3080 Yonge Street Suite 5052, Box 32 Toronto, ON M4N 3N1
t: 888.378.8845 f: 888.378.8846
To Whom It May Concern,
We understand that many school officials have expressed concern about allowing their students to travel. We want to assure you that the safety of the tour participants is Explorica’s number one priority and that we have policies in place to protect the school, school district, teachers, and participants involved with this tour.
Explorica has a $5 million (U.S. funds) liability policy with AIU/Lexington Insurance Company that protects third parties and tour participants (students, teachers, chaperones) for injuries and damages resulting from Explorica’s negligence.
We know that school officials should not have to assume responsibility for the safety of their students while abroad, and with Explorica, they don’t. Explorica has taken all precautions to best protect the students and other tour participants. For additional information on our liability insurance, or to receive evidence of our insurance coverage, please contact our insurance broker, Stephanie Serra of Wells Fargo Acordia, at 1.617.204.2534. Furthermore, all travellers' payments are protected by the Travel Industry
Explorica enters into individual contracts with each tour participant and his or her parents. As soon as a participant signs this contract, we immediately begin planning the trip to ensure that students get the best tour possible. We buy airline tickets, make hotel deposits, and arrange all the other elements of the trip so that the tour is not coordinated hastily at the last minute. During this extended planning process, we incur costs that we cannot recoup. These costs are why we must charge cancellation fees when participants withdraw, even if a school board, who is not in any way financially liable for the tour, cancels the trip.
We of course share your concern for the students’ safety and peace of mind. Our optional Travel Protection Plan, which includes a Cancel For Any Reason benefit, provides medical, baggage, and cancellation insurance coverage for our travellers. We also have a network of support staff overseas as well as 24-hour emergency service for groups and their families.
We offer additional peace of mind for parents and friends of our travellers by providing an online ‘‘Tour Diary’’ that is updated with pictures and journal entries by the Tour Director throughout the trip. When deciding whether to run a tour, Explorica always follows the guidelines of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, which issues country-specific Travel Warnings when they ‘‘decide, based on all relevant information, to recommend that Canadians avoid travel to a certain country.’’ We feel that this government department is in the best position to make this judgment. There are currently no Travel Warnings issued for any Explorica destination, so we continue to proceed as planned with all our tours. If you would like to discuss this matter further, we would be happy to speak with you at any time.
Please call us at 1.888.378.8845. Sincerely,
Matt Wertz President & CEO Explorica, Inc.
A message from Kimberlee Regan, our tour director.
As for the insurance, it is definitely optional. When parents are going online, they’ll fill out the first two pages with personal info and emergency contact info. On the third page, the price will be outlined and below it will be two options: “accept selections” or “change selections.” If you click on “change selections,” they’ll have the option to remove the insurance from their account.
Let me know if anyone has any trouble—the plan is non-refundable so just be sure that they really want to purchase it!
Also, you mentioned in your voicemail that they would get ALL their money back if they cancel for any reason. They should get all their money back (with insurance) if they cancel for a covered reason (illness etc). If they cancel for ANY non-covered reason (OFSAA playoffs etc), they would only receive 75% of their funds back.