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Frequently Asked Questions

Below is a list of frequently asked questions which will hopefully answer any queries you may have. If you don’t see what you’re looking for below, feel free to contact us and we’d be more than happy to help you.

About You

Our trips cater to people from all walks of life who want to embark on an adventure travel experience. The main requirements are flexibility, open-mindedness, the ability to adapt, trust in your local guide and tour leader, and the willingness to engage with local communities.

Take a look at some of the trips we operate such as our adventure travel trips or charity challenges. If none of these take your fancy, we can always arrange a bespoke or private group challenge for you to cater for your needs. In addition, we also offer adventures for corporate and school groups so more people can experience one of our ‘once in a lifetime’ trips!

Our challenges have the power to transform lives. Participants often come back from our trips and make significant changes, such as pursuing their dream careers, forming new relationships, ending old ones, getting married, selling their homes, embarking on travels, and experiencing other life-altering events. Moreover, our trips have a way of revealing hidden perspectives. They expose individuals to the harsh realities of poverty in certain parts of the world, inspire them to learn new languages and encourage them to delve deeper into the cultures of the countries they visit. Some people simply relish the opportunity to break free from the ordinary and engage in something refreshingly different during their holidays. Rest assured, our trips are fully supported, allowing you to immerse yourself in the experience without any logistical worries. Our local guides, who are well-compensated and treated fairly, offer expert knowledge about the regions you explore and insights into local customs and traditions.

Please read our responsible tourism policy for more information.

To take part in our challenges or adventure holidays, the minimum age requirement is 18 years or above. If you are below 18, you may still have the chance to join, provided that you are accompanied by a parent, guardian, or responsible adult. However, each child’s parent or guardian needs to assess the suitability of the challenge and grant written permission for their child’s participation. We encourage you to have a conversation with us about your specific needs and preferences.

The level of challenge varies depending on the specific activity. Our tours offer a range of challenges with different difficulty levels. For instance, climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is an extreme challenge due to its high altitude, long trekking hours, and the need for good physical fitness. On the other hand, our Sahara challenge requires trekking up to 25km in one day, without altitude concerns but with the added difficulty of extreme heat. It’s hard to categorize each challenge as people have different reactions to various aspects. For example, someone may enjoy trekking at high altitudes but struggle with the heat, making the Sahara challenge more difficult for them.

When it comes to assisting with a project, everyone has something to contribute! You don’t need to be a builder, carpenter, medic, or teacher to help out. Even such basic things as visiting an orphanage and spending time with the children will have a massive psychological benefit to those you visit. Every person will be a valuable asset to the project and every person has their part to play.

To fully enjoy our tours, it’s important to have a reasonable level of overall fitness. While it’s difficult to provide precise guidelines as people have different definitions of fitness, our trips have been graded to help you gauge the level of challenge involved. Typically, we expect participants to comfortably walk for up to 8 hours per day at a moderate pace (around 5 km per hour) on flat or easy terrain while being able to hold a conversation without feeling out of breath. As most of our challenges include undulating terrain, maintaining a good level of fitness will ensure you can keep up with the guides and the group, making the experience enjoyable rather than exhausting.

No need to worry if you’re carrying extra weight when signing up for a challenge. Our training program is designed to help you get prepared. By fully committing to the training program, which includes increasing physical activity, going for walks, utilizing a gym if available, and opting for walking instead of driving, you’ll notice a reduction in weight as your fitness improves. Challenges often serve as a fantastic catalyst for a healthier lifestyle, leading to overall better health, such as lower blood pressure and cholesterol, decreased risk of heart disease and type two diabetes, as well as reduced anxiety and stress.

If you have a BMI of 30 or above, please let us know in your medical form, and ask your doctor to confirm that your weight will not hinder your participation in the tour or put your safety or the safety of your group at risk. For example, if you have a slower pace, you may arrive at camp very late or if there are any rocky sections, you may be unsteady on your feet or less agile. You can calculate your BMI on the NHS website. Having a BMI of 30 or above does not mean you cannot join the tour, but we kindly request that you assure us of your commitment to a regime to ensure your safety and well-being during the challenge.

The ability to participate in our challenges depends on the specific challenge and the nature of one’s disability or medical condition. While some challenges may not be suitable for individuals with more restrictive disabilities, such as those requiring strenuous physical activity, we recognize that people with disabilities often possess unique talents and capabilities. Therefore, we evaluate each application on an individual basis.

As part of the registration process, all participants are required to complete a medical declaration form. If you indicate any medical conditions on the form, we kindly request that it be signed by your specialist and/or regular physician. This signature serves as confirmation that your doctor has reviewed the tour itinerary and believes that your medical condition will not pose a risk to your health and safety or that of the group while participating in the tour.

At Different Travel, we believe in inclusivity and stand against any form of discrimination or prejudice. We warmly welcome individuals of all sexual orientations and gender identities to join our trips. We prioritize a supportive and respectful environment for everyone on our tours. It is important to note that any form of intolerance towards fellow group members will not be tolerated.

We expect all travellers to be treated with equal respect and courtesy. Participants who may hold different opinions are kindly requested to respect our company’s stance and refrain from words or actions that could offend. Our tour leaders will reiterate this expectation, under our terms and conditions.

However, we kindly ask for your understanding regarding the cultural, legal, and societal differences that exist in certain countries. It is crucial to be aware that in some destinations, homosexuality may still be considered a crime, and public displays of affection can have serious consequences. As with all our tours, we expect all team members to show respect for the local culture, laws, and norms, regardless of personal beliefs.

Thank you for your cooperation and for being a part of the Different Travel community.

Please be aware that different countries have varying cultures, laws, and attitudes, which may not always be as accepting or inclusive. It’s important to note that in some places, homosexuality is still considered a crime, and public displays of affection can have serious consequences. Regardless of personal beliefs, it is crucial for all team members to respectfully adhere to the culture, laws, and norms of the destination during our tours. If you have any specific questions regarding particular destinations, please don’t hesitate to ask us. If you are traveling alone, please note that you will be assigned a roommate who shares the same gender as indicated on your passport. If your gender identity does not align with the sex assigned on your passport, please inform us at the time of booking so that we can discuss suitable arrangements with you.

Absolutely! Many of our travellers come solo, and we wholeheartedly welcome single travellers. We match individuals with someone of the same gender and similar age to avoid any additional charges for single occupancy. If you prefer to have your own room, we may be able to arrange it for a small extra fee.

Please don’t hesitate to join us as an individual. You’ll be part of a group of like-minded people who have chosen to embark on an exciting challenge or holiday. Throughout your journey, a UK Tour Manager will be by your side, ensuring a smooth experience. We provide various opportunities, such as team meals, for you to connect with your fellow adventurers. Many of our previous participants have formed lifelong friendships! While you may start as an individual, you’ll leave as a valued member of our team!

Yes, travel insurance is compulsory for our challenges because of the nature of the tour. We need to have your insurance details at least 12 weeks before your departure, but we strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance when booking to protect your non-refundable registration fee. It’s advisable to consult a specialist travel insurance provider who can offer various insurance options that suit the type of challenge we provide.

Different Travel is an Unregulated Introducer of Campbell Irvine Ltd who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. You can click here to purchase your policy. Campbell Irvine is an independent expert in customized insurance and risk solutions, catering to both corporate clients and individuals. With over 35 years of experience, they are a renowned firm of Registered Insurance Brokers that prides themselves on delivering quality, professionalism, and, above all, personalized service.

Please note: most travel insurance policies protect you before departure too so it is advised to buy insurance as close to booking as possible as it may protect you against the loss of your non-refundable, non-transferable registration fee if you cancel due to injury, illness etc.

Please notify your insurance provider about the activities you will be participating in, as your current policy might not provide coverage for these activities. Not informing your insurance broker may invalidate any future claims you make. The Different Travel Company cannot be held responsible for any loss resulting from your failure to ensure that your insurance policy adequately covers all aspects of your tour.

Yes, you can support your favourite charity during our adventure travel holidays. These challenges are not specifically organized for a particular charity, so participants have the freedom to choose which charity they would like to support. If you’re unsure which charity to choose, you can check out our list of charity partners to find one that appeals to you.

Additionally, we also offer charity challenges in collaboration with specific UK charities, where the goal is to raise funds for their organization. If you’d like to join one of these trips, you’re more than welcome to do so, but please note that you may be required to meet a minimum sponsorship level for that particular charity.

Absolutely! Our tours offer a unique and thrilling alternative to traditional holidays. The only exception is if you’re interested in participating in a tailor-made charity challenge. In that case, you can cover the tour expenses with the minimum sponsorship target, but you’ll need to independently raise or contribute the remaining amount as a donation to the charity.

For instance, if the minimum sponsorship is £3000 and the tour costs amount to £1500, you’re welcome to cover the £1500 for the tour expenses and additionally raise or contribute the remaining £1500 as a donation to the charity.

About Us

There are plenty of companies which offer adventure travel trips and charity events, and you may have even worked or travelled with them in previous years. But we believe there are many reasons why you should choose to book with us:

  • We are a small, dedicated and flexible company which offer a personal service and excellent support to our participants and charity partners.
  • As an ATOL-bonded tour operator, you know you can trust our organisation and you are ATOL-protected abroad.
  • All our staff are experienced travellers and have a passion for overseas adventures.
  • Many of our trips include community projects which help communities at home and abroad, which not only makes them different but gives our challenges more appeal to potential supporters (if you are fundraising).
  • We offer advice on how to make your trip carbon neutral, which makes them ethical and sustainable.
  • Where possible, we work with smaller local agents in our destinations to support local businesses and often use the same expert local guides year on year who have lots of experience with our groups.
  • For charities and other challenges which require marketing, we offer a range of marketing support services and we aim to help you to make our challenges a success for you, for us, and for the local community.
  • Charities, schools and bespoke groups will also have a dedicated account manager so you know who to turn to for advice and help with your challenge.

No. The Different Travel Company is a direct action charity challenge tour operator. However, we do work with charities and other organisations on fundraising challenges.

Many of the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected.

Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate, please go to:

Our trips are led by a Different Travel tour manager who is selected for their wide travel experience in remote places, being great with people and able to communicate in a friendly and approachable way as well as being able to deal with any situation that arises during the tour. They are all a minimum of Outdoor First Aid trained and are always willing to offer a friendly ear if you have any concerns or problems, as well as an encouraging word when things get tough.

Our tour managers come from a variety of backgrounds from sales and marketing to finance, travel and tourism to nursing and everything in between but they are all fluent English speakers and passionate about travel and adventure. Many of them have full-time jobs and manage our tours on an ad-hoc basis so they are fresh and full of enthusiasm for each trip they lead.

Unlike many companies, we don’t send our tour managers to the same destination for long periods of time so they will be as excited about the trip and the new experiences as you are. The role of our tour manager is to support the group throughout the trip, while being a liaison between the participants and the local staff to make sure everything runs smoothly and any issues are handled quickly and efficiently.

We’re pleased that you love our photos, videos and content but to respect the copyright of our photographers, videographers and publishers any images, video, written copy or anything which falls under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (known hereforward as “Media”) that is sent to you by email, found on our website or printed documentation is not to be reproduced anywhere without express permission by The Different Travel Company.

If permission is granted, the Media should only be used in direct reference to and acknowledgement to The Different Travel Company. If you would like to use any Media that appears on our website, emails, documentation or printed documents please email us on with your request, the description (and weblink if relevant) of the exact Media you wish to use, and your intended use for this Media. Permission to use The Different Travel Company Media will not be withheld unreasonably.

About our challenges

Throughout the challenge, you might find yourself camping in tents, staying in huts, sharing dormitories with both genders or residing in basic guesthouses.

The toilets available could vary between long drop, flushing, or squat, and there may be times when you have to embrace nature’s bathroom. The washing and bathing facilities might be basic or even unavailable.

Before and after the challenge, we typically arrange accommodations in locally owned hotels, which are mostly rated 2-3 stars. While the standards can differ, a 3-star rating ensures you’ll have comfortable and clean rooms with amenities such as air-conditioning or a fan, as well as a private bathroom. These hotels often provide many facilities that you’d expect in the Western world, including flush toilets and possibly internet access. In cases where the accommodation deviates from this standard, we make sure to mention it in the tour information.

We kindly ask you to carefully review the tour information for each specific trip to be well-informed about the expected accommodation standards.

Working together as a group can truly make a remarkable impact! It’s incredible how our ongoing projects receive contributions from various groups, including yours, even if it’s for a short duration.

We prioritize bringing different groups to projects where their help is still needed. This ensures that both the local community and individuals have the chance to truly make a difference.

Certainly! Depending on availability and the size of your group, we can arrange post-challenge travel for most of our tours. In some cases, there may be pre-arranged tours available for separate purchase, but you are also free to travel independently if you prefer.

Feel free to get in touch with us for further information.

For our trips abroad, we provide an international flight option from the UK, allowing you to travel together with the group right from the beginning. However, if you prefer, you have the flexibility to book your own flight and join the group at the destination. In this case, please get in touch with us to inquire about the cost of the land-only package.

Before booking your flight, please ensure that the trip you’ve chosen has met the minimum required number of participants, as we cannot be held responsible for any financial losses if the tour is unable to proceed. Additionally, if you opt to book your own flight, it will be your responsibility to arrange your transportation to the designated meeting point at the start of the trip.

At the time of booking you will be provided with a trip dossier which includes a suggested kit list plus lots of information about the tour and what to expect. Please read this carefully because this is packed full of useful information to prepare you for your trip.

Please note that the kit (packing) list is just a guideline and you are expected to use your own judgement to decide exactly which items to bring. Our expert staff are on hand to answer any questions you may have about what to take so please ask them for advice. You are also advised to spend some time in your local outdoors store with your kit list and itinerary to look at the products available and speak to the specialist staff for advice to complement the list.

Please remember to shop around and look online for special deals.

Rest assured we will support you every step of the way.

Before the trip: For individuals we’ll provide a comprehensive trip dossier and kit list packed full of useful information and tips on how to get started with your training. Further trip information documents will be sent to you prior to departure and your flight e-tickets will be sent approx. 2 weeks before the date of departure.

In addition, for our charity and bespoke group trips, we can provide information evenings where we give an informative presentation about the experience and we also provide a pre-departure meeting which goes into detail about the trip, what to expect, what to pack and a general feel for the experience with your confirmed group. As we are a small flexible company, if there is anything you would like us to provide which we haven’t offered, we are open to suggestions and always willing to do our best to accommodate your requests.

We also offer a very flexible support package to meet your needs and the needs of your organisation. At the very least we will provide you with print-ready information materials such as flyers, trip dossiers and marketing copy for newsletters if required. We also provide tips on how to effectively market the challenge and advice on how to convert enquiries to bookings if you need to recruit participants.

If you are fundraising, we can also help with fundraising ideas and payment options for your participants, such as part self-funding, part sponsorship. This can all be discussed with your account manager to ensure the best solution for you and your team.

During the trip: You will be in the company of an expert local guide and UK Different Travel Tour Manager who will ensure the trip operates as smoothly as possible. They in turn will have 24 hour assistance to hand from our local agents and will be liaising with the UK office for any concerns that may arise. All our guides and tour managers are minimum outdoor first aid trained.

Visas: Check out our individual trip pages or we will let you know before you book if visas are required for your trip. Whilst we are unable to assist you with applying for visas, we will certainly furnish you with information and guidance on how to apply. Please note that the information we provide is correct at the time we provide it and we cannot be held liable for any changes to visa requirements.

Medical Advice: It is essential that you contact your GP, health adviser or travel health clinic for medical advice whenever travelling, regardless of where and when you go. You may also need to see your practice nurse for a list of vaccinations and recommended medication to counteract malaria and other possible tropical diseases. Failure to ensure you are properly vaccinated and take appropriate medication that is recommended for travel to certain countries may result in your insurance policy being void if you become ill with a preventable disease. For some destinations there are compulsory vaccinations, such as yellow fever for parts of Africa and South America. We will advise you in these instances and valid certificates must be carried to show at immigration. If for any medical reason your doctor advises against having these compulsory inoculations, he/she will be able to provide a medical certificate stating the reasons and most countries will accept this instead. Remember, when you book a place on one of our tours you receive a 10% discount voucher for Nomad Travel clinics who are specialist travel health providers.

The main priority at all times is the safety of the group and individuals. The Different Travel Company will not allow this priority to be compromised. As such we carry out risk assessments for all our trips and have a stringent health and safety policy to ensure the utmost safety of all our groups.

We also have the following policy in respect of work on our projects as well as participation on our challenges:

  • No one may conduct work in an environment, or with materials, where they might be at risk of injury, without having been subjected to a full briefing of any potential hazards, dangers and risks.
  • No one is allowed to work in a hazardous environment without the proper supervision of a contractor or supervisor, suitably qualified and able to instruct on matters pertaining to safety.
  • The decision of a tour leader, contractor or qualified person appointed by The Different Travel Company is final and non-negotiable.
  • Anyone working outdoors should take adequate care to ensure that they are protected from the effects of exposure to the sun and elements. This means that if it is hot the participant is responsible for wearing a high-factor sun screen and UVA resistant sunglasses (if relevant) and ensure keeping well hydrated. All participants must ensure appropriate clothing and footwear is worn.
  • People must remember to drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol whilst working on any projects, especially if working with machinery and/or tools which can cause hazards to others.
  • People are expected to be mindful of others around them and be careful regarding causing a hazard for others on the site by acting in a safety conscious manner at all times.
  • Those with existing medical conditions should declare this to the group leader before commencing work on any project.
  • While participating in the physical challenge part of the trip, participants are to listen to the local guides and tour escort and understand that decisions they make are final and non-negotiable for your safety.
  • In the event of circumstances beyond our control (such as meteorological, political and legal) it may be necessary to change the itinerary and this will be done so with your safety in mind.
  • If it becomes clear that you are not fit enough or physically able to participate in the physically challenge part of the trip without causing a hazard to yourself or the group you may be asked to separate from the group and be escorted by a local guide to a hotel at a designated meeting place where you will wait for the physical challenge to end and reunite with the group. This will be at your own cost and to be claimed on your travel insurance.
  • Anyone who chooses not to adhere to the health and safety policy in its entirety does so at their own risk, and Different Travel cannot be held responsible for any injury arising from non-adherence to the health and safety policy.
  • We only work with local agents who also comply to our health and safety requirements.

Please click here for our Terms and Conditions.