Outward Bound requires full disclosure of all medical and criminal history. Confirmation of your enrolment is subject to approval from the Outward Bound NZ medical screening team. Read our Participation Guidelines here.
Your safety and welfare is our primary concern, however, you do participate at your own risk and there are times without direct staff supervision. Our courses are designed to be mentally, emotionally and physically challenging, with long days and a good night’s sleep not guaranteed. Activities occur in all weather conditions and can include off-track tramping, camping (sometimes alone), kayaking, running, sailing, swimming, rock climbing, and high-ropes.
Although we have procedures in place to minimise risk, none of these risks can be completely eliminated. When undertaking any activity, you will be briefed on the risks and how to manage them. There is a chance you could get a cold, stomach illness, blisters, sunburn, exhaustion, wasp stings, infected cuts or insect bites, sprains, or some other injury, and may be asked to sit out certain activities.
There have been no major life-changing injuries at Outward Bound in over 20 years, however, serious risks can never be completely eliminated. These include death or injury from falling, burns, hypothermia, heat stress, drowning or road accidents. To reduce the likelihood of a serious accident we have a robust externally audited safety management system, which includes trained staff, up-to-date weather forecasts, robust communication protocols, modern equipment, and emergency procedures.
Your personal information will be held confidential to Outward Bound, in accordance with the Privacy Act (2020), for the purposes of Outward Bound courses and associated administration, including promotional activities. You have the right to see all information held by Outward Bound and may ask at any time for that information to be corrected. You authorise Outward Bound the right to send a copy of your course report to your course fee sponsors, including employers if requested.
You authorise Outward Bound the right to use your name, comments and images (video footage or photographs) that are obtained in relation to your Outward Bound participation and to disclose this information to third parties for marketing and public relations purposes; these materials will remain the property of Outward Bound. You grant Outward Bound permission to contact you by email, including a regular e-newsletter and other updates.
Surveys – for research purposes
The Outward Bound Outcomes Survey (OBOS) has been developed by Outward Bound International (OBI), the international organization that provides oversight of the global Outward Bound network of Schools. This, along with the Outward Bound NZ Personal Effective Questionnaire (PEQ) are designed to evaluate impact and effectiveness.
Responses collected from these surveys will be used only for research purposes by Outward Bound NZ and Outward Bound International (OBI) and will only be presented as collective information in reports, articles or publications. All responses will remain anonymous and participant particulars will be held with strict confidence.
Thank you for supporting us by participating in these surveys and, by doing so, assisting OBI and OBNZ to ensure that our programs continue to impact and change the lives of more people around the world.
Drugs and Alcohol
Outward Bound has a strict no-smoking and no-vaping policy. No alcohol or non-prescription drugs are permitted.
If are not able to meet the fitness criteria for your course you may be asked to leave – for the safety and benefit of you and your watchmates. It is therefore important that you are prepared for your course before you arrive.
Your Outward Bound medical form must be completed by a medical doctor or nurse practitioner no more than 90 days* before your course, and returned 8 weeks before your course start date. You will be sent a medical form later in the enrolment process.
*Mind Body Soul, Classic, and Leaps & Bounds course participants’ medical forms are valid for 180 days, unless told otherwise.
Confirmation of your enrolment is subject to approval from both your doctor and Outward Bound; this is to ensure your and others’ safety, and quality course outcomes for all.
If you are attending one of our 5 Day Professional courses, you don't need to complete our Medical Form with a doctor. Instead, you will need to simply complete our Medical Declaration form yourself.
Your booking may be cancelled or you may be sent home from your course at your own expense if you give false information, withhold relevant information, or don’t update us with any new relevant information, unless permitted by law.
Willing to Participate
Outward Bound is an adventure. For the benefit of yourself and other course participants, you must be willing to fully participate in your course, comply with all instructions, and respect others, their beliefs and belongings. Otherwise, you may be sent home at your own expense.
To the maximum extent allowable by New Zealand law, Outward Bound is not liable to you for injury, damage, delays, or other additional costs you incur. Also, for our international participants, these terms and conditions and your participation in our courses are governed by New Zealand law. You are therefore subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of New Zealand courts.
Payment & Refunds
Paying your course fee
Full payment is required 8 weeks before your course start date. Course fees are in NZ dollars and are GST inclusive. For support with fundraising head to our funding page.
Your full course fee may be transferred only once to another course date up to 30 days before your original course start date. Transfers are not applicable to scholarship funding provided by Outward Bound. Any additional transfers will incur a fee of $749 per transfer. Transfer requests within 30 days of a course start date will be handled on a case by case basis.
Refunds, cancellations & departures policy
Your course fee, less your $749 deposit, is refundable up to 30 days before your course start date. Deposits are non-refundable except for medical reasons, at which point a verified medical certificate is required within 7 days of cancellation to be eligible for a refund. If you cancel within 30 days of your course starting, your full course fee is not transferable or refundable. Cancellations must be received in writing i.e. email.
If you depart due to an injury or illness* incurred on course, and you have completed less than 70% of your course, you will receive a pro-rata refund, e.g. you will be refunded for each day of your course you did not complete, less your deposit. If you have completed 70% or more of your course, you will not receive a pro-rata refund.
If you have received Outward Bound scholarship funding towards your course fee or you are participating in any custom design course, refunds are handled on a case by case basis.
If you depart early or are sent home from your course due to behaviour or motivation barriers, your course fee is not transferable or refundable
If you depart your course due to an undisclosed existing medical or mental health condition, your course fee is not transferable or refundable.
*Due to the critical setup phase of the first three days of your course, if you fall ill and need to be isolated during the first three days of your course you will not be able to continue your course. In this instance, you will be eligible for a pro-rata refund as detailed above.
Full payment of a Professional course fee is due by the 20th of the month following the date on your invoice. Course fees are in NZ dollars and are GST inclusive.
Fees are refundable up to 45 days prior to the commencement of the course, less an administration fee of 10%. Fees are non-refundable except for medical reasons, at which point a medical certificate is required for cancellation.
Sickness on Course
Outward Bound actively takes steps to prevent the spread of any infectious illness during all courses.
You must contact Outward Bound if you have any illness in the days prior to course start - our screeners will advise you whether it is still the appropriate time to attend.
Participants or staff with mild cold symptoms will be asked to wear a mask when indoors.
Any participants or staff displaying flu or COVID-19 like symptoms will be asked to take a Rapid Antigen Test.
Anyone producing a positive test result will be asked to isolate until one of the following occurs:
- 5 days have passed since symptoms began
- a negative test result is produced
- they have been symptom-free for 24 hours
*Confirmation of your enrolment is subject to approval from both your doctor/nurse practitioner and Outward Bound. This is to ensure your safety, the safety of others, and quality course outcomes for all.
Please do not book travel or confirm any plans to attend until you are notified that you have been medically cleared.
- I have read the above information and I understand that there are risks associated with participating in some course activities and these risks cannot be completely eliminated. Risks exist in these activities that may result in serious injury or even death.
- I am willing to fully participate in my course, comply with all instructions, and respect others, their beliefs and belongings.
- I understand that, to the maximum extent allowable by New Zealand law, Outward Bound is not liable for any injury, damage, delays or other additional costs that I incur. If I am an international participant, these terms and conditions and my participation in Outward Bound is governed by New Zealand law; I am therefore subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of New Zealand courts.
- I understand that, except as expressly permitted by law, if I give false information, withhold relevant information, or do not advise of any new relevant information, and that if I do not comply with the above Terms and Conditions, my enrolment may be cancelled or I may be sent home from my course at my own expense.
- I give consent for Outward Bound to contact my next of kin (emergency contact) in the event of a medical necessity, and give consent for the disclosure of personal medical information to my next of kin.