Travel Preparation

Want to know how much luggage to bring or plan for eating gluten-free while traveling? See some of our commonly asked questions and answers about getting travel-ready for your WorldStrides program!

General

What is the best way to carry money?

Students carrying money should be advised to keep cash in a safe place such as a money belt or wallet in a secure pocket. Where possible, it is best for travelers to carry only what they may need for the day, and to secure the rest of their cash in their luggage.

How much luggage can students bring?

On most programs, students will carry their own luggage, so it is always recommended to pack light! For short programs, one small suitcase is recommended. For longer programs, we recommend no more than one checked bag and one carry-on. The cost for checking baggage is not included in WorldStrides program price and travelers should be prepared to pay these fees upon check-in for both departing and returning flights. Please also check your airline's website prior to travel for up-to-date information regarding weight and size limits set by the airline. Additionally, all travelers should be aware of the Transportation Security Administration's guidelines for air travel. For more information, please visit the TSA website.

What should students pack?

Comfortable clothes and walking shoes are a must. Since the weather can be unpredictable, be sure to bring rain gear and to dress in layers in case the temperature changes throughout the day. You should check the weather forecast for your destination during the time you'll be traveling and pack accordingly. Download sample K-12 destination packing lists here:

For our university travelers, a packing list is included in each program's online registration portal. Click the tab that says Packing List. Don't forget trip-specific items such as business clothes for professional meetings, comfortable shoes for touring, and an electricity converter if necessary. Also note that students receive a travel folder with all kinds of goodies prior to the trip. This information includes destination-specific travel letters detailing currency, weather, electricity, etc. In addition, travelers receive a country-specific guidebook with etiquette advice and country customs.

Can students apply or receive frequent flyer miles for the trip?

Due to the nature of group travel and the discounted group rates we receive, airlines do not allow the use of frequent flyer programs. Additionally, travelers are not eligible to receive frequent flyer miles for their travel. University students traveling individually may be eligible to redeem and/or earn miles and should contact their Account Manager with specific questions.

What type of documents are required for air travel?

In accordance with TSA regulations, minor children are not required to carry ID. However, we strongly encourage students to carry a school ID or ID card. All participants must provide their full legal name (first, middle, and last name matching information on a government-issued ID) matching information on a government-issued ID regarding date of birth and gender prior to ticketing. International air travel: A passport is required for all travelers on all international trips. Each traveler is responsible for obtaining their own passport. Obtaining a passport can take several weeks, so make arrangements to acquire one immediately. Passports should not expire for at least 6 months from the date when you'll return. All pages must be securely fastened inside. (Some countries will not accept a passport that does not meet these standards.) We recommend students make two black and white copies of their passport before travel in case their passport is lost or stolen; keep one in secured luggage and give one to the Program Leader.

Are meals for participants with dietary restrictions available?

Students with special meal requirements will need to communicate these to WorldStrides and your Program Leader in advance. WorldStrides will make every effort to communicate special dietary restrictions requests or allergies to the restaurants where food is served on our programs. Despite our best efforts, though, several factors make it impossible for WorldStrides to make a reliable commitment ahead of your program that a specific meal will be arranged according to the health requirements for a participant. Travelers who suffer from complex or extreme food allergies are advised to pack adequate snacks and be prepared with extra meal money to purchase uniquely prepared foods, if necessary.

Can I download the medical release form and behavior contract?

The medical release form and behavior contract are available for download by accessing MyTrip. You can also get a copy of the form and contract from the teacher leading your program, if you are unable to access them online.

How far in advance do I need to contact you to plan my international program?

Typically, our clients will begin planning their international trips between 9 and 11 months in advance of travel. However, this all depends on your travel needs! If your travel program is optional, a longer planning timeline helps give students time to decide if they'd like to participate and time to raise money to go. International air inventory opens approximately 11 months prior to travel; however, we can generally provide other cost components as early as 15 months prior to travel. We also receive last-minute program requests (groups traveling in fewer than 4 months) and do our best to accommodate those requests.

Am I a "Parent of a Student," or an "Adult/Other?"

You are the 'Parent of a Student' if you are financially responsible for the student traveler whether or not you are traveling on the program as well. Your parent account includes access to all payment information for your child. You are an 'Adult/Other' if you are traveling on a program and are responsible for your own program costs.

Higher Education Custom Programs

Do university travelers need a visa?

All students traveling on a Higher Education Custom program receive an email within 24 hours of registration that details their visa needs (dependent on destination and nationality). This email will include detailed instructions for obtaining a visa, if necessary, and an application. Thanks to our unique in-house visa team, WorldStrides may provide comprehensive visa processing services for U.S. citizens when contracted by the school. For visa questions, please email visas@worldstrides.org. Please note it is the traveler's responsibility to obtain necessary travel documents. If you are denied entry to any country, including a country you have connected through, you are not eligible for a refund.

What is WorldStrides' relationship to my professor or school?

WorldStrides partners with educators from all over the world to develop and operate educational travel programs. Your school or professor has worked with us to customize your program. Depending on the arrangements we've made with your school, we will handle elements including booking airfare, arranging great guides, collecting participant information, and arranging immersive experiences for you in the country or countries you are visiting.

Discoveries Programs

How do I create my rooming list for my domestic, science-based, or performing program?

You need to register for MyTrip in order to create your rooming list. Visit mytrip.worldstrides.org to register. Once you've registered, you can easily create your rooming list in the Program Leader or Director Resources section.

When will I get my specific flight and program information?

You will receive a Program Information Letter from WorldStrides or your Program Leader containing specific details approximately two to three weeks prior to departure. This letter will include the flight schedule as well as hotel and sightseeing information. All airline tickets are sent directly to the Program Leader. Confirmed hotel information will be available 20 days prior to departure for domestic programs. WorldStrides cautions that schedule changes occur VERY frequently, which can often lead to a completely new set of flights. Don't make any firm plans around these student travel flights until they are finalized and, even then, allow plenty of time for connections.

What is the itinerary for our travel program?

The specific itinerary will be chosen by your child's Program Leader and is based on the educational goals for the trip. The itinerary for your program can be found on the back of your trip information letter. Please realize that the itinerary found on this letter is subject to change. Once all the details are finalized, your child's teacher will distribute the final itinerary to you.

OnStage Programs

How do you handle instrument transportation and rental?

Performing tours abroad may necessitate the transportation of instruments, equipment, and uniforms. Our dedicated operations staff has the expertise and proven ability to ensure the smooth travel coordination of all your instruments and equipment. Call us at 1-800-522-2398 for information on transporting equipment and instruments, including rental options.

Where can I download your Suggested Music List?

Where can Directors download the Performance Information Form for a Heritage Festival/Festival of Gold?

You can download the Performance Information Form for a Heritage Festival program by clicking here.

How do I create my rooming list for my domestic, science-based, or performing program?

You need to register for MyTrip in order to create your rooming list. Visit mytrip.worldstrides.org to register. Once you've registered, you can easily create your rooming list in the Program Leader or Director Resources section.

How do you promote a concert performance?

We make every effort to ensure warm, appreciative, and receptive audiences so that our groups enjoy the most rewarding performance experience possible. Our full promotional service includes the following specific and tangible measures:

  • Production of 30 to 50 posters advertising a concert, including arrangements for these to be displayed at hotels, railway stations, libraries, etc.
  • Communications with music societies and associations within 30 miles of your proposed concert, inviting them to organize an individual or group visit to your concert.
  • Communications with local colleges, churches, and musical institutions.
  • Preparation of a press release promoting the concert, including distribution to local radio stations, local TV stations, entertainment and concert listings, and local newspaper editors and cultural/entertainment reporters.
  • Small display advertisements in local newspapers publicizing your concert.

Are there other venues in which we can perform, especially if we have a service or mission component to our tour?

We offer extensive options with hospitals, care homes, and community centers that offer performers the opportunity to bring a sense of fellowship, understanding, and caring to those in need of respite. Your Tour Coordinator will be pleased to discuss specific options with you according to your preferred destination.

Can you arrange travel for our performing trip?

Of course! Our Destination Specialist team can arrange motor coach or air travel to and from your event. We can even help arrange for instrument rentals or shipping if necessary.

Perspectives Programs

How much money is recommended for tipping internationally on high school programs?

Gratuities to your WorldStrides Tour Director and long distance tour bus driver (if applicable) are not included in the tour price. For a job well done, recommended tipping guidelines are as follows:

  • Europe: 4 Euros per day for your Tour Director and 2 Euros per day for your long-distance coach driver.
  • UK: 3 Pounds per day for your Tour Director and 1 Pound per day for your long-distance coach driver.
  • Latin America: $3 per day for your Tour Director and $2 per day for your long-distance coach driver.

Will we need a visa to travel on our high school program?

WorldStrides will notify the Program Leader if a visa is required for entry by U.S. citizens to any of the countries that you may be visiting. Please be aware that the time required to process visa applications can be several weeks for each country.

What is the itinerary for our travel program?

The specific itinerary will be chosen by your child's Program Leader and is based on the educational goals for the trip. The itinerary for your program can be found on the back of your trip information letter. Please realize that the itinerary found on this letter is subject to change. Once all the details are finalized, your child's teacher will distribute the final itinerary to you.

HAVE ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS?

We're here to help provide you with all of the information that you need to begin your educational travel adventure.

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