FLIGHT BOOKING OVERVIEW
Booking Your Flight
Welcome to SPI’s flight booking information page!
Every SPI traveler is required to book and manage their own flights within our specific arrival and departure guidelines below. Peak fares range between $600-1,200 for Latin America and $1,600-2,200 for Europe & Asia. You have the choice to book directly with the airline or through a travel agency of your choice. You are free to use miles or points to book your ticket.
Travel to the International Arrival City
Our on-site director teams arrives abroad several days ahead of students. Although 90% of our student body travel abroad independently or in small groups, we encourage parents to accompany novice travelers or students under age 16 to the international gateway airport (ie. New York, Atlanta, Dallas, etc.) Some parents may elect to travel with their child all the way to the program arrival city (ie. Madrid, Queretaro).
STUDENTS UNDER 16
Please book on an airline that does NOT require unaccompanied minor service for 14-15 year olds (do NOT book on United or Southwest). We also recommend parents travel with their student to the gateway or program arrival city if they are uncomfortable with them traveling independently. Please refer to the individual airlines for their current policies.
Airport Arrival Reception Abroad
All students traveling on our regular SPI summer programs will be met at the international arrival airport outside of customs by SPI staff holding an SPI sign (provided your flights are within our booking guidelines). SPI normally has staff at major hubs (i.e., Newark) to assist with connecting flights for our outbound summer programs although this is not guaranteed.
Families Wishing to Meet Their Child Abroad
Due to disruption from the immersion experience, SPI does not encourage parents to visit their child during the program. If you would like to meet your child AFTER the program has ended, please review our flight guidelines and deviations below for specific information on planning your “meet up.”
FLIGHT BOOKING GUIDELINES
Choose Best Flights & Airline
Book with 2-3 hours of Connection Time (Outbound Flight)
It is worth having more time at the airport to avoid missing your international flight!
Submit Your Flight Itinerary IMMEDIATELY to SPI Online or by email
Arrival & Departure Abroad Windows
Program start date is the departure day from the U.S. Spain, France, Italy & China – Students will arrive abroad the FOLLOWING DAY. Mexico & Costa Rica – Students will arrive abroad the SAME DAY. If you arrive from outside North America, please book accordingly.
|Program||Airport||Outbound Arrival||Return Departure|
|Madrid Barajas Airport (MAD)||7:00 -11:00 AM||9:00 AM – 1:30 PM|
|Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG)||7:00 – 10:00 AM||9:00 AM – 1:30 PM|
|Rome Fiumicino Airport (FCO)
Extension Return Departure: Florence Airport (FLR) anytime after 9 AM
|7:00 – 10:00 AM||9:00 AM – 12:00 PM|
|Liberia Intl Airport (LIR)||11:00 AM – 3:30 PM||12:00 – 4:30 PM|
|Queretaro Intl Airport (QRO)||11:30 AM – 1:30 PM||12:00 – 4 PM|
|Guangzhou Intl Airport (CAN)
Extension Return Departure: Guilin Airport (KWL) anytime after 9 AM
|3:00 – 7:30 PM||11 AM – 3 PM|
Booking Your Flight Online Is Easy!
Search Best Flight Options: Google Flight Search
Book Directly with Specific Airline: Delta United American China Southern
Arriving and/or departing outside of the booking window – $350 fee
All students traveling outside of SPI’s Arrival & Departure Window (see above) will be charged a $350 fee. This is to discourage flights outside of the time window. All deviations must be pre-approved by SPI (please email firstname.lastname@example.org). In addition, families must provide complete deviation details and sign the release form below.
> Failure to provide permitted deviation details by May 1, will incur an additional “late planning fee” of $150.
Certain permitted arrival deviations are exempt from any fees. Please reference the information to the right of this box for more information. ***Students arriving 1+ days late must fly directly to the homestay city, unless approved in advance.***
PERMITTED: Arriving outside of the Arrival Window and INDEPENDENTLY TRAVELING to the hotel where your group is staying . Families must provide complete deviation details and sign the release form below.
> You must be in hotel lobby or designated meeting point by:
SPAIN: 12:00 PM on arrival day
FRANCE: 10:30 AM at hotel on arrival day
ITALY: 10:30 AM on arrival day
COSTA RICA: 9:00 PM on arrival day
MEXICO: 9:00 PM on arrival day
PERMITTED: Departing before the group and INDEPENDENTLY TRAVELING to the airport by taxi, car, with parents, etc.
PERMITTED: Parents picking-up students or students having been authorized to INDEPENDENTLY DEPART the program. (See Designated Program Release Points & Times for guidelines).
*SPI cannot assist with ground transportation arrangements for permitted deviations.
All students are released from the SPI program at the airport check-in counter in the gateway city (i.e. Madrid, Paris, etc.) on the program end date. Below are alternative program release points and times if students will not be departing as scheduled in program itinerary.
Stay Longer in Homestay City: Students meet parents at their hotel or an agreed upon place and time. Officially released from SPI on Saturday morning at 9 AM.
Stay in Rome, Paris, Madrid-Depart Night Before: Meet student at hotel the night before group flight departs at 9 PM for pick up. Officially released from SPI at scheduled pick up time.
Stay in Rome, Paris, Madrid-Meet Parents at Airport: Meet student at airport check-in counter of the group’s designated airline between 9-10 AM. Officially released from SPI on program end date when group is dropped off at airline counter.