Traveling alone at 16 years - The360 Travel

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  • Wednesday, December 18, 2019

    Traveling alone at 16 years

    Traveling alone at 16 years

    More really teenager, but not yet adult, your young 16 or 17 year old wants to go on vacation without you next summer. How can you help him prepare for his stay?

    Major, really?

    The age of majority may vary depending on the territory of residence in Canada and also the country of destination. It is therefore important to inquire about this point before organizing the trip.


    "Contact the transportation company [plane, bus, train ...] to check applicable policies and services for minors traveling alone," said Brianne Maxwell, spokesperson and media relations representative for Global Affairs Canada. She also advises to provide her child with a letter of consent, as it may be required by foreign or Canadian authorities.

    Or sleep?

    "Hotels do not accept minors unaccompanied by an adult," says Annie Prémont, owner of Voyages Prémont and Voyages Chartier. The solution? To leave accompanied by a friend already major, who will lodge in the same room, or to opt for the camping.

    "As an association, we do not impose guidelines on our members, but we guide them with respect to camping for minors. In general, we invite campsites that accept minors to request that the reservation be made by a parent or guardian. Some operators may also ask for a signed authorization from the parent or guardian, "explains Marilyne Champagne.

    This is also the case with the Quebec Open-Air Establishment Corporation (SEPAQ), "which authorizes a person aged 16 or 17 to book and stay at a camping pitch or network accommodation by calling the reservation center. "Says Simon Boivin, head of media relations at SEPAQ.

    In the case of youth hostels, most bookings are made online by one of the parents, but there is no legislation requiring this type of establishment to seek the consent of an adult. This implies that if a minor goes to a hostel to book directly, it is only necessary to rely on the seriousness of the person in charge of the place, who will decide whether or not to contact the parents.

    Organized trips

    Organized travel is an interesting intermediate option. "It takes six people to organize a group, including an adult. We match several groups of young people of the same age together, which creates beautiful encounters. These can be cultural, humanitarian or language trips, "says Mélanie McDonald, Director, Customer Experience at EF Voyages Culturels.

    Precautions to take

    "To leave a few days without leaving the country can be a good first experience. In any case, it is recommended to take the minimum amount of money with you, to leave the passport in a safe place, to have a photo of the passport and other important documents on your cell phone as well as paper photocopies, useful in case loss or theft, "says Annie Prémont, owner of Voyages Prémont and Voyages Chartier.

    Brianne Maxwell, spokesperson and media relations officer for Global Affairs Canada, recommends consulting Travel Reports and Warnings and staying connected on her website for the latest travel tips. In addition, check that your young person is covered by travel insurance.

    To reassure each other

    "Adulescents" can prepare a PowerPoint presentation of their program detailing their daily activities to present to their families. A good way for young people to optimize their stay and, for adults, to judge the organization and autonomy of their offspring. It is also a great opportunity for exchange, where parents can advise without giving direction.

    To stay in contact

    Cell phones help keep in touch. Check your packages and ask your child to give you news regularly, without asking too much. And above all, check that the charging cable is in the luggage!

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