The team at Brightspark has helped thousands of teachers and students travel the world on education and performance tours each year. On all our tours, safety is our number one priority. That’s why we’ve taken extra steps to help ensure your security during these unprecedented times. Our team of travel experts is constantly evolving and developing new protocols in response to COVID-19.
As part of the WorldStrides family, we’ve supported tens of thousands of travellers around the world in 2021. For more than 50 years, WorldStrides companies globally have been the trusted partner of more than 9 million travellers, and our industry-leading commitment to health and safety speaks for itself. Expecting the unexpected is where we excel. All aspects of every program are reviewed, from the initial planning stages to the on-tour experience, and the health and safety of our participants is our top priority every step of the way.
Our team is continually evaluating and updating our protocols based on guidance from the CDC, the Government of Canada, and our Doctors on Call Team from the George Washington University Department of Emergency Medicine. Led by Dr. Neal Sikka, who also serves as WorldStrides’ Medical Director, our Doctors on Call Team is an interdisciplinary group with access to George Washington University experts from public health, infectious disease, and laboratory services (testing).
Your group will be met by their Tour Leader, who will be fully vaccinated and been specially trained in protocols to help keep the group safe. You also will be provided with a destination-specific safety briefing to help set expectations for your time together.
Our motorcoach partners have implemented enhanced cleaning and safety protocols. All drivers will be fully vaccinated. Coaches will be disinfected using a variety of techniques, including electrostatic and anti-microbial sprayers, foggers, and steamers. All high-touch surfaces will be wiped down multiple times a day. Air filtration system improvements promote frequent exchange of cabin air, replacing it with fresh air from the outside.
Each airport, and airline, will have its own rules regarding your flight travel, and we recommend you check the website of your airport and carrier at least 72 hours before departing. Temperature checks and face coverings will be a requirement at the airport and on the plane. Some destinations may require health forms or additional testing/screening prior to arrival, including requirements based on your home province or city. We will make every effort to communicate these requirements in advance. You will be allowed to bring hand sanitizer in a container up to 12 ounces in your carry-on.
We work only with hotel partners who are committed to the highest standards in cleanliness. In addition to their already rigorous cleaning protocols, they are now using enhanced cleaning products and increasing the frequency of cleaning in public spaces. Housekeeping spends extra time disinfecting surfaces in guest rooms, focusing on high contact areas. The check-in process has also been modified to limit interaction between students and other guests. Changes have been made to hotel arrival and departure procedures, use of lobby and elevators, and breakfast and other hotel-based activities to promote social distancing. Additionally, we have developed flexible options to support the rooming preferences of individual travellers. For example, if your program pricing is based on quad occupancy, room upgrades will be available for students who prefer double occupancy at the time of registration.
Our team is working closely with our contacts at museums, landmarks, and other sites we visit to define specific (and evolving) protocols for groups to make sure the experience is both safe and fun. Based on new information, we may make changes to your itinerary, to make sure you have plenty of time to accommodate any new restrictions. We also will focus your time on places where you have the most freedom to explore. All sites we visit will require face coverings, and have new rules for security and group management. You should be prepared to follow the instructions of your Tour Leader and staff at these locations. We recommend you bring a clear purse or backpack, or a gallon-sized ziploc bag, as some sites will not allow traditional bags.
Group meals will be prepared by professionals who adhere to proper food safety and handling protocols, including mask wearing and frequent hand washing. We work closely with each meal vendor to determine the appropriate meal type and group seating configuration, secure outdoor dining where possible, and implement social distancing practices. Individually packaged food items, grab and go, and plated and served meals may replace traditional self-serve buffet options.
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We will be there for your group every step of the way, from pre-tour, on-tour, and post-tour to ensure the safest experience possible for all travellers.
As part of WorldStrides, we have access to an exclusive partnership with The George Washington University Department of Emergency Medicine. We leverage this unique program to connect travelers to doctors for phone consultations or treatment recommendations.Learn More
As a TICO registered agency, Brightspark offers parents peace of mind while their child is on tour by offering the opportunity to protect both their child and their financial investment of the trip cost with travel insurance.Learn More