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FAQs

Where are the Moondance students from?

Moondance students come from all over the world! We’ve had people hailing from 34 states and 6 foreign countries last summer alone. We love to connect people from such vast distances in search of experience and adventure.

What if I have no previous backpacking or camping experience?

No problem! You don’t necessarily need prior experience to go on a Moondance trip. There are trips with varying levels of challenge, and we’re here to help you choose a trip that’s right for you. The only requirements for a successful Moondance adventure are positive attitudes, good physical condition, and the willingness to collaborate as a member of a small group.

Can I come with a friend?

One of the greatest elements of a Moondance trip is meeting new people and being yourself in an entirely new group. We encourage you to partake in that valuable experience, and we love what happens when a group of strangers come together to form a team. That being said, sometimes participants come with a friend. In order to keep our focus on group dynamics, our policy is that no more then two friends from the same town, or school can be in the same group.

How big are the Moondance group sizes?

Moondance groups are typically 10 to 13 participants, plus two leaders.

How much is the deposit?

The trip deposit is $1000 which is due with your application. This deposit will be applied to the total program cost (Balance due March 1st) and can be paid by check, Visa, MasterCard or American Express.

Will I need special immunizations for my trip?

Depending on your trip, it is possible that you will need special immunizations. This can change from year to year, and we operate under the guidelines of the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta. For these specific trips, we ask that you discuss immunizations and any pre-existing conditions with your family doctor or local travel clinic. Please visit www.cdc.org for more information.

Can I bring my cell phone?

One of the greatest parts of a Moondance trip is unplugging from the doldrums of your device. We encourage you to leave them behind if you can, but cell phones are permitted in transit in case of travel complications. Once you arrive on your trip however, you will turn your cell phones into your leader, and not have them until you get to the airport on your last day. Phones detract from the experience we cultivate on a Moondance trip, and we strongly believe in the positive effects of digital detox.

Is airfare included in the cost of the trip?

Airfare to and from your Moondance program is not included in the cost of your trip due to the diversity of locations our students travel from. However, internal flights on Belize + Costa Rica, Ecuador + Galapagos, Hawaiian Islands, South Africa, Spain + Morocco and Thailand are covered in the cost of your trip.

Does my child need to fly as an unaccompanied minor?

This depends on the airline you are flying. Each one has its own policies on flying as an unaccompanied minor, and depending on which airline your child is flying, policies will differ. We suggest contacting your airline directly for up to date policies before you fly. Moondance will provide you with direct contact information for your child’s leaders, so you can discuss a flight plan before travel day. Keep in mind, that almost all airlines do not allow unaccompanied minors to travel on the last flight of the day.

Can Moondance put me in touch with others who are flying from the same city?

Absolutely! We are happy to put you in touch with other families who will be on your same flight. The more information we can share, the easier it is on our leaders who are waiting to meet your children at their destination city.

How does Moondance select and train its leaders?

Moondance leadership positions are in high demand and we receive a large number of applicants every year, with many returning leaders. After a rigorous selection process, we select only the top 25% of the potential leaders who apply. Those who are accepted through our written application and interview process are then required to attend an 11 day staff training. At this intensive training, leaders immerse themselves in their trips, their students, and the policies and procedures of Moondance. Staff training is a chance for us to get to know each and every leader deeply, and make sure they are the best fit for their trips, and our mission.

Can I find out who the other participants on my trip are before it begins?

We believe that the excitement and value in arriving with an open mind and a blank slate about your team members adds an irreplaceable component to our programs. Therefore, we don’t disclose this information in advance. We ask that you don’t call the office asking for this information please!

Where do we sleep at night?

On our domestic trips you will set up single gender, 3-person Marmot or Mountain Hardwear tents every night on most trips; however, we will encourage you take the opportunity to sleep beneath the stars. On our international trips, you will stay in local hostels, lodges, inns, and sometimes in tents outside.