Travel Procedures & COVID-19 Protocols

Last Updated: June 16, 2021

We are so excited that you have chosen to spend your summer with AMIGOS! This page is dedicated to the most up-to-date travel procedures, including COVID-19 testing protocols for each project location. Information on this page is updated regularly. If you have any questions, please contact the On-Call Team at [email protected]. 

See our COVID-19 FAQ here. 

If you have any problems on your travel day, call the Travel Hotline at: (888) 264-4675 (888 AMIGOS-L). 

 

Procedures for Programs in Latin America 

What should I expect when traveling to my AMIGOS project in Latin America?  

These logistics can be found in the Travel Memo which you will receive along with your flight itinerary or by following the links by country on this page. They are also detailed below. 

Volunteers fly from their home airport to Houston or Miami, depending on the project, on their own. We strive to arrange group travel domestically so often they are on the same flight as other volunteers in the area, but this is not always the case.  

Once in Houston or Miami, volunteers connect with the rest of the group and proceed on the international leg of their trip. Upon arrival, volunteers should immediately walk to their international departure gate where they will find an AMIGOS staff person (wearing AMIGOS gear) and the rest of the group. The AMIGOS staff member will stay with the group at the airport until their international flight has taken off.  

Volunteers travel as a group on their international flights. Upon landing in their project destination, volunteers should proceed through customs and to baggage claim and look for the Project Staff Team. Their Project Staff Team will be at the airport ready to pick them up and travel to their briefing site. 

What should I expect when traveling home from my AMIGOS project in Latin America? 

Volunteers traveling home after their AMIGOS program will travel to their departing airport as a group, accompanied by Project Staff. The group will depart on their international flight to either Houston or Miami, and Project Staff will ensure they depart safely.  

Once volunteers land in Houston or Miami, they should deplane, proceed through customs, and head directly to the gate for their connecting flight. Layovers are often short, so volunteers should proceed rapidly to their next gate. Each volunteer will travel on their own connecting itinerary to their home airport, where a parent or guardian should plan to pick them up.  

AMIGOS staff members are not always present at the airport on return travel days, however, there is always a staff member on call within 30 minutes of the airports in Houston or Miami who is prepared to assist in the case of a layover or emergency. Call the Travel Hotline with any issues.  

*Note: For the Nicaragua: Nueva Segovia y Leon project as well as the Ecuador: La Sierra project, please see below for specific details pertaining to volunteer layovers. 

**Note: For the Western Colorado program, please see notes in the “Colorado” section below. 

If you have any problems on your travel day, call the Travel Hotline at: (888) 264-4675 (888 AMIGOS-L). 

 

RESOURCES BY LOCATION AND PROJECT 

Costa Rica 

Project Specific Pre-Departure Procedures 

  • Getting Your Flight Itinerary 
    • You will get your flight details no later than two weeks prior to departure. We book based on project start date so there is a possibility you will get it before then if our team is able to get to your project quicker than planned. In order for it then to be sent to you, you must have turned in all your paperwork and paid your airfare billing statement (National Chapter students only)
  • COVID-19 Testing Specifics
    • All volunteers are required to receive a COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours prior to travel, regardless of vaccination status. This test can be the PCR or rapid antigen test. The result must be sent to [email protected] as soon as it becomes available.
    • When we have received the negative result, we are able to proceed with buying the volunteer’s Costa Rican INS health insurance, which will be promptly sent to the volunteer and their family 
    • When the volunteer receives the insurance, they are now able to complete their Costa Rican health pass. The health pass must be completed within 48 hours of departure. This can be found at https://salud.go.cr. Instructions for how to complete it can be found here. They will then receive a QR code to be presented at customs.  

Project Specific Travel Day Notes 

  • Paperwork to Print Out and Carry on Travel Day
    • Travel Memo 
    • Your Flight Itinerary 
    • Original result of negative COVID-19 test
    • A copy of your COVID-19 vaccination card (if vaccinated) 
    • Health Pass Documentation QR Code 
    • Costa Rican government required COVID-19 insurance documentation (our On Call will send this via email after getting your COVID-19 test results) 
    • Original notarized travel forms:  
      • Under 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney 
        • Parent Permission to Travel 
        • Power of Attorney for under 18  
      • Over 18 Years Old:
        • Medical Power of Attorney for over 18 
    • Local Addresses for customs form and luggage tags 
      • This will be emailed to you by our Admission team one week prior to your departure. 

Quick Links 

Ecuador 

Project Specific Pre-Departure Procedures 

  • Getting Your Flight Itinerary 
    • You will get your flight details no later than two weeks prior to departure. We book based on project start date so there is a possibility you will get it before then if our team is able to get to your project quicker than planned. In order for it then to be sent to you, you must have turned in all your paperwork and paid your airfare billing statement (National Chapter students only).
  • COVID-19 Testing Specifics
    • All volunteers are required to receive a COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours prior to travel, regardless of vaccination status. If unvaccinated, student must take the RT-PCR test. If vaccinated, the student can take the RT-PCR test or the rapid antigen test. At-home antigen tests are not approved. The test result must be sent to [email protected] as soon as it becomes available.  Volunteers should carry a printed copy during travel.

Project Specific Travel Day Notes 

  • Paperwork to Print Out and Carry on Travel Day 
    • Travel Memo 
    • Your Flight Itinerary 
    • Original result of negative COVID-19 test 
    • A copy of your COVID-19 vaccination card (if vaccinated) 
    • Original notarized travel forms:  
      • Under 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney 
        • Parent Permission to Travel 
        • Power of Attorney for under 18  
      • Over 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney for over 18 
    • Proof of insurance document from AIG (sent to you with your flight itinerary from our Travel team) 
    • Local addresses for customs form and luggage tags 
      • This will be emailed to you by our Admissions team 1 week prior to your departure 
  • Layover in Quito (La Sierra Only)  
    • For the La Sierra project, students will have an additional layover in Quito before continuing on to Cuenca. Once they arrive in Quito, volunteers should go through customs and pick up their bags from baggage claim. At baggage claim, an AMIGOS staff member will meet them and accompany the group during their layover, as well as on their flight to Cuenca. If students have any trouble in Quito before they are able to connect with the AMIGOS staff member, they can call the Travel Hotline at (888) 264-4675 (888 AMIGOS-L) OR +593 2-342-3263 (a local Ecuador number).  
    • This same process will be followed, but in reverse, for travel to return home from Cuenca.  

Quick Links 

 

Nicaragua 

Project Specific Pre-Departure Procedures 

  • Getting Your Flight Itinerary
    • You will get your flight details no later than two weeks prior to departure. We book based on project start date so there is a possibility you will get it before then if our team is able to get to your project quicker than planned. In order for it then to be sent to you, you must have turned in all your paperwork and paid your airfare billing statement (National Chapter students only). 
  • COVID-19 Pre-Departure Testing Specifics
    • All volunteers are required to receive a COVID-19 test 72 hours prior to travel, regardless of vaccination status. 
    • Nicaragua requires anyone entering the country to receive an RT-PCR COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours before arrival in Nicaragua (for example, at 4:25 PM MST on June 8 for Session A). This negative result must be a physical copy which is stamped with the seal of the laboratory and signed by a physician to be presented before boarding the flight and at customs. There are no exceptions to this. Rapid PCR tests will not be accepted. Volunteers who do not strictly adhere to this will be denied entry by Nicaraguan customs officials.
    • The result must be sent to [email protected] and [email protected] no more than 36 hours before flight departure to Nicaragua (please no later than 11:59 pm on Sunday, June 6th for Session A).
    • The volunteer must complete this contact tracing form with 36 hours of departure. 
    • Note: Please be on the lookout for communications from our On-Call team on this subject. We understand many families are experiencing challenges in locating this test and are working to gather resources.  

Project Specific Travel Day Notes 

  • Paperwork to Print Out and Carry on Travel Day
    • Travel Memo 
    • Flight Itinerary 
    • Signed and stamped lab results of negative COVID-19 PCR test (see above for specific instructions) 
    • A copy of your COVID-19 vaccination card (if vaccinated) 
    • Original notarized travel forms:  
      • Under 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney 
        • Parent Permission to Travel 
        • Power of Attorney for under 18  
      • Over 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney for over 18 
    • Local addresses for customs form and luggage tags 
      • This will be emailed to you by our Admissions team one week prior to your departure. 
  • Layover in Miami (all Nicaragua based projects) 
    • Volunteers traveling to Nicaragua this summer with AMIGOS have been booked on two tickets. One ticket will accommodate travel from each volunteer’s home city to Miami, and a second ticket will provide transport from Miami to Managua. This is in order to ensure booking on Avianca, which is the preferred airline option flying into Managua.  
    • Because volunteers are flying two tickets, once they arrive in Miami, they will need to exit security all the way to baggage claim and collect their luggage. At baggage claim, an AMIGOS staff person (wearing AMIGOS gear) will be present to meet up with each volunteer and provide any support needed. At baggage claim, volunteers will be instructed by the AMIGOS staff person to collect their baggage, check-in for their next flight (if necessary), and proceed back through security to their international departure gate. 
    • Once all volunteers have successfully re-entered the terminal, the AMIGOS staff person will join the group at the international departure gate and remain with the group until the flight has taken off.   
    • This procedure will also be followed in the reverse on return travel, and an AMIGOS staff member will be present at the airport.  

Quick Links 

 

Colorado 

Project Specific Pre-Departure Procedures 

  • You book and/or plan your travel to Colorado! When you’ve passed the screening process, our Admissions team will email you detailed instructions. Check out the Travel Memo for specifics.  
  • Paperwork Needed on Travel Day 
    • Original notarized travel forms:  
      • Under 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney 
        • Parent Permission to Travel 
        • Power of Attorney for under 18  
      • Over 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney for over 18 
  • COVID-19 Testing Specifics
    • All volunteers, regardless of vaccination status, are required to receive a PCR or rapid antigen COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours prior to departure. Results must be sent to [email protected] as soon as they become available before departure for the project.  

Project Specific Travel Day Notes 

  • Paperwork to Print Out and Carry on Travel Day
    • Travel Memo 
    • Flight Itinerary or Driving Instructions (see Travel Memo) 
    • A copy of your COVID-19 vaccination card (if vaccinated) 
    • Original result of negative COVID-19 test 
    • Original notarized travel forms:  
      • Under 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney 
        • Parent Permission to Travel 
        • Power of Attorney for under 18  
      • Over 18 Years Old: 
        • Medical Power of Attorney for over 18 
    • Local addresses for luggage tags 
      • This will be emailed to you by our Admissions team one week prior to your departure. 
    • Colorado-Specific Procedures 
      • Volunteers on the Western Colorado Projectmay either fly to the Denver International Airport (DIA) or be dropped off at the briefing site.  
      • Please refer to the Colorado Travel Memo, which details specific procedures for both options.  

Quick Links