Summer courses for kids & teens in Germany: FAQ
If you have questions we´ll be glad to answer them anytime. Some, we hope, we can answer already now:
Arrival and pick-up for the summer courses in Germany
1. Who will meet me at the airport?
2. What time should I arrive?
3. Who can I talk to in case I have a problem?
4. What if my parents would like to bring me?
Who will meet me at the airport in Berlin or Munich?
A member of GLS staff will be waiting for you at the train station or airport, when you arrive - right in front of your gate or the platform on the station, and the big GLS sign, he or she will have, will make it easy for you to recognize him or her. To ensure your transfer, please let us know the exact date, time and airport/station of your arrival as soon as you made your travel arrangements. Please note: Berlin for example has 3 airports and several train stations, so don´t forget to tell us, which one you´ll arrive at.
Please note: if you book the Berlin Summer College: here transfer is not automatically included in the price, but you cvan book it at a surcharge
What time should I arrive?
For all programs arrivals and departures are on a Sunday.
Please try to arrange your arrival between 9am and 6pm. If you arrive before 8am or after 10pm or not on a regular arrival day, transfers are available as well, but you will have to pay a surcharge.
Who can I talk to in case I have a problem?
You´ll get an emergency mobile number together with the confirmation of your booking, so you can call GLS staff any time. Both teachers and tutors will live with you in the camp, they will take care of you all around the clock. So you´ll definitely have somebody to help you all the time.
What if my parents would like to bring me?
No problem, just let us know: when you enroll, you´ll receive an infoset with detailed descriptions, how to get to the camp by car or train.
How can my parents contact me in Germany?
1. Can they call me at the camp?
2. What´s the best time to call?
3. Can my parents stay with me at the camp?
Can they call me at the camp?
There is a GLS office in the school, which is open daily from 9.00 am – 4.00 pm; and your parents can leave a message for you by fon, fax or email, and there also is an emergency mobile number - all of these phone and fax details you´ll receive after enrolling together with our confirmation of your booking. There are public phones as well – please understand, that on the office phone your parents can only leave messages for you: we recommend that you call them back either at a public phone or agree on a time to talk later.
What´s the best time to call?
We kindly ask to avoid calls during lessons in the morning, between 9.30 am and 12.15 pm, and also late at night. (Germany may be in a different time zone than your country). As you´ll be out a lot, with our activities and excursions, you parents won´t always be able to reach you in the house, but if they call while you are out, we´ll definitely let you know, so you can call back.
Can my parents stay with me at the camp?
We can try to find your parents a place to stay near by, but they won´t be able to live with you within the camp: All of the kids, whether from countries as far away as Venezuela or near by as Italy, come by themselves, because they want to have fun with each other and spend some time away from home. Your parents don´t need to worry though, as there is GLS staff on campus to take care of everybody.
Accommodation and meals
1. Can I choose my room or room mate?
2. What type of food do you serve?
3. What about bedtime and other rules?
Can I choose my room or room mate?
If you want to bring a friend, we can accommodate you in the same room, if you want us to. Usually, however, we try to accommodate you with someone of a different nationality: That way you aren´t tempted so much to speak your own language instead of German.
What type of food do you serve?
Food at the camp may not be the same as you are used to at home: Southern Europeans for example are often surprised that Germans eat so much for breakfast and often like to cover hot meals with a sauce all over it – so even if you may prefer the way your parents cook, please try to be open and enjoy the German way of preparing food.
You´ll have all your meals at the campus cafeteria. On excursion days you will receive a packed lunch.
- Breakfast 08.15 am – 09.15 am: continental breakfast buffet with milk, chocolate, coffee and tea
- Lunch 12.30 pm – 01.30 pm: meat or fish with potatoes or pasta, vegetables or salad, dessert or fruit
- Dinner 06.00 pm – 07.00 pm: choice of snacks, sandwiches and hot dish (e.g. soup or pizza)
Drinks served are mineral water, tea and ice tea. Additional afternoon and evening snacks are provided. You can buy extra-snacks in between at a kiosk on campus. We kindly ask you to let us know if there are special wishes regarding your diet e.g. vegetarian.
What about bedtime and other rules?
Curfew times may vary from camp to camp, you will find detailed information about that in the Infoset. Please follow the instructions of GLS staff anytime in order to secure your own health and well-being. There are some rules that are valid in every camp:
- Alcohol and drugs are strictly prohibited on campus. Students younger than 16 are not allowed to drink alcoholic beverages or smoke in public according to German law - please respect that and don´t smoke in your bedrooms. Should a student break these rules, he or she will be sent back home prematurely at his or her own expense.
- Please note that you can do any type of sports including swimming only when accompanied by GLS staff. Whatever sport you´d like to do - we need your parents´ permission for all types of sport
- If you are 12 or older, you will have the opportunity to go shopping when on excursions and to separate from the group in pairs or a smaller group of 3 - 4 children. In this case, too, we need a written permission of your parents
Your time table - classes and teachers
1. When do lessons start in the morning?
2. Who will be my teachers?
3. How will you know what level is best for me?
4. Will I get a certificate?
When do lessons start in the morning?
Classes usually take place between 9 am and 1 pm. Exact hours may vary from camp to camp.
Who will be my teachers?
All GLS teachers are German native speakers with university degrees in German language or literature. They are both teacher and coach for you – please let them know whenever you need additional feed-back or advice. German is the only language spoken in class, and the method we use is the communicative approach: You´ll get all the corrections, grammar and vocabulary you need, but our priority is on active speaking.
How will you know what level is best for me?
A placement test prior to course start will help us to assess your level of German. Important for your placement in a group is your level of German, not your age. Usually, however, it turns out that you will learn with others of a similar age.
Will I get a certificate?
Yes, you will get a certificate, stating not only the length and type of your course, but also your level of German.
1. Who will do my laundry?
Laundry and cleaning services
Laundry service is included: Your laundry will be collected and washed at least once a week. Please note that we can only accept laundry with a name tag. You will get your clothing back after 2 or 3 days. Please note that GLS cannot accept liability for any damages or loss of your clothes. Your bedlinen and small towels will be provided by us and changed once a week. Your room will be cleaned 3 times per week. But you are responsible for keeping your own room tidy.
What you should bring
1. Do I have to bring books?
2. How much pocket money should I bring?
3. Where can I leave my passport and other valuables?
4. What type of clothes will I need?
Do I have to bring books?
No, you don´t, we provide all teaching materials, and they are included in the price. All materials are selected to the requirements of your age group, students between 8 and 15 years.
How much pocket money should I bring?
As entrance fees, all activities and public transport are included (only exception: Berlin Summer College), you´ll need extra money only for your own use, i.e. soft drinks, ice cream, shopping etc. We suggest an amount of € 50 per week. Your rooms cannot be locked, but there are lockers and a safe where you can store your pocket money and valuables.
Where can I leave my money and passport?
We recommend that you deposit your passport and flight ticket at the GLS office. We recommend not to carry all your money on you when we do excursions and please don´t leave your camera, walkman or gameboy in your room. We can guarantee for valuables only if you deposit them at the GLS office or in the safe. On one of the first days after your arrival we will take you to a bank where you can change your money into €, if you need to do that. There´ll be further occasions to change money on excursions.
What type of clothes will I need?
Temperatures in summer are in the 20ies and occasionally go up to 32°C in Germany, but evenings can be quite cool. In addition to standard clothing, please bring
- comfortable shoes, fit for long walks
- sport shoes for indoor use
- a sweater
- a waterproof coat or jacket
- clothing where you don´t mind if it gets dirty
- bathing wear and bath towels
- if you like, additional big towel
Medical care and insurances
1. What if I get sick?
2. What kind of insurance should I have?
What if I get sick?
GLS staff with first-aid experience will be on campus to take care of minor injuries and illnesses. Whatever happens – if you don´t feel well or have injured yourself -, please contact your teachers or tutors immediately. In cases more serious, local doctors are available for you.
What kind of insurance should I have?
Please make sure that you bring proof of health insurance. With health insurance you will have to pay for medical treatment first, but will then be reimbursed at home. As GLS is not responsible for any costs of medical treatment, we strongly recommend taking out an insurance package with health, third party liability, luggage and accident insurance.
Please note that proof of third party liability and health insurance is mandatory. GLS offers a combined travel insurance policy including comprehensive health, accident, personal liability and baggage insurance for damage incurred abroad. All necessary forms and documents are provided by GLS upon arrival.
How to book, visa etc
1. What happens after I sent my booking?
2. What if I need a visa?
What happens after I sent my booking?
You´ll hear from us within 24 hours (except Saturday and Sunday) with a first confirmation, and you´ll receive an official confirmation with info on camp location, accommodation, phone numbers etc after the deposit (in case of visa: full payment) has been accredited to our account.
What if I need a visa?
If you need a visa, we´ll send an invitation together with the official confirmation of your booking. The invitation, however, we can issue only after having received full payment from you. In case of a visa rejection - which really is very unlikely with deadlines kept and necessary documents all handed in - the payment will be refunded except a handling fee of Euro 200.
GLS cooperates with educational travel agents in many countries and most probably there is someone representing GLS in your country, too. If you want personal consultation in your own language they will be glad to help. They provide all services like help with visa procedures, insurances and travel information. And you can book all GLS programs with them. Just send us an email: Let us know your name and address with tel, fax, eMail, the program you are interested in and we will forward your name to a GLS representative in your country who will contact you.