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Updated October 15 2020
We’re thrilled to report that most of our departing high school students for fall 2020 have arrived in their new countries, with up to a year of excitement ahead of them! Our high school departures are going ahead as scheduled, and for those of you still waiting for departure we are working hard to make your wait as short as possible.
If you haven’t already, it’s high time to apply for your high school exchange for 2021/2022. The earlier you apply, the better options you will have to tailor your program and get the experience you’re dreaming of.
We’re following advice from government advisories and remain in touch with all our partners to keep you up to date and well informed. Please know that at STS, we always will act with our students’ and their families’ best interests at heart.
Students who would still prefer not to proceed with their exchange as planned have several options:
• Change destinations (subject to availability)
• Postpone your exchange until the next intake season
• Cancel the programme entirely (full cancellation terms apply)
If you would like to make a change to your programme, please contact us as soon as possible.
The situation continues to change as the world aims to curb the spread of COVID-19. We’re following advice from government advisories and remain in touch with all our partners to keep you up to date and well informed.
We will be sure to notify you if your programme needs to be modified or suspended because of developing governmental travel restrictions. We will always act with our students’ and their families’ best interests at heart.
At STS, we remain positive about the future, and we hope you do too! Throughout our 62 years of experience in youth travel, we’ve continued to perfect our itineraries and we will do our outmost to make sure that as many students as possible will get a safe and wonderful experience.
On June 22, the United States government issued a proclamation regarding immigration regulations following the Coronavirus. Fortunately, foreign students entering the United States for high school exchanges are not included in the restrictions, so STS students planning on going to the US will not be affected by these new regulations.
As of October 20th Canada will reopen borders to International students. Though details still remain to be specified, we are happy to see a step in the direction of opening up again for our students to experience Canada.
Any regulations restricting non-essential travel to or within the EU do not apply to people travelling for studies. So, STS students going to the EU in for their exchange will not be affected by any travel restrictions.
For now, Australia and New Zealand remains closed to international students. We are hopeful that the borders will reopen for the term start after the new year. If worst comes to worst and the restrictions remain in place we will of course help you to either defer to a later start or identify another destination where you may want to do your exchange program instead.
Since it’s still not a good idea to gather in large groups, we have decided not to hold our usual Welcome Camps to get your exchange started this year. This is for your own safety, as well as the safety of your host family and community. Instead, where possible, we will hold a year-end camp at the end of your exchange. It will be a similar gathering with other international students in your host country, where you’ll get the chance to explore the big city and see the sights and take part in workshops that will prepare you for the return home. Please keep in mind that the possibility to attend the camp depends on when you’re due to return home.
If there are travel restrictions in place at the time of your departure that prevent you from travelling, we will first try to reschedule your trip to another destination or a later date. If that’s not possible, we will refund the program fee always in accordance with the applicable laws in your country.