Covid: Rule of 6 and how it will affect your holiday cottage booking
The government has just announced that, with effect from the 14th September 2020, there are new rules on the permissible size of groups allowed to gather in England.
So how will these new rules affect you and any booking for a holiday cottage in Kent you have already made? Or were perhaps thinking about booking?
New rules on social distancing
Following an increase in the rate of Covid-19 infections and the overall ‘R’ value (or ‘reproduction’ value), the government has taken further measures to deter gatherings of large groups of people, from multiple households.
In England, there is now a limit of up to six people from multiple households meeting up.
This new rule applies both indoors and outdoors, to all ages and to private homes, pubs, restaurants and outdoor spaces, such as parks.
Fines for breaching these rules will be £100 for a first offence, doubling on each further offence, to a total of £3,200.
One of the main exceptions of this new rule is if your household – or support bubble – is already larger than 6.
The government currently defines a support bubble as “a close support network between a household with only one adult in the home (known as a single-adult household) and one other household of any size.”
How does the Rule of 6 affect my holiday cottage booking?
So how will the new Rule of 6 affect your booking for a holiday cottage in England?
For existing bookings
If you have already made a booking for a holiday rental on the south east coast of Kent with Keepers Cottages, then provided it is for 6 or less people, there is nothing you need to do.
If it is for more than 6 people BUT those staying at the cottage currently all live in the same household, or are part of a support bubble, then again, there is nothing you need to do.
But if your booking is for 7 or more people AND they are from different households, then you will need to take action to either amend your booking or request a refund.
For future bookings
If you have not yet made a booking for a holiday cottage, you still can, provided the total number in your party does not exceed six.
The key exception to this is if your household (or support bubble) already exceeds six people. In which case, you can book a holiday property large enough to accommodate everyone in that group.
So, for example, it may be that your household currently comprises two parents and four children plus a support bubble that extends to grandma. In which case, you would be fine to book a holiday cottage for seven people.
What to do if you need to amend or cancel your booking with Keepers Cottages
If you need to amend or cancel your existing booking with Keepers Cottages due to this latest legislation, then please get in touch.
We pride ourselves on our exceptional customer service and it is our policy that any guest with a booking which has been affected by the latest ‘Rule of 6’ government directive about social gatherings in England may either rearrange to new dates in 2020 or 2021, with no amendment fee or else receive a full cash refund, if preferred.
This policy currently applies to bookings of seven or more guests from different households (or not in the same bubble) who would be travelling to one of our Kent properties, as a social gathering.
When will the ‘Rule of 6’ end?
Right now, there is no official end date to this new legislation. Which means that it could be relaxed within weeks. Or else, extended (or amended) for the foreseeable future.
For this reason, right now, we will be prioritising delivery of the above options to customers for bookings due to arrive between 14th September 2020 and 11th October 2020.
Dates after this will be reviewed on a weekly basis by Keepers Cottages, following any updates to government guidance.
If your booking is impacted by the ‘Rule of 6’, we will refund you or help you rearrange your arrival date.
We therefore politely request that you do not cancel your booking or chargeback to your payment card as this creates further delays and unnecessary administration in processing refunds.
Call Keepers Cottages for help with your Kent holiday
If your booking has been affected by the ‘Rule of 6’ or you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to call Keepers Cottages directly and speak to one of our friendly team.