How we plan to learn from the best
Our May/June 2019 trips are full wrapped up and preparations for next year’s challenges are in full swing. Nearly 99% of this year’s challengers have given us feedback on what they loved and what they think could be improved for future travelers. Proudly, our guides and in-country staff continue to receive the highest rankings across the board. On average, this year’s trips received an overall rating of 9.3/10. However, there’s always room for improvement! In this blog, we’ve put together our five greatest takeaways from our 2019 challenges.
Clearer emphasis on the difficulty of our challenges
We have a running joke here in the office that we’re called “Choose a Challenge” for a reason and not “Choose a Vacation”. Our challenges are designed to push you and that’s what makes us, us. It’s important to us that our trekkers and runners fully understand what’s in store when they sign up for one of our trips. Moving forward, we’ll aim to make the difficulty of our challenges clearer from the very beginning.
Opportunity for more free time in-country
We all wish we could spend an extra day or two in one of our overseas destinations. Many trekkers mentioned they wish they could’ve spent some more time in Cusco specifically (and we don’t blame them!) We’re excited to announce that next year we’ll be launching a new extension trip option for Machu Picchu that will allow just that. Stay tuned for details!
Further information on money/currency and training/fitness
Traveling to a new country and taking on a challenge for the first time can require quite a bit of preparation. We try our best to ensure that useful and relevant information is sent throughout the entire school year to our participants. We often say our briefing packs are our “one-stop-shop” for everything you need to know about your challenge. However, we do understand they may not be the most exciting to read. We’ve made notes to bring certain areas of our briefing packs to light, such as those on money/currency and training/fitness. We’ll also begin offering students 1-on-1 phone calls with our care and support staff in order to allow any last minute burning questions to be asked before they head off.
Increased team meetings throughout the school year
We typically leave it up to our campus leaders to organize meetings with their team throughout the year. However, we know getting together is important for information dissemination and to get in some team bonding before spending days on a mountain with one another! This year we’ll hold our leaders a bit more accountable in terms of getting their teammates together - and hopefully even make a few campus visits ourselves throughout the year as well.
More hands-on experience with charity partners
Raising thousands of dollars for charity is no small feat. We want to ensure our charity partners (and ourselves) are supporting our students during this process in the best way possible. Some challengers suggested more practical fundraising advice and further team events throughout the year would have been beneficial. We’re currently in the process of researching best fundraising practices for college students in the US and are looking forward to making 2020 the best year yet!
Have any comments or suggestions to share?