Frequently Asked Questions - Guardian

Can I serve as a Guardian if I don’t have a veteran to go with?

Our “One More Tour with Honor” would not be possible without the help of our Volunteer Guardians. We keep Volunteer Guardian applications on file and send an availability check, via email, approximately 60 days before a trip we may need you for.

Are there age limits to be a Guardian?

Yes. Guardians must be between the ages of 18 to 72 and be in good physical health. They must be capable of assisting veterans in and out of a wheelchair and pushing a veteran in a wheelchair up a slight incline. A spouse may not serve as a guardian unless clinically trained for required medical care.

If I am a friend or family member Guardian when must I apply?

The timeframe for submitting your application, if you are going with a veteran who is a relative or friend, is not as critical but must be completed shortly after your veteran is informed of a firm travel date. You may complete the application online at www.cvhonorflight.org or print out the application and mail it to us. Your form asks if you are applying to travel with a specific veteran, and their name. You will be linked automatically to that veteran.

What are my responsibilities as a Guardian?

Guardians play a very significant role on our trips and are responsible for helping to ensure every veteran has a safe and memorable experience.. Essentially, they act as the veteran’s safety “always only an arm’s length away bodyguard”! Duties include: physically assisting their veteran at the airport, during the flight, on and off tour buses, at the hotel and at the memorials. Guardians also remind veterans to take medications, ensure that they are dressed for the weather and they stay hydrated throughout the trip. Guardians get veterans where they need to be at the allotted times (airport, dinners, bus, etc.) A full itinerary is provided to Guardians and veterans two weeks before the trip.

Do Guardians have to pay a fee?

Guardians make a $1,000 tax-deductible donation to Honor Flight to cover their own travel expenses. Your pre-negotiated Guardian travel package includes Allegiant Airlines charter airfare direct to BWI/2 nights hotel/all meals/tour bus fees/snacks/jacket & bag (actually, over a $1,600 value) This donation is only due and payable once they have been confirmed to go on a trip. We will not accept any payment from the veteran. Payment instructions will come, via email, at least 30 days before the trip.

Can I have my own room?

Due to room availability, expense and safety all Guardians will share a room with their Veteran in a spacious Hilton Hotel room with two queen beds. Women "guarding" a male family member (father or grandfather) are expected to be the roommate. Non-family volunteer guardians of the opposite sex will room with a guardian of the same sex and a staff member will room with your veteran.

I am also a veteran, do I still pay my own expenses if I serve as a Guardian?

Yes. Although you may opt to apply as a Veteran and travel at no cost with other veterans from the era you served. Each trip seems to have over a dozen guardians who have served.

How many veterans will I be responsible for?

You will be assigned to one veteran. In rare cases, you may be asked to accompany two veterans if they are able to walk unassisted. Please note that while you will be assigned a specific veteran(s), Guardians work as a team and assist other Guardians and veterans as needed.

How else can I help my Veteran?

Take photos. While the veterans are busy taking pictures of the memorials, it is wonderful to have the Guardians take photos of the veteran throughout the day. Photos that show the veterans enjoying the sites are the ones most cherished by family and friends. Engage. You will have the opportunity and privilege of hearing firsthand accounts of the war to end all wars! Ask questions as appropriate and listen. Some of our veterans have fought in the Battle of the Bulge, survived Pearl Harbor, landed on the beaches of Normandy, stormed Iwo Jima and engaged in a multitude of notable and critical battles. The camaraderie of this trip will entice many to tell their stories. Speak with the spouse in advance of the trip. Many of our veterans have not been separated from their spouses for quite some time. It’s nice to reassure beloved husbands and wives that the veteran is in very capable hands.

Will Guardians receive training?

A two-hour Guardian training session is held a week or two before the trip, normally on the day or weekend the trip orientation meeting (“Get-2-Gether”) is held. You will learn our safety procedures, learn how to work as a team with other guardian to assist with wheelchairs, receive tips for a successful trip, and meet the staff. A makeup session is normally held a couple days before departure for guardians traveling from out of state.

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