Participant FAQs

A range of Frequently Asked Questions that we have received from participants that might be useful to you as a participant on one of our expeditions.

  • How can I book a place on an open expedition?

    All of our open expeditions can be booked and paid for online – you can therefore confirm you expedition place and receive joining information immediately. Take a look at the DofE – For Individuals – Open Expeditions pages on our website or search for the level of award, dates or locations that are relevant for your in our Calendar to bring up all expedition dates that meet your needs.

    If you can’t find what you’re looking for then do get in touch for a chat (call 01433 651449) or email us through the website Contact page or on [email protected]

  • We only have an expedition team of the minimum size with 4 participants - can you still offer us a tailor-made expedition?

    Yes we can.  Our prices are quoted per person per day so that we can tailor your programme to meet the exact needs of your and your team. Our prices are based on a minimum team size of 6 but as we would like to try and offer expeditions for everyone, including smaller teams, we are happy to provide the expedition but pro rata of 6 places between the 4 of you.

    You must ensure that everyone is aware that if one of you needs to withdraw from the expedition and your team size drops below the minimum number of 4, the whole expedition team would be withdrawn and the expedition stopped.

    If you are in any doubt, it might also be worth looking at joining one of our open expeditions as a team of four rather than opting for a tailor-made expedition. This gives security of potentially having others to join with if one person has to drop out at any time so that the rest of your can continue.

  • I would like to complete my expedition in a location that is not mentioned on your website. Is this possible?

    Yes of course.  The locations on our website are only a selection of the places where we can run expeditions.  For inspiration on other expedition locations follow our Facebook page. You can also use the Contact form to get in touch and discuss your idea with us or call (01433 651449) or email ([email protected]). We like to hear your ideas and are always keen to explore new areas, as long as they meet the terrain requirements for the level of award that you are undertaking.

  • Can my payment be refunded if I cannot attend or have to withdraw from my expedition for any reason?

    Unfortunately not. AE will not be able to offer you a full refund but we may be able to offer you a partial refund or transfer to another expedition date (subject to an administration charge to cover transfer of logistics bookings) – please see our Booking T&Cs for full details.

    We try and help wherever we can but always recommend that you take out cancellation and curtailment insurance to cover your expedition. Such insurance is available at relatively low cost and can be very handy if you do not make it to your expedition or have to withdraw at any time during your programme.

  • I have found other expeditions that are cheaper. Why are your prices set at the level that they are?

    Our prices are a true reflection of the cost of running a safe and quality programme that ensures that you get the most out of your chosen activity.

    We use only qualified, experienced professionals who are friendly and approachable to work with you and all of the group kit that our use is of a high standard, giving you the opportunity to carry light weight tents that will stand up to any weather conditions that you might face.

    We are more expensive than some providers but cheaper than others but feel that we strike a unique balance of price, safety and quality to give you a great time.

  • Who will my instructor be?

    Please take a look at our instructor profiles on the Meet The Team pages of our website to learn a bit more about your instructors and who to look out for.

    Your instructors will be there to meet you when you arrive at your expedition venue, and be with you right through to waving goodbye at the end so you can be sure of our support from beginning to end. All instructors are selected for their professional qualifications, experience and, importantly, their friendly and approachable manner – a warm welcome is therefore guaranteed.

  • How heavy should my rucksack be? Is there a weight limit?

    We want to ensure the safety of all participants on expedition, especially when carrying a loaded rucksack full of kit.

    The DofE state that your rucksack should not weigh more than 25% of your body weight. We have sets of hand scales available to weigh your rucksack before you set off but ask that you come to your expedition with an accurate idea of what your bodyweight is (in kilograms). We have a limited number of sets of bodyweight scales in case you forget but please don’t rely on this as they may not be available on every expedition.

    You need to remember that you will have your personal share of the AE group kit that is distributed to your team to factor into your weight allowance. Group kit includes: tents, stoves and pans, gas canisters for stoves, group shelter, waterproof maps, group first aid kit. Your personal share of the group kit given to your team should weigh a maximum of 4kg.

    To give you a rough guide of the weight limit of the items that you pack to bring with you from your kit list you should therefore calculate:
    25% of your body weight LESS 4kg = max weight available to pack.

    Ideally you should aim to pack as lightly as possible while still having all of the things that you need and that are listed on the personal kit list for your programme. Ensure that you don’t pack any extra or unnecessary items and look for lighter alternatives wherever possible. Your instructors will be able to help advise you and answer any questions that you have. If you have questions in advance of your programme, use the Contact form on our website and we can help point you in the right direction.

Need more information?

Contact us