Frequently Asked Questions
Where do you operate trips?
We operate programs worldwide in more than 70 countries on six continents. Supported by our global network, we make recommendations based on the specific needs of your program – never pushing a single destination or area.
How many years have you coordinated international study programs?
We are the oldest and most experienced company specializing in university travel study programs. For more than 35 years, WorldStrides has supported custom international study programs for tens of thousands of students at more than 100 universities.
Where are you located?
We are headquartered in Charlottesville, VA, with field offices around the country, and in China, Canada and the United Kingdom. Operating from the United States gives us the ability to visit client schools and keep closer contact with clients, as well as providing the stability, relationships, and U.S.-based legal and accounting framework to better serve universities.
How far in advance do I need to contact you to plan my international course?
Typically, our clients will begin planning their international courses between nine and 11 months in advance of travel. 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 – for groups traveling in fewer than four months – and do our best to accommodate these programs.
We are new to running programs and looking for advice on where to go and how to structure the program based on your experience. Can you provide recommendations for a destination and/or business visits that fit the theme of our course?
Yes, we have ample experience helping schools decide the best destination based on their course objectives and even students’ nationalities. Our Global Business Meeting Planners are available to help determine the best business visits to support your course theme.
Do you have experience with visa processing?
Yes, we provide full-service visa processing and are happy to help program participants navigate this process. We do work with non-U.S. passport holders, but they must have a valid U.S. resident status.
Do you provide pre-trip documentation for your travelers?
Yes, prior to departure students receive information on currency, weather, electricity, business etiquette, country customs, and other relevant information. The Program Leader receives all critical information for the group, including health and dietary information for all travelers, passport numbers, airline tickets (if booked through WorldStrides), country information, and 24/7 emergency numbers for travel assistance
Do you work with student-led programs?
Yes, we provide services for student-led programs.
Do you operate programs for individuals?
No, we focus exclusively on university groups traveling internationally for educational purposes.
Do you work with schools outside of the school of business?
Yes, we work with schools of Law, Architecture, Arts & Sciences, Public Health, Public Policy, and Education, and we work exclusively with university clients.
Do you work with schools that are not U.S.-based?
Yes, we do work with non-U.S.-based universities and have experience sourcing multilingual guides in emerging markets.
Safety and Security
Our university has very stringent regulations for international travel providers. Can you meet them?
Yes, we are confident we can meet even the most stringent regulations. WorldStrides has an unmatched safety record, and we have coordinated international study programs for universities for more than 35 years. We are financially strong and maintain a $30 million liability insurance policy and consumer protection through USTOA for advance payments and for deposits of up to $1 million. We are registered with all state sellers of travel offices and offer you and your students 24/7 emergency support while abroad. Please see the Safety section of our website for more details.
Our program was hit pretty hard a few years ago with the dollar devaluation. Do you have any recommendations to avoid that in the future?
Budgeting for currency fluctuations is difficult for many university purchasing offices. To minimize the risk associated with changes in currency, we offer currency hedging services and support. If elected, we can hedge all market-traded currencies and hold five standing currency accounts, including the Euro, British Pound, Japanese Yen, Singapore Dollar, and South African Rand. Your Account Manager is trained to assist you in determining the best currency strategy for your program.
Are you registered with my state’s seller of travel office?
Yes, we are registered with all U.S. state sellers of travel offices and ensure legal compliance with all U.S. Seller of Travel laws. Importantly, we are registered with the California State Seller of Travel Office. Any universities with California residents participating in a program should ensure that their vendor is compliant with this state’s law.
Our university requires the students to have medical insurance. What options do you have?
All WorldStrides travelers are covered by a $15,000 supplemental (secondary) medical and dental insurance and $50,000 in emergency medical evacuation insurance. Additionally, programs have access to our George Washington University Doctors on Call program in the event of a medical emergency while on tour.
How is the program protected from a liability standpoint?
We’ve considered all variety of students traveling on WorldStrides Capstone programs and have set our liability insurance policy at $30 million. This Travel Agent’s Professional Liability insurance coverage extends to cover certain individuals acting on behalf of WorldStrides as tour directors, Program Leaders, chaperones, and volunteer speakers. Universities can be named as additional insured, if desired.
Do you offer 24-hour emergency support?
Yes, a WorldStrides representative at our Tour Central offices is on call 24/7 while groups are traveling to assist with any problems or questions. We also provide support when faced with emergency re-routes due to civil unrest, terrorism, or natural disasters, and as a result, more of our programs are able to continue with last-minute changes than any single-market operator. This enables students to continue to benefit from a global learning experience in spite of unforeseen circumstances.
Can you provide more information about your accreditation?
In 2010, we achieved accreditation by AdvancED following a thorough review of all aspects of our business, from our educational offerings to our financial and business plans. We are the first and only organization of our kind to achieve accreditation. Our participation in the accreditation process demonstrates our unrivaled commitment to superior global service and provides a number of benefits to the schools that partner with us. Every course is custom-built to the learning needs of the students and goals of the faculty, and we welcome the opportunity to deliver exceptional course content through unique business visits and cultural experiences for your students.
Do you plan business meetings or factory tours?
Yes, we plan both business meetings and factory tours. Business meetings can be held at the company you are visiting or in a hotel meeting space, depending on the size of your group. Factory or manufacturing tours are easily arranged to meet the specific goals of the program.
We’d like to arrange our own business meetings and daily course content. Can you still work with us?
Yes, we are flexible in arranging course content for your program. We can arrange all of the content, none of the content, or just some of the content at your request.
I am interested in your specific experience with business schools. Can you explain?
The majority of our programs are for business schools – including full-time, part-time, and executive MBA programs, as well as undergraduate business programs. We are a founding corporate member of the Executive MBA Council and a member of the MBA Roundtable. We regularly participate in industry conferences, including AACSB, the MBA Roundtable, and EMBA Council to maintain a greater understanding of the trends in global business education.