Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to complete an application?

The application generally takes about 2 to 3 hours to complete. As you make plans to complete and submit the application, keep in mind that you'll need to consider the additional time it takes to obtain your recommendation. You'll also want to make sure you leave time to come back to your application so you can review everything before you submit it.  

What makes for a strong application?

The strongest application responses are the ones that include specific examples. Examples give the reader more information about who you are and help to illustrate the point you're trying to make. It's one thing to say you're an ideal candidate for a trip, but it's another to demonstrate through your past experiences and skills what makes you an ideal fit.

What is involved in the application process?

To learn about the various parts of the application and how to apply, read the Application Instructions. For additional support see the Application Top Tips. If you still have questions about the application, contact nationaltravel@girlguides.ca for support.

What is SurveyMonkey Apply?

SurveyMonkey Apply is an online application system that GGC uses to manage travel applications. The platform is used to submit applications, send messages to applicants and review and score application submissions.

How do I set up an account with SurveyMonkey Apply?

If you have applied for a Nationally-Sponsored Trip, or been a reviewer for a Nationally-Sponsored Trip in the past, then you should already have an account and should use the SAME login/account information to log into SurveyMonkey Apply. If you forgot your password, jump to the next question.

To create a new account, visit SurveyMonkey Apply and click the green 'Register' button in the top right-hand corner of the page. From there, you'll be asked to fill in some basic information including your name, email address and password. Please note: when entering your name, make sure you use your own name to create your account so that the account information matches the application information.

Once you have an account, you can log into the website at any time by clicking the SurveyMonkey Apply Girl Guides Travel Program link - https://ggtravel-apply.smapply.io/ - and logging in. The "Log In" button will be in the top right-hand corner of the page.

What should I do if I've forgotten my password?

If you've forgotten your password, click 'Forgot your password?' on the SurveyMonkey Apply login landing page. You'll be brought to another page that asks you to enter your email address. Check your email for a password recovery message from SurveyMonkey Apply, follow the link on the message and then enter a new password for your account.

What should I do if my recommender says they have not received an email request from SurveyMonkey Apply?

First, check to make sure the email address you entered for your recommender is correct. If you've accidentally entered the wrong email address, simply withdraw the request and add the recommender again with the correct information. If the email address you entered is correct, you can try resending the request. You can also have your recommender check their spam/junk folder in case the request message ended up there. If they still do not receive the email, you can contact support@smapply.io for technical support.

How often should I follow up with my recommender?

Make sure to let your recommender know that you have submitted their name and that they should expect an email from SurveyMonkey Apply. Give them a deadline as to when you would like them to submit their recommendation. After that, it's up to you how often you want to follow up with them. We suggest selecting and contacting your recommender as soon as you start your application. This gives your recommender a longer period of time to respond.

What should I do if I'm concerned that my recommender will not get their recommendation in on time?

If you're concerned that your recommender may not submit their form on time you can withdraw the current recommendation and submit a request to a different recommender. We suggest selecting and contacting your recommender as soon as you start your application. This gives your recommender a longer period of time to respond.

What should I do if I'm having a technical problem while filling out the online application?

If you're having a technical problem, you can contact SurveyMonkey Apply directly by emailing support@smapply.io.

What should I do if I have questions surrounding the application content or requirements?

If you have any questions surrounding the application content or requirements, you can contact the National Travel Team at nationaltravel@girlguides.ca.

What happens after I submit my application?

Once applications are submitted, they are reviewed by the Nationally-Sponsored Trip Review Team and/or the National Travel Team. Girl applications that move on from this initial review will then be entered into a randomized selection process. Guider candidates are also interviewed by the National Travel Team. Selected Guiders are then invited to accept their role as Responsible Trip Guiders. Once the Guiders have confirmed, girl candidates are notified and asked to confirm their spot on the trip.

When are participant selections announced?

Selected participants are announced in December.

What is a Girl Alternate or a Guider Alternate?

An alternate is someone who fills in on a trip if a selected participant cannot participate. For each trip, two Girl Alternates and two Guider Alternates are selected and expected to participate in all trip preparations including obtaining a passport, immunizations, visa and any other requirements. They are also expected to communicate with the rest of the group and participate in all meetings related to the trip so that they are well prepared in case a participant spot opens.

If selected for a trip, can I extend my stay or tack on another trip?

You cannot extend your stay or tack on another trip. All participants must travel to and from the departure city together. 

What is a Nationally-Sponsored Trips (NST) Ambassador?

If you're a girl member selected for a Nationally-Sponsored Trip, you'll become an NST Ambassador when you return from your trip! As an NST Ambassador you'll share your trip experience with others and help support the Nationally-Sponsored Trips program in fun and exciting ways. You'll give a presentation about your trip to your Guiding Unit and inspire others through your stories, photos and insights. You'll also get to choose from a variety of initiatives like hosting a Nationally-Sponsored Trips information night, writing a blog post about your trip for GGC's blog, or supporting other groups that have been selected to go on a trip for the following year.

What do I need to pack and/or wear for my Nationally-Sponsored Trip?

Although every trip will have a different kit list depending on where you are travelling to, here is a Sample Kit List to get you started. This is a guide to be used at your discretion. It has everything from the travel uniform and what to pack in your carry-on to optional items and what not to pack at all.

What level of activity is required for a Nationally-Sponsored Trip?

All Nationally-Sponsored Trips include some level of activity, ranging from city walking tours to white water rafting. The designated activity level (listed on the Adventure Overview) for each trip is based on activities that are already booked and included in the itinerary. Keep in mind that some itineraries can be adapted and the National Travel Team will do their best to make accommodations when requested – just let us know in your application! We highly encourage you to apply for the trip that best suits your desired level of physical activity.

  • Relaxed – In your trip there will be some light physical activity, such as light walking or easy climbs (no more challenging than a few flights of stairs). It'll be typically flat terrain, dirt paths, or cobblestone streets with little-to-no elevation change.
  • Recreational – In your trip there will be some moderate physical activity, such as some light hiking, biking, horseback riding or canoeing in addition to walking. You may encounter some hilly terrain, steep ascents/descents, or uneven trails.
  • Active – In your trip there will be some vigorous physical activity, such as more challenging hiking, biking, rafting, canoeing, or kayaking in addition to walking. You may encounter some high-altitude hikes or more strenuous activities.

Why do I need international travel experience to be a Guider on an international NST?

Safety of girl members is our number one priority. To ensure that girls are safe on our international trips, we require that Guiders have experience with adjusting to a different culture, climate, jet lag, handling potential communications barriers and the unexpected incidents that often occur. Having Guiders without international travel experience in these roles introduces additional risk that we think could jeopardize safety. We recognize that this excludes some Guiders and while we regret that, we are trying to act in the best interest of the girls. Opportunities are available for Guiders without international experience to apply for domestic NSTs. (Please note: Linked to the challenges listed above, previous travel experience to the USA or to all-inclusive resorts does not meet the international travel experience requirement.)

Isn't it enough if one Guider on the trip has international experience? Why would both need it?

In the event that there is a crisis and one of the Guiders is not available to be with the group (i.e. one of the Guiders is at the hospital with a girl, and the alternate has not yet arrived), we want to make sure the second Guider is equally experienced.

If you have any other questions, please reach out to the National Travel Team at nationaltravel@girlguides.ca for additional support.