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Is World Challenge a rip-off?

(22 Posts)
Seaturtles Wed 30-May-18 12:37:14

Does anyone have experience with World Challenge, and cancelling participation? My son has had to drop out of a Peru trip for medical reasons. We cancelled giving 3 months’ notice.

We have paid £2,900 towards the program, but World Challenge are only willing to refund £150.

I can understand World Challenge needing to retain an amount for admin & cancellation fees, but does it seem excessive for them to keep £2750?

OP’s posts: |
TheThirdOfHerName Wed 30-May-18 21:40:58

Did you have cancellation insurance?

NorthernSpirit Wed 30-May-18 23:17:27

What’s in the terms & conditions if you cancel?

Seaturtles Thu 31-May-18 15:06:37

Trying through our normal travel insurer. Hoping for the best.

OP’s posts: |
Seaturtles Thu 31-May-18 15:10:20

35% payable to World Challenge if you give them 12 months (!) notice
50% payable with 6 months notice
60% payable with min 42 days notice.
100% payable with less than 42 days notice.

Quite a racket. You have to pay the bulk up front so there is not much recourse.

OP’s posts: |
TheThirdOfHerName Thu 31-May-18 19:13:04

That's harsh. What if they break their leg the week before?

NorthernSpirit Thu 31-May-18 21:27:37

If you paid £2,900, gave 3 months notice to cancel and the T&C’s state 60% payable if you give 42 days notice I would expect a refund of 40% - £1,160.

Ask them to explain why they have only refunded £150.

ReservoirDogs Fri 01-Jun-18 17:29:19

Travel insurance? Eg do you have ot on.your bank account or similar even if no separate policy.

specialsubject Fri 01-Jun-18 20:25:36

yes. expensive package tour.

hope you bought insurance when you booked.

KnownUnknowns Fri 01-Jun-18 20:29:53

I think it's a rip off and I hate the suggested charity association for fund raising - it's an expensive holiday and that's it.

saltandvinegarcrisps1 Sun 03-Jun-18 00:08:00

World challenge is a total rip.off - middle class kids going on a junket to do 'good work" paid for by friends and family and a few cake offs - but you will have signed up to the Ts and Cs so although you probs didn't read them, here they are biting you in the bum

MrsSchadenfreude Sun 03-Jun-18 00:10:03

DD1 went to Namibia. The charity work they did seemed to be minimal. Most of the visit seemed to be one big expensive jolly.

specialsubject Sun 03-Jun-18 09:17:42

not seemed,is. entitled rich kids (which all brits are compared to these places) have no skills of any use and are just wasting money on flights.

plenty needs doing in the uk for those wanting to help.

MrsJacksonBrodieTheSecond Sun 03-Jun-18 09:20:58

Is World Challenge a fundraising thing now. I did a trek with them 7 years ago or so and it was just like any other trekking company. Crappy if they’re doing fundraising or charity bollocks now though.

It’s a bit rubbish they wouldn’t refund more. Surely it’s all in the t’s and c’s though so maybe your insurance will cover it?

MrsSchadenfreude Sun 03-Jun-18 09:30:23

You’re supposed to raise the money yourself. We strongly objected to the idea of putting something on Just Giving or Go Fund Me (which is what NCS also suggests for their international service) as this just seemed like begging other people for the money. The reality is that the parents or relatives will fund it anyway, as the chances of a child raising £5K in a year under their own steam are pretty remote. I would say that DD1’s bunch did a lot for the project while they were there (painted, put shelves up and equipped a library, spent time helping the children), but the reality was that they were only there for a couple of weeks. The rest of the time was spent on safari, a river cruise, sightseeing and sand surfing. I’d have been happier if they had spent more time with the community.

Eclipsemints18 Fri 08-Jun-18 05:25:41

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Seaturtles Fri 15-Jun-18 22:46:00

The total cost of the program is £4600, so they made us pay £2760 to cover their "cancellation costs."

Please think twice before letting your children sign up for World Challenge. I'm just angry at ourselves that we didn't do more research and look proper charitable organisations such as Habitat for Humanity instead.

OP’s posts: |
specialsubject Sat 16-Jun-18 09:48:19

did the travel insurers not pay out?

that other one you mention is also voluntourism. british kids with no skills taking work from locals is not helpful.

Fad Sat 16-Jun-18 14:11:46

All of these are just glorified holidays and should be treated as such.It amazes me how schools allow these companies to fleece gullible youngsters and their parents.
I would have thought you could get travel insurance but as always with travel insurance it needs booking at the same time as the trip is booked.

NerrSnerr Sat 16-Jun-18 14:20:03

Isn't this what travel insurance is for? If you'd booked a package holiday and cancelled you wouldn't expect them just to refund, you'd claim.

myheartgoesout Sat 16-Jun-18 14:20:50

Just been looking at family trips to far flung places and you can get a family of 4 going to somewhere like touring around Cambodia or Vietnam for under £4K for 2 weeks in the summer holidays. World Challenge is such a rip off.

billybagpuss Sat 16-Jun-18 14:27:26

We cancelled very early on and still lost about £400. There are much more worthy and cheaper opportunities out there.

In DDs year there were some ridiculously entitled rich kids most of whom had it just paid for them and they have absolutely no sense of reality.

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