FAQs

Planning your Trip

When it comes to planning a school educational program, we are well aware that choosing an educational provider is one of the biggest decisions you will make.

For over 5 years we’ve helped teachers and students discover the world through immersive educational programs around the globe. Whether you’re planning an educational program for the first time or you’re a seasoned group leader, we’ll support you every step of the way

How soon should I plan for a program?

Ideally, you should start planning an international program 9 to 12 months before your intended program start date. There is a lot to organize, so it is best to give plenty of time. Not only will this make the process less stressful, but it also gives parents more time to budget for the trip, thereby making it more affordable.

All local programs within your city can be signed up for up to 30 days in advance.

I like your itinerary, but can I make a few changes?

Yes, of course. Having partnered with multiple schools, we have a vast repository of subject-specific educational and skill development programs – both locally and internationally. If you have specific requirements, your dedicated sales manager will help your teachers find (or create) the perfect program to suit your school and students’ requirements

Our school has stringent risk-assessment protocols. Can you help me prepare the relevant risk assessment documentation?

While the completion of the risk assessment is the responsibility of the school, we will share all the standard documentation to put you right on track. We acknowledge and understand the importance of maintaining health and safety standards, and go above and beyond our duty of care.

Your dedicated client managerwill supply you with all the relevant risk assessment documentation with a 200-point safety checklist, ensuring that international standards of health and safety are maintained on your program.

Will you help me promote your program to the students?

The most effective way to promote a program is by ticking all the boxes for students and parents alike. These audiences are very different, and our team understands this.

Our team is happy to come in for parent and student presentations when required. Your dedicated sales manager will share all the relevant promotional material to ensure that your program gains the required popularity with your audience.

How does a student register to a program?

For a student to be considered registered to any of our programs, a filled-up student booking form and registration fee is required.

In the absence of the registration fee and/or the booking form, a student may be considered as not registered on the program.

Is there a minimum and a maximum number of students on a program?

To offer the best pricing for a program, usually a minimum of 24 students are required. This, however, varies from programs to program. Your dedicated sales manager can guide you with details on the program you’re interested in.

There is no upper limit on the number of students that can register for a program, however, if your group is over 50 students, we will need to organize the group into sub-groups to allow for a superior student experience and logistics considerations.

Is there any minimum age requirements for the students required to undertake a program?

We maintain a policy of a minimum age of 10 years to undertake our international educational programs. Students below 10 years require clearance and undertaking from the school and parent respectively.

There is no age restriction on our local programs, unless required otherwise required by the program guidelines.

Safety

Safety and security are of primary precedence for our business. In consideration of the this, we have several safety and security protocols and procedures in place for every educational program. These include:

  • Travel insurance
  • Guardian chaperones
  • First-aid trained program leaders
  • Safety guidelines for students
  • Incident response plans
  • Risk assessed activities

What are the safety protocols in place for your programs?

Each program goes through a rigorous 200-point safety check, with relevant risk mitigation procedures in place.

Your program is managed by an experienced client manager once you have registered, who can be reached prior to, during and post the program.

Who will assist while I am on a program?

On international programs, student groups are led by a Program Director (unless your school requests not to have one) who will be available to assist in-person on the program.

For individual students registering to programs, a resource from the local organizing team is assigned to assist the student.

My child is a minor. Is there an accompanying adult on the program to assist him/her?

Students while travelling in a group, are under the guardianship of the school teacher. In case your child is travelling from a non-participating school, he/she will be under the guardianship of the Program director.

In order to transfer guardianship of the student for the duration of the program, a No Objection Certificate (NOC) must be furnished by the parent or legal guardian to the adult responsible for your child. A template of this NOC is available with your dedicated client manager.

What is the adult to student ratio on your programs?

In most international programs, a chaperone ratio of 1:10 is followed. This means that, for every 10 students attending a program, a chaperone is responsible for leading them. In certain cases, this policy varies up to 1:15, based on the nature of the program.

Are the participants on your programs insured?

All students and chaperones undertaking our international programs, are provided with a travel insurance for the duration of the program. The insurance policy includes coverage for personal and medical emergencies. For applicable terms, we request you to go through the details insurance policy assigned to you.

The travel insurances assigned are reimbursable in nature and have a minimum co-pay of USD 100. This means that any on-trip expenses covered under the insurance policy (as long as the value exceeds USD 100) can be claimed only once the participant is back in the country of policy issuance.

What happens if a participant falls sick or needs emergency medical assistance?

The Explorers Lab team identifies hospitals and medical centers close to the accommodation. In certain cases, when residential facilities are used for a program, there is usually a doctor-on-call available.

In case a participant requires medical assistance, the guardian (in case of a student) accompanies him/her to the medical facility.

We request you to highlight any pre-existing medical conditions in the Student booking form, to avoid any foreseeable emergencies.

Can the relatives or friends of a student visit them while on the program?

For safety purposes, participants are not permitted to travel anywhere unaccompanied. This includes visiting relatives and friends during the program. This includes relatives or friends of a student, who are strangers to the rest of the group.

General Program FAQs

The Explorers Lab is a full-member of the World Youth Student and Educational Travel Confederation (WYSETC). In congruence with our membership, we follow international standards of program delivery on all of our programs. 

What is covered in my program fee?

It is important to read the inclusions and exclusions of every program before you sign-up.

International programs include flights, ground transportation, accommodation, activities mentioned in the itinerary, and meals (in most cases – breakfast, lunch and dinner); unless mentioned otherwise in your program information.

Local programs include the booking of facilities of activity providers for specified number of hours. Foods, beverages and meals are available on an optional basis.

How does a parent get in touch with his ward on an international program?

Students are on a tight schedule on programs and we would recommend parents not to call at odd-hours unless it is very urgent.

The best time to call and interact with students would be from 08:00 p.m. to 09:00 p.m. local time as the day’s schedule would’ve come to a close.

Who is responsible for the passport of students while on an international program?

For a students travelling in a group, the chaperone with legal guardianship would be responsible for the passport of the respective student. The passport is handed to a student only while he/she is passing through check-in, immigration and boarding. Apart from this, the student’s passport would always remain in the custody of the chaperone.

For individual students travelling by themselves, the student would be responsible for his/her passport.

Do I need to carry medicines on the program?

Our Program Directors carry a first aid kit which include but is not limited to over the counter medication such as paracetamol, anti-allergens, pain relieving sprays, mosquito repellents, bandages and band-aids.

If the participant has pre-existing medical conditions such as blood pressure, diabetes and asthma, etc.; we recommend that the participant carries the relevant medication with a medical prescription. Please ensure that you make a note of the medical condition in the Student Booking Form.

To ensure dosage requirements are followed, we require the students to take any medication only in the presence of the guardian.

What kind of meals are available on program?

We offer local and international cuisines with vegetarian, non-vegetarian and halal options. Where a halal meal is not available, students will be offered vegetarian meal alternatives.

I have a special dietary requirement. Can this be accommodated?

If a participant has any special dietary requirements, the same should be communicated to us at least 20 days prior in the Student Booking Form. While we will endeavor to accommodate dietary requirements, non-standard dietary requirements may be difficult to cater on certain programs.

We also recommend that you inform us about any allergies to specific foods that a participant may have.

Can I carry food or snacks to a program?

In usual cases, one can carry dry snacks in their check in baggage while participating in an international program. However, participants must refrain from carrying nuts or nut-based products which can cause allergies to other participants.

It is also important to check with your dedicated client manager whether snacks are permitted for a particular program. Certain residential programs and facilities may have a strict no outside food policy.

Can we carry electronic gadgets to a program?

There is no restrictions on carrying personal electronic gadgets to a program. However, the responsibility of safe-keeping of such devices will always be with the students.

Students are also expected to engage in the judicious usage of electronic gadgets. For example, using an electronic gadget would be frowned upon when a session is being conducted by an expert.

In certain cases, when a student travels with a school group, students may not be allowed to carry cellphones as per the school policy.

International Program FAQs

As a school and a parent, you may have multiple questions before you register for our international programs. We have covered a wide range of questions that we usually deal with operationally. If there is something else that you would like to know, feel free to contact us

Will there be other school students travelling along with our school group?

Travelling is all about being open to new ideas, places and people. Unless the school has booked for a private program, participants will travel with participants of other schools.

This offers an affordable mechanism for small groups to travel together. An open approach allows participants to learn from each other and make new friends.

Will I be assisted in the application of tourist visa to travel on a program?

Program participants require valid travel documents with appropriate visa(s) to visit each country on a chosen program. Once you have registered on a program, The Explorers Lab will connect you with a visa services provider who will facilitate the visa application process. It is the participant’s responsibility to engage with the visa services provider, providing the required documents, and completing all visa related formalities.

Please note that, The Explorers Lab will only recommend a visa services provider (on optional basis) and we do not guarantee that a visa will be granted. Parents are allowed to process the required visas by themselves or through a provider of their liking.

The decision of approval or rejection of a visa is always at the discretion of the issuing authority. Once you have been granted a visa, please verify the details on the visa as per the details on your passport – Name spellings, Gender, Duration, Passport #

On international programs, will the flights be direct or non-stop?

On our international trips, we endeavor to book flights on major international airline that offer the shortest connection to the program with the best flight routes. However, the period of travel or availability of seats may dictate that the chosen flight is not direct.

Our groups operate on both scheduled and low-cost airlines.

Can I pre-book my airline seat in advance on international programs?

For groups, seats are booked and purchased at special group fares with specific ticketing policies. These do not allow participants be allocated specific seats prior to the flight. This can only be requested for participants with special needs and conditions.

In case the participants wish to accrue frequent flier miles, the participant must notify the airport agent at the time of check-in.

How is travel organized while travelling locally within a country?

Depending upon the distance, time and itinerary considerations; we arrange domestic flights, trains, private charter buses and public transport. Travel arrangements are booked in advance, and communicated to you at least 2 weeks prior to your travel on an international program.

What kind of accommodation is provided on the program?

A wide array of accommodation options are offered across on our programs. These are shortlisted after detailed audit of international standards that includes guidelines about location, safety, food & hospitality.

These are typically youth hostels, multi-bedded dorms, 3-star hotels as well as host families. Our team will recommend accommodation that suits your program needs and budgetary considerations.

Who will be my room partner?

Participants share a room with additional participants of the same gender. Room allocation is done in consultation with the accompanying teacher. This is a great opportunity to make new friends!

Rooms on the same floor for the entire group will be requested for, but cannot be guaranteed.

Is drinking water provided on your programs?

Yes, drinking water is provided on all of our international programs. In cities where tap water is safe for drinking, the same is offered to the students and the chaperones.

What are the various personal expenses on an international program?

Personal expenses on a program may be utilized towards purchasing snacks & beverages, shopping allowances, and tips for service providers.

Who is responsible for the money carried by a student?

It is advisable that students are made responsible for their own money. We suggest that the amount carried must be split between physical cash and a travel card. Furthermore, the physical cash must be secured in 2 to 3 separate sections of your baggage(s) to reduce the inconvenience in case a wallet is lost.

In certain cases, where it is mutually agreed upon, the money can handed to the chaperone for safe keeping.

I've heard of a tipping practice in some countries. Is it mandatory to pay a tip on your program?

Tipping is considered as a sign of gratitude to service providers who make the trip memorable for all participants. These providers include coach drivers, tourist guides and stewards.

In certain countries, tipping is considered mandatory by culture. This means that a provider may feel offended if a tip is not paid at the end of a service.