Who will I be studying with?
The on-the-ground program provider is Maximo Nivel, with whom InterExchange has collaborated for years on offering affordable Spanish immersion and other cultural exchange programs. They will be your program provider, there to support you from the school and throughout your time in Guatemala.
Will I have a chance to travel during the program?
Compared with the bustle of Guatemala City, La Antigua feels generally calm and quaint. La Antigua is a nice small city to explore on foot, sign up for a chocolate making class or take a small hike in the surrounding hills. There are numerous little cafes (best coffee ever!) and restaurants to enjoy during lunch breaks and in the evening. Since your weekends are free and you might like to add some time after your program for personal travel, we suggest a guided hike at a nearby volcano, relaxing at Lake Atitlan or even taking a surfing excursion to El Salvador. Ask us for suggestions!
How are the Spanish classes structured?
Choose group or private classes or a combination of both. You will learn from teachers with master’s degrees and/or certification in teaching Spanish and over five years of experience. Classes focus mostly on speaking and listening but will attend to your particular goals as well. In addition to classes you’ll also have the option to join English-Spanish language exchange sessions with local English learners in one-hour sessions. If you stay with a host family they can help you practice during breakfast and dinner, too!
Can I arrive whenever I want?
Yes, but you’ll want to be there by Sunday so that you’re ready to head to your orientation Monday morning. If you’d like to arrive a day or two early and set up accommodation, no problem!
Can I stay with a friend?
Yes. Please indicate that you’re traveling with a friend when you sign up.
Do I have to use your accommodation options?
No, but if you plan to book accommodation elsewhere you might want to speak with the team so they can advise on distances, getting to/from your classes, etc.
I’m a vegetarian – will there be vegetarian food available?
Yes, host families have experience with vegetarians/vegans and various special diets, but please let us know in your application so we can find you the right placement.
How will I get around in Guatemala?
Walking is a great, free option in La Antigua, but buses are also very inexpensive and support staff will provide info on using public transportation or taxis. If you’d like to organize a trip on the weekends we can help with that too!
How can I stay in touch with friends and family back home?
You’ll have access to a computer room and high-speed internet at school. We recommend bringing a tablet or other personal device, as computer access can be limited during busy hours, but WiFi is available. There are also plenty of internet cafés available throughout La Antigua. You can also purchase a local phone plan while in La Antigua.