What age groups are appropriate for these programs?
The European Selects BOYS Tour is for Bantam AA and older players only.
What kind of coaches can we expect for these programs?
The coaches for all our programs are current NHL, collegiate, Junior coaches, hockey directors, and high school coaches all over the world.
What kind of teams will we play?
All RMHS European Selects Tour teams will play local Novizen (Midget Major/Midget Minor ages) teams. All teams will either be at the Elite or A levels, which equates to Junior A/Midget Major AAA - Midget Major/Midget Minor AA.
What kind of games?
Each game will consist of a 15-minute warm-up, three 20-minute stop time periods, and a zamboni break after each period. Sometimes, tourney games will differ. These games may consist of a 10 minute warm-up, followed by two, 25-minute stop time periods with a zamboni break in between.
How do I register for one of these Tours?
To be accepted on this tour, each player mustEmail RMHS a complete player report. Included in this report must be current year player team and stats, player size, position, shot direction, family contact info, and coach name and contact number. Upon receipt of completed player report, the RMHS will contact each coach for an in-depth player recommendation and evaluation. After speaking with each coach, RMHS staff will make a determination about each player and notify you of our decision within 2-3 weeks.
Are meals provided?
Breakfast and dinner is included each day of the tour for all players. Please note that lunch is not included and only one soft drink is provided per meal per player. European customs do not encourage more than one soda per meal and all players are recommended to drink water while traveling and training. Please be aware of this while having lunch on your own.
Is transportation included?
All in country transportation is included and provided via private motor coach. However, if you plan to venture into town during some off time, public transportation, especially buses, are easy and convenient.
Where do the groups stay?
All living arrangements are as a group, including coaching staff. All accommodations will have individual rooms that house anywhere from 2-10 players, and will be in the same section of the hostel/hotel as the coaches. Players may bunk with personnel of their choosing provided this does not cause conflicts or create havoc. However, this is not guaranteed at all locations due to changing room configurations. We will do our best to accommodate everyones wishes.
How do we exchange money?
Money can be exchanged at all banks and airports, as well as smaller money exchange booths located in tourist areas. For the best rate however, try to do all your money exchanging at a bank. Using an ATM card, or paying for items with a credit card, is also desirable as that will get you the best rates. For exchange rates, visit www.x-rates.com. Do not exchange all your money at one time as you may not use it all and then you will lose doubly on the exchange back to USD. Last note: Coins play a very important part in the Swiss monetary system. Some are as much as 5 Swiss Francs (CHF), so please do not disregard them just because they are coins.
Can we call home?
The red SwissCom phones work the best. Enter the phone booth, pick up the receiver, dial 001, the area code & phone number, and then insert a credit card. It will hold it for a second to register and then tell you to pull it out. Immediately after pulling your card out it will connect. It is very fast, easy and cheap. A 15 minute call is approximately 3 CHF, or around $2.75 per minute depending on the current exchange rates.
What is the weather like?
The weather this time of year in Latvia is warm during the days, high in the mid to high 80's, and cool at night, especially in the mountains. I have attached a simple Packing List to guide you along on what to bring.
What kind of spending money do I need?
As daily lunches are not included it is recommended that the players budget $30 USD per day for those meals. Additionally, they should bring a little spending money as well for snacks or gifts. However, since the tour does include everything except lunch, they will not need much. $250 - $300, and an emergency credit card or debit card, should be enough.
What do I do with my sticks?
All players will have to check their own sticks all the way through to Latvia. Some airlines may try and charge you for a third bag fee for your sticks, however, this is not correct. According to FAA guidelines, checked hockey equipment equivalent to one bag includes a hockey gear bag and an exterior stick bag. If the person who is checking your bags tries to hit you with an extra charge, be sure to mention this regulation, as you should NOT be charged an extra fee for your stick bag. As a recommendation, I have found in the past that it is much easier tog et a gear bag and a stick bag checked through if you do so curbside. Traditionally, I have found them to be much easier to deal with on this issue.
Is skate sharpening available?
Skate sharpening is few and far between. It is HIGHLY recommended that you sharpen your skates right before you leave just in case. Every effort will be made to get them sharpened at each venue, but it is not always available.
Tournament & Friendly Game Formats:
The RMHS Selects team will play 5 games during the trip. The friendly game formats will be 3 20 minute stop periods. Each game we will have a 15 minute pre-game warm up.
All team members are expected at the arena 60 minutes prior to game time to prepare, stretch, tape, etc. After warm up is complete, both teams will line up on opposite blue-lines facing each other and raise their sticks in the air in a gesture of sportsmanship and goodwill. At that time, the captains will exchange gifts, and then proceed to shake the referees hands, wish them luck, and then do the same with the opposing coaches. Please note the score clock counts up, not down, so it will start at 0:00 and count up to 20:00 by period end.
Team Locker Room:
We will have our own private bus the whole time we are in Finland. This is to be treated with the upmost respect at all times. We will have to transport our gear to and from the rink and the hotel that we are staying at. The rinks have private showers in the locker-rooms for all the hockey players. There is also a public restaurant and skate sharpening available. I would suggest 2-4 sticks depending on how fast you go through them and you must have a mouthguard.
Team jerseys and matching socks will be provided. RMHS Selects Hoodies will be provided for use at team events that may not require a polo shirt and khakis. The coaching staff will notify the team of these events. It is not necessary to wear these to the team dryland sessions, but we do request you wear a hockey t-shirt of some kind.
Skate sharpening will be available but It is HIGHLY recommended that you sharpen your skates right before you leave just in case. Every effort will be made to get them sharpened at each venue, but it is not always available.
Since your child is traveling out of the country to play hockey, we need to make sure their medical needs are taken care of. The health insurance you carry for your child is the primary coverage when they play in tournaments and camps. Before your child leaves August 7th, you need you to contact your health insurance agent/provider and ask a couple of questions.
1. If your child is injured out of the country, can they seek medical attention (i.e. can your child see a doctor while in Switzerland and will the coverage follow)? If the answer is yes, please have your provider fax a document saying where your child may or may not be treated.
2. If the answer is no, please ask if your child is injured out of the country, will the treatment of the injury be covered when back in the states (i.e. physical therapy, surgery, etc.), and how to go about receiving the reimbursement.
It is very important to address and pre-authorization for medical treatment before you child plays out of the country. If you don't find out, and your child does get injured, you will be responsible for their medical bills. Health insurance will usually follow yourself and your dependents out of the U.S.A. or Canada, but you need to ask your agent/provider. Please make sure you document the conversation for your records in case someone tries to tell you different.
At the time of an injury, we will try to obtain approval and payment for all treatments to your son while we are there. If we are not successful with this method of payment, we will submit the credit card information you provide on the Tour Health & Release Form as an emergency form of payment. If neither of these methods work, RMHS, and Bryan Smith, will pay for your child's medical costs while in Switzerland. These fees will have to be paid immediately upon our return, and all bills/receipts will be provided. You will then be able to provide these bills to your insurance provider for reimbursement.
Hospital VISIT POLICIES:
A 300-500 CHF deposit will be required for any visit to the emergency room. This will be charged to the credit card provided on the health form (all players must have the listed credit card with them on the trip), with the rest of the bill to be sent to you at a later date.
The only way for insurance to work is if you can get your insurance company to sign off on covering everything, a full 100% of potential charges, ahead of time in writing. If this letter is not included with the health form, the player can attempt to get a copy of this form faxed to the hospital we are at, otherwise, they will have to pay the deposit amount as outlined above and be reimbursed for these expenses by your insurance company upon your return.
It is HIGHLY recommended that you purchase Trip Insurance prior to the trip. This insurance is not just for a canceled trip, but also covers the players health costs, lost flights and lost baggage. Most importantly however, it also works when your son receives an injury just prior to the trip preventing him from going and includes flight costs. A company we have had good luck with in the past is Travel Guard International, and they can be reached at 800.826.1300, or Travel Guard. They have proved very easy to work with in the past, have a great track record and an easy to use website and application process.