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Road Scholar Program Terms and Conditions

These Terms and Conditions govern the relationship between you and Elderhostel, Inc., d/b/a Road Scholar. By enrolling in a program with us, you agree to be bound by these terms, and agree to carefully read all pre-program communications and program preparatory materials.

Effective January 1, 2023


How to Enroll in a Program

Call Us or Enroll Online To enroll

Please call us toll free at (877) 426-8056, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. ET. You may also enroll online at To reserve space on a program, Road Scholar requires a deposit followed by final payment.

Road Scholar is Not-For-Profit

Road Scholar is a not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) organization that incurs over $5 million annually on credit card fees. Please help us reduce this cost by paying for your program with a check. Please consider our paperless check option when paying on the phone or over the Internet. Our Advisors are happy to explain this payment option to you.

Tax-Deductible Donations

As a not-for-profit organization, we appreciate and rely on charitable donations to help us develop and maintain high-quality educational programs with exceptional value. Donations from U.S. citizens are tax-deductible as provided by law. As Road Scholar is not a registered charity in Canada, donations are not tax deductible for Canadian citizens.

Financial Assistance

Road Scholar offers two kinds of assistance: Scholarships, for those with desire but not the financial means to participate in our U.S.- or Canada-based learning adventures; and Caregiver Grants, designed to provide a unique respite opportunity for unpaid family caregivers to participate in a U.S.- or Canada-based Road Scholar program. Visit, email us at, or call us toll free at (877) 426-8056.


General Program Information

Activity Level Ratings

Each Road Scholar program is assigned an Activity Level rating, ranging from Easy Going to Challenging, which are noted on program webpages. Try our Advanced Search tool to find programs that match your activity level. If you have special needs, or need a little extra help in finding the right program for your level of fitness and ambition, please call us and we’ll work to find options for you. 

Disabilities and Special Needs

Road Scholar is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to participants with special needs and disabilities. If you have special needs requiring accommodation, please communicate them to Road Scholar at the time of enrollment. We will discuss your request with you and make every effort to accommodate you.

Service Learning

Our Service Learning programs bring participants together to work as a team to serve worthy projects. Road Scholar and sponsoring service institutions are not-for-profit organizations and are tax-exempt under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The program price may qualify as a tax-deductible gift. However, since individual circumstances vary, we suggest participants contact their tax advisors.

Included Emergency Assistance and Medical Evacuation Insurance

Road Scholar’s continued commitment to our participants and their well-being is exemplified in our Road Scholar Assurance Plan. Whether participating on a program in the United States or on one of our programs overseas, every Road Scholar participant receives coverage under the Road Scholar Assurance Plan. This plan is purchased by Road Scholar on behalf of every participant. The plan provides 24-hour assistance in the event of an emergency during your program and insurance for emergency medical evacuation. This plan includes insurance benefits underwritten by Arch Insurance Company and emergency assistance services provided by LiveTravel Assist. To learn more about this plan, including its terms, conditions, limits, and exclusions, and to view and download a certificate of insurance, please visit:

Travel Health

In addition to maintaining necessary vaccinations, including seasonal influenza vaccination, Road Scholar recommends all participants consult with their physician, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. Department of State regarding their health condition and any recommendations specific to the destinations they will visit or transit well before departure. While Road Scholar does its best to provide pertinent information regarding international health requirements and travel health precautions for travel abroad, please remember we are not health experts and can only share with you the recommendations made by the CDC and the US Department of State. It It is therefore your responsibility to consult with your physician and/or contact the CDC for health information specific to your travel destination. Your physician will be able to assess your overall health and fitness, provide information and guidance on health risks you may encounter while traveling, medication you may need to take, and other precautions for the prevention of injury and illness during your program.

Staying healthy is critical to enjoying your program experience, and taking common sense steps to reduce the risk of getting sick.

  • A week before you depart on your program, consider limiting your exposure to others. If you must be in public in the week prior to departure, wear a mask.
  • Do not travel if you are sick, have any symptoms of illness, or if you have had close contact with a person who is ill. Do not risk traveling if you are not feeling well. 
  • Bring a few face masks to the program. Wearing a well-fitted mask is an effective means of protection against airborne viruses, including COVID-19. Wear a mask whenever around others, including when flying and transiting airports. Once on your program, wear a mask whenever you are in public settings, especially if you have a weakened immune system or an underlying medical condition.
  • Wash your hands often and practice good hygiene.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Once on the program, if you do begin to feel ill or have symptoms of illness, immediately isolate and notify the Group Leader.

For those looking for additional resources on this topic, we recommend trusted sources such as your physician, the US Department of State, CDC, and WHO. 

Your health and safety are of the utmost importance to us. To learn more about Road Scholar’s commitment to our participants’ well-being and the steps you can take to keep yourself healthy when traveling, please visit

Please also be sure to review our Travel Updates webpage for the latest travel information, steps we are taking to keep your program experience as safe as possible, as well as helpful information about how to prepare for your upcoming program and what to expect once you're there. 

Domestic Travel Arrangements

Programs in the United States and Canada require independent arrivals and departures unless otherwise stated, meaning that you must make your own travel arrangements to and from the program site.  If you are flying to your program, you will be responsible for getting yourself from the airport to the starting location of your program and returning to the airport at the end.  Please keep in mind that many airlines assess penalties if you need to change or cancel your ticket— up to 100 percent of the ticket price in certain cases — for which you will be responsible. Please also be aware that Road Scholar may occasionally have to alter a program in a way that affects flight schedules, and you will be responsible for changing your flight arrangements and paying applicable fees.  For the greatest protection, we recommend waiting until 60 days prior to your program in the United States or Canada to purchase airfare.

International Travel Arrangements

Road Scholar Can Help Arrange Your International Airfare

Almost all of our international programs can be purchased with airfare arranged by Road Scholar. We have negotiated special international rates with major airlines. A list of departure cities can be found by visiting our website or calling to speak with one of our experienced Advisors. As an added benefit, guaranteed airport transfers on the program’s published start and end date are included with your international air travel when arranged through Road Scholar. If your preferred airport is not listed, or you would like to travel on a different day, travel in premium or business class, specify the airline or routing, or travel independently before or after our program, we are happy to customize and create a personalized air travel itinerary to meet your needs. Select the “Custom Flight Arrangements” option and then the airport you want, or discuss your flight preferences with one of our expert air Travel Advisors.

Arranging Your Own International Airfare

If you choose to make your own international air travel arrangements, you will be responsible for getting yourself from the airport to the starting location of your program and returning to the airport at the end.  Please keep in mind that many airlines assess penalties if you need to change or cancel your ticket— up to 100 percent of the ticket price in certain cases — for which you will be responsible.  Please also be aware that Road Scholar may occasionally have to alter a program in a way that affects flight schedules, and you will be responsible for changing your flight arrangements and paying applicable fees.  For the greatest protection, we recommend waiting until 90 days prior to your International program to purchase airfare,

Road Scholar Optional Trip Protection with “Cancel for Any Reason” Coverage

The optional Road Scholar Trip Protection Plan helps protect your investment if you must cancel or interrupt your program for specified, covered reasons, such as illness or injury to you, your traveling companion or an immediate family member of you or your traveling companion. Plus, if you need to cancel your program for any reason not covered by insurance, you will receive a credit good for future travel with Road Scholar for the full amount of the Road Scholar cancellation fee. The plan also provides benefits if you are delayed getting to or returning home from your program and protects your investment should you have an emergency during your program that causes you to miss program days or return home earlier than expected. Your airfare, whether purchased through Road Scholar or independently, is covered at no additional cost — an exceptional benefit and value offered exclusively to Road Scholar participants. You will receive information about this optional travel insurance plan when you enroll in a program. To learn more about this plan, including its terms, conditions, limits, and exclusions, and to view and download a certificate of insurance, please visit:

Additional Program Information

Our goal is to make sure our participants have the most enjoyable and rewarding program experience possible. Whether you are considering one of Road Scholar’s many educational adventures or are currently enrolled in a program, we highly recommend you review the additional program information available in the Practical Information section on our website.  The section includes a wide range of topics and information -- everything from how to choose the perfect program to traveling solo to insurance. Please visit, or call us if you have specific questions.  After you enroll in a program, please be sure to carefully read all pre-program communications and your Program preparatory materials, as they provide important information about how to prepare for your upcoming program and what to expect once you're there.


Program Policies

Deposit, Transfer and Cancellation Policy

Road Scholar requires deposits for all its programs, and charges fees if you transfer or cancel your enrollment.  Deposits and fees vary between programs. Please refer to the Deposit, Transfer & Cancellation Policy on program webpages for specific deposit amounts, and transfer and cancellation fee schedules. Please note that enrollments are on a per person basis and substitutions are not permitted.

About Program Details and Itineraries

We make every effort to operate our programs as advertised. The information on our website is updated regularly, and reflects the most up to date information. We are committed to providing participants with final program details no later than three weeks before the start of land programs within the United States, four weeks for programs International and Afloat programs. and one week for online programs.  However, itineraries or other aspects of a program may change due to situations beyond the control. If this happens we will do our best to notify you of the change prior to arriving on your program. We ask you to pack a little extra patience and flexibility, just in case there are last-minute changes to your program.

If Road Scholar Cancels or Interrupts a Program

Road Scholar reserves the right to cancel programs prior to departure, terminate a program early, and to take action as needed on an individual or group basis when, in Road Scholar’s opinion, the health, safety or well-being of participants requires such action. Additionally, due to low enrollment or other unforeseen circumstances, Road Scholar must occasionally cancel or change the dates of a program. When that occurs we will notify you as far in advance as possible and will assist you in transferring your enrollment to another program or refunding your full Road Scholar program payment. If you have made transportation arrangements, such as an airline ticket purchase, Road Scholar will give you a credit good for future travel with Road Scholar to help cover the cost of transferring your travel arrangements for use on a replacement program. The maximum value of the credit will be $300 and documentation of your paid fees is required before issuance of the credit.

Accuracy of Information

While every effort is made to provide accurate information on our website and in our catalogs, Road Scholar is not responsible for typographical errors, inaccuracies or omissions that may relate to program descriptions, pricing, and availability. Road Scholar reserves the right to correct any errors, inaccuracies or omissions that may appear in our publications, and to change or update information at any time without prior notice. If you discover an error on our website or catalog, please let us know.

Program Pricing

Prices on our website and in printed materials are quoted in US dollars. All payments must be made in US dollars whether by credit card, check, or paperless check/bank wire. As a not-for-profit organization, we are dedicated to providing exceptional educational opportunities at a remarkable value. We do everything in our power to ensure that the published program price is the price you pay. On occasion, costs we can’t anticipate and that are beyond our control arise and may be passed along to you. If this occurs, we will let you know as soon as possible.


Terms and Conditions

Program Selection 
We want every participant to have a safe, enjoyable and rewarding program experience. The travel and activities of Road Scholar programs require participants to be in good general health and capable of performing all program activities as described by the program description and its corresponding Activity Level. As a group travel experience, participants must be capable of caring for themselves during the program and agree not to impede the progress of the program or interfere with the enjoyment of other participants. Participants are required to disclose known medical and physical conditions that may interfere with their safety and well being or the safety and well being of others during this program. Road Scholar may limit or terminate the participation in the program at the participant’s expense and without refund any participants who fail to disclose all medical information or do not honestly assess their physical capabilities in advance. With this information in mind, carefully consider the travel and program demands as described on the Road Scholar website, and consult with your physician about your travel plans. If after enrolling you have second thoughts about the program you chose, please call us and we will be happy to assist you in finding a program better suited to your abilities.


Road Scholar’s responsibility is limited. Road Scholar organizes, promotes, and sells educational programs consisting of certain travel services, including land, air, and water transportation, excursions, and cruise/barge/hotel accommodations that Road Scholar purchases or reserves from various suppliers (collectively, “Suppliers”). Road Scholar neither owns nor operates any of these Suppliers; they are independent contractors and are not Road Scholar’s agents. Therefore, Road Scholar is not responsible for any negligent or willful act or failure to act of any Supplier or any other third party. You agree that you will look to such Suppliers, and not to Road Scholar or its agents, for any accident, injury, property damage, or personal loss you may suffer. Without limitation, Road Scholar is not responsible for any injury, loss, or damage to person or property, death, delay, or inconvenience in connection with the provision of, or failure to provide, any goods or services occasioned by or resulting from — but not limited to — acts of God or force majeure, acts of war or civil unrest, insurrection or revolt, strikes or other labor activities, criminal or terrorist activities of any kind, mechanical or other failure of airplanes or other means of transportation, or the failure of any transportation mechanism to arrive or depart on time, or for any other cause beyond the direct control of Road Scholar.

Safety & Risks

Certain risks — from natural disasters to accidents, outbreaks of illness, crime, insect-borne and other infectious diseases, environmental risks to health, terrorism and other unforeseen events — are inherent in travel. While such occurrences are beyond our control, we make substantial efforts to be prepared for such possibilities. Participants are encouraged to review the safety and travel information provided by the U.S. Department of State and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to learn about current security issues, travel advisories and warnings, recent embassy notices, local laws and customs, country-specific health information, health risks you may encounter while traveling, precautions for the prevention of illness, disease and general health issues during your program, and other helpful destination-specific information. By enrolling in a program, you agree to assume responsibility for your own health, safety, and welfare, and acknowledge that Road Scholar cannot guarantee your safety or health at any time.

Admission & Participation Policy

The granting or denial of admission to a program is within the sole discretion of Road Scholar. Road Scholar reserves the right to revoke admission or terminate or limit participation at any time if Road Scholar reasonably determines a participant’s condition, behavior or actions are inappropriate or disruptive, or adversely affect the participant’s health or safety, or the health, safety or enjoyment of other participants. Road Scholar reserves the right to take action as needed on an individual or group basis when, in Road Scholar’s sole opinion, the health, safety or well-being of participants requires such action.

Photography and Video

Road Scholar reserves the right to take photographs, videos or audio/visual recordings during the operation of any program or part thereof and to use them, whether taken by a representative of Road Scholar or by other participants, for promotional purposes. By enrolling in a Road Scholar program, participants agree to allow their images or recordings to be used for such purposes. Participants who prefer that their images or recordings not be used are asked to identify themselves to program staff and the photographer at the commencement of their program. For Road Scholar online programs, all audio or video recordings, content and materials are the property of Road Scholar. Participants are prohibited from taking screen captures, or making, copying or distributing all or part of any audio or video recordings of online programs.

Cruise Line Terms and Conditions

If you choose to attend one of our ship-based programs, please be aware that Road Scholar participants are subject to the Cruise Line's terms and conditions as stated in the cruise line's contract of passage/conditions of carriage. Please visit the cruise line's website for more information. 

Online Program Terms

If you enroll in one of Road Scholar’s online programs, you are responsible for the integrity of the device on which you will attend this online program, as well as your own high-speed internet connection. Road Scholar is not responsible for outages or interruptions in internet service. Road Scholar cannot and will not provide recordings, content or materials, or provide reimbursement of any kind, for missed portion(s) of your online program, regardless of the reason.

Seller of Travel Information

Road Scholar’s state of Washington Seller of Travel Reg. No. 602244658. CST #2068427-40. Florida Seller of Travel Reg. No. ST35594.

Modifications to Terms and Conditions

Road Scholar reserves the right at any time to update, change, modify, or revise these Terms and Conditions at any time.  Any changes will become effective upon posting the changes, modifications or revisions to the Terms and Conditions.  Accordingly, participants should review Road Scholar’s Terms and Conditions regularly prior to travel in order to ensure they are aware of any changes.


© 2024 Elderhostel. All rights reserved. The Road Scholar service marks, logos, website address and other marks are owned by Elderhostel, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to inspiring adults to learn, discover and travel.