Essays must be submitted online by 11:59pm EDT on March 31st, 2014

  • Essay Grand Prize Winner to be announced by April 15th, 2014

Videos must be submitted online by 11:59pm EDT on April 6th, 2014

  • Video Grand Prize Winner to be announced by April 16th, 2014


Contestants may submit only one essay OR one video during any given contest year. Only essays and videos pertaining to the themes described on the Contest Info website will be considered. Essays and videos must be in English. Videos may not exceed 2 minutes, and essays must be between 300-500 words to be considered. Every word of the essay is counted. This does not include the title, bibliography or footnotes. Any quotations or copyrighted material used in the essay or video must be identified properly. Failure to identify non-original material will result in disqualification.

Copyrighted Music in Your Videos

Please do NOT include copyrighted music in your video – it will be automatically disqualified because it would be illegal for us to publish it on our website. All contest submissions must be the original work of the entrant, and any copyrighted material must be properly documented. If you want to set your video to music, please use non-copyrighted music, available for free from a variety of websites, including Free Music Archive and Incompetech.


Contest is open to all students who are in grades 7–12 and between the ages of 13–18 years old, from around the world. Certain restrictions may apply, contest is not valid where not legal.


The winner will receive one all-inclusive Travel For Teens trip and will be offered the choice of the following trips: Costa Rica Surf and Service, Costa Rica Adventure and Service, Costa Rica Spanish and Service, Barcelona and Paris, or Sicily Community Service. All prizes and trips are subject to availability. The winner will be determined by a panel of experts including teachers and Travel For Teens employees. Their decision is final. Judging will be based on Persuasiveness and Originality.

Travel For Teens reserves the right to publish or otherwise duplicate any essay or video entered into the contest. The grand prize trips are non-transferable and have no cash value.

If you have any questions after reviewing contest rules and registration page, please email with your question.