Our frequently asked questions provide detailed answers to many of your questions about our trips and the volunteering experience in general. If you have another question not mentioned here, then please send us a note and we’ll respond personally and promptly!
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Frequently Asked Questions
- Conservation of natural and cultural resources
- Advocate for Special Places
- Hikers who want to 'Give back' by repairing trails
- Enjoy the sense of accomplishment from working on an important project
- Work with locals to better understand the local culture
- Travel to a foreign country without needing to learn the language
- Travel to an important destination without having to make all the travel arrangements
- Bird-watching (condors in Torres del Paine!)
- Enjoy the outdoors
- Have a fun adventure
In addition to the mandatory medical and evacuation insurance, many volunteers also buy other travel insurance, which covers things like trip interruption or lost baggage. Since we don't make specific company recommendations, we leave your choice of company and other travel insurance strictly up to you.
Generally, you can claim a charitable contribution deduction for travel expenses necessarily incurred while you are away from home performing services for a charitable organization….The deduction for travel expenses will not be denied simply because you enjoy providing services to the charitable organization. Even if you enjoy the trip, you can take a charitable contribution deduction for your travel expenses if you are on duty in a genuine and substantial sense throughout the trip.
Conservation Volunteers International Program is a 501 (c)(3) qualified charitable organization. We try to structure our trips to ensure that participants are given the opportunity to contribute in a genuine and substantial sense throughout the trip. Please see your tax advisor to confirm the appropriate tax treatment for your trip expenses.
Management and Responsibilities Disclosure
The responsibility of Conservation Volunteers International Program, Inc., a California non-profit corporation, 501(c)(3), is strictly limited; Volunteer Project participant agrees that maximum liquidated damages shall not exceed the Volunteer Project price. ConservationVIP® is responsible only in the capacity for making arrangements for the Volunteer Project services offered, including hotels, transportation (whether by motorcoach, boat, train, airplane or any other means), guides, porterage, and meals from various suppliers (collectively Suppliers). The itineraries shown are subject to revisions, including substitution of hotels, activities and routes. If a service is not provided, and ConservationVIP® is unable to substitute a service of similar value, ConservationVIP’s liability shall not exceed the actual cost of the services not provided. ConservationVIP® does not own or operate any of these Suppliers. The Suppliers are not agents, servants, employees or joint ventures of ConservationVIP®, but are Independent Contractors providing travel services to ConservationVIP®.
ConservationVIP® is not liable for any damage, including personal injury, accident, personal loss or other expense, from any cause, act or omission by Suppliers or third parties. Volunteer Project participant agrees that by utilizing the travel services of Suppliers, that Volunteer Project participant will look to Suppliers for any damages of any kind. ConservationVIP® is not responsible for any purchases made during the Volunteer Project.
ConservationVIP® is not responsible for the costs of any medical treatment required during your Volunteer Project, nor is ConservationVIP® responsible for the quality, or lack thereof, of medical care you may receive while on your Volunteer Project. ConservationVIP®, Inc. and/or its agents are not responsible for any damage, expense or inconvenience caused by late departures, change of schedule, strikes or other conditions.
ConservationVIP® is not liable for any wrongful, negligent, or unauthorized acts or omissions of any travel agent or travel agency. Legal proceedings by or against ConservationVIP®, Inc. may be instituted only in a state or federal court within the State of California, and any claim involved in such proceedings shall be decided in accordance with the laws of the State of California. ConservationVIP® reserves the right to decline to accept or retain any person as a member of a Volunteer Project at any time before or during the actual operation of the Volunteer Project. ConservationVIP® reserves the right to cancel any Volunteer Project at any time. In computer or human billing error, ConservationVIP® reserves the right to re-invoice with correct billing. ConservationVIP® is not responsible for printing errors or other errors.
Cancellation Disclosure/Travel Consumer Restitution Fund
We must state in writing and with specificity all terms and conditions relating to the transportation or travel services we sell. Whatever cancellation policy applies must be conspicuously and completely made known to the purchaser at the time of purchase. Any cancellation penalties not so disclosed in writing are unenforceable. Upon cancellation of the transportation or travel services, where the passenger is not at fault and has not canceled in violation of any terms and conditions previously clearly and conspicuously disclosed and agreed to by the passenger, all sums paid to the seller of travel for services not provided will be promptly paid to the passenger, unless the passenger advises the seller of travel in writing, after cancellation. This provision does not apply where the seller of travel has remitted the payment to another registered wholesale seller of travel or a carrier, without obtaining a refund, and where the wholesaler or provider defaults in providing the agreed-upon transportation or service. In this situation, the seller of travel must provide the passenger with a written statement accompanied by bank records establishing the disbursement of the payment, and if disbursed to a wholesale seller of travel, proof of current registration of that wholesaler.
The cost of delays is not included if any trip is delayed due to bad weather, trail conditions, river levels, road conditions, transportation delays, government intervention, sickness or other contingency for which Conservation Volunteers International Program or its agents cannot make provision.
Trip Costs and/or Land Costs are subject to increase without prior notice, even after you have signed up on the trip. We often publish our prices more than a year in advance. Between that time and the time of the trip’s actual departure, we are occasionally faced with significant cost increases that we cannot absorb, for example international currency fluctuations, fuel surcharges, or increases in cost of services. We regret this situation, and we do everything we can to avoid raising prices, but sometimes it is unavoidable. We will do our best to limit such increases and will notify you as soon as possible about any necessary changes.
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