charge is made for this amendment but any difference in price will need to be paid by the passenger. Please always quote the booking confirmation number when amending a booking.

Unless otherwise specified, any cancellations are required to be made at least 24 hours prior to departure. Cancellations made within 24 hours or on the day of travel are not entitled to a refund.

Claims for refunds due to circumstances out of passengers control should be submitted in writing no later than 30 days after the date of departure. Passengers are recommended to insure themselves against cancellation charges and possible loss of personal belongings.

7. Children and Infants

Unless otherwise specified, children are aged 4 – 14 years inclusive. Infants 3 years and under travel free.

8. Cancelled Sailings

SDL reserves the right to cancel any cruise at any time due to unsafe weather conditions, vessel maintenance, or not meeting the minimum passenger numbers required to sail.

In the event of a cruise being cancelled prior to departure, passengers will receive any pre-ordered food and given the option of an alternative sailing or a full refund on the cruise portion only.

If a cruise is cancelled during a sailing due to unforeseen circumstances, adverse weather affecting passenger safety and comfort, unforeseen operational reasons or any other issue, passengers will receive a partial refund. Full refunds will only be given when a cruise is cancelled prior to departure.

Milford Road Closure (State Highway 94)

The Milford Road is an alpine pass and can be closed with no or very little warning from the Land Transport Authority at any time of year. Up-to-date road information is available at milfordroad.co.nz

SDL accepts no responsibility for disrupted travel plans as a result of a road closure. SDL is informed of the road status at 7.30am each morning. All agents and passengers can choose to receive a full refund or travel when the road is re-opened.

9. Product Terms and Conditions

Milford Sound Coach & Cruise

Southern Discoveries Ltd reserves the right to amend prices, timetables, arrange alternative transport and provide alternative routes without prior notice.

Southern Discoveries Ltd reserves the right to cancel departures when necessary. Departures are subject to weather conditions.

Cancellations must be received by Southern Discoveries Ltd no later than 24 hours prior to the coach departure. Passengers who have not cancelled will be considered “no shows” and no refunds are available.

WiFi is available on selected Coach & Cruise services from 1 August 2017 and is free of charge. If the WiFi service is unavailable then no refund will be issued.

As this is a returning day excursion our luggage storage capacity is limited. Please call reservations to confirm availability on 0800 264 536.

Go Milford

Go Milford is owned and operated by SDL who reserve the right to cancel departures, alter prices, timetables, and arrange alternative transport or sightseeing services without notice. Departures and itineraries are subject to sea, road and weather conditions. Infants 3 years and under travel free of charge and are allocated a seat. No refund will be given to passengers failing to check-in prior to departure.

Cancellations are required to be made at least 24 hours prior to departure. Cancellations made within 24 hours or on the day of travel are not entitled to a refund. Disabled passengers who require assistance on and off the coach must arrange for this assistance at pick up and drop off points. For health and safety reasons, drivers are not permitted to participate in carrying of passengers. The coaches are unable to store and/or carry motorised wheelchairs or motorised mobility scooters.

Minimum numbers apply to operate.

Milford Sound Kayak

All passengers must be able to swim and wear an approved life jacket in accordance with weight.

Double kayaks are available and must be requested at the time of booking. Single kayaks are only available for adult passengers. Double kayaks are available for children. Each child must be accompanied by an adult in the kayak. Minimum child age is 4 years, and children are aged 4 – 14 years inclusive.

SDL reserves the right to cancel or modify any kayaking trip due to unsafe weather conditions or not meeting the minimum number requirements. In the event of a kayaking trip being cancelled by SDL, passengers will receive a part refund for the kayaking portion only.

Detailed risk management and strict safety procedures are observed, however there still remains an element of risk. Risks in Milford Sound include extreme weather and water conditions which can change rapidly, cold water and limited kayaking landing sites. SDL accepts its legal responsibilities but cannot be held responsible for personal injury or loss, theft or damage to passenger belongings outside of any legal liability.

SDL cannot absolutely guarantee passenger safety. All passengers will be required to sign a liability form to this effect before commencing kayaking. All children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian who must sign on behalf of a child. Passengers on kayaking trips must follow guide instructions and adhere to safety requirements.

Milford Sound Underwater Observatory

The Milford Sound Underwater Observatory is an add-on to a cruise. Passengers will be dropped off by one vessel and will be collected by a second vessel for the last portion of the cruise to the Milford wharf. Allow an additional 30 – 60 minutes for a visit to the Milford Sound Underwater Observatory.

The Milford Sound Underwater Observatory is located on a floating platform in Harrison Cove. SDL reserves the right to cancel the Milford Sound Underwater Observatory at any time due to unsafe weather conditions, maintenance, or not meeting the minimum passenger numbers.

The Underwater Observatory is located in a natural environment so SDL cannot guarantee visibility or viewing of marine life. In the event of the Milford Sound Underwater Observatory being cancelled by SDL, passengers will receive a full refund for the Milford Sound Underwater Observatory if they have purchased the Underwater Observatory as an add-on to a cruise.

If passengers have booked the Discover More, Milford Sound Cruise & Kayak or Go Milford Day Trip, passengers will receive a partial refund for the Milford Sound Underwater Observatory only. No refunds will be given for cruise, transport or food.

Station 2 Station Cycle Trail

Cyclists take part in the Station 2 Station Cycle Trail at their own risk. Southern Discoveries is not responsible for the safety of cyclists on the road between Mt Nicholas and Walter Peak Stations, and all cyclists need to be aware of the New Zealand Road Code. Southern Discoveries reserve the right to amend timetables, cancel departures, substitute plant or equipment or alter ticket prices at any time.

 

Scenic Fixed Wing Flights or Fly/Cruise/Fly

Prices include return flights from Queenstown and SDL Milford Sound Cruise. Prices are valid from 1 October 2017 – 30 September 2018 and are subject to change without notice.

Flight routes, itineraries and cruises are subject to weather conditions. Child age is 2 – 12 years inclusive. Infants under 2 years fly free of charge if sitting on adult knee. Maximum one infant per couple.

Milford Sound Underwater Observatory is only available on selected flights.

For full terms and conditions, please contact reservations@southerndiscoveries.co.nz or phone +64 3 441 1137 or 0800 264 536.

Helicopter Flights or Heli/Cruise/Heli

Prices include return flights from Queenstown and SDL Milford Sound Cruise. Prices are valid from 1 October 2017 – 30 September 2018 and are subject to change without notice.

Flights are dependent on weather conditions. Flight routes, itineraries and cruises are subject to weather conditions. Child age is 4 – 11 years inclusive. Infants under 4 years fly free of charge if sitting on adult knee. Maximum one infant per couple.

Milford Sound Underwater Observatory is not able to be included when flying into Milford Sound. Maximum six passengers per helicopter. Individual personal weight is required at time of booking. Flight times are approximate and flight paths/landings may change at the pilot’s discretion.

For full terms and conditions, please contact reservations@southerndiscoveries.co.nz or phone +64 3 441 1137 or 0800 264 536.

Milford Sound Lodge

All cancellations incur a 10% charge (except due to road closures). Cancellation within 7 days of the date of arrival will incur a 30% charge. Cancellation on day of arrival will incur a 100% charge. Cancellations due to road closures are 100% refundable.

For full terms and conditions, please refer to www.milfordsoundlodge.com

KJet

Southern Discoveries Limited have a 50% shareholding in KJet. All trips require minimum numbers.
Child age is 4 – 14 years inclusive. Infants 4 years and under travel free. Minimum age to travel is 2 years.

KJet reserves the right to cancel or postpone trips at its sole discretion and SDL will refund the ticket price if a trip is cancelled or postponed by KJet.

Once a ticket is purchased, and there is a requirement to cancel, KJet must be notified more than one hour before the departure time. Refunds will be given at the sole discretion of KJet. Tickets cancelled less than one hour before departure incur a 100% charge. No shows are non-refundable.

Online Promotions

Save 10% Online
10% discount applies to selected Milford Sound Cruises, Spirit of Queenstown Scenic Cruises and Mt Nicholas Farm Experiences only. The promotion is valid for travel until 30 September 2018 and may change or be removed without notice. 10% discount only applicable on adult fares and the discount is applied at the time of booking. The promotion is not available in conjunction with any other offer and is not redeemable for cash.

 

Milford Sound/Queenstown & KJet Combos

Child age is 5 – 15 years inclusive. Infants 4 years and under travel free. It is not possible do to both products on the same day as Milford Sound is approximately 5 hours each way from Queenstown. The combos are valid for travel until 30 September 2018 and may change or be removed without notice.

Kids Go FREE

Kids Go FREE applies to Milford Sound Scenic Cruises, Spirit of Queenstown Scenic Cruises and Mt Nicholas Farm Experience when travelling during the New Zealand school holidays.

Dates inclusive

  • 30 September 2017 – 15 October 2017

Travel period is valid for New Zealand primary school holidays only. Children must be accompanied by a full fare paying adult. Maximum two children per adult. Not valid in conjunction with any other offer. Child age is 4 – 14 years inclusive. Infants 3 years and under travel free.

 

10. Information

SDL is entitled, at the passenger consents, to the use of any of the passenger’s personal information obtained in relation to a passenger’s use of any SDL service, whether collected directly by SDL from the person concerned or not, for any purpose associated with the operation or marketing of SDL and to disclose any such information to any of its subsidiaries, associated companies, or any other person engaged in business operations with SDL from time to time.

11. New Zealand Law

These Rules are governed by New Zealand law in every particular including formation and interpretation. Every contract incorporating these Rules is deemed made in New Zealand. Any proceedings relating in any way to these Rules or to any SDL service must be brought in a court of competent jurisdiction in New Zealand.

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