What do students like most about this program?

Students fall in love with the colourful and kind Nepali culture, and tell us that spending time within the magical Himalayas is an unforgettable experience that they will remember for life! It's great for people that love nature too!

What will the accommodation be like?

Accommodation on this program will be quite varied, ranging from hotels in Kathmandu and Pokhara, staying in tents at a beautiful river camp during the rafting portion of the program, tea houses while trekking (tea houses are rustic hotels with simple beds and shared bathrooms), and homestays living with local village families during the service portion of the trip.

Is it safe to trek?

The risks when trekking are the same as those present during any strenuous physical activity – mainly dehydration. These risks are mitigated by paying close attention to how you’re feeling and being sure to eat and drink regularly. Additionally, the trekking on this program does reach quite high elevations where some people have been known to experience minor elevation sickness. The signs of this are quite clear and your program leaders will be well-versed in what to do should a student show signs of being affected by the elevation. The solution is simple – backtrack to lower elevation. The elevation reached on this program is not extremely high and cases of elevation sickness are quite rare, and we ensure we hike at the right speed to reduce the risk of sickness. 

How often can I do laundry?

Laundry can be washed by hand at any time. It is best to pack without the expectation of doing laundry - so enough socks and undies to last the distance!

How much money should I bring?

It depends on how much shopping you would like to do! We recommend $100-$200 depending on the number of souvenirs and snacks you would like on top of what is already provided.

Can I bring a mobile phone?

Yes. Schoolies travellers are allowed to bring phones on their Schoolies Reimagined program, but we do recommend trying to switch off for a few weeks and be present in Nepal as much as possible!

What sort of electrical voltage adapters do I need to bring?

Australia’s power voltage is close enough to Nepal’s that you don’t need a converter, but you will need an adapter. Nepal uses 3 different types of sockets – type C, D and M. It is probably best to bring an adapter that has multiple attachments for different socket types.

What is the weather like?

December is the beginning of winter in Nepal, so you should expect it to be quite cold. In Kathmandu, the average highs are around 15 degrees Celcius and lows around 8, although it can go below zero. Pokhara is warmer with highs in the low 20s. You should be prepared for cold weather on the trek (we will provide a packing list!) Rain is not common in December, but is possible.

What should I wear?

Once you book your trip, we'll provide a packing list to ensure you take the right gear with you. Generally however, on trips like this where the temperature can vary widely, layers are your friend! A warm, winter puffy jacket that can pack down quite small is a great idea, as well as a rain jacket, a fleece sweater, quick-drying hiking pants and shirts, and some thermal underwear. 

How often will I have access to the internet?

Internet access will not be frequent on this program, but SIM cards with 3G can be purchased quite cheaply from the airport. Phone service can be spotty in the mountains. Safe arrival emails will be sent out to parents and guardians when you settle in country, and we will provide the opportunity to at least once to visit an Internet Cafe if desired. 

Who will my trip leaders be? And how many of them are there?

Your trip leader is there to help you have a fun, safe and awesome trip! Each trip is staffed by a combination of Australian and Nepali leaders, and in most cases each team will include a nationally licensed guide, and leaders of both sexes. We never have less than one staff member for every five students.

Who will the other Schoolies Reimagined students be?

You will be with other Australian students between the ages of 17 – 19. You may find yourself in a smaller, cosier setting or part of a big high-energy crew depending on the trip you choose. Whatever the case, you will make new friends for life.

What kind of food will I eat? What if I have certain dietary restrictions?

We will eat a wide variety of Nepali and ethnic food, as well as the occasional Western meal. Nepali food has some incredible flavours, and this trip will awaken your tastes you didn’t even know existed! Delicious dhal curries, succulent momo dumplings, warm and spicy chai teas – you’re in for a treat! Almost all dietary concerns can be accommodated, but please alert us of any relevant restrictions beforehand just to make sure. Vegetarians welcome!

What water is available for drinking?

All the water you drink on this trip will be either bottled, boiled, or treated. Bringing a reusable water bottle is mandatory. Bottled water is safe and readily available in the cities and towns of Nepal, and when trekking, water that is either boiled or treated with purification tablets is absolutely safe. The Himalayan mountain water is clear and delicious!

Where is the nearest healthcare?

There are great hospitals with an international standard of care in both Pokhara and Kathmandu. The urgency of the need for medical care would determine means of evacuation to hospital – we can arrange both on-ground transport to these hospitals, or air evacuation in case of emergency.

Is your staff qualified in First Aid?

Safety is a top priority, and all of our programs have staff certified with First Aid and CPR training. Many of our guides are also qualified Wilderness First Responders, EMTs, Wilderness EMTs, or lifeguards.

Do we need to get visas for this program?

You do need a visa to enter Nepal, but Australian citizens can purchase it on arrival into the airport in Kathmandu. A single-entry visa can be for 15, 30 or 90 days. At Tribhuvan International Airport, the fee is payable in major currencies. Please be sure to have enough cash with you to purchase the appropriate visa.

You must have a valid visa in your passport to leave Nepal. If your visa has expired, you’ll need to extend it at the Department of Immigration before you depart. If you overstay your visa, you can be detained or refused permission to leave until a fine is paid. The amount of the fine is based on the number of days you overstayed your visa.

Will my leader fly with me?

Our program staff will greet you when you arrive in Nepal. However, we will provide a suggested flight schedule so students can choose to fly together - and get to know each other on the flight over! 

How long is the flight to this country?

The travel time depends upon where in Australia you are flying from and the length of the layover between your flights. No airlines fly directly from Australia to Nepal so you will need to connect through another country with a major airport that flies to Nepal. It is common to connect through Bangkok – using this as an example, the flight from Melbourne to Bangkok is 9 hours 38 minutes, and the flight from Bangkok to Kathmandu is 3 hours 15 minutes.

Does the advertised trip length include international travel time?

No, the 14 day trip length only takes into account time in-country.

Which areas does this program operate in?

This program operates in Kathmandu, along the Trishuli River, in Pokhara, in the Annapurna Conservation Area and Kavrepalanchowk district.

What immunisations do we need to get for this trip?

Please consult with a travel doctor or your family physician for immunization and other medical recommendations, based on the area(s) where you will be travelling and on your own medical history. In addition to consulting with a medical professional, please visit the following websites for country specific information around immunizations and traveller’s health. Please let us know if you have specific questions.

www.traveldoctor.com.au – The Travel Doctor
www.smartraveller.gov.au – Australian Government Travel Advice
www.cdc.gov – Centre of Disease Control (US)

What costs are not included on this trip?

Flights, passport fees, immunisations, travel insurance, personal gifts and snacks are not included. All other costs (accommodation, meals, in-country transportation, and activities) are included in the program price. See above 'inclusions and exclusions.'

What community service projects will I work on and how are the projects chosen?

Schoolies Reimagined works with local community leaders and organisations to identify and prioritise the needs of each community. This program will focus on various education and infrastructure initiatives such a building a new classroom at a school, helping deliver clean water to the village and more!

Exclusions?
  • Passport and visa for entry into Nepal
  • Meals when traveling to/from Nepal
  • Flights
  • Immunizations (if required)
  • Travel insurance (can be provided through QBE at additional cost)
  • Personal expenses such as snacks, souvenirs, internet, phone calls