Updates from Valerie Brown, Lead Smart Coaching, LLC
No one could have anticipated this global worldwide pandemic that has resulted in unprecedented measures to halt the rapid spread of the Coronavirus. Like you, I am “sheltering in place,” leaving my home essential services and social distancing.
While there is a lot of uncertainty, I am hopeful that our Walk in Beauty Pilgrimages will proceed. We work with official Spanish travel agencies only, registered under Spain’s General Tourism Board and guaranteed by the Spanish government. I am certain that the hallmark of the Walk in Beauty experience is grounded in kindness and community. Please know that your safety and wellbeing is our first priority.
Like the United States, Spain and Portugal announced the closure of borders and businesses, with the exception of those necessary for health reasons. Both countries have directed people to stay at home, except for medical treatment and food.
The Federación Española de Asociaciones de Amigos del Camino de Santiago has confirmed that there are no pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago during this time. In the U.S., on March 19, the U.S. Department of State advised U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19. As a global community, we must be aggressive in halting the spread of the virus, and we can all do our part.
Updated Cancellation & Refund Policy
I remain committed to running the Portuguese Coast Camino on October 6-17, 2020 and the Camino Finisterre, October 23-31, 2020 once this public health crisis is past us and the governmental authorities give the “all clear” signal. I am keenly aware that everyone has their own perspective on what’s right for them.
- Therefore, I’ve adjusted the booking and cancellation policies to allow you more time and flexibility to make the right decision for you.
- Also, we’ve added 5 instead of 3 Camino Community Conference Calls to build community—especially now. This situation is fluid, and as it evolves, so will our response. I’ll continue to be in touch and provide updates as they roll in.
As I’ve learned over the past few weeks, what makes sense today may not make sense tomorrow. Please understand that I reserve the right to change these policies without prior notice due to this very fluid and unpredictable situation.
You may be asking yourself:
What if I am questioning whether I should travel in October?
To provide you with more time to make travel decisions, I have adjusted the payment schedule previously listed in the registration form:
1) Revised installment payment schedule for the Portuguese Coast Camino:
Payment #2: $2774.50/per person double occupancy due by June 6, 2020 (NOT April 6, 2020)
Payment # 3: $2774.50/per person double occupancy due by August 6, 2020 (NOT July 6, 2020)
2) Revised installment payment schedule for the Camino Finisterre:
Payment #2: $2524.50 due by June 22, 2020 (NOT April 22, 2020)
Payment #3: $2524.50 due by August 22, 2020 (NOT July 22, 2020)
What if the pilgrimage is cancelled due to continued travel restrictions?
If we must cancel the pilgrimage, those registered have the option of:
1) a full refund, less the deposit; or
2) transferring your registration to October 2021 for the same or a similar pilgrimage.
The decision to cancel will be made carefully and with our official Spanish travel agency.
While things might feel bleak now, we will emerge, even stronger, from this public health crisis. Despite the uncertainty you might feel, there is certainly no end to the opportunities to step into courage and integrity, to connect to deep wisdom, and to strengthen the fabric of community, perhaps in ways you’ve not considered before. The seeds of whatever will happen on the other side of this pandemic are being sown right now.
As a women and minority owned small business, I take your trust and confidence in traveling with me seriously. Please call me at 215-933-9978 or contact me online if you have any questions.