This policy covers travel by CISV Ottawa chapter members to CISV programs. It is designed to ensure safe and reliable travel arrangements for the participants.
This policy applies to:
- Delegations attending Village, Summer Camp or Interchange
- Individuals attending Village as a JC, Seminar Camp, Youth Meeting, International People’s Project, National Camp, or National Board Meeting
Role of Travel Coordinator
- The chapter will select a Travel Coordinator to make necessary travel arrangements for delegates. The Travel Coordinator will recommend a Travel Agent, for ultimate approval by the Board. The approved Travel Agent must:
- Be familiar with CISV International travel requirements
- Be a direct buyer of flights
- Have a 24-hour emergency phone number accessible from anywhere in the world
- Once selected and approved by the Board, the Travel Agent will become the agent for travel booked by the chapter until such time as the Board selects another Travel Agent.
- All CISV travel should be booked with the safety of travelers in mind.
- Selection of flights is generally made based on timing, connections, airline quality and price.
- Charter flights and 100% non-refundable tickets must be avoided.
- Airlines known to have unacceptable safety, reliability, or on-time performance records or with whom the chapter has had problems (e.g., China Air & United Airlines) will not be used.
Additional Guidelines for Delegation Travel
- All travel to be arranged by the Travel Coordinator. Families may not book their own delegation flights en route to or from a CISV program.
- Must be booked on the same ticket so part of the group does not get bumped.
- May not use travel points, which are subject to rules and regulations which can significantly complicate or compromise group travel arrangements
- Due to factors outside CISV Ottawa’s control, program dates might change between when invitations are issued and when precamps arrive in early March. Families are advised not to make their summer travel plans until they receive the delegation’s itinerary from the chapter in early April.
- Circumstances beyond the control of CISV Ottawa may result in delegates leaving or returning on dates other than those indicated on the itinerary by up to a few days, so families should plan their summers accordingly.
- The program begins with the delegation's departure from Ottawa and ends with their return to Ottawa. Delegates must remain with their delegation for the duration of the program, which includes travel to and from the destination.
- Delegations may not plan sightseeing excursions en route to or from a CISV program.
Additional Guidelines for Individual Travel
- May arrange travel on own or using the Travel Coordinator.
- May use travel points.
- Due to factors outside CISV Ottawa’s control, program dates might change between when invitations are issued in early November and when precamps arrive in early March. Delegates are advised not to make their travel arrangements until they have received precamp 1 in early March. Or early September for winter programs.
- Circumstances beyond the control of CISV Ottawa and the delegate may result in delegates leaving or returning on dates other than those indicated on the itinerary by up to a few days, so delegates should plan their summers accordingly.
- Must notify the Travel Coordinator of their travel plans.
- JBers attending National Camp should attempt to travel together.
CISV Ottawa travellers, and all CISV travellers are covered by CISV International's travel insurnace. All details are available here: https://cisv.org/resources/risk-management-travel-insurance/travel-insurance/
Frequently Asked Questions
Can we book our own delegation flights?
No. All delegation travel must be booked through CISV Ottawa because:
- We use a chapter Travel Coordinator who is familiar with CISV Ottawa and CISV International travel requirements.
- We have to obey arrival and departure dates & times as outlined by the program organizers on the precamps. If we are a little bit early or late, CISV Canada loses invitations for the following year and CISV Ottawa can be financially penalized. It wouldn’t be fair if the national or local program was penalized because families were not familiar with expectations.
- It’s not fair to expect a leader - a volunteer and usually a young adult - to referee the families through the travel arrangement process. Families would come forward with their preferred routing, based on using carriers to redeem travel points, to accumulate points, cheapest flights available, etc. The leader might not feel comfortable saying they’d prefer a more expensive routing that would be less demanding to endure with their youth in tow.
- Sometimes it’s impossible to get itineraries without an overnight stay required. We do not allow CISV delegations to plan on staying in hotels (even if it makes the routing cheaper) as that’s more than the leaders bargained for when they volunteered. It is a lot to expect them to be responsible for hotels, transportation, restaurants, money management and managing children in unstructured settings with no support. If there is an overnight required CISV Ottawa, not individual families, communicates with the program organizers to arrange a homestay.
Can delegations add a sightseeing excursion en route to/from a CISV program?
CISV Ottawa offers international programs in foreign locations and arranges transportation to and from these programs. CISV Ottawa does not allow delegates to include sightseeing excursions for many reasons, including:
- There is an opportunity to tour the host country during homestay visits and excursions.
- Delegates should be excited and focused on attending the program, not on sightseeing.
- Leaders are chosen based on their ability to manage at the program with the help of other adults. It is a lot to expect them to be tour guides responsible for hotels, transportation, restaurants, money management, arranging sightseeing and age appropriate activities and managing children in unstructured settings with no support. As well, it is unfair to add extra days to their volunteer commitment after having accepted the position.
- Sightseeing would increase the cost of the program and not all parents may be comfortable with this.
- It would make travel arrangements difficult for the chapter Program Coordinator, who has three days to purchase flight tickets after receiving a quote. Arrangements for homestays in the host chapter, hotels, other transit connections and miscellaneous details would need to be sorted out with the delegation families in a very short time frame.
- It would be unfair to ask another CISV chapter to provide a homestay over and above that which is required to ease transportation.
- CISV Ottawa would not be covered by CISV insurance while not engaged in a CISV activity or travel towards it and, as such, the chapter cannot take the risk.
Can we purchase/use our own insurance policy?
Even though some families do have extended health and travel insurance, the CISV international insurance policy is a very thorough package. This ensures that:
- The leader has only one policy to deal with. This is invaluable in the event of an incident.
- Everyone in the delegation has a policy and it is the absolute best one. For instance, the leader need not pay, out of pocket, the travel costs of someone to accompany a delegate home if needed.