We know the most stressful week as an ILP volunteer is the one you leave, so here is some details of what to expect!
Traveling abroad can be a bit stressful, but that's why you decided to volunteer with ILP, right? Check out these 8 ways ILP is going to take care of you.
The week you leave is go-time! You will be working hard to get everything packed/make sure you don't forget anything, starting to say your goodbyes and getting in all your favorite foods last minute. We have a big guide to packing for an international trip if you're worried about packing.
We want you to concentrate on all of that stuff and not about what will be happening on our end. So, here are the things we will be taking care of for you:
- Getting your passport/visa ready for you
- Getting your ISIC/SIM cards ready
- Making copies of your important documents
- Double checking your flights
- Calling to remind you about your flights
- Sending flight information to your school
- Arranging transportation to your school
- Meeting you at the airport (if you leave out SLC)
Getting your passport/visa ready
A huge perk of traveling with ILP is you don't have to worry about getting your own visa. If your country requires you to have a visa, we will take care of the whole application process for you. All you need to do is turn in your passport and ID photos by our due date and we will take care of the rest for you. We will make sure we have your passport back (with the visa inside) by the time you leave!
If you're leaving out of Salt Lake City, an ILP representative will meet you at the airport before you leave to give you your passport and visa. If you're NOT leaving from SLC, we will mail your passport, visa and any other documents you need the week you are leaving.
Getting your ISIC/SIM cards ready
If your ordered an insurance card (ISIC) or a T-Mobile SIM card through us, we will be including those in the envelope that your passport/visa will be in.
Your T-Mobile cards will be activated before being put in the envelope and all you need to do is insert it into your phone (here's how to do that with an iPhone) and make a test call (to anyone) to make sure it's working before you leave the country.
You will get these cards the same way you get your passport (at the airport if you're leaving from SLC or overnighted to you if you're leaving from somewhere else).
Making copies of your important documents
Having a copy of your passport and visa is important when traveling internationally. We will include a copy of both in the envelope you will be receiving.
Double checking your flights
Unfortunately, we can't control any changes to flights that airlines make, so we double check them the week you're leaving. Most of the time, there will be no changes. In the case there is a change, we will be emailing or calling you to let you know. I suggest checking your email often during this week just in case there are changes happening close to your departure date.
Calling to remind you about your flight
The day before you leave, expect to get a call from us reminding you about your flight (the time you leave, time you need to be there to meet a rep and where you will need to meet them). If there has been any changes to your flights, they will also let you know then.
Sending flight information to your school
We will double and triple check with your school and coordinator to make sure they know exactly what time you arrive and where to pick you and the rest of your group up at the airport. If there are any delays along the way, the school will be notified of those as well.
Pst: You might want to screenshot this info just to make sure you have it too.
Arranging transportation to your school
Whether it's by car, train, ferry or bus, we will arrange for you to get from the airport to your school. The tickets will be purchased in advance or your ILP head teacher or coordinator will have the money to purchase them upon arrival.
Again, your coordinator or a designated person from the school will be traveling with you from the airport back to your new home.
Meeting you at the SLC airport
Like I said above, we will meet you at the SLC airport with your envelope full of your passport, visa, insurance card, SIM card, copies, etc. We will tell you exactly where to meet us and your ILP group (in the phone call you get the day before you leave) at the airport.
If you're leaving out of any airport other than SLC, there will not be a rep there to meet you but you will already have your envelope (we will mail it to you). You'll be meeting up with your group either at a layover or at the final airport and your head teacher can let you know what the plan is.
Hopefully your nerves can rest easy and you can enjoy the week you're leaving! Savor the week because your semester will be over before you know it and you'll be wishing you could go back to that week and start it allll over again.
Oh, and if you're panicking because you forgot everything about ILP training, don't worry. We've got you covered.
If you want to spend a semester volunteering abroad, don't wait! There is no better time than now. Click below to start your application!