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.
Yes. WorldStrides welcomes handicapped participants and makes every effort to accommodate the student’s needs. Middle and High School students should ask the teacher leading their program to contact his or her Account Manager regarding any special needs so we may take care of the necessary arrangements. University students may work directly with their Account Manager.
Please note that there may be some activities in which a traveler is unable to participate. WorldStrides will be happy to work with anyone who has mobility or other issues to try to make it possible for them to participate. Additionally, we recommend that students with special needs investigate their destination(s) to make sure any special care would be available. Review the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Travelers’ Health website for tips.
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.
Yes! We love when students get credit for learning. This helps them get a step ahead, whether its for a college application or for a future career.
All middle programs include the opportunity to earn free high school credit. Our Perspectives programs offer high school students the opportunity to earn three free college credits. Our university programs also include the opportunity for students to earn additional college credit.
Our online courses make it easy to earn credit at a student’s own pace. WorldStrides offers coursework that has been carefully designed to combine the field experience with online assignments that demonstrate achievement of learning objectives. Acceptance of credit is always at the discretion of the receiving institution. Click here for more information.
Or, you can contact our Curriculum & Academics Team at firstname.lastname@example.org
Yes, WorldStrides is committed to giving every student the opportunity to travel. To support this mission, we offer several financial assistance and fundraising programs. Through these programs, thousands of students who otherwise would not have been able to afford this experience are given the opportunity to travel—and of this, we are extremely proud!
For middle and high school travel, the FLAG financial assistance programs makes nearly $2 million in financial assistance available each year to qualifying families. One simple call to WorldStrides Customer Service at 1-800-468-5899 can tell you how much assistance may be available to you. If you have questions, please contact email@example.com.
For university Capstone groups, our International Financial Assistance program provides scholarships through the Foundation for International Education. To determine what scholarship you may pre-qualify for and receive your customized application, contact the Capstone team at 1-800-422-2368 or IFA@worldstrides.org.
We also make fundraising simple for parents, students, and teachers. Through the Gift of Education, students can send e-cards, letters, and share Facebook links to receive direct donations to their trip. 100% of all the money raised by the student goes directly to their account. It’s the perfect fundraiser!
For more information on FLAG, the Gift of Education, and other fundraiser and scholarship options that may be available to you, please visit fundraising.worldstrides.com.
Yes, WorldStrides offers one of the best fundraising programs in the industry. Our Gift of Education program puts each student in charge of their own fundraising—and best of all, 100% of the money the student raises goes directly to help pay for their trip.
Students can send e-cards, letters, and share Facebook links with friends and family members. In one simple click, friends and family can make a direct contribution to the student’s trip. It so easy—and that’s why we call it the perfect fundraiser!
Visit fundraising.worldstrides.com to start your fundraising!
Yes. The safety and security of our traveling teachers and students is our top priority, and one measure we take to ensure this safety, and support, is through Tour Central.
Tour Central is staffed by WorldStrides employees and is available 24/7 for all traveling groups. Tour Central is there to assist you with any questions or problems that may arise—no matter how big or how small. The staff is specially trained to monitor events domestically and around the world, and has dozens of contingency plans in place to help us jump into action when necessary.
The Tour Central number for your group is printed on the WorldStrides name badges that are given to all our travelers for easy access should you need it. This is just one of the many measures that we take to ensure that your trip really is the experience of a lifetime.
Teachers leading middle and high school programs may enroll in our 3-credit graduate course, “Instruction and Management for Increased Learning.” This course is designed to serve teachers across all content areas and is run on a semester schedule. The course is taught by Director of Curriculum and Academics Wendy Amato. For information and to register, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
One of the many benefits of choosing WorldStrides is that educators can earn free professional development points. Both the educator leading the trip and the educator chaperones are eligible to receive this credit. Details and number of points vary by program, so please contact your Account Manager for full details.
You can change your contact information and other account information by logging into your MyTrip account. Click My Information and update your information, then click Save Changes. Changes to your account can also be made in writing, but must come from the responsible party.
For most programs, there are a few easy ways to register:
- Online: Visit our online portal
- By Phone: Some programs may be eligible for phone registration. Visit our Contact Us page to find the phone number!
- By Mail: If you received a trip letter distributed by your program leader, complete the registration form and fax the front and back with your credit card information to the number or address provided in your letter.
Some WorldStrides programs offer incentives for early registration, so please refer to the information provided to you by your program leader for complete details.
When registering, you’ll need to use the Trip ID assigned to your program. Each ID is unique and can also be found on the registration information provided to you by the educator leading this program.
*Note: Some groups may have special registration procedures. Please check with your program leader if you cannot find a Trip ID associated with your trip.
You can choose the EZPay payment option at the time of registration and even after you have registered.
During registration, just select the Automatic Payment Plan option and payments will be automatically deducted from the account or card you provide.
After registration, you can still sign up for EZPay through MyTrip or by calling WorldStrides Customer Service at 800-468-5899.
We strongly encourage you to choose this payment method for your trip. It’s easy and hassle free—and best of all, you’ll avoid all processing fees and not have to worry about any potential late payment fees!
Upon successful completion of coursework, WorldStrides Curriculum and Academics Department will issue a transcript directly to the student by mailing it to the address on file.
Click here to view full details on WorldStrides’ Discovery for Credit Program.
Registering for coursework through Discovery for Credit is easy. First, the student must be actively enrolled in a WorldStrides travel program and must have created a student account on MyTrip. Once on MyTrip, students can click on the Discovery for Credit link to begin the registration process. If you encounter any questions along the way, our Curriculum and Academics Department will be happy to help you out and can be reached at email@example.com.
Click here to view full details on WorldStrides’ Discovery for Credit Program.
WorldStrides is backed by the financial strength of The Carlyle Group, Charlesbank Capital Partners, and Silverhawk Capital Partners. In addition, through our membership in USTOA’s Traveler Assistance Program, all deposits up to $1M are protected in the unlikely event of WorldStrides insolvency. You can also purchase an additional trip interruption and/or cancellation plan (known as the Full Refund Program for high school and middle school programs). See your registration materials for details on the protection plan specific to your program.
The workload of the course is determined by the number of credits being earned. Fortunately, the majority of our course hours are satisfied in the field during travel programs, leaving a manageable portion of coursework for the online learning environment. Students are encouraged to register for and explore the coursework to anticipate their personal timeline. Upon returning from travel, all coursework must be completed within 6 months of the return date.
Click here to view full details on WorldStrides’ Discovery for Credit Program.
Three free college credits are included with all our Perspectives International Travel Programs. This is a great value for students seeking to get ahead or fulfill graduation requirements. It’s also a great differentiator for students when applying to college. For many of our other programs (non-Perspective programs), college credit is also included at varying levels.
High school students seeking college credit can refer to the Discovery for Credit section of MyTrip for exact details on the credits available for your specific travel program and any applicable fees. All college credit transcripts are issued through our university partner, University of California – San Diego. Please note, students traveling on a non-science based international program need to call 800-468-5899 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for academic credit information.
College students—please refer to your online registration website for additional information on what is included in your program.
Discovery for Credit is free—meaning students who successfully complete online coursework following their travel program will receive free high school credit. The exact amount of credit received depends on the travel program and specific coursework selected. Click here to view full details on WorldStrides’ Discovery for Credit Program.
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.
The amount of spending money students need to bring depends on the length of the tour. It is also a personal preference—meaning that if you want to buy a lot of souvenirs, then you’ll need to bring more spending money. As a general guide, we recommend $50 in spending money to purchase souvenirs for programs lasting three or more days.
Be sure to check the information provided to you by the teacher leading the trip. On some of our programs, not all the meals are included so students will want to bring an additional $7-$12 to buy lunch each day.
Please note, these recommendations may differ if you are traveling internationally.
If you are a K-12 student and have forgotten your password, click the orange link located below the login area on the MyTrip homepage.
One of the many benefits of traveling with WorldStrides is that we handle all the details. In the event of a flight delay or cancelled flight, our Tour Central team kicks in to action. Tour Central, in conjunction with our Operations Team, will coordinate all new flight arrangements and secure hotel accommodations for your group. We’ll even coordinate additional meals when necessary—and the hotel and meals expenses are covered by WorldStrides,which means no additional expenses for the trip participants.
All cancellations and requests for refunds must be addressed in writing and mailed to WorldStrides at P.O. 9033, Charlottesville, VA 22906-9033. Please include the registrant’s name, Customer Account Number, and complete address. The refund process takes approximately four to six weeks.
If you have not purchased one of our optional Refund Programs, our Standard Cancellation Policy applies. Exceptions to the policy are not made. Money is refunded to the responsible party listed on the registration form.
We do offer refund provisions through our Full Refund Program, or similar program based on your program type. You can choose this option (at a nominal additional cost) when you register for your trip. These programs provide a refund of all monies paid, minus the program fee and other nonrefundable fees (initial deposit), if it becomes necessary to cancel at any time prior to departure for any reason.
For full information about this program, please refer to the terms and conditions. If you do NOT have the protection of one of these plans, your registration is subject to our Standard Cancellation Policy as follows:
- If your cancellation is postmarked more than 75 days before the group’s departure, WorldStrides will retain 25% of the base price.
- If your cancellation is postmarked 74-45 days before the group’s departure, WorldStrides will retain 50% of the base price.
- If your cancellation is postmarked within 44 days of the group’s departure, WorldStrides will retain 100% of the base trip price.
To ensure the safety of all our travelers, WorldStrides has a Behavior Code of Conduct that each student must agree to follow. In some cases, the trip Program Leader will add their own personal requirements and those of the school or college where applicable.
Yes. If you opt not to pay for your trip in full, you will be placed on a monthly payment plan. With this plan, payments are spread out across the months leading up to your trip, with the final balance due, in most cases, 75 days prior to travel. A $6 handling fee applies for each monthly installment payment, unless you elect to use EZPay.
EZPay, our most popular payment option, automatically deducts each payment from an account you authorize us to use. The monthly handling fees are eliminated and you never have to worry about the possibility of incurring a late fee. You can elect EZPay at time of registration or you can switch to this option by calling WorldStrides Customer Service at 800-468-5899.
We are confident we can meet even the most stringent risk regulations for travel. WorldStrides has an unmatched safety record, the largest liability insurance policy in the industry, and $1 million in consumer protection. All travel programs includes significant medical and medical evacuation insurance for the traveler as well as access to our 24/7 Doctors on Call and Tour Central office. WorldStrides is also registered with all state seller of travel offices.
Our reputation for preparedness is matched by a strong history of successful management of crisis situations. Click below to read about our responses to several situations that impacted student travel.
Emergency Medical Evacuation, May 2012
Japan Earthquake Response, March 2011
Arab Spring Protests, January 2011
H1N1 Response, March 2009
Bangkok Political Protests, January 2014
Please contact us with any additional questions about our risk management profile.
Depending on your particular program, WorldStrides offers one of two optional refund protection programs to protect your investment should you have to cancel for any reason.
For domestic and science-based programs (unless stated otherwise in your registration materials), we offer the Full Refund Program (FRP). Under this optional program, you are refunded all money paid to WorldStrides minus the program fee and other nonrefundable fees (initial deposit) should you have to cancel at any time prior to departure for any reason. You can sign up for the Full Refund Program at the time of registration or within 45 days from the time of registration by calling WorldStrides Customer Service at 800-468-5899. The fee for the Full Refund Program is in addition to your trip price and varies based on the amount of your trip. Full terms and conditions can be found here.
For our international and language immersion programs (unless otherwise stated in your registration materials), we offer a Cancellation Protection Plus (CPP) plan. With this plan, if you cancel beyond the seven-day grace period, the CPP protects your payments and provides a refund less the CPP fee and other non-refundable fees if you, the Program Leader, school, or school administration need to cancel at any time prior to departure for any reason. Enrollment in this optional program can be completed during the registration process, for an additional fee—$25 per trip day. Full terms and conditions can be found here.
Being accredited means that WorldStrides has been evaluated and approved by external educational agencies. In fact, Worldstrides is accredited by multiple agencies including AdvancED, MSA-CESS, and WASC. These are the same accrediting bodies that evaluate traditional brick-and-mortar schools like yours. We were the first organization of our kind to achieve this accreditation.
Our voluntary participation in the accreditation process demonstrates our unrivaled commitment to the learning experience of our travelers. Every program is custom built to meet students’ age-appropriate needs and standards-based goals of the curriculum. Our accreditation allows us to issue academic credit for students and professional development for educators.
The safety of our travelers is our top priority. In the event of an emergency, WorldStrides Tour Central office is available 24 hours a day. This office is the gateway to our Doctors on Call Program. Doctors on Call is an exclusive partnership we have with the George Washington University Department of Emergency Medicine. Through this partnership, doctors provide consultation by phone for international participants and even in-person visits in Washington, D.C. Doctors on Call is just one of the many steps we take to ensure every detail is covered to provide a safe, and worry free, experience for our teachers, students, and parents.
EZPay is our convenient automated payment plan. Through EZPay, your trip payment installments come directly out of the bank account or debit card you authorize us to use.
With EZPay, you never have to worry about missing any monthly payments and incurring late penalties. Another benefit of choosing EZPay is that all monthly processing fees are waived, saving you even more money.
You can select this automated payment plan at the time of registration or you can change to this plan after registration by calling WorldStrides Customer Service at 800-468-5899.
LEAP stands for Learning through Exploration and Active Participation. It is the WorldStrides educational philosophy that embodies a hands-on, exploratory approach to travel and learning. This means students won’t be passive tourists, but rather, active participants in experiential learning with high levels of engagement, guided discussion, questions and answers, and personal connections.
MyTrip is a free customizable online portal for teachers, students, and parents. Teachers may communicate important trip information to travelers and parents, create rooming lists, and view registrants. Students and parents may use MyTrip to learn about specific trip details, review MyAccount for payment history, and access the Discovery for Credit program. Access to MyTrip starts with your Program Leader ID (for teachers) or your Traveler ID (for registered students). All participants on an WorldStrides program are strongly encouraged to set up their MyTrip account upon registering.
WorldStrides’ Curriculum & Academics team is fully credentialed and responsible for all aspects of the online coursework of Discovery for Credit. Program Leaders are not required to grade, write curriculum, or collect assignments related to credit issued by WorldStrides. Program Leaders are encouraged to introduce the opportunity to earn credit as a valuable element of the program they are leading.
You will travel by either airplane or motorcoach, depending on how far your hometown is from your destination. A comfortable, air-conditioned motorcoach will be used to take your group to the various sites and activities in your destination city. In some cities, you will walk or take public transportation to many of the sites, when convenient.
WorldStrides takes pride in providing safe, quality accomodations for all programs. Hotels are licensed by local authorities, inspected by WorldStrides staff and partners for cleanliness, quality, and location, and rated by Program Leaders on an ongoing basis. All of our domestic hotels are nationally recognized chain hotels including Marriott, Hilton, Sheraton, Holiday Inn, and Hampton Inn.
For international travel, WorldStrides generally uses centrally located 3- and 4-star hotels that have excellent access to sites and transportation. Some graduate programs may use 5-star properties. Please note students on some programs may participate in activities such as camping in tents or cabins, per the itinerary.
For domestic programs, students enjoy full American breakfasts at the hotel or at a local restaurant. Groups eat fast food, food court, or cafeteria-style lunches while touring and are provided with sit-down dinners. In some cases, lunches may not be included in the program price.
Internationally, WorldStrides provides a continental breakfast each morning which may include juice, milk, tea, coffee or chocolate, bread/croissant/pastry, and fruit. Some hotels offer a buffet usually consisting of cereals, cold meats, and cheeses. This varies from one hotel to another, but is always more than enough to get the day started. Dinner is always three courses: a starter, a main course, and a dessert. WorldStrides introduces local food to the students and makes sure that there is a variety of food and plenty of it!
WorldStrides’ liability insurance is the largest in the industry at $50 million. This insurance coverage extends to cover certain individuals acting on behalf of WorldStrides as tour directors, program leaders, chaperones, and volunteer speakers. Your school can be named as additionally insured, if desired.
You can register for your trip using one of the following methods: electronic check, debit card, or credit card.
You can choose to pay in full or to select a monthly payment plan, where payments are spread out in monthly installments. When choosing a monthly payment plan option, we strongly recommend you take advantage of EZPay, our automated payment option that automatically deducts your monthly payments from the account or debit card you provide. EZPay saves you time and money and is the most popular option among our parents. Click here to learn more about EZPay and how it works.
You can make a payment online at any time through our payment page by calling Customer Service at 800-468-5899. You can also make payments by mail.
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.
You can download sample packing lists here:
Though you probably have insurance of your own, all of our programs include additional medical, dental, and accident coverage to ensure you are fully covered while traveling. This is particularly important if you are traveling abroad and some schools even require this additional insurance. Terms and conditions of this insurance are controlled by our provider, AIG. If you need to claim this insurance benefit, you can file your claim directly with AIG.
WorldStrides calls these guides Course Leaders or Tour Directors and they are often the highlight of the trip! Our guides are trained by WorldStrides and are unique in being LEAP-certified. Many have other careers that allow them to present interdisciplinary approaches to subject material and to make connections that extend beyond traditional classroom instruction. They include educators, scientists, writers, artists, teachers, singers, musicians, art historians, film producers, translators, and more. They all have fascinating stories. They are collectively multilingual, college-educated, well-traveled, passionate about the destinations in which they work, and enthusiastic about working with young people.
Every program is customized and what’s included may vary from trip to trip. A typical program includes transportation (air or motorcoach), hotel accommodations, meals, a daily guide (Course Leader or Tour Director), sightseeing activities, and immersive educational content. All programs also include all of our safety provisions and support.
The registration letter provided by the teacher leading your program has all the inclusion details for your specific program.
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.
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.
The Curriculum & Academics team is comprised of highly credentialed educators with years of classroom and field teaching experience. Our Director of Curriculum & Academics, Wendy Amato, holds a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Virginia. All courses are designed to meet the specific developmental and educational needs of the learners on the travel programs. Coursework is evaluated by the WorldStrides team with personalized feedback, differentiated assignments, a range of product options, and a mastery learning approach to assessment.
Click here to view full details on the WorldStrides Discovery for Credit Program.
Our internal risk and operations teams are staffed by executives with decades of experience in contingency planning. Additionally, our partnership with the George Washington University Department of Emergency Medicine allows travelers access to expert medical care while on tour. Lastly, our team works closely with the U.S. State Department, International SOS, and iJET to evaluate global conditions and advise clients when substantive issues arise.
The official group leader (hereafter referred to as the Program Leader), is most often a teacher at school. The Program Leader is supported by other chaperones as needed, usually either parents of traveling students or other teachers or administrators at the school. This person is supported by WorldStrides specialists at the airport, on the bus, and at the hotel.
The educational part of the program is led by a Course Leader, who is an expert in connecting with students and sharing information about your destination. This Course Leader will be with your students at all times, leading them through the incredible destinations included in your program.
The good news is our status as an accredited educational travel organization and our partnerships with colleges and universities allows us to issue credit directly to participants in our programs. Acceptance of credit at any institution is always at the discretion of the receiving school.
Click here to view full details on the WorldStrides Discovery for Credit Program.
Yes. Payment is needed by the date indicated on your monthly invoice. A $15 late fee will be assessed for each payment submitted after the date indicated on the invoice.
You can avoid the hassle of manually making monthly payments—and possibly incurring late fees—by signing up for EZPay, our automated payment plan. This easy-to-use plan automatically deducts payments from your authorized account, saving you time and eliminating all processing fees and possible late fee penalties. You can switch to EZPay at any time by calling WorldStrides Customer Service at 1-800-468-5899.
Students typically room with three other students (four students to a room), and most hotel rooms have two full or double beds that are shared by students of the same gender. Many programs allow students to select their own roommates. Ultimate approval of all roommate selections rests with the Program Leader.
WorldStrides works hard to ensure that students are properly supervised as appropriate for their age and for the destination where they are traveling. In addition to the Program Leader and additional parent and teacher chaperones (per a safe ratio), you will have trained WorldStrides staff by your side. This may include a 24-hour Tour Director, Course Leader, on-site coordinator, field specialist, and sometimes even night chaperones at the hotel. These team members will vary depending on the nature of your program.
For high school programs, 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.