Frequently Asked Questions
If you have questions about alumni travel, we have the answers.
Choose a topic:
- How do I make a reservation?
- How do I know I’m confirmed on a trip?
- Who makes all of the travel arrangements for the Alumni Travel program?
- What is the Alumni Association’s role in operating the Purdue Alumni Travel program?
- Is my money refundable if I have to cancel my trip?
- Should I purchase travel insurance?
- Do I have to be an Alumni Association member to take a trip?
- How early should I make a reservation?
- Why do I have to pay more if I am traveling alone?
- Can I take my children on a Purdue Alumni trip?
- Can I take a Purdue Alumni trip if I have a disability or special need?
- How many people generally travel on a Purdue Alumni trip?
- Are trips cancelled when participation is low?
- Do I need a passport?
- Is the flight service by private charter?
- Why do I receive travel brochures even though I didn’t request them?
- Does the Alumni Association provide a bus or other transportation to the gateway city?
- Can I remove the air component from the travel package so that I can use my frequent flyer miles to get to the destination city?
- Am I required to depart from the designated departure city?
- How can I contact the Purdue Alumni Travel Program?
How do I make a reservation?
Reserve your spot by calling the Purdue Alumni travel office or the tour company and booking your reservation using a credit card. If you wish to send a personal check, we can hold your reservation until payment is received.
How do I know I’m confirmed on a trip?
A confirmation letter from the Purdue Alumni Association will be mailed the day your reservation is received. A confirmation packet from the tour operator will arrive within two weeks of the date you made your reservation.
Who makes all of the travel arrangements for the Purdue Alumni Travel program?
Our programs are designed and managed by the finest travel operators, most of whom specialize in providing trips for alumni associations. We select these travel operators based on our criteria of established reputations, dependable operations, and professional staff. All itinerary and flight details are handled by the travel operators. The Purdue Alumni Association selects trips based on feedback we receive from our travelers as well as current trends in the industry.
What is the Alumni Association’s role in operating the travel program?
The Alumni Association adds the Purdue connection by supplying our travelers with travel insurance options, traveler biographical information, and international connections with alumni and students abroad when circumstances allow. Many trips include Purdue faculty or staff to accompany the group and serve as hosts for a private Purdue Alumni reception. In addition, all travelers receive a special Purdue Alumni gift as a memento of their trip. The Alumni Association staff is also available to assist travelers in making arrangements for deviations from the standard trip and reconfirming travel arrangements. Our staff will interact with the travel companies on behalf of our travelers to obtain answers to questions or resolve problems. If you need any assistance please don’t hesitate to call the Purdue Alumni travel office at (800) 414-1541.
Is my money refundable if I have to cancel my trip?
Most travel companies charge a nominal cancellation fee from the time of deposit to cover expenses incurred in processing a new reservation and mailing out preliminary trip information. As the departure date gets closer, the travel company has made more financial commitments to their suppliers (airlines, hotel, ground transportation) and accordingly, cancellation fees become more substantial. Cancellation penalties are structured to coincide with advance payments that our travel vendors must make to their suppliers and the penalties are strictly enforced due to these contractual commitments. Because our many travel providers have different policies regarding cancellations, we suggest that you discuss cancellation fees with them prior to making your trip deposit. We also strongly encourage purchasing trip cancellation insurance to minimize financial risks.
Should I purchase travel insurance?
We strongly recommend that you be adequately insured against last minute trip cancellation and other travel related risks. For example, if you must cancel your trip due to a family emergency and can only recover 50% of your money based on the travel company’s cancellation policy, the insurance company will cover the remainder of the loss up to the level of coverage that you selected, provided you meet the criteria spelled out in the policy selected.
We have arrangements through Travel Insurance Services (TIS) to offer travel insurance in connection with the Purdue Alumni travel program. Once you register for a trip, you will receive travel insurance information from the Purdue Alumni Association. Please contact TIS at (800) 937-1387 or visit their website if you have questions regarding travel insurance coverage or costs.
You are free to make travel insurance arrangements with another insurance company of your choice.
Do I have to be an Alumni Association member to take a trip?
Yes, we do request that one of every two members of each travel party be a Purdue Alumni Association member. The Purdue Alumni travel program welcomes all alumni and friends of Purdue, regardless of whether they are members of the Association, to travel with a member. Members receive special travel mailings. There are four membership options to join the Purdue Alumni Association starting at only $25 per year. Join today.
How early should I make a reservation?
We suggest making reservations as early as possible once the trip information becomes available. Some trips sell out very quickly, while others do not fill to capacity. It is impossible to predict how quickly a trip will sell out, so the longer you wait the greater the chances are that the trip will be filled by the time you send in your registration. You may call the Purdue Alumni Association travel office at any time at (800) 414-1541 to inquire about the status of a trip.
Why do I have to pay more if I am traveling alone?
Trip prices are always based on two people sharing the cost of the hotel room or ship cabin. If you are traveling alone, there is no one else to share in the lodging expense. Therefore, a single traveler must cover this entire cost, instead of half. Please note that the single supplement for a cruise is generally much higher than a “land” trip since a substantial portion of the total trip cost is the ship cabin. There are no other extra fees charged to a single traveler other than the additional lodging cost. Most of our travel companies will try to honor requests for roommates, but there is no guarantee that a roommate will be available.
Can I take my children on a Purdue Alumni trip?
Occasionally, we do offer trips that are designed especially for families. However, most of the Purdue Alumni trips are best suited for adults, especially trips on small expedition vessels or those with long side-trips that include lectures. Small children may be bored on many of our trips as well, since there would most likely be no activities or playtime facilities available for them. If you are interested in taking your children on one of our trips, please contact the Purdue Alumni Association travel office or the travel company to find out if a particular trip is appropriate for children.
Can I take a Purdue Alumni trip if I have a disability or special need?
While the Purdue Alumni Association encourages people with disabilities to participate in its activities and programs, some of our expeditions cannot accommodate people with severe health problems or physical limitations. The Purdue Alumni Association and their travel vendors cannot take responsibility for special arrangements or problems incurred by passengers unable to participate in the planned activities. Travelers requiring extraordinary assistance must be accompanied by someone who can and will provide all required assistance. Many countries do not offer the same level of access for persons with disabilities as the U.S. For this reason, we recommend that you call the travel vendor or the Purdue Alumni Association prior to registering for a trip to inquire about the physical access provided and to obtain information regarding the trip best suited to any physical limitations that you may have.
How many people generally travel on a Purdue Alumni trip?
The number of Purdue travelers on a trip can range from six to 45 but is typically somewhere in between. Most of our travel programs include groups from other colleges and universities in addition to our Boilermakers. The Purdue Alumni Association generally provides a host when we have more than 15 Purdue travelers on a trip, and a private Purdue reception or gift when several university groups are traveling together.
Are trips cancelled when participation is low?
Even when participation is very low, our trips generally do not cancel. However, in rare cases, our travel vendor is unable to meet minimum requirements to operate the trip and may be forced to combine departures or as a last resort, cancel the trip. In the event that a trip is canceled by the travel company, all funds paid to the travel company will be refunded.
Do I need a passport?
It depends on the trip — all international travel requires a passport. Your passport should be valid for six months beyond your planned return date. Should you need to apply for a passport, please contact your local post office for an application. If you passport has expired and it was issued less than 12 years ago, you will just need a renewal form.
Is the flight service by private charter?
Generally, no. Most flights are on regular scheduled service with reputable international carriers. Occasionally, the travel company will charter a plane for a particular trip. Sometimes the cruise ships are chartered by the travel company as well.
Why do I receive travel brochures even though I didn’t request them?
Purdue Alumni travel brochures are generally mailed to individuals who have made recent inquiries regarding our travel program, or who have taken a trip with us in the past. Travel brochures are also sent to alumni within specific graduation years based on selection criteria provided by our vendors. If you prefer not to receive our brochures or if you would like to be added to our mailing list, please contact us at [email protected] or (800) 414-1541.
Does the Alumni Association provide a bus or other transportation to the gateway city?
No. Because our travelers come from all over the United States it is difficult for us to provide transportation to the group departure city. Our travel companies will be happy to assistant you in making flight arrangements to the gateway city, or you are free to make your own arrangements.
Can I remove the air component from the travel package so that I can use my frequent flyer miles to get to the destination city?
Yes. Our travel companies will give you a discount if you prefer to make your own air arrangements to the destination city. If you are not flying with the group, you will be responsible for arranging your own ground transportation from the airport to the hotel when you arrive in the destination city. Many of our travel companies now offer trips both with and without airfare. This gives travelers greater flexibility when making air arrangements. Please refer to the individual trip brochures regarding what items are included in each type of travel package.
Am I required to depart from the designated departure city?
Most of our travel companies base their tour price on a group departure from a designated city or cities. The travel company obtains better airfares because of the group departure, and is better able to facilitate transfers upon arrival in the destination city. You may depart the U.S. from another city of your choice if you prefer. However, you may incur additional airfare, deviation fees, and you will be responsible for arranging your own ground transportation from the airport to the hotel when you arrive. If the Purdue gateway city is not a convenient airport for you, be sure to ask if there are any other gateway cities available for your particular trip.
How can I contact the Purdue Alumni Association travel program?
Our direct phone number is (765) 494-5175. We can also be reached at (800) 414-1541. You can reach us by e-mail at [email protected] and by fax at (765) 494-9179.