Are participants allowed to use their cell phones during the program?
While phones are technically permitted on our programs we have a strict policy to reduce usage. Participants may have their phones for emergencies and during free time in the evenings back at the hotel, but we expect them to be fully present and unplugged throughout the day and encourage them to live in the moment. Teens may use their phones for photo opportunities, however, we will be taking upwards of 100 photos a day on our high-quality DSLR cameras that we upload to a shared album every evening. We find this policy works well to help teens and families feel safe knowing they have a phone if they need it while balancing phones not detracting from the actual trip.
Trip Emails & Photographs
We will take dozens, if not hundreds, of photos each day. The best photos will be posted as regularly as possible (ideally every day) to a private webpage where you can follow along with the trip. We will send you an email to alert you when we post new photos. We will provide every family a link for downloading all pictures immediately after the trip returns. All photos can be purchased in high resolution after the trip via digital download ($50) or USB ($75).
The trip director will be in regular email contact every 24-48 hours, internet willing, with the families. Email will be the best way to communicate messages to the Trip Director.
Safety, Sickness & Communication
SAFETY AND SICKNESS
The safety of your kids is our #1 concern, which is why we have only experienced trip leaders running the show.
All trip leaders and chaperones will have international mobile phone access and TFT will give you these numbers before departure.
The TFT trip leader will also have a smartphone that is accessible 24/7 that can be called in case of emergency.
Your kids will be given opportunities to call and email home on a regular basis. Teens are encouraged to bring a cell phone on the trip. Outside of the hotel students can use their cell phone for photos/videos and emergencies. At the hotel, they can use their smartphones for social media, texting, emailing etc.
Who is Travel For Teens?
We are in our 19th year in the teen travel business and have emerged as the industry leader for teen travel in Europe, North America, Asia, Latin America, Oceania and Africa. We operate over 100 programs in 46 countries on 6 continents.
Our philosophy: We offer genuine and authentic trips for travelers, not tourists.
Our goal is to engender a passion for learning about other cultures and places through living like a local in that place.
What is the activity level of this trip?
This is an active trip. The goal of the trip will be to maximize each day. We aim to achieve a good balance of activity and downtime. You will need to be comfortable walking about 5 miles a day in total.
If I cannot afford the payment schedule listed above, does Travel For Teens provide flexible payment plans?
Yes, Travel For Teens is willing to customize a payment plan for any participant who needs a little flexibility in the payment schedule. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for details on payment plans.
After I register, what happens next?
Once you have completed your registration and paid your deposit, you will receive an email that contains your USERNAME and PASSWORD to MyTFT. All forms to be completed by parents and physician as well as packing lists, travel tips, travel insurance information, and other important information can be found on the MyTFT portal (hard copies of the essential legal/medical forms can be mailed to participants upon request). Our contract and release must be signed by all custodial parents (or guardians) and the participant.
Do I have to bring a backpack?
No–the bag you bring is up to you, but we strongly recommend a smaller lighter bag, preferably one with rolling wheels to make your travel a bit easier. Larger “backpacker-style” backpacks are also appropriate. Please keep in mind you will be responsible for your own bags throughout the duration of the trip so packing light like a true traveler is key!
How does this program connect to other programs?
Our program dates are designed specifically so that participants can opt to combine trips throughout the summer. When connecting to another program, your counselor will escort you to the airport on the last day of the program and assist you in meeting your next group at your new destination.
Families who sign up for more than one program will also receive a 15% discount on the lesser-priced program.
Who leads the program?
Our staff is a cut above the rest! We seek out two main characteristics in our counselors – extensive knowledge of and experience in our destinations, and a passion for working with teens. Our staff’s backgrounds include living abroad and working in summer camps or other educational settings. Team members are proven leaders and role models, who connect easily with others and form genuine friendships with each student – all while bringing each destination to life.
We celebrate diversity! Our staff represents 49 different nationalities, speak a combined total of 21 languages, and visited 142 countries. Additionally, 80% of our staff lived or worked abroad in their lives. With so many unique experiences to share, you are sure to gain a global perspective.
Our average minimum ratios are one staff member to every seven participants. Each program has one Trip Director with several support staff, depending on the group size. Directors must be at least 25 years old and have prior experience working with TFT.