Profile of Road Scholar, Formerly Elderhostel

Gullfoss Waterfall, Iceland
••• Road Scholar leads tours to 150 countries, including Iceland. Rhoberazzi / Getty Images

Road Scholar Information:

Road Scholar, formerly known as Elderhostel and Exploritas, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing adults with learning adventures. Road Scholar offers trips to 150 countries; the organization presented almost 5,500 learning programs last year.

Road Scholar's Mission:

Road Scholar offers adults the opportunity to learn, talk with locals and fellow travelers and expand their horizons through travel.

As a nonprofit, Road Scholar can also offer scholarships to adults who would like to learn through travel.

Destinations:

North, Central, and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Polynesia, and Antarctica when conditions permit.

Tour Participant Demographics:

Although there is no official age limit or minimum age, most Road Scholar tour participants are age 50 and older. Road Scholar offers special intergenerational programs for grandparents and grandchildren ages 4 and up.

Single Traveler Information:

Road Scholar does charge a single supplement, but you will not have to pay it if you sign up for a roommate. In addition, Road Scholar offers several trips each year that do not require solo travelers to pay a single supplement.

Cost:

Varies widely. Some four-day North American travel programs cost less than $400. Prices for 115-day, around-the-world learning programs at sea begin at $33,395.

Trip Length:

Varies. Road Scholar offers short and long trips,ranging from four days to over 28 days.

Road Scholar Tour Information and Tips:

Road Scholar’s program fees may or may not include airfare. Check your program’s itinerary for complete information.

Nearly all other expenses are included. Check each trip’s itinerary for details.

Road Scholar offers a wide variety of trips and programs. You can learn a new skill, such as basket weaving, try a high-adventure sport, immerse yourself in the culture of another country or participate in a service learning trip. Activity levels vary.

Some US-based trips include an alternative lodging option for participants who live in their RVs and are willing to do so during their Road Scholar experience.

While you are free to book your own international air travel, if you make your international airline reservations through Road Scholar, your airport transfers will be included and you will be eligible for a full airfare refund if Road Scholar has to cancel your trip.

Road Scholar works hard to accommodate travelers with disabilities, but warns that many overseas destinations do not have accessible facilities.

Road Scholar offers partial scholarships for US programs that cost $1,400 or less. These scholarships, called Enrichment Grants, are available to applicants who live in the United States, are at least 50 years old and whose household income is less than 80 percent of the median household income for their state. 

Road Scholar also offers Caregiver Grants, which are designed to give devoted caregivers a break from their routine by paying for a substitute caregiver.

You can earn discounts on future Road Scholar trips by becoming a Road Scholar Ambassador. Ambassadors give at least four Road Scholar presentations per year. You will receive a credit toward a future Road Scholar trip for every 100 people who sign up for the Road Scholar mailing list.

Some international trips involve “home-basing” at one hotel and taking day trips to various sites. Check a map or use an online mapping site to see if you are comfortable with the distances you’ll travel each day. 

Every Road Scholar tour participant is covered under the Travel Protection Plan. Benefits vary, depending on whether you are traveling in the US or in another country. Medical evacuation insurance is included, but trip delay, trip cancellation and  trip interruption coverage are not. Road Scholar encourages all tour participants to consider purchasing a separate travel insurance policy which includes these benefits.

Contact Information:

Road Scholar

11 Avenue de Lafayette

Boston, MA 02111

USA

Telephone: (800) 454-5768 from within the US; 1-978-323-4141 from other countries

E-mail: contact@roadscholar.org

Road Scholar Website