Frequently Asked Questions
When you inquire about us and our programs, it’s the beginning of a long-lasting relationship. We urge you to contact us for any reason whether it be enrollment questions or assistance planning your next abroad journey — just email us at email@example.com or call us at 877 55 GLOBAL. In the meantime, here is a list of questions we’re frequently asked along with some helpful answers.
What is a “Global Citizen”?
Global citizenship is a collection of political, social, economic, and environmental efforts by individuals on a worldwide premise. At GBA, we define a global citizen as a person who understands the world, the people, and cultural differences; a global citizen promotes a positive change throughout the world in his or her service to others. To learn more about what a global citizen is and how one can benefit from it, visit our dedicated GC Page.
Why is being global citizenship important?
As a global citizen and upon completion of our programs, participants will walk away with their lives forever enriched. In their personal lives by finding meaning and purpose to it, in their education and professional careers by gaining the skills, connections, and world view that they need to succeed, and also how they interact with their community along with other communities around the world.
How is GBA different from any other youth abroad program?
Our programs were created for minority youth! Therefore our core values were designed respectively with them in mind. The values in which we stand on, as a company, are the essence of who GBA is. We full-heartedly stand by our mission, which is why we intend to inspire action, break barriers of discrimination, and operate in excellence (and we hold each participant and staff alike, to this very standard).
Is a passport or visa required to travel abroad?
A passport is needed for all international programs. If you are a U.S. citizen traveling to one of our international programs, you will be required to possess a passport with at least six months’ validity and two blank pages. The same applies to E.U. citizens traveling to programs inside of the U.S. For countries outside of those parameters, please consult with your country’s regulations.
Depending on the country, a visa will be needed. Each individual program will list their requirements for U.S. and E.U. citizens. More information regarding U.S. visa requirements can be located here. For non-US citizens, please consult with your country’s visa regulations.
Are vaccinations required for travel?
Specific countries recommend or require vaccinations. GBA will list and make every effort to inform participants of vaccination information; however, we do recommend speaking with your primary care physician regarding vaccination requirements and recommendations.
What is included in the program?
Each program includes accommodations, meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner), medical travel insurance, excursions, activities, transportation (to and from the airport), transportation within the host country, and a lifetime of experiences.
How will this program benefit my teen or young adult?
GBA will help broaden their horizons, enabling them to be open to new cultures, foods, activities outside of their comfort zone. We will further build confidence, and they’ll know that they can survive in unfamiliar territory. Your teen or young adult will acquire new skills such as speaking another language plus how to communicate with a diverse group of people. They’ll learn time management skills, research and planning skills, leadership skills, and so much more. Your teen or young adult will gain the independence that they desire. They’ll foster relationships in which they can be themselves. Ultimately, our programs will inspire them to become global leaders, entrepreneurs, world travelers, or whatever it is that they want to achieve. We’ve dedicated a special page for this topic alone. Visit our global citizen page to read more on how your tee or young adult will benefit from a GBA program.
Who will lead my teen or young adult? And what are the safety qualifications for the program leaders?
Safety is an essential element while abroad. Our program managers and leaders are thoroughly screened and selected with extraordinary backgrounds from the medical field to youth development. For programs intended for younger teens, GBA requires program leaders to be 25 years or older. For programs designed for young adults, GBA requires program leaders to be 30 years or older.
Each program manager and leader is CPR and first aid certified, including trained on the typical local ailments and medical concerns. Along with safety and medical techniques, our team engages in an annual training where all GBA team members participate in workshops related to youth development, international travel safety, and more.
Where will my teen or young adult be staying while abroad?
Each GBA program has a uniquely different accommodation experience. GBA selects accommodations based on comfortability, ratings, and location security. For safety cares, we do not disclose the names or locations of our selected accommodations publicly. Each participant will have access to this information after the final confirmations and prior to program departure.
What happens if my teen or young adult experiences a medical emergency?
GBA will immediately notify the parent or emergency point of contact in this unfortunate circumstance. The program managers are certified and trained in CPR, first-aid, and many of the typical local ailments and medical concerns. For cases outside of their expertise, the participant will be accompanied to the nearest medical facility for care using their travel medical insurance included in the program.
How do you prepare and/or determine the safety of a country prior to or during the program?
GBA takes pride in utilizing our trusted global resources along with consulting several travel advisory boards, one of which is the U.S. Overseas Advisory Council. We always maintain and continuously update our contingency options. We are prepared to change course at any moment’s time.
Will my teen or young adults have the chance to venture off solo?
Although each program has a very active itinerary and may not leave room for adequate free-time, our programs are designed to develop independence. Some programs are mainly for young adults, while others are intended for the teens and will be delicately formed as such. Should you have further questions on which program is right for your child, please contact us.
How will I be able to communicate with my teen or young adult?
Depending on the program, there will be designated days of the week throughout the program for participants to contact their parents back home. To bypass distractions, cell phone usage will be limited during specific days and activities. We want to ensure every participant experiences the program to its full potential. Additionally, program managers are always accessible to GBA staff. Parents and guardians are provided with essential contact numbers should an emergency occurs.
What can I do as a parent to help my teen or young adult in this exciting process?
You have taken a monumental step in helping your child prepare for international travel, by inquiring on this very page. You can further encourage your child to recognize the importance and benefits that world travel has to offer. Allow them to see the world, learn about it, to bring their knowledge back to their communities. We also urge you to participate in our discovery survey to help us develop and curate the most beneficial programs for our participants.
Can I participate in GBA programs if I don't identify as a minority or person of color?
Absolutely! Although our programs have been created with minorities in mind, they are definitely not limited to minorities or people of color. We encourage every person (no matter the race) who has a desire to experience our programs to join us. As a non-person of color, our programs will help in expanding racial perspectives. Particularly, you’ll develop a more multifaceted understanding of race and ethnicity because you’ll learn about the diversity within the majority-minority student program.
Do I need to speak the language before traveling to another country?
Not at all! It is encouraged to brush up on some introductory terms and phrases, it is not mandatory to speak the local language. Duolingo is a great source to learn a second language. Depending on the chosen program, participants will be enrolled in a language course based on their language level. There will also be additional coaching within the pre-departure orientation for all GBA programs that are designated in a country where the official language is not English.
I've never traveled alone, can I bring a friend?
Of course, you can bring a friend! Our programs can be equally enjoyed with friends or as a solo traveler. You’ll gain new friends abroad either way. If you’d like to participate in the program with a friend, you can refer them by clicking on the link, and we’ll send them all of the information to get started. As a bonus, participants who take advantage of our referral program may be eligible for an exclusive discount off future programs.
Are my accommodations single or double occupancy?
Every participant will be linked with another participant of the same gender. Unless noted, each accommodation room provided will occupy two (2) twin or two (2) double beds.
How many participants will be in my program?
We like to develop close and personal relationships with our participants. To guarantee a more inclusive experience, each program will have a minimum of 5 participants and a maximum of 15. Additionally, there will be at least two program leaders in every program.
What will I eat while traveling abroad?
Every program’s destination is unique; therefore, we will encounter all of what the country has to offer, including its local cuisine. Part of being a GBA participant is broadening your horizons. We ask that participants keep an open mind. We also realize that participants may have specific diet restrictions, so we will communicate with the participant to ensure their dietary needs are met.
Will I receive a certificate upon completion of the program?
Yes. Depending on the program, participants will receive a language certificate or a community-service certificate. Each participant will walk away with their lives forever enriched.