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The Dominican Republic:

 

Would you like to visit a beautiful Caribbean nation such as the Dominican Republic? Would you also like not experience the beauty of this nation, but also to help some of the people living there? If so, this trip is a wonderful opportunity for you. Our trip will take place from May 21-28, 2014.

 

Faculty leader:

 

Erica Simpson, Communication

Course offered: COMM 1502, Intercultural Communication,

COMM 2105, Interpersonal Communication

Office: Floyd campus, F-132

E-mail: esimpson@highlands.edu

Office phone: 706-368-7623

 

For more information and an itinerary of this trip see the following link with EF College Study Tours:

http://www.efcollegestudytours.com/educational-tours/tour-detail.aspx?code=BVEA

 

 

The Dominican Republic: Community Empowerment

 

How do you pay for this trip?

Our trip is through a tour company called EF College Study Tours. EF is a well-established company with a good reputation. The first step is to enroll with EF Tours and pay EF a $95 enrollment fee. Please be sure to give EF the tour number for the GHC Dominican Republic trip, which is # 1443677 CU. You may contact EF either by calling them at 1-800-766-2645 or enrolling online at their website:

http://www.efcollegestudytours.com/

After you enroll with EF, you will make all other payments at the Georgia Highlands College Business Office, NOT with EF Tours. It is very important for you to pay with the Business Office to avoid confusion with the college as to the balance of your bill. The Business Office has locations on each Georgia Highlands College campus. You may pay in person with a check or credit card.

You may also use a credit card to pay online with the Business Office under the link on the GHC homepage under Student Interests labeled PAY YOUR ACCOUNT.  When you choose what term to pay, it should be labeled PARKING/STUDY ABROAD.  As long as you pick this term, your payment will be applied to their trip. Please keep in mind that there may be an additional processing fee if you choose to pay with a credit card. The link for on-line payment is as follows:

http://www.highlands.edu/site/payment-intro

Students may pay for the trip with one payment for the full amount. Another option is to make payments for the trip over the course of the academic year. The payment schedule for the Dominican Republic trip is as follows:

Under the age of 30, $2,765, or four payments of $691.25

Over the age of 30, $2,992, or four payments of $748

 

Payment deadlines:

First payment deadline: Friday, November 15, 2013

Second payment deadline: Friday, January 24, 2014

Third payment deadline: February 21, 2014

Fourth payment deadline: March 21, 2014

 

For more information on other issues such as booking conditions and cancelation policies (scroll down to the last page for cancellation policy), please see the EF website at:

http://www.efcollegestudytours.com/eliterature/BookingConditions_CST_13.pdf

Explanation of trip cost:

There are several costs associated with study abroad. First, students should keep in mind that the cost of going on the trip itself is separate from the cost of the GHC Maymester courses associated with the trip. Students are encouraged, but not required to take one of the courses associated with the trip. These courses should be paid in the same manner as students pay tuition and fees for all other courses at GHC. Students may use financial aid for these courses.

The cost of the trip itself includes several elements. A breakdown of these costs is found below:

$95 Enrollment Fee

What this covers: Fee to enroll on the trip itself per the enrollment instructions above, to be paid with EF Tour in one payment. This is an EF membership fee. If you go on another trip with EF, you will not be required to pay it again.

$2,560 cost of the trip with EF for those under 30

What this covers: This includes round-trip airfare to the Dominican Republic, accommodations, transportation in country, activities, some meals and tour guides. 

$205 charge for trip reserve in addition to EF charges

What this covers: State regulations require the college to maintain an account reserve for each trip. For study abroad trips at GHC, an additional non-refundable trip reserve charge of 8% is added to the cost of the trip in order to build this account reserve. The college can use this reserve at its discretion to pay for a number of expenses whose prices cannot be accurately calculated or fully anticipated at the beginning of the academic year. For instance, the reserve can be used to cover increases in EF's departure fees, which include airfare and customs entrance fees. As airfare, particularly due to the cost of fuel, and customs fees often increase at some time between the beginning of fall semester and the departure of trips in the summer, the trip account reserve creates a cushion for the trip. In most cases, it allows the college to give students one total price at the beginning of fall semester that remains constant and stable throughout the academic year. In addition to providing a cushion for increases in departure fees, the reserve can also be used on the trip itself to pay for the group's tips to tour guides and bus drivers. In many countries, there is a cultural expectation of tips for guides and drivers. Finally, the trip reserve can be tapped in the event of an emergency. 

Total cost of the trip, cost with EF for those under 30 and charge for trip reserve=$2,560

 

$2,770 cost of the trip with EF for those over 30

What this covers: This includes round-trip airfare to the Dominican Republic, accommodations, transportation in country, activities, some meals and tour guides. Please note that EF charges a $210 room supplement fee for those over 30 years of age so that they will have private rooms for the duration of the trip.

$222 charge for trip reserve, in addition to EF charges

What this covers: State regulations require the college to maintain an account reserve for each trip. For study abroad trips at GHC, an additional non-refundable 8% trip reserve charge is added to the cost of the trip in order to build this account reserve. The college can use this reserve at its discretion to pay for a number of expenses whose prices cannot be accurately calculated or fully anticipated at the beginning of the academic year. For instance, the reserve can be used to cover increases in EF's departure fees, which include airfare and customs entrance fees. As airfare, particularly due to the cost of fuel, and customs fees often increase at some time between the beginning of fall semester and the departure of trips in May, the trip account reserve creates a cushion for the trip. In most cases, it allows the college to give students one total price at the beginning of fall semester that remains constant and stable throughout the academic year. In addition to providing a cushion for increases in departure fees, the reserve can also be used to on the trip itself to pay for the group's tips to tour guides and bus drivers. In many countries, there is a cultural expectation of tips for guides and drivers. Finally, the trip reserve can be tapped in the event of an emergency. 

Total cost of the trip, cost with EF for those over 30 and charge for trip reserve= $2,770

 

Other expenses with the trip:

 

Travel insurance:

Students are required to purchase travel insurance before the trip departs. This is so students will have health insurance while abroad. Depending on the policy, travel insurance may also cover lost luggage and other such expenses. Students may purchase insurance directly with EF Tours for $145. EF Tours offers all-inclusive travel insurance. Details on EF travel insurance may be found on their website.

Students may also purchase travel insurance directly with Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI). This company has a strong relationship with the University System of Georgia (USG) and provides travel insurance for study abroad trips offered by USG institutions. CISI has policies that range between $31 and $122 for those between the ages of 18 and 50. The price of each policy varies by age and the extent of coverage desired. Younger people pay less, as do those who choose less comprehensive insurance policies. Details on CISI policies may be found at their website as follows: 

http://www.culturalinsurance.com

Passport:

If you do not have a passport that will be valid for the duration of the trip, you will need to obtain one with the United States Department of State. Please keep in mind that it may take several weeks to obtain or renew your passport. Information on passports can be found at the following website: 

http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html

Spending money:


You will need a few hundred dollars, depending on your on personal spending habits, to pay for some meals, tips and souvenirs. Students should consult with faculty trip leaders in order to estimate spending money for the trip.

Page last updated: September 9, 2013