How is the trip rating scale defined?

PLAY it Forward® Trip-O-Meters are rated on a scale from 1-5, with 1 being low and 5 being high, in the areas of physical activity, culture shock and comfort level. This rating scale is designed to assist you in selecting the right outdoor adventure and volunteering abroad experience that is right for you.

Do I need to train to participate in a trip?

Activities vary from soft multi-sport outdoor adventures such as hiking, biking and kayaking to more challenging feats like climbing Kilimanjaro. All active adventures are leisurely and tours at full capacity can usually provide options for travelers along the way. You do not have to train to participate in outdoor adventures levels 1-3, but we do recommend some level of regimented exercise prior to departure.  For outdoor adventures level 4-5 you may want to train or be skilled enough to participate at this level.

How is the level of culture shock defined?

Every PLAY it Forward® adventure provides a cultural experience.  The level of culture shock is based on the cultural differences between American society and that of the country you’re visiting. Such things as gender roles, religious practices and rituals may differ greatly from those at home which would be rated a 4 or 5 on our Trip-O-Meter.  For cultures that are not so different from that of our own, we rate them at a 1-3.

Will I be comfortable?

Every destination is different though we do seek out locally owned and operated accommodations with a local flavor.  Some destinations may not appear much different from home while others may not provide running water or electricity. Meals, transportation and accommodations may not be as luxurious as you’re accustomed to, making a tour all the more adventurous.  See individual rating scales under Comfort Level to determine what’s right for you.

What age do I need to be to participate?

All participants must be 18 years of age or older or the age of majority in their state of residence, unless traveling with a parent and authorized by PLAY it Forward® Adventures.  All laws within the United States are adhered to while we travel abroad.  (i.e. US laws are applicable no matter which destination you’re traveling in; the drinking age on PIF Adventures is 21).

Outdoor adventures and volunteer projects are designed for all ages. Support vehicles are provided whenever possible in case any activity becomes to challenging.

See individual tour itineraries for activity details.

What type of lodging will be provided?

We aim to keep accommodations community focused, yet comfortable, by seeking out eco-lodges and locally owned and operated hotels whenever possible. Accommodations with a local flavor are selected to enhance your cultural experience.

Comfort levels are rated on a scale from 1-5 with 1 being very rustic and 5 including most amenities.

For details on lodging in each country, see individual tour itineraries.

Do you provide a single supplement option?

Hotel accommodations are based on double or triple occupancy. Individuals preferring single occupancy must make arrangements with their PLAY it Forward® representative at the time of registration. Single supplement accommodations may increase tour cost, are pending availability and cannot be guaranteed.

What is a typical group size?

Group travel tours provide a safe, fun environment for travelers to explore the natural wonders of the world. In order to maximize mobility and give our groups the most enjoyable experience, PLAY it Forward® keeps group sizes between 8-10 participants per tour. Join our group as an individual traveler or arrange a group of your own.

What should I pack?

Participants should bring proper attire and necessities specific to their tours’ activities. A complete packing list is included in your orientation packet or available upon request.

Every PLAY it Forward® adventure will combine the elements of outdoor adventure and volunteering abroad, though activities vary among tours.

Do I need to provide my own outdoor equipment?

All necessary sporting equipment will be provided and is included in your land costs unless otherwise noted on your tour packing list.

Shipping your own outdoor equipment such as bikes and kayaks is not permitted.

How much do I tip my guides?

Guide tips are not included in tour costs. Tips are based on your level of satisfaction though it is customary to give $10/day.

Is PIF a faith-based organization?

PLAY it Forward® is not a faith-based organization, however, there is a somewhat spiritual aspect to every adventure.  We aim to exercise your mind, body and spirit equally though we appreciate every individual’s personal journey.  There may be optional activities such as yoga and meditation offered on some trips.  We encourage people of all belief systems to participate in our adventures.  We ask that Sojourners are respectful of each others differences and see it as an opportunity to learn and grow.

Is PIF a non-profit organization?

PLAY it Forward® Adventures is a for profit business.  We are in the business of providing all-encompassing travel tours that empower people and enrich lives.  When you travel with us, you are purchasing an experience.  With the help of our non-profit partners, we are able to offer opportunities to connect with locals that may not otherwise be available to the average tourist.  Our for-profit business model allows us to bring resources to existing non-profits in the countries we visit.  All project fees are already included in your land costs.  No portion of a PLAY it Forward® adventure is tax deductible unless otherwise stated.