Insights on Travel from Costa Rica Expeditions’ Founder Michael Kaye and his Expert Friends.

Update: Guests helping local kids learn English

Last May and June I did a series of posts about a project to develop a method for guests at Tortuga Lodge to help local kids learn English.

My biggest concerns were that either the local kids, or the guests would not enjoy the process.  Those concerns turned out to be unfounded.  Nearly 2 months into the project it has become clear that both the kids and the guests love it.

Click here and you can get a very good idea of how it is going from an article in the Aug 20 edition of Costa Rica’s English language newspaper.

Now I have another problem.  We are going into our low season, which means that for the next 2 and a half months there will be too many days when we will not have any guests who are willing and able to help the kids.  We will continue the classes with one of our guides, but that is not the same as having a native speaker, and I am concerned that the kids will loose ground in conquering their shyness.

So I have decided to offer specials packages to the lodge at literally out-of-pocket cost.  The price for 3 days and 2 nights, including round trip flights from San Jose, 7 meals from breakfast on the day of arrival through breakfast on the day of departure and the two Word Adventure Sessions with all materials and all taxes, which would normally sell in the low season for $484, is $380.  The even bigger bargain is the extra night with 3 meals and an English session for $58 per person.  The normal low season per person price for an extra night and full board is $142.  We never charge for the English session.

The offer is limited to no more than 4 Native English speakers at a time.  All prices are in double occupancy.

Given the short lead-time I expect that most of the people who take advantage of this offer will be from Costa Rica’s English speaking community.  But please try to join us.  Please also tell anyone you know who would enjoy the opportunity and can get away on short notice.

Furthermore, we will surely  be making the same offer for next May, June, Sept, October and the first half of November.  So start making plans now.

Finally September and October are the least rainy months in Tortuguero and among the best months for fishing.  Early September is the best time for seeing both turtle nesting and hatching.  The hatching continues through October and early November.

Oh—and please send me your comments on this and the article.

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3 Comments and 1 Replies

  • At September 09, 2010
    11:38:36 pm
    miranda said:

    Sounds like a wonderful program! I am planning my 40th b’day trip in november and have not yet decided where to go-I will be traveling from Los Angeles with my husband, 2 daughters (age 6,2) and my mother-in-law-a retired elementary school teacher. This would be her dream vacation! Need some help figuring out logistics and cost, who should i contact for detailed information?
    miranda liu

    • At September 13, 2010
      6:26:28 am
      Michael Kaye replied
      to miranda:


      I’m delighted that you like the program. It is very close to my heart. The best thing for you to do is go to our website at and fill out and send us the Wish List. In the first comment box where it asks about “Personal Primary Trip Goal” mention that you heard about the Words Adventure from the blog and want to participate. On the basis of the Wish List we will assign our trip planner who is most qualified to advise you on your vacation.

    • At August 27, 2010
      3:49:36 pm
      Shannon Borrego said:

      Bravo, Michael! The program has taken off beyond anyone’s wildest expectations! Kudos to you for pursuing this vision. You are bringing tourists and locals together in a way that benefits both parties. I would imagine your program can serve as a model for similar endeavors around the world. I will certainly spread the word about your generous offer for travelers to Costa Rica in the low season.

      • At August 26, 2010
        8:26:35 pm
        Jennifer Fletcher said:

        Hi Michael,
        I found the article in the “Tico Times”very,very heart-warming & uplifting.Made my day.
        It looks as if your Great Plan is really working out.Such a splendid opportunity for the youngsters & also for the tourist-teachers who will get more out of it than they ever thought….

        Your reduced prices are a generous idea, too,& should attract people.

        In fact,it seems clear to me that you’re very kind & generous all round!