Program Booking Terms & Conditions

Here’s everything you need to know about booking an OG program

Please take the time to read the Booking Terms & Conditions laid out below before you pay your deposit and confirm your participation on an Operation Groundswell (OG) program. We also recommend that you review the online program itinerary, style and physical demands of the trip as well as the Welcome Package that you will receive as part of your acceptance.

1. Your Booking with us

By making a booking with Operation Groundswell and/or joining a program as a participant, you agree to be bound by all the Booking Terms & Conditions detailed here as well as any special conditions described in the Welcome Package, Medical History Form and Release & Waiver, and Code of Conduct which are available online for viewing. 

By making a booking on behalf of another person or persons (e.g. a family or custom program booking), you represent and warrant that you have the authority and/or required consents to bind all the participants listed on the booking to these Booking Terms & Conditions. 

Your booking and/or participation will only be accepted by OG on this basis. 

2. Program Pricing 

Prices are listed in CAD for Canadian residents and USD for all other nationalities. Advertised pricing includes any applicable taxes but a processing fee of 3.0-3.7% will be applied to payments made by credit card. There will be no change to the program price after a deposit has been made. From time-to-time OG offers reduced pricing or discounts on certain programs, products or services. Reduced pricing only applies to new bookings made during the relevant promotional period or using the appropriate discount code. Any reduced pricing or discounts that become available after a deposit has been paid will not apply.

3. Acceptance & Deposit requirement

Once a participant has been accepted to participate on a program, OG will provide a welcome email and booking confirmation invoice with the total program price, payment details and timelines.

To confirm a booking, you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit of $400 per participant for a Short Program lasting 15-days or less OR $700 per participant for a Long Program lasting 35-days or more.  

4. Membership & Program Fees 

The remainder of the total program price (less the Deposit) will be divided into two equal installments: 

  • The remaining Membership Fee, which includes a variable community contribution, is refundable up to 60 days before the programs scheduled start date for Long Programs OR up to 45 days before the programs scheduled start date for Short Programs.
  • The Program Fee, which includes a variable carbon offset, is refundable up to 45 days before the programs scheduled start date for Long Programs and up to 30 days before the programs scheduled start date for Short Programs.

5. Personal Information & Privacy 

Operation Groundswell must collect certain personal information in order to responsibly deliver our programs, products and/or services. OG only collects, uses and discloses that information which we consider necessary to enable our personnel, partners and vendors to deliver the program, products and/or services related to your booking or purchase. By submitting your personal information to OG, you indicate your acceptance of the Privacy Policy which is available online for viewing.

6. What’s Included

The Membership and Program Fees include:

  • A comprehensive pre-planned itinerary
  • A detailed Program Package
  • Pre-departure support and 1-2 group training sessions 
  • All in-country group accommodations* 
  • All group transportation* 
  • Three meals per day*
  • All group activities and excursions* 
  • Onsite Program Leader(s)*
  • A variable community contribution and carbon offset 

*Except during ITT where applicable.

7. What’s not included

The Membership and Program Fees do not include:

  • International or internal airfare unless stated otherwise on the program page
  • Airport transfers, taxes and excess baggage charges 
  • A passport (required) and/or entry visa(s), if required 
  • Emergency medical insurance (required)
  • Trip cancellation insurance (recommended)
  • Any costs related to Independent Travel Time (ITT), where applicable

8. If you need to cancel your participation

You may cancel your booking at any time by submitting written notice to [email protected] Refunds will be processed with reference to the date on which written notice of cancellation is received. 

  1. For any cancellations received 60 days or more before the scheduled start date of a Long Program OR 45 days or more before the scheduled start date of a Short Program, OG will keep the Universal Deposit in accordance with these Booking Terms & Conditions and refund the payee for any other payments they made towards the cancelled program.
  2. For any cancellations received 45-59 days before the scheduled start date of a Long Program OR 30-44 days before the scheduled start date of a Short Program, OG will keep the Universal Deposit and Membership Fee in accordance with these Booking Terms & Conditions and refund the payee for any other payments they made towards the cancelled program.
  3. For any cancellations received less than 45 days before the program’s scheduled start date of a Long Program or less than 30 days before the scheduled start date of a Short Program, OG will keep the Universal Deposit, Membership Fee, and Program Fee in accordance with these Booking Terms & Conditions and no further refund will apply.

For certain programs offered by OG, including some custom programs, alternative cancellation terms may apply. If this is the case, OG will advise you of any such requirements prior to confirmation of your booking.

Participants are strongly encouraged to acquire Trip Cancellation Insurance.

9. If we need to cancel or suspend a program

Long Programs lasting more than 35-days are confirmed at least 60 days before their scheduled start date, Short Programs lasting 15-days or less are confirmed at least 45 days before their scheduled start date.

If Operation Groundswell chooses to cancel a program due to enrollment, OG will refund the payee(s) for any payments they made related to the affected booking including the Universal Deposit. 

If OG is forced to suspend a program due to circumstances beyond its control or a Force Majeure, OG will provide the following options:

  1. You can transfer your booking to another program of the same length at no additional charge. If you would prefer to transfer your booking to a program of a different length, you will be responsible for paying the difference in price; or  
  2. You can obtain a refund for any eligible payments and receive a Program Credit valued at 100% of any non-refundable payments made towards the suspended program. 
  3. You can waive a refund and receive a Program Credit valued at 110% of all payments made towards the suspended program.

If Operation Groundswell suspends a program after its scheduled start date, OG will provide a pro-rata travel credit for any remaining days of the program. 

Program credits provided by Operation Groundswell:

  • Are valid for 2 years from the date of issue
  • Cannot be redeemed for cash
  • Are fully transferable
  • Exclude flights or insurance (they will have their own booking conditions)

If Operation Groundswell cancels or suspends your program, there will be no claim for damages by either party against the other and OG is not responsible for any incidental expenses that you may have incurred as a result of your booking or in preparation for your program including but not limited to visas, vaccinations, travel insurance or non-refundable flights.

10. Passports and Entry Visas 

A valid passport is required for travel with Operation Groundswell. Participant passports must remain valid for at least six months past their date of departure.

For some destinations, an entry visa is also required and may need to be obtained prior to departure. By making a booking and/or joining an OG program as a participant, you accept full responsibility for acquiring all necessary documents, visas and permits before the start of the program, and you are solely responsible for any costs incurred as a result of missing or defective documentation. You agree that you are responsible for the full amount of any loss or expense incurred by us that is a direct result of your failure to secure or be in possession of necessary documentation. 

If you have any questions relating to travel documentation, please contact OGHQ by phone at 1-888-422-0164 or by email at [email protected]

11. Travel insurance

All participants are required to have travel medical insurance coverage for the duration of their program. Travel insurance must cover personal accident, death, medical expenses and emergency repatriation. We require a minimum of $50,000 for each category.

Participants must provide their travel insurance policy number and the insurance company’s 24-hour emergency contact number with their Medical History Form and Release & Waiver and will not be allowed to join the program before submitting these details.

Participants are not required to carry trip cancellation insurance but OG strongly recommends they get coverage for cancellation, curtailment, personal liability and loss of luggage and personal effects. 

12. Changes to your Itinerary

Published itineraries on the program web pages and Program Packages are samples reflecting past experience and planned activities. If OG considers it to be in the best interest of its personnel, participants, partners, we reserve the right to make changes to the program including but not limited to changes to routes, schedules, accommodations, amenities, and modes of transport, without prior notice.

13. Your Program Leadership

OG Programs are accompanied by at least one Program Leader who is available on-site throughout the program, except during ITT, where applicable. The decision of the Program Leader is final on all matters likely to affect the health, safety or general well-being of any personnel, participant, or partner involved in the program.

14. Acceptance of Risk

Every participant will be required to complete a Certification of Health & Fitness, Release of Liability Waiver, and Code of Conduct before their program’s scheduled start date. Failure to disclose important medical information and/or comply with the stipulations within OG’s Certification of Health & Fitness, Release of Liability Waiver, and Participant Code of Conduct may result in the dismissal of the offending participant.

Forms are available online for viewing.

15. Optional activities

OG is not liable for any optional activity undertaken by participants that is not included in the official program itinerary or price of the program including but not limited to activities undertaken on ITT. You accept that any assistance, recommendations or advice given by OGHQ and/or Program Leaders in helping participants arrange an optional activity (including before or after a program as well as during ITT) does not infer responsibility or render OG liable for them in any way.  

16. Severability

If any provision in these Booking Terms & Conditions shall be or be held to be illegal, invalid or unenforceable, such provision shall be deemed to be severed from these Terms & Conditions and of no force or effect; provided that the validity, legality and enforceability of the remaining provisions shall not in any way be affected or impaired thereby.

17. Applicable law

All bookings with Operation Groundswell and these Terms and Conditions are subject to the laws of Ontario, Canada. By making a booking with OG or joining a program as a participant, you submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada for the resolution of any dispute concerning your booking or program.