Deal Breakers

Before you get too far into planning for your summer trip, we want to make sure you’re aware of the “deal breakers” (the stuff that will get you sent home). One of the major factors in running trips throughout the world is the confidence that Builders following our rules will stay safe. Although they may seem silly or extreme, all of these deal breakers are in place for a reason. So, take some time to read through and are good with them before you commit to a Humanitarian XP trip, because they are non-negotiable.

The "3's Actually Not a Crowd" Rule (The Rule of Three)

Whether it be at the worksite, a sightseeing activity, church, or even just running into a public bathroom, all Builders must be in a group of at least three people, always. No matter where you are, find at least two Builders and stick together. Like glue. Like super hot glue you kind of hate at first but then love when you realize how useful it is. More than anything, it’s about always having one another’s back. Take care of your people by making sure that no one in your group is ever alone. If someone in your group needs to go to the bathroom, decide now to be the first one to jump up and go with her. This rule has saved lives at Humanitarian XP more than once. Love each other enough to never leave someone in your pack vulnerable. This rule also prohibits anyone from pairing off. . . need we say more?


Actually, we will say more. Let us be clear here. . . we are, in the abstract, pro-kissing (in the right settings). But on an Humanitarian XP trip, pairing off becomes a serious distraction to why we’re there: to help people. Listen. Kissing (or pairing off) totally changes the group dynamic and affects everyone on the trip. Trust us. So we are asking you to keep your focus on serving, and even if you meet the girl or boy of your dreams, please try to restrain yourself from kissing them until you get home. After that, it’s entirely up to you.

If you decide you simply can’t wait to kiss someone on your trip, you’re welcome to make that choice. Just know that you’ll be choosing that instead of staying on your trip (i.e. you’ll be flying home early to your own cost and never coming back to Humanitarian XP). That’s one expensive kiss! But hey. . . no judgement.

Sneaking Off

No matter how confident you feel going off by yourself in another country, or how good that treat from the market next door sounds, sneaking off is a serious risk. Like, buried-landmines-and-poisonous-snakes-type risk. You aren’t in Kansas anymore.

Health Code

We’ve chosen to follow the same code as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. No drugs, vaping, smoking, alcohol, black tea, or coffee. We’ve had to send a few Builders home for this in the last few years, and it is always so sad for everyone. If you’ve had a problem with substance abuse, think about this trip as a chance for a clean start.

Secret Phones

At the airport, your Trip Leader will collect all the phones. Once in a while, a Builder sneaks a secret phone in their luggage. It seems like no big deal, but you’d be stunned at how that one choice can actually totally wreck your whole experience – and not just yours, but your whole group’s. It’s damaging enough that this year it landed in the dealbreakers section. Know that at any point on the trip, your parents can reach you in an emergency through your Trip Leaders within just a few minutes, and if you need to talk to your parents once or twice, your Trip Leaders can always make that happen as well. And pssst…you’re actually going to love it. Here’s why…

It’s a literal Digital Detox. 

Studies show that teenagers spend nine hours every day on various social media apps on their phones. Hold up—NINE. HOURS. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.

You can fly to Peru in that amount of time! Make no mistake, we love social media and we believe it does so much good. However, one of the greatest blessings of these trips is the fact that you will have ZERO access to your phones, which allows you to be totally present in the experience. Breathe. You will be okay.

You may not believe this now, but the “Digital Detox” will be one of your favorite aspects of the trip. At the airport when your Trip Leader asks to hold on to your phone, you may experience a few moments of utter panic and may forget your identity as a human being—but you’ll survive. Without the distraction that carrying your phone will bring, you will be able to completely focus on the service you are providing and the relationships you are building with the other members of your group. Thoughts of home, school, work and stress can be left at the departure airport allowing you to “leave the real world behind” while you are serving for two and half weeks or ten days. Never underestimate the power of a Digital Detox. You’ll leave behind stress, distractions, and open up a lot of opportunities to strengthen your relationship with your Humanitarian XP family, your Savior, and your Heavenly Father.