At Rustic Pathways, we understand that risk is an inherent part of our programs. We travel to remote destinations, expose our students to unfamiliar surroundings and encourage personal growth through new experiences. When conducted responsibly, these experiences create student transformations that are impossible to replicate. For this reason, our risk management system remains a fundamental component of all our programs. It is driven by strong leadership and executed successfully by our teams and partners.
Rustic chefs and cooks prepare meals and can make necessary adjustments for specific dietary needs and allergies. Some meals will take place at trusted local restaurants. All water is bottled or purified.
All participants stay at Rustic-owned base houses or carefully vetted hotels, guesthouses, camps, or with trusted homestay families. In-country vehicle transportation is provided by Rustic drivers or local vendors. Rustic performs annual safety checks on all company-owned vehicles and vendor transportation companies.
Rustic reviews all external service providers, including transportation, accommodation, and activity vendors, annually. Vendor business infrastructure, hiring and training processes, and emergency management systems are assessed to make sure they are reputable and safe.
A: In addition to our experienced local Country Operations staff, we employ a Health and Safety Team that includes a consulting physician and psychologist.
Our Program Staffing Team also spends four months vetting applicants to identify the most talented and passionate Program Leaders.
A: Yes! Rustic also monitors safety and security with the help of International SOS, a leader in international medical, security, and travel services. All Rustic Pathways travellers also have access to International SOS services.
A: All participants of Rustic Pathways programs are strongly recommended to consider buying their own comprehensive medical insurance coverage. For students departing from outside the United States, we’ve partnered with Trawick International. They offer a travel protection plan designed to protect our participants, their belongings, and their travel investment in those unforeseen circumstances that may arise during travel.
Contact the company to purchase a plan or for more information.
A: Country Operations teams and the Safety Director create risk management plans. They include critical incident protocols and natural disaster plans. However, most incidents Rustic responds to involve minor illnesses common during international travel. Program Leaders manage these situations with the support of Country Operations teams.
If an incident is more serious, Country Operations works with Rustic’s Crisis Response Team to coordinate the appropriate action, which could include engaging International SOS. Rustic’s Safety Director, Medical Director, and Mental Health Director remain available to ensure that students, families, and other essential stakeholders are informed and supported throughout incidents.