London Boats Terms and Conditions
No booking can be confirmed until a completed and signed copy of the Booking Form has been received.
No charter will be deemed confirmed until the deposit has been received.
By booking your Private Charter with Thames Boat Hire, any person named on the Booking Form shall be considered the Hirer. You are bound by the Terms & Conditions of the Operating Company and shall be liable for all charges made by the Company.
Reservations and Payments
A provisional booking will be held for seven days and the booking will be confirmed when we have received a completed, signed booking form with a non-refundable or non-transferable deposit of the boat hire fee. If no form and deposit are received within that time the date will become available for other clients.
The balance of all monies must be received no later than 14 days before the date of the function. Tax point will be the date of the function.
Any additional charges incurred during the function must be settled at the end of the function by card or cash. Cheques are not accepted at this time. In the event of any accounts not being settled by the end of the function we will invoice for the amount outstanding plus a 10% plus VAT administration charge.
Any payments made on a credit card will incur a 3% plus VAT surcharge. There is no charge for debit cards. Bookings can only be accepted by persons over the age of 21. Clients are not permitted to re-sell the whole or part of the vessel without express permission from us. Should the whole or part of the vessel be re-sold without our permission we reserve the right to cancel the function and no refunds will be given. We are under no obligation to accept any booking and no reason need be stated.
If a voyage, party or function is cancelled by a client for any cause within one month of the voyage, party or function then 50% of the boat hire charges, all pier tolls where applicable and 100% of any costs incurred by us on the clients behalf are payable by the client. If the voyage, party or function is cancelled within two weeks of the voyage, party or function 100% of the boat hire charges, all pier tolls, entertainment and catering costs where applicable are payable by the client. In the event that a booking is cancelled due to non-payment, 100% of all charges remain payable. Cancellation must first be made by the organiser speaking to a member of office staff, and secondly confirmed in writing. In the event of litigation our costs will be recovered from the client.
We reserves the right to substitute another vessel and, if necessary for reasons beyond their control, to cancel the said party, but will not be liable for any expenses incurred by the Hirer caused by such substitution or cancellation. We reserve the right to cancel the function and refund the clients deposit in full if the booking changes significantly from that originally quoted or agreed. We also reserve the right to cancel a function or retain all/part of the security bond if it is discovered that the information given by the client on the booking form is in any way false, or if the function contravenes any part of these terms and conditions and in this situation no refunds will be given. We also reserve the right to alter prices should circumstances beyond our control make this necessary. We also reserve the right to charge interest on any outstanding debts. Should the client have any cause for complaint, the Captain must be notified before the end of the function. Complaints will not be accepted unless so notified.
Under 21’s Policy
We have a strict Under 21’s policy; if more than 5% of passengers are under 21, please contact the office at the time of booking for details of our under 21’s policy. Failure to do so may result in the cancellation of your function.
All functions selling tickets should be promoted as over 21 events
A 696 Promoters Risk Assessment form must be completed and returned to the office one month before your function date. Failure to complete this may result in the Police cancelling your function and in this situation no refunds will be given.
A security bond may be required in connection with any booking and payment of the bond will be due 14 days before the function. The bond will be returned in full no later than 7 days after the function providing no additional costs have been incurred (including but not limited to unauthorised alcohol, delay to the end of the function, or loss or damage to the vessel, equipment or furnishings, the discovery that information given by the clients on the booking form is in any way false.) In the event that a security bond is not taken or the amount of the bond is less than any charges incurred (including but not limited to the reasons listed above) we reserve the right to invoice for these additional costs. The organiser is invited to inspect the vessel prior to embarkation of the party.
Captain’s Control of the Vessel
The vessel will remain under complete control of the Captain and/ or his crew during the entire hire period. If for weather, tidal or other reasons the Captain considers it necessary to vary the scheduled trip, his decision will be final. The Captain has the right to refuse passage to any person or persons and the reasons for such a refusal need not be stated.
Set up /clear away
We endeavour to allow up to two hours set up time at Temple pier before a function, however this cannot be guaranteed. Any clients requiring extra set up time are requested to book additional hours. Any additional time booked will be charged at the normal hourly rate. The vessel may not be on the pier upon arrival and you may need to be taken across the river in a small crew boat. If this is the case it will involve a steep step down on to the boat and suitable footwear should therefore be worn. Passengers permitted on-board during the set up time are restricted to a maximum of 6 people actually helping to set up. Any other passengers will be asked to disembark until the boat is ready for boarding. Clients using a pier other than Temple are welcome to remain on-board and travel with the vessel to their chosen embarkation pier.
Embarkation / Disembarkation
The vessel will endeavour to be ready for boarding 15 minutes before the requested embarkation time; passengers will not be permitted on-board before this time regardless of weather conditions. Organisers are requested to pass this information on to their party to ensure they arrive at the correct time. The vessel will leave the pier at the requested time and anyone not on-board will be left behind. We will not be responsible for late passengers missing the function.
At the end of the function the boat will endeavour to arrive at the chosen disembarkation pier 15 minutes before the end of the function which is when the bars will close and lights will be turned on. For health and safety reasons only background music may be played and lights must be turned up from this point on. Passengers will then have 15 minutes to finish their drinks and disembark. All passengers must have disembarked by the end of the function. Passengers delaying the end of the function will incur additional hourly charges at the appropriate rate and these will be billed to the organiser.
Clients are not permitted to bring any alcohol onto the vessel except by prior arrangement. Any unauthorised alcohol found on the vessel will be confiscated. In the event that unauthorised alcohol is consumed on the vessel we will charge a corkage fee and the Captain reserves the right to terminate the function.
Health and Safety
Any passengers perceived to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs will be refused entry to the vessel. Due to the tidal nature of the River Thames the walkway to the pier can be steep at certain times of the day. Our crew are always on hand to offer help to the elderly, very young, disabled or anyone else who may need assistance. A safety announcement will be given by the Captain at the start of your function. To reduce the danger of slips, trips and falls, drinks should not be taken onto the dance floors. It is recommended that low heeled footwear is to be worn on-board any moving vessel. We will not be held responsible for any accident or injury caused by inappropriate footwear being worn.
PLEASE NOTE: We operate a policy of zero tolerance on drugs.
It is the organiser’s responsibility to ensure that all members of their party are conversant with these terms and conditions of hire. The organiser will be deemed responsible for the behaviour of the passengers.
Reception drinks from our reception drinks list will be served in real glasses and set out on a table for passengers to help themselves to when boarding.
Clients wishing to purchase wine or champagne by the bottle to serve as reception drinks will be provided with the bottle and plastic glasses and will be responsible for pouring and serving.
Corkage is not permitted on weekend functions (Friday evening to Sunday evening) or during peak season. If permitted, corkage must be prearranged and prepaid and will be charged on any wine, sparking wine and champagne brought on-board at the current rates. Corkage charge covers storage, chilling and pouring wine, sparkling wine or champagne in real glasses.
All drinks from the bar are served in plastic glasses. Soft drinks, spirits and mixers, half pints of lager and wine are served in plastic tumblers, pints of lager are served in plastic pint glasses and champagne is served in plastic flutes. If a client requests real glasses we require additional bar staff to collect, wash and dry glasses and these costs will be passed onto the client. The number of bar staff required is dependent on passenger numbers. Real glassware is dependent on passenger numbers and vessel being hired.
If extra bar staff are required these are charged for the duration of the function plus one hour set-up and one hour clear-up (a total of two extra hours).
On functions where more than 10% of guests will not be drinking alcohol, the office should be notified in advance of the booking as a surcharge may apply.
On-board the larger vessels, one of the bars may remain shut or be closed during the function if numbers drop and/ or demand is low. Clients wishing to have both bars open for the entire function should liaise with the office at the time of booking their function as a charge for extra bar staff may apply.
Account bars can be operated on a specific drinks system, i.e. beer, wine and soft drinks only, and any drinks not available within the account will remain available for purchase by individuals. Clients who run an account bar during their function and require an itemised receipt must request this from the Bar Manager at the beginning of their function. We regret that itemised receipts cannot be supplied once the bars have been closed.
There is no requirement to have catering on-board our vessels.
Clients using our caterers must cater for all passengers on-board. Should clients wish to use their own caterers then a surcharge will apply. The surcharge will apply to everyone on-board. On vessels equipped with a galley the surcharge covers use of the galley, hob, microwave and waste disposal. For vessels without a galley the surcharge covers waste disposal. The surcharge does not include use of any cooking utensils (pots, pans, wooden spoons etc.), crockery, cutlery or linen. Under no circumstances does the own catering surcharge include ‘own beverages’. We do not permit any drinks (soft or alcoholic) to be brought on-board.
If using the galley for own catering clients are responsible for fully cleaning this area at the end of the function. If the galley is not left in a clean condition additional charges will apply.
Tables and chairs
Our tables are trestle tables which seat a maximum of 6 people, 3 per side. The amount of tables and chairs vary depending on vessel and whether or not catering is ordered. Copies of the seating plans can be obtained upon request. If additional trestle tables, round tables, or gilt chairs are required then these can be ordered in at an additional cost. All tables are covered in a Damsak catering roll. If using our caterers linen can be requested for an additional cost.
There is no obligation to have entertainment on board but if required we can provide a full range of entertainment. Clients wishing to provide their own entertainment on-board may do so for a surcharge. If our equipment is used then a security bond may be taken (in addition to the hire charge), this is refunded after the function as long as there is no damage to the equipment. Noise limiters are fitted on our vessels in order to comply with current noise regulations and these are under the Captain’s control at all times.
Laying alongside a pier
We are able to spend part of a function alongside a pier. This must be booked through the office at the time of confirming your function at additional cost.
The time spent alongside must be before 2300hrs and is subject to availability and relevant pier charges.
Lost and Left Property
We are not responsible for any items lost whilst on our boats. Any items found at the end of a function will be held for 7 days and must be collected from Temple pier. Any items not collected after 7 days will be discarded. We regret clients are not permitted to leave anything on vessels after their function, all equipment, decorations and any other items must be removed at the end of the function.
In line with current legislation smoking is not permitted anywhere inside our vessels. Smoking is permitted on the open decks at the rear of all vessels. Passengers who continuously ignore crew orders to stop smoking inside the vessels will be put ashore early and we will not be responsible for their lost function time or travel costs. We regret the following are not permitted on-board under any circumstances: Party poppers, silly string, confetti or table confetti or similar. Dry ice, smoke or bubble machines. Lit candles, sparklers, fireworks or similar. Chewing gum. Strobe or laser lights.