Some questions frequently asked by Achva applicants and parents:
Q. How long has Achva been around?
A. Achva started providing tours to Israel in 1981 and has been running amazing trips to various places ever since. We especially love hearing from the many parents that tell us that they went on Achva and are now sending their kids. For many Achva families, sending kids on Achva is a family tradition. You can rest assured that Achva's almost three decades of experience is put to good use on every tour we run.
Q. Who are the counselors?
A. Our biggest asset is our talented, dedicated and hard working counselor staff. We are especially selective about every staff member who comes on the program. All newly hired staff are either someone we know personally or come highly recommended by camp/youth professionals. Please see our staff pages for more information about the age and qualification of our staff members or see a list of our actual staff from the summer.
Q. When is the last day I can apply to come on Achva?
A. Waiting for the last minute to apply is rarelya good strategy. We have seen so many people miss out an Achva trip because they waited too long and then decided too late that they wanted to attend. We continue to accept applications to Achva until we run out of space. When that will be, no one knows for sure, so it's not worth taking a chance. If a program does not fill up, we keep taking applicants until about 30 days before the trip leaves. To find out the status of a particular program, send us an email or give us a call.
Q. Who else is going?
A. If the past is any indication at all, then the answer is a really great group of kids. If you want specific names, however, we will not give out a list of registered participants for privacy reasons. We are happy to provide you with an idea of the types of kids we have, and more general information like what schools they go to and where they live. Chances are that if you sign up, your friends may do so as well. Your best bet is to give us a call and we will be happy to discuss the types of kids we have and whether Achva is right for you.
Q. Does everyone get in?
A. No, not everyone. Every summer we end up rejecting a few. But the vast majority of the people who apply for Achva are accepted and make wonderful participants. Achva requires two written recommendations and carefully screens all applicants by checking references. We know that what makes Achva great is not just where we go but the caliber of the participants.
Q. What if I need to leave the program early?
A. If you need to leave early, we can usually accommodate. Please give us a call to discuss your situation. A family simcha or family vacation should not stand in the way of attending the rest of an Achva program.
Q. How much time is spent on the bus?
A. Achva's programs are travel programs and that means we move around a lot. Generally, that travel is by bus. However, the number one misconception about Achva is that we spend all day long on a bus. The vast majority of the day is spent at sites and attractions. We make every effort to minimize unnecessary time on the bus. Many kids find the bus rides fun and a chance to relax, socialize, listen to music or watch movies. Achva buses make frequent stops. Buses in America have bathrooms for emergencies though frequent stops are made anyway. Overall, participants feel the bus rides are actually a fun part of the trip.
Q. What if I am taking medication?
A. Achva does everything possible within the context of a travel program to accommodate kids with various medical conditions and who require various types of medications and treatments. No nurse or doctor travels with the program but we do utilize local doctors whenever necessary. Please give us a call to discuss your circumstances and we will give you an honest appraisal of the situation.
Q. Are there discounts?
A. We offer discounts for multiple children (sibling discounts) and early-birds. You can give us a call if you wish to discuss financial options such as spreading out your payments over a longer interval.
Q. What does the Achva staff do the rest of the year?
A. Believe it or not, people ask this question. Of course, putting together great summer trips is a year round effort. Work on the following summer actually begins right after the programs return home.
Have more questions? You can try the FAQs provided for each program. Those can found as one of the tabs on the program pages. Still have more questions after that? I guess you are going to have to pick up the phone and call the Achva office!