How To Book

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Done it before, know the stuff

Links below for those who know what they're doing and want to get on with it:

If you're new to our website

The link below goes to a page from which you can: view availability; price a holiday; book a holiday; send an enquiry; read how the online system works (ESSENTIAL).

  1. Do It Online

But first, please read to the end of this page! - otherwise bits of the online system might not make sense to you.

Human contact by telephone or email still has advantages - holiday bookings can be a complex process of juggling our limited availability (that's why we maintain a manned office). Don't hold back!

Off-Peak Discounts & Short Breaks

Our busiest times are set out under "Peak Periods" below. "Off-peak" is everything else - that's over 70% of the year! We make it worth your while to book off-peak, so as the Americans say, get with the programme! All of the following are available off-peak:

  • Low occupancy discount - 4% deducted for each bed unoccupied;
  • Early booking discount - 10% for full weeks only, conditional upon booking with payment in full by preceding 30 November, or by 31 March for autumn weeks starting September;
  • Short breaks (less than a full week) - prices calculated by the online system based on number of beds, number of nights, and fixed cost elements such as cleaning.

The above discounts and short break prices are automatically applied by the online system where relevant. One further off-peak discount is NOT automatically applied by the system, so please do tell us if you are eligible, and we'll apply it manually:

  • Multiple booking discount - 10% for the third off-peak full week in a year (additional to Low Occupancy and Early Booking discounts).

Peak Periods

For peak periods the online system automatically applies the following conditions:

  • Full week basis, Saturday to Saturday - you can arrive late or leave early (it's not a prison!), but no deduction from the weekly rate will normally be given. Please contact us if a peak week is still available at short notice and you can't come for a full week - we'll work out a short break for you.
  • No discounts (low occupancy, early booking, multiple booking) in peak periods.

Peak periods are:
> Easter school hols - pretty variable (some schools now ignore Easter);
> Whitsun / "Spring Bank Holiday" - generally last week of May;
> Summer school hols - July & August (or nearly all of);
> October school half term - usually second half of Oct;
> Christmas and New Year.

Weekly changeover: Saturday

For full weeks our changeover day is Saturday. In peak periods the online system does not allow any other start day. But in off-peak periods it DOES allow you to book a week starting on any other day - we can't avoid this, but don't want to encourage it because it mucks up weekly bookings for others, so we reserve the right to add a small 25 supplement to weeks not starting on Saturday.

Priority Booking System

We try to be fair and to honour loyalty and regularity. There's nothing worse than being bounced out of your regular annual slot by a newcomer (and some of our guests have taken the same slot for more than 30 years!). So if we know that you want to keep a regular annual slot, we'll protect it for you. That's why many dates show as provisionally booked in the online booking system.

On the other hand, we want to make it possible for new guests to break into the system and stake a claim to their own annual slot. We have therefore put a tick-box on the booking form for those who think they would like to repeat the same booking the following year.

Booking Conditions, Deposits, etc.

These are viewable in the online booking process and the printable booking form below, but here are the brief essentials:

  • No booking is treated as definite until a deposit has been received (unless otherwise agreed, e.g. for last-minute bookings). The deposit is currently 100 per house per week.
  • To obtain the 10% Early Booking Discount, full payment is required on booking.
  • Cancellation: we offer a cancellation waiver scheme for complete peace of mind. It is unique because unlike travel insurance schemes it applies to cancellation for any reason whatsoever. It is also cheaper, because travel insurance automatically includes a whole lot of additional covers which are only needed for travel abroad and/or which duplicate your household insurance for personal belongings. Full details in the printable PDF download below.
  • The balance of the holiday cost is payable 4 weeks before the holiday starts, together with a good housekeeping deposit of 25 which is refundable after the end of the holiday (subject to any necessary deductions).
  • We also offer a very low cost accidental damage waiver scheme. Full details in the printable PDF download below.

Waiver Schemes

Below is a link to a PDF document with full details of our unique Cancellation Waiver and Accidental Damage Waiver schemes. Depending on your browser settings, the document will either open automatically in Adobe Reader (normally runs separately, while this web page remains open), or you will first be asked to choose whether to save or open the file.

Like to talk?

So do we. Ring us:
01556 502211
From abroad:
+44 1556 502211

Gelston Castle Holidays, Gelston, Castle Douglas, Dumfries & Galloway DG7 1SW
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Last modified: Mon Apr 27 07:30:51 2020
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