A group of volunteers in Argentina, South America paint a mural about human rights awareness.

Travelling with Projects Abroad: COVID-19 FAQs

As the world begins to open up again, and travel restrictions are lifted, many volunteers like you are making plans to go abroad and give your support to those in need. We understand that this is a challenging time to travel, and because your safety is our top priority, we've answered the most commonly asked questions about travelling during the COVID-19 pandemic below.

Right now we're getting lots of enquiries about travel in 2021, and are confident that all of our projects and destinations will be available. Contact us to discuss your trip.

If you want to travel as soon as possible, the following destinations are open for people travelling from Sweden, and volunteers are on the ground right now:


Will I get a refund of the project fees if my travel can’t go ahead?

Yes, we've updated our refund policy so that you can book with confidence.  These changes apply to all new bookings from 21st August 2020.

If your project is cancelled due to COVID-19, we’ll guarantee you a full refund.

We understand that this is an uncertain time to travel so we want to give you total peace of mind. If you can’t travel due to travel bans or quarantine restrictions, then we’ll offer you flexible options, including a full refund.

Here is a summary of the flexible options we offer:

  • Free Date or Destination Changes: Choose a new date or different destination without any amendment fee. Just give us your new dates or alternative destination and we’ll arrange the rest. Multiple changes allowed.
  • Convert Your Booking into Transferable Credit: If you can’t commit to a new date or want to change destinations, you can swap your fee into future credit. You can even pass this credit to a family member or friend. We’ll lock this in with 100% financial protection. Choosing this option will help us to continue to support our overseas projects.
  • Full Refund: If you don’t want credit, we will offer you a refund for your project fee. This can either be a combination of partial credit and partial cash refund, or a full cash refund. Our refunds will be processed within 21 days with the funds entering your account within the next 10 days after it is processed. Please note that flight refunds are separate and dependent on each airline's terms and conditions at the time of booking.

Will I get a refund for my flights if my travel can’t go ahead?

Most airlines will offer a refund or a travel voucher when flights are cancelled by the airline or forced to be cancelled by restrictions imposed by the government.  However, it’s important to contact the airline to request this before the departure date on your ticket.

If you're in this situation and you booked your flights through the Projects Abroad Travel Team, please contact our Travel Team before the departure date on your ticket to confirm if you'd like to cancel your flights, apply for a travel voucher, or change dates.


What insurance is available and what does it cover? What happens to my insurance cover if a travel ban is imposed before or during my project?

Travel and Medical insurance policies differ depending on the provider, and this is especially the case for policies issued since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.  In our recent experience, some insurers are offering additional options including cover:

  • for treatment due to medical emergencies relating to COVID-19
  • for cancellations prior to departure due to medical issues or travel restrictions
  • if travel restrictions are implemented while overseas

However, it's important to stress that every policy is different and we strongly advise you to read the terms and conditions when choosing your insurance, to make sure that it has the level of cover you require.

We also recommend that you arrange insurance for your trip as soon as possible after booking with us, in order to make sure that you have cover in place.

Projects Abroad is able to help arrange insurance cover. Please contact us to discuss your options.


What happens if travel restrictions are imposed or flights are cancelled while I'm abroad and I can’t travel home?

If your trip gets disrupted by travel restrictions, we'll give you support until you're able to get back home.

If you need to stay in-destination past your original departure date, we can:

  • Provide accommodation at an extra cost of $30 USD per day
  • Arrange for you to continue working on your project and staying at our accommodation, charged per week at our “Extra Week Price”
  • Help recommend alternative accommodation options if you would prefer to arrange your own accommodation

If your flights are cancelled and you're not offered another option with the same airline, you'll need to buy a ticket with a different airline and apply for a refund of the flight that was cancelled.

If all flights are cancelled, we'll help get in contact with your embassy to get on a repatriation flight. You'll be required to pay for the repatriation flight, but these are usually reasonably priced.


What happens if I show symptoms or get COVID-19 whilst in destination?

We have enhanced health and safety protocols in place in all destinations. As soon as volunteers present any symptoms, they are  immediately isolated at home and we inform the local medical authorities. Each country has its own protocols when dealing with suspicious cases and we follow their instructions.

If symptoms are mild, there won’t be a need to take you to the hospital unless it is advised by doctors.  If symptoms become more serious, we'll immediately take you to a clinic to get medical assistance and get tested. There are private and public designated clinics and hospitals in all our destinations that will provide treatment.

If this prevents you from returning home on your scheduled departure date, your insurance should cover the cost to change flights, extend your accommodation, and for any treatment or hospitalisation. However, all insurance policies are different, so we strongly recommend that you read the conditions of your insurance policy before travelling.

Projects Abroad is able to help arrange insurance cover. Please contact us to discuss your options.


What happens if there's an imposed lockdown while I’m in destination and I can't continue working at my project?

If your project cannot continue because of lockdowns or curfews, we'll recommend you leave the country and finish it at a later stage. Many airlines are offering free flight changes for anyone affected by COVID-19, but we cannot guarantee this. You would be responsible for paying any charges for changing flights.

We can also give you the option to change to a different destination free of charge, you'll need to cover the cost of changing your flights.

If you choose to return home early, we'll protect the remainder of your project by giving you credit for the unused weeks. This credit can be used to travel with us again at any point for up to two years.


What happens if I get COVID-19 before my starting date?

If you get COVID-19 before your starting date, we can postpone your trip free of charge. You'll be able to travel at any future date for up to two years, with no amendment fees. Alternatively, most insurance policies will provide a refund for cancellation due to contracting COVID-19, but please check your specific policy. 

If you incur fees for changing your flights, this should be covered by your insurance policy.  However, all insurance policies are different, so we strongly recommend that you read the conditions of your insurance policy before travelling.  We also recommend that you arrange insurance for your trip as soon as possible after booking with us, in order to make sure that you have cover in place.

Projects Abroad is able to help arrange insurance cover. Please contact us to discuss your options.


What happens if a host family member or someone at my project shows symptoms or gets COVID-19 whilst I'm there?

Each country has its own protocols when dealing with suspicious cases.  We have systems in place and will act immediately to follow local guidelines.

If you see someone at work or at your host family showing symptoms, please inform our local staff immediately so they can take the appropriate measures.


Is testing available in all destinations? If I need a test, can I get one?

Testing for COVID-19 is available in all of our destinations.  Each country has its own protocols for determining who needs to be tested, both when exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 and when coming into contact with others showing symptoms.

If, based on these protocols, you require a test, we'll help arrange this. There may be a fee charged in order to take a test, and you'll be responsible for paying this.

Your insurance may cover the cost of a test. However, all insurance policies are different, so we strongly recommend that you read the conditions of your insurance policy before travelling.

Projects Abroad is able to help arrange insurance cover. Please contact us to discuss your options.


What safety checks and procedures are in place in your destinations? Will protective equipment be provided, and will I need to wear a mask?

Every country has its own specific protocols and safety measures in place. You'll be informed by your Destination Expert of these measures and steps for arrival before you leave your home country.

You'll also receive a briefing at the start of your project on how to stay safe locally and what the current restrictions are.

However, in general we recommend you wear face masks on public transport and at your placement, and at all times in public. We also ask that you avoid crowded places - observing social distancing is really important at this time.

Our local teams have been trained on the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and we have pre-identified which hospitals and clinics to take volunteers to, should they become ill or show any symptoms.

We'll provide alcohol-based hand sanitiser for all volunteers, and regular hand washing is required. We'll carry out a deep cleaning of all volunteer accommodation before each new arrival and throughout the stay, your host will make sure all spaces are sanitised and adequate safety measures are always considered.

We'll provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in line with the requirements of local authorities and individual placements.

Do you have more questions?

Our Project Experts are here to help with anything you want to know. Contact us on:

08 - 55 921 116

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