Puerto Rico FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions
Our private trips can accommodate groups as small as 4 people and as large as 50+. Reduced pricing applies for groups larger than 10 people.
Yes! Puerto Rico is a United States territory and is governed by most United States laws. We always travel in groups, our staff have local knowledge, and we are invited by local pastors and communities. Quality hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies are a short drive away from all areas we’ll serve and stay. We do our very best to provide safe and healthy food, and we are experienced in leading teams. There are no guarantees in life, but we have never had a major safety issue in Puerto Rico or in any of our mission trips over 10 years in ministry. God calls us to go, and we go wisely and pray he will go before us and guide our journey.
Every year we work with a wide variety of denominations from teams in the US and Canada. Our base of church partners in Puerto Rico is varied as well. We strive to match the team with an appropriate church partner and location.
None are required. We ask that each person visit their own doctor or travel nurse to see what is personally needed to stay up to date. We have a list of recommended medications for those traveling to Puerto Rico in our trip handbook, but nothing is required by Thirst Missions. Generally Puerto Rico – a US territory – is a very safe and healthy place to visit.
All adult United States citizens only need a driver’s license or another official form of identification. Youth under 18 need a notarized letter allowing them to travel without both parents. No passport is required for United States citizens.
You know what’s great? When you arrive in San Juan you just walk off the plane, grab your luggage, and exit the airport like you would in any other US city. There’s no drama with immigration or customs!
No, but the whole trip is all inclusive from arrival in Puerto Rico until departure from Puerto Rico. Airfares vary too greatly to include in the trip cost. However, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the typical rates and flight options from most US cities.
Each group is responsible for booking their own flights that arrive within a reasonable timeframe so as to be ready at our pickup times and on the exact trips dates registered for. We have a travel agent we work closely with if you’d like help booking your flights.
Phones work in Puerto Rico with most major US carriers, so communication is generally easy and good. That being said we strongly discourage trip participants from using their calling, texting, going online, or on social media on their phones during the trip. Most people use their phone as their main camera, and that’s fine – just put it in airplane mode.
The ministry and relationships built when putting our personal devices down is eye-opening. Our philosophy is no news is good news. We encourage each group leader to to post trip updates and send pictures back home on behalf of each group. In addition we post pictures every day from every trip on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/thirstmissions. In the case of emergencies we have open and direct lines of immediate communication on every trip.
There is a section on the Individual Registration form each person fills out prior to the trip in which these needs can be listed. We read these over thoroughly and pass them along to our cooks. The food on our trips is plentiful and amazing!
We do our very best to accommodate all diets and diet restrictions, but please realize we are in a different culture without all the options we have back home. Feel free to bring supplemental food options with you if this will ease the anxiety of not knowing if there will be food which fit your tastes or diet.
Lodging will all be either a floor stay or a bunkhouse stay. A floor stay would be at a local church, which would require the team to bring air mattresses, pillows, and a sleeping bag or sleeping bag liner for bedding. (Think indoor camping!)
A bunkhouse stay would mean each person would have their own bunk with linens provided. Your consultant will let you know how to plan.
Most of our transportation during the week will be via bus or passenger vans. We will also do a fair amount of walking during the trip, so bring good walking shoes. We do have a smaller vehicle that we also drive everywhere for those who are not up to walking or need a break to get in air conditioning for a few minutes. Just let us know, we’re here to serve you!
Approximately 10% of each trip’s cost is dedicated toward materials. If you see a need and are interested in contributing during your trip, please see one of our staff members and we can talk through options for additional contributions of materials or donations. In order to keep trip costs down we ask that each participant bring the tools/supplies listed on the supplies list.
Not many, our trips are all-inclusive. The only additional money that most people spend is for souvenirs, offerings in church, extra snacks or desserts, and travel money for meals at the airports.
Feel free to bring a credit card if you feel you will want to purchase more expensive souvenirs. Most tourist and souvenir shops accept credit cards and the US dollar is used everywhere, there is no need to exchange money.
You can use Facebook and Instagram or email, call, or text just like you do with your friends back home. Staying in touch with new friends in Puerto Rico is such a blessing and benefit to going and serving.