Important Travel Information


Topics...

Travel Insurance & Supplementary Health Coverage (including but not limited to COVID coverage)

Pro Hockey Travel Inc. and Pro Hockey Development (2015) Inc. strongly advise all customers acquire Trip Cancellation & Supplementary Health Coverage (including but not limited to COVID coverage) for trips out of region, out of state/province, out of country or overseas.

US Citizens travelling out of region, out of state, out of country or overseas

U.S. citizens travelling out of region, out of state, out of country or overseas should strongly consider purchasing a travel protection plan to help protect their travel investment against the unexpected. Travel protection plans may include coverage for Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, Emergency Medical and Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation, Trip Delay, Baggage Delay, Covid Protection and more.

Trip cancellation insurance can reimburse you up to 100% for money you lose in prepaid deposits that are non-refundable. To make a trip cancellation claim you must be canceling for a reason listed in the policy.

Further, not all travel insurance plans cover Covid-related problems. To help you find the best pandemic travel insurance we consulted with Forbes. They evaluated 50 plans using data from Squaremouth, a travel insurance comparison provider. Here is what they recommend...

https://www.forbes.com/advisor/travel-insurance/best-pandemic-travel-insurance/

CANADIAN Citizens travelling out of region, out of province, out of country or overseas

Canadian citizens travelling out of region, out of state, out of province or overseas should strongly consider purchasing a travel protection plan to help protect their travel investment against the unexpected. Travel protection plans may include coverage for Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, Emergency Medical and Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation, Trip Delay, Baggage Delay, Covid Protection and more.

Below is a list of resources for you and your family to consider when evaluating trip cancellation and supplementary health insurance coverage.

Government of Canada

https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/publications/insurance-factsheet

RATEHUB.CA

https://www.ratehub.ca/insurance/travel/trip-cancellation

Best credit cards with travel insurance

RATES.CA

https://rates.ca/insurance-quotes/travel

COSTCO

https://www.manulife-insurance.ca/costco/travel-insurance/travelling-canadians.html?MKT=I65&gclid=Cj0KCQjwmdGYBhDRARIsABmSEeMlrJyQfEsFXg14IgUF3ua0fp_LJ9NRLKSv0l2Sqdoya5ck-u_nilMaAkSZEALw_wcB

CAA

https://caasco.oriontravelinsurance.ca/

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Passports & Traveling Out-Of-Country

It is up to you and your family/travel members to carry with you all required and valid documents when travelling abroad.

***All airlines require full passport name, date of birth, and gender for every passenger on international flights. Failure to provide correct information will result in you being denied boarding at the airport. You may also be refused entry into a country if your passport will expire within 6 months. Passports expiring within 3 months of departure, will most likely be refused at the airport for international travel.***

All participants are expected to be at the Airline check-in counter a minimum of 3 hours prior to your scheduled flight. International check-in typically takes much longer than traditional domestic check-ins. Players that will not be able to make this timeframe should contact their team leader in advance of the departure date.

Depending on your country of origin and/or destination, you may also require "proof of COVID vaccination certificates based on nationality or age of traveller or both nationality and age of traveller.

FOR ALL...

Hotels in Europe REQUIRE information on rooming lists, registration pages and rosters to match exactly the name on the Passport (no nicknames or abbreviations).

USA Passport and International Travel

https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/passports.html

US Children Travelling Without Parent

If a child (under the age of 18) is traveling with only one parent or with someone who is not a parent or legal guardian, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) strongly recommends that the accompanying adult have a note from the non-traveling parent (or, in the case of a child traveling with neither parent, a note signed by both parents) stating “I acknowledge that my wife/husband/etc. is traveling out of the country with my son/daughter/group. He/She/They has/have my/our permission to do so.”

For details... https://help.cbp.gov/s/article/Article-449?language=en_US

Consider using the Canadian "Consent Letter" in MS-Word format as an editable template (remove Canadian references...!!!). American government websites recommend getting the letter notarized. https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/children/consent-letter

Canadian Passport and International Travel

Travel Advice and Advisories for Canadians Travelling Abroad

Canadians Travelling Abroad...

Helpful links and important considerations...

Documents for Entering USA
(for Canadians Travelling to the USA)

Ontario OHIP - Out of Country
(for other provinces please search for your provincial health plan out of country insurance coverage information)

Recommended Consent Letter For Children Travelling Abroad (and returning to Canada)

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Flight Checking

We strongly recommend that you frequently check your flight for updates the day before and day of your departure. Actually, sometimes changes include an earlier departure time. Also consider for connecting flights, you take account for the time it will take to get to your connecting flight gate. There can be some significant walking involved and you may also need to travel from one terminal to another.

Besides your travel provider, there are numerous apps you can use to check flight status.

Flight Stats is a free real-time flight status and airport tracking application that is airline independent. Quickly access worldwide flight status by flight number, airport or route.

Android/Google

Apple iOS Flight Stats

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Safety & Security

In case of emergency, in the European Union use "112" phone dial ("911" equivalent).

Overview

Pro Hockey Development Group is dedicated to providing once-in-a-lifetime sports experiences to all our athletes and passengers.

We are equally committed to ensuring that all of our travellers are well informed with regards to safety & security when travelling abroad.

Travel advisories, alerts, and warnings, are routinely monitored on all government websites.

We encourage you to visit the following links and to enrol in the Canadian or US Government Traveller programs listed on this page.

US Citizens

Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service to allow U.S. citizens and nationals travelling abroad to enroll their trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. To Register... https://step.state.gov/step/

Additional Important FREE Services...

Travel.state.gov RSS Feeds
http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/rss.html

US Government Travel Alerts

http://www.travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html

For Emergency U.S. Embassy contact information, please click here.

In case of emergency, in the European Union, use "112" phone dial ("911" equivalent).

Canadian Citizens

Registration of Canadians Abroad is a free service to keep you connected to Canada in case of an emergency abroad or at home. To Register... http://travel.gc.ca/travelling/registration

Additional Important FREE Services...

Travel Updates... http://travel.gc.ca/stay-connected/subscribe

Smart Travel Mobile App...http://travel.gc.ca/mobile

Canadian Travel Alerts... http://www.travel.gc.ca/travelling/advisories

For Emergency Canadian Embassy contact information, please click here.

Securing & Remembering Belongings

Forgetting to secure the locker or dressing room door... Forgetting your jerseys or skates or sticks at the hotel... These are recipes for disaster. It doesn't just hurt you, it hurts your team.

It is in everyone's best interests to look out for each other. It's called "The Buddy System". Don't feel pushy to ask your buddies if they have remembered to bring everything or to "lock up". Don't feel ashamed if you are spending another 2 minutes to make sure you have every piece of your equipment and sticks loaded on the bus. That may include a fresh towel and change of clothes.

Furthermore, although there will be a team representative assigned to lock up equipment, there may be times when you are "the last one out the door", or assigned to retrieve or put something in a lock up room. Be responsible. Take charge. Ask for help, if you need it.

Travel Documents, Money & Electronics... If your hotel room does not have a safe, there will be lock boxes available at the front desk. It is recommended to secure your valuables when not on your person.

 
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Communications

Team Communications

While abroad, please ensure to stay in the loop with team communications.

Although you will be provided in advance with an itinerary, time changes to activities and bus schedules do occur.

You can rely on your team representative, manager or coach for communications. That person is most likely travelling with you on a daily basis.

Beyond that, included in your itinerary will be a list of additional personnel, their telephone numbers and email addresses. So keep that list handy. You may need to use it.

You may also want to exchange email and phone numbers with teammate families at your discretion.

What has evolved into the de facto standard communications tool for Pro Hockey staff, team families, and coaches is the mobile app WhatsApp. While abroad, please ensure to stay in the loop with team communications.

Although you will be provided in advance with an itinerary, time changes to activities and bus schedules do occur.

You can rely on your team representative, manager or coach for communications. That person is most likely travelling with you on a daily basis.

Beyond that, included in your itinerary will be a list of additional personnel, their telephone numbers and email addresses. So keep that list handy. You may need to use it.

You may also want to exchange email and phone numbers with teammate families, at your discretion.

Wifi & Mobile Apps

There are many WIFI based apps out there now that you can use while out-of-country or overseas to keep your budget in check and they are usually quite good.

Pro Hockey Development Group recommends that you become familiar with a number of these apps as certain apps may work better, or may be more applicable for specific people that you plan to communication with such as your Euro team, family and friends at home, and work associates at home.

These apps may be Apple iOS, Google Android, or Platform Independent.

By no means is this a complete list below, however, these apps tend to be very popular. Investigate what works best for you, your family, your friends, or your work associates...

Use Your Own Phone?

Mobile Phone companies have recognized that they are losing revenue/profit opportunities and have been extending more reasonable out-of-country and overseas plans. Consider as a first option to consult with your mobile provider to determine what they offer. Perhaps you use a combination of options such as your own phone (mobile out-of-country plan) plus WIFI zone apps.

Consult with your service provider. To use your mobile/smart phone in Out-Of-Country for Voice/Text (SMS) and/or Data Communications consult with your service provider in advance for a cost effective plan.

Beware of roaming charges. If using a smart phone, there are also data roaming charges that may apply. Again, consult with your provider in advance. A help desk person can assist to change your phone settings to protect you from incurring exorbitant roaming charges overseas.

We strongly consider utilizing money saving communications APPS that you can use with your mobile device in a WIFI zone.

Phone Rental?

Another alternative is to rent a phone while in Europe by contracting either after arrival at your location, or before you leave to have ready upon landing. Minutes can be purchased for a prepaid sim card.

For US travellers to Europe, our partner World Selects Hockey recommends Cello Mobile . Enter the promo code SELECTS at checkout, and receive a 10% discount on your total order.

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Food Allergies

Taking a trip to another area in your country or elsewhere gives children the chance to learn about their world. Start your planning as far in advance as possible. You should choose somewhere to stay that best suits your family’s needs. For example, having a kitchenette will be useful for preparing some of your meals and keeping fresh food on hand. Keep in mind that laws and policies are different in different countries, including laws and policies for airlines, restaurants and food labeling.

Please visit this link for details and recommendations... https://foodallergycanada.ca/allergy-safety/travelling/

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Currency & Credit Cards

CLICK HERE to access a universal currency converter. It is recommended that you bring Visa or Mastercard, some US or CDN money and an ATM or Debit card. Currency exchange will be available at the arrival airport. There are ATM machines and currency exchange places throughout Europe and there is also a currency exchange on the cruise ship between Helsinki & Stockholm. Money can be withdrawn at ATMs in local currency with reasonable fees. This is the safest and easiest method of obtaining local currency. VERY IMPORTANT - Due to fraud controls in place at most banks, travelers should notify their bank and/or credit card companies of their intention to travel OUT-OF-COUNTRY. In most cases, they will temporarily lift these security controls.


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Luggage & Hockey Equipment

Luggage

Baggage fees are not included in tour cost and will be each traveler's responsibility. Each airline has different baggage restrictions. Typically for overseas travel, but not in all cases, you may check one piece of luggage, with a weight limit of 50 lbs. and linear dimensions no more than 62", at no additional cost. Additional checked bags are usually around $50 per flight (one way). Most airlines may allow a carry on piece as well for the overhead bin and a small knapsack/purse for under seat.

Hockey Equipment, Tape, Sticks & Pucks, Blades 

Pro Shops in Western European rinks are typically not as well equipped as the rinks we are used to in the US and Canada. Equipment and stick selections are often limited and prices can be high. Players should also have enough tape to last them the duration of the trip. Spare sets of laces, blades, helmet hardware, etc. are advised.

Hockey Bag... It will be considered a second piece of luggage which will mean extra costs. You may want to try and keep the contents of the bag under 50 lbs by limiting unnecessary items which tend to accumulate.

Sticks... A team stick bag will be available to accommodate all players’ sticks on group flights only. Players should bring their sticks to the airport taped together to facilitate this process. The coach or team representative will be responsible for the stick bag.

3 Sticks & 3 Pucks... Although your team will provide a stick bag for group flights, it may not work out for you, if you are leaving from another city for example. Be prepared to pay extra. We advise bringing 3 sticks and to help out your team, please bring 3 pucks.

Remember... Lots of tape!

Extra Blades... It is also recommended that you bring a sharpened pair of replacement blades to accompany your son's or daughter's sharpened skates. Most hockey speciality stores in the US and Canada will carry replacement blades. Make sure they are sharpened and you learn how to replace them. You should also bring along the tools required (if necessary) for replacement. Remember... that extra set of laces!

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Electric Converters EURO

Normal electric devices like blow-dryers, radios, curling irons, laptop power cords, etc. will not fit into any of the Western European cities' electric outlets.  You will need to purchase the following international adaptors.  You can find them on the internet at http://international-electrical-supplies.com/electricguide.html Amazon, etc. or at your local electronics stores.  

Plug Adapters

For laptops, you can purchase special plugs that will enable your existing power source to work and charge your batteries.

Below are the adapters that will be needed to use any of the Western European cities' electric outlets:

Plug adapters: the grounded plug adapter WA-9 and the ungrounded plug adapters #1 & #6

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Weather & Deportment

Weather

Springtime in Western Europe is very similar to the weather you have in upper parts of Canada for this time of year. Temperatures on past trips this time of year ranged from highs of 65F / 18C during the day to lows of 32F / 0C at night. Also, families should be prepared to dress for cold arena conditions.

Deportment

Player dress code and evening wear shall be dictated by your coach or team manager. Try to remember that in addition to representing yourself, you also represent your team, your family and your country. As people in Europe may have limited exposure to North Americans, your dress and behavior may shape their opinion of Americans and Canadians.


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