What age groups are appropriate for these programs?
The European Selects BOYS Tour is for Bantam AA and older players only. The European Selects GIRLS Tour is for U19 AA and AAA girls.
What kind of coaches can we expect for these programs?
The coaches for all our programs are current NHL, NCAA or Junior A coaches.
What kind of team's will we play?
All USJDP European Selects Tour teams will play local Junioren (Junior A/Midget Major ages) and Novizen (Midget Major/Midget Minor ages) teams. All teams will either be at the Elite or A levels, which equates to Junior A/Midget Major AAA - Midget Major/Midget Minor AA.
What kind of games?
Each game will consist of a 15-minute warm-up, three 20-minute stop time periods, and a zamboni break after each period. Sometimes, tourney games will differ. These games may consist of a 10 minute warm-up, followed by two, 25-minute stop time periods with a zamboni break in between.
How do I register for one of these Tours?
All interested players must submit the online USJDP Selects International Hockey Tour Application Form by clicking the green Apply Now! button at the top of this page. Upon receipt of the completed application form, the USJDP will contact each players’ coach for an in-depth player recommendation and evaluation. Acceptance on any of the teams will be based equally on character references and player ability. These tours are for the dedicated athlete interested in the individual development and exposure our tours provide.
Are meals provided?
Breakfast and dinner is included each day of the tour for all players. Please note that lunch is not included and only one soft drink is provided per meal per player. European customs do not encourage more than one soda per meal and all players are recommended to drink water while traveling and training. Please be aware of this while having lunch on your own.
Is transportation included?
All in country transportation is included and provided via private motor coach. However, if you plan to venture into town during some off time, public transportation, especially buses, are easy and convenient.
Is the Jungfraujoch trip mandatory?
This day is mandatory for all players traveling alone on one of our Switzerland Tours, and is voluntary for those players whose parents are joining us. The cost of the ticket for the Jungfraujoch is included for players, but is not included for parents. We have learned the hard way in the past that this is a good day for parents to grab their sons to spend a day off with them as some have either done the Jungfraujoch before, or want a day to themselves as a family. It is typically one of the only days without hockey so it is a good time for families to spend some time alone.
Where do the groups stay?
All players stay as a group with the coaching staff. All accommodations will have individual rooms that house anywhere from 2-10 players, and will be in the same section of the hostel/hotel as the coaches. Players may bunk with personnel of their choosing provided this does not cause conflicts or create havoc. However, this is not guaranteed at all locations due to changing room configurations. We will do our best to accommodate everyone's wishes.
How do we exchange money?
Money can be exchanged at all banks and airports, as well as smaller money exchange booths located in tourist areas. For the best rate however, try to do all your money exchanging at a bank. Using an ATM card, or paying for items with a credit card, is also desirable as that will get you the best rates. For exchange rates, visit www.x-rates.com. Do not exchange your money all at one time as you may not use it all and then you will lose doubly on the exchange back to USD.
How to call home from Switzerland?
The red SwissCom phones work the best. Enter the phone booth, pick up the receiver, dial 001, the area code & phone number, and then insert a credit card. It will hold it for a second to register and then tell you to pull it out. Immediately after pulling your card out it will connect. It is very fast, easy and cheap. A 15 minute call is approximately 3 CHF, or around $2.00-2.25 depending on the current exchange rates.
What is the weather like in Switzerland?
Summer Tours: The weather this time of year in Switzerland is warm during the days, high in the mid to high 80's, and cool at night, especially in the mountains.
Spring Tours: Spring time in Switzerland is much like spring time in the Rockies, it could be 20 and snowing, or it could be 50 and sunny. Although at altitude (Engelberg sits at 3350 ft), it will still be cool at night.
What kind of spending money do I need?
As daily lunches are not included it is recommended that the players budget $25 USD per day for their daily lunch. Additionally, they should bring a little spending money as well for snacks or gifts. However, since the tour does include everything except lunch, they will not need much. $250 - $300, and an emergency credit card or debit card, should be enough.
What do I do with my sticks?
All players will have to check their own sticks all the way through to their final destination. Some airlines may try and charge you for a third bag fee for your sticks, however, this is not correct. According to FAA guidelines, checked hockey equipment equivalent to one bag includes a hockey gear bag and two hockey sticks in an exterior stick bag. If the person who is checking your bags tries to hit you with an extra charge, be sure to mention this regulation, as you should NOT be charged an extra fee for your stick bag. As a recommendation, I have found in the past that it is much easier to get a gear bag and a stick bag checked through if you do so curbside. Traditionally, I have found them to be much easier to deal with on this issue.
Is skate sharpening available?
Skate sharpening is few and far between. It is HIGHLY recommended that you sharpen your skates right before you leave just in case. Every effort will be made to get them sharpened at each venue, but it is not always available.
In order to enjoy travel to, and within Europe and Scandinavia, all travelers, including infants, require a valid passport. When applying for your passport from your government’s passport authority, make sure you know how much time to allow for delivery, and be sure to give yourself extra time so that it arrives before your planned departure. If your passport expires 6 months after your return home, consider applying for a new one before your trip to Europe, as some countries may not accept a passport so close to expiration. Once you receive your passport, be sure to sign it and fill in the personal notification data immediately. Make two copies of your passport and other travel documents, leave one at home and carry the other with you.
Check if you require a Visa to enter the Countries? Most European Countries do not require a Visa
Please read the following great article entitled "Travel Insurance Coverage - To Insure or not to Insure", from acclaimed travel guide Rick Steves.
Money & Currencies:
Credit or debit cards are best as Travelers Cheques are not always welcome. Taking money out of an ATM is very smart as this often results in the best exchange rates and lower transaction charges. Before leaving, be sure to inform your bank and credit card company where you will be traveling, as well as the length of trip and the countries that you will be visiting.
Any electrical device you wish to bring on your trip can be used with the aid of an electrical travel kit with variously configured plugs. You will need to bring along at least one adapter plug to fit the sockets in the country you are visiting, and a power converter if the voltage is different from that at home. Europe is usually 220 V at 50 Hz. Most electrical equipment is labelled with its range of voltage and sometimes can operate within either power range, but you will still need an adapter plug for the wall sockets.
Clothing .... DO NOT OVERPACK
Summer – more or less the same as in Canada and the USA but again be prepared for some rain.
All countries have an emergency number in case you should need the attention of the police, fire or medical/ambulance services. The European Union countries all share a single European emergency call number – 112 – in addition to their individual numbers, and 112 is also the emergency number used for GSM cell phones worldwide. When dialing 112, the operator will speak in both the language of the country you are calling from as well as in English.
Shopping & Taxes:
Check for more information: http://www.premiertaxfree.com. International shoppers may be entitled to tax refunds on the purchases they have made, so keep your receipts, ask what forms you need to fill out when you make your purchases, and be prepared to show the goods to Customs officials at the airport or other point of departure from the Europe Union.
Traveling in Europe is generally very safe; however, all travelers should take certain common sense precautions to protect themselves from petty crimes, such as pick pocketing, which are common in well-frequented tourist areas everywhere. Stay alert and walk with confidence. This can be especially challenging following a long flight when you're jet-lagged, so take extra care upon your arrival when you may not be quite awake and at your most alert! In hotels, use the in-room safes or those at the front desk to ensure your valuables are truly secure.
Crowded buses and trains are prime places for pickpockets – avoid the crowds, or if you cannot, take extra care in well-frequented tourist areas. Keep your possessions close to you and consider using a money belt to carry documents inside your clothing for maximum safety. Also, it’s a good idea to keep money in more than one place. Avoid wearing flashy jewelry or clothing that might attract attention. Make a photocopy of your tickets, passport, traveller’s cheques, credit cards and IDs and keep them separately from where you keep your valuables; it is also a good idea to make extra copies that you can leave with someone back home.
Tipping in Europe is not the same as in Canada and USA. The prices are all final prices with everything included. The wages of Restaurant Services are included in the price but if you want to leave a tip, then you do not need to leave very much... for example, if the bill is 24.60 Euro, most would give 25 Euro and a good tip would be 1 more Euro for a total of 26 Euro.