Answers to so many of the frequently asked questions come down to the amount of pre-trip communication you had with your outfitter or booking agent. Of the ten evaluations in the OutfittersRating.com survey, the one covering pre-trip communication can be viewed as the most important. If you’ve received thorough communication from the outfitter and had access to his/her complete and well-designed website, then chances are you’ll know the answer to every question that will come up – or at least you should.
The time to have this question about who pays for what in the case of unforeseen circumstances answered was back when you were initially researching the trip and negotiating a contract with the service provider. When you are on your third frustrating day in a tiny village, anxiously waiting to get out to camp and paying exorbitant prices for bad meals at the café is definitely NOT the time to figure this out. The situation is too “charged” right then.
An experienced, highly-rated outfitter will be a master of planning contingencies for such uncontrollable events,…
so while it may fall to you to pay for your unplanned room and board, the outfitter should be able to find economical options for you. However, unless this was agreed to in writing before the trip, you shouldn’t expect the outfitter to foot the bill.
Same thing when you’re delayed coming out of camp due to weather or other uncontrollable circumstances and you miss your commercial airline flights home. Change fees, rebooking fees, and new tickets are your responsibility. If you are traveling to a locale known for unpredictable weather (as most hunting locations seem to have) you should plan ahead by booking “open” tickets or purchasing trip insurance (just be sure it covers what you need it to cover.) It may cost a bit more up front, but will save you potentially thousands of dollars if the unforeseen happens.
Bottom line: there is no standard answer to this question. It’s all in what is negotiated and agreed with the outfitter prior to the trip.