Oyster has been actively involved in developing the BS8848 standard, introduced by the British Standards Institution in 2007. Expedition and adventure travel companies wanting to reach this standard have to meet stringent requirements to make sure that their customers are protected as far as possible from health, safety, planning and financial risks.
We have made sure that our systems meet BS8848’s requirements and can provide our detailed evidence on request. Some of the key requirements are described below, to show what customers can expect from a company operating in line with BS8848.
When you go on an Oyster project you can be confident that:
- we have carried out a risk assessment to identify any potential risks to health, safety and security, as well as ways in which these can be prevented
- regular checks are made on your accommodation, transport and equipment
- there will be an Oyster representative or volunteer co-ordinator locally to help you in any emergency
- emergency procedures exist for every project
- you will be briefed thoroughly on how to stay healthy and safe during your stay
- there will be access to first aid on-site and medical care nearby
- our UK and overseas staff are experienced at planning and managing your trip
- you will be given full information about the project, cost, Oyster’s conditions and any risk factors before you decide to book
- we monitor political and security developments carefully and pay close attention to Foreign Office travel advice
- your money will be protected through our comprehensive insurance policies and our ATOL bond (if we book your flight)
- you will understand your responsibilities when leaving the project for independent trips (known as ‘downtime’).
The Year Out Group has written an excellent Guide to BS8848.