FAQ & Resources
Pricing & Registration
  • What is the difference in the pricing options?

    We offer two forms of pricing: Cash Discount Price (for passengers paying by check, money order, or cash), and Standard Base Price (for passengers paying by credit card – Visa and Mastercard only). We show separately the package price and the gratuities.

  • Are tips and gratuities included?

    Yes. Catholic Travel Centre pre-collects all tips for all service personnel, including motor coach driver and tour guide. Passengers may, if so inclined, take up a “second collection” for the driver and tour guide at the end of the pilgrimage.

  • Can I book my own airfare?

    Sometimes passengers want to use their frequent flyer points for their airline flight, upgrade from economy class, ensure their seat selection, and/or deviate from the group travel dates (leave earlier or return later). For these and other situations in which passengers wish to book their own airline ticket, we offer a “Land Only” option, which includes everything except airfare, airport taxes, current fuel charges, and airport transfers.

    “Land Only” passengers book their own airline ticket independently and meet up with the group at the first hotel. Catholic Travel Centre does not offer assistance with individual ticketing requests for deviating passengers. Additionally, “Land Only” passengers must arrange any private airport transfers on their own. (See the “Airlines & Flights” section below for more information.)

  • If I cancel, can someone take my place?

    Substitutions are not permitted. The cancelling passenger is subject to the cancellation terms noted on the Terms & Conditions on the brochure.

  • Can I register on the phone? Will you hold my place?

    In order to register for the pilgrimage, you must complete and sign the registration form in the brochure, and submit that completed and signed form with your initial deposit. These items must be sent together.

    We cannot process a registration with payment and no registration form; nor can we process a registration form without payment. We do not take registrations over the phone, nor can we “hold” a reservation space without a completed registration form and deposit.

    Make certain the name on your registration form matches exactly your name as it appears on your passport – which is how your name will be printed on your airline ticket. The first, middle, and last name must match exactly. Any spelling changes are subject to expensive change fees by the airlines. Passengers with wrong names can be denied boarding. (See the “Passport” section below.)

  • What happens after I register?

    Within two weeks of Catholic Travel Centre’s receipt of your deposit and registration form, you will receive a reply from CTC, including an invoice. Final payment for the pilgrimage is due 90 days prior to departure. You will receive your final travel documents two to three weeks prior to departure.

  • What are my final travel documents?

    Your final travel documents will either be distributed at a group meeting several weeks before departure (meeting date / time to be advised later by your group leader), or will be shipped to you a minimum of two weeks before departure. Your package will include your airline electronic ticket (if applicable), daily itinerary, hotel information, rooming list, certificate of insurance (if applicable), plus your document holder, luggage tags, and name badge.

Travel Insurance
  • Do you offer travel insurance?

    Yes. Catholic Travel Centre strongly suggests the purchase of Travel Protection to help protect investment in the trip and to help provide medical coverage outside the United States.

    CTC offers two plans: a Group Deluxe Plan and a CFAR Plan (Cancel For Any Reason). The Group Deluxe Plan may be purchased up until the final payment is made for the tour. CFAR Plan payment must be received by CTC within 14 days of your original invoice date.

    For an Enrollment Form and a full description of coverage and exclusions, visit Catholic Travel Centre.

Passport
  • Do I need a passport?

    Yes. A valid passport is required for all international travel. If you do not yet have a passport, please apply as soon as possible.

  • How do I obtain a passport?

    United States citizens who do not have a valid passport must apply for one. Passport applications are available at the official U.S. Passport Agency website. You also may check with your local post office, as larger post offices carry the necessary passport application forms. In either case, fees are required to obtain a passport.

  • Do I need to supply a copy of my passport for my registration?

    Yes. You must provide this copy to Catholic Travel Centre 90 days or more prior to departure. Mail a photocopy of the photo page of your passport to Catholic Travel Centre, 4444 West Riverside Drive, Suite 301, Burbank, CA 91505. Or email a copy of your passport photo.

    Make certain the name on your registration form matches exactly your name as it appears on your passport – which is how names will be printed on your airline ticket. The first, middle, and last name must match exactly. Any spelling changes are subject to expensive change fees by the airlines. Passengers with wrong names can be denied boarding.

    It is highly recommended you photocopy the first pages of your passport, and keep the originals and copies separate while traveling. This will make replacement easier if you lose your passport while traveling. It is also useful to carry spare passport photos. Please remember to sign your passport.

  • Does my passport need to be valid beyond our trip’s return date?

    Yes. If you have a passport, please check to make certain your passport is valid for at least six months beyond the return date of your trip, and if not, apply for a renewal as soon as possible.

  • Do I need a Visa?

    U.S. citizens do not require a Visa for travel to Mexico. All non-U.S. passport holders should consult with the local Mexican consulate to determine if visas are required. It is the responsibility of such travelers to secure any required visa(s) before departure.

Airlines & Flights
  • Can I use my frequent flyer miles for my reservation?

    We regret that deviations from the group flight itinerary, specific seat assignments, seat upgrades, and bookings using “frequent flyer” program points are not possible within the terms of our group airline contract. If these items are important to you, we advise you register for the “Land Only” package.

  • What type of seating does my airline ticket provide?

    Airline tickets are round-trip economy class electronic tickets, which are non-refundable unless specifically stated otherwise. Tickets are not upgradeable using frequent flyer miles.

    Seating on the plane is done on a group basis only. Catholic Travel Centre cannot accommodate any individual seating requests. Any special airline seating requests must be made at the airport at the time of check-in. If seating selection or an upgrade to business or first class is important to you, we advise you register for the “Land Only” package.

  • Can I use my frequent flyer points, TSA number, and/or Global Entry number on my reservation?

    Catholic Travel Centre does not record frequent flyer numbers, TSA numbers, or Global Entry numbers for passengers. You must submit this information on your own at the airport at the time of check-in.

  • Can I earn frequent flyer points for my reservation?

    The fare on most group airline tickets is eligible for frequent flyer miles, so you may request mileage credit when you check in for your flight. You should already be subscribed in the frequent flyer program for the airline, or one of the affiliate airlines.

    To request frequent flyer credit, you need to present your frequent flyer number upon check-in at the airport. Catholic Travel Centre does not take frequent flyer information from passengers. Passengers need to keep copies of their own airline ticket receipts for follow-up with frequent flyer credit, as CTC cannot produce airline ticket copies after the group has departed.

  • What do I do if I have a special diet need for the flight?

    If you have a special diet request for the flight(s), contact Catholic Travel Centre at least 30 days prior to departure by emailing, and provide your name, departure date, and group name, along with your meal/diet request. Please be sure to place “special meal request” in the subject of your email.

  • What do I do on the day of departure for my flight?

    Check in for your flight three hours in advance. This allows time to check your luggage, obtain seat assignments and boarding passes, ensure frequent flyer miles and TSA and Global Entry numbers are entered for your ticket, and pass through security procedures to the boarding area. Airline seating is on a group basis, and individual seating requests cannot be accommodated prior to check-in. Special airline seating requests must be made at the airport at the time of check-in.

Luggage & Packing
  • How many pieces of luggage can I bring? What am I permitted to pack in my luggage?

    Passengers are permitted one piece of checked luggage and one carry-on each. This baggage allowance is required due to the limited storage capacity in the motor coach.

    In general, checked luggage specifications for the airlines are one piece of checked luggage per person with total linear dimensions (length + width + height) not to exceed 62 inches or 50 lbs, and one carry-on luggage per person.

    Baggage restrictions are airline policy, and subject to change without notice. Check with your airline prior to departure for updates or clarifications. For updated regulations regarding what you may pack in your checked and carry-on baggage, consult the Transportation Security Administration and/or call the airline directly.

  • Are airline baggage fees included in the registration price?

    No, airline baggage fees are not included in the registration price. Passengers are responsible for payment of all airline baggage fees. In this case, a $25 fee applies to each checked bag each way.

    While on a tour, porterage for one suitcase is included at hotels; however, passengers are responsible for their own luggage porterage at airports.

    Be sure to use the colored luggage tags you receive with your Final Travel Documents prior to departure. These luggage tags help hotel porters identify your luggage as part of the group’s.

  • What is the attire for the pilgrimage? What should I pack?


    Casual, comfortable clothing, along with a good pair of comfortable, already broken-in walking shoes, are best for general daytime wear. Nice jeans, or slacks if you prefer, are acceptable attire for men and women. Most churches do not allow visitors to enter wearing shorts or sleeveless shirts; pants are permitted for ladies.

    You may choose slightly more dressy attire for a special occasion, such as a celebratory dinner or an evening out. Gentlemen may want to bring a jacket for such an occasion. Leave valuable jewelry at home.

    An all-weather coat is recommended, plus a folding umbrella for a rainy day, just in case.

    Note that self-laundry is not available at most hotels.

    You also may want to download the “Traveler’s Packing Checklist” available in the Resources section below.

  • How should I pack my medications?

    Pack all medications in your carry-on luggage (not in your checked luggage), and be sure to pack a sufficient supply. We recommend you carry medications in their original containers that show the prescription label.

    It is helpful to make a copy of all prescriptions you are taking, and keep them on your person at all times in case of an emergency. If you require medical assistance, contact the hotel operator.

  • Will the hotel have a hair dryer? Do I need to pack one?

    Some hotels will have hair dryers, others will not. If you must have a hair dryer, we recommend you pack one, along with the appropriate adapter.

  • Do I need an adapter or converter for electrical appliances?

    In the United States, Mexico, and Canada, wall outlets deliver 110 to 120 volts. So you don’t need a converter (to convert the electric current). However, you may want to bring a plug adapter (for the socket) while travelling in Mexico. Although the voltage (current) is the same in Mexico as it is in the United States, outlets may be slightly different in some areas of Mexico. The adapter does not change the voltage; it adapts U.S. electrical plugs for use with Mexican wall outlets.

Money
  • What should I bring for money? Cash, credit cards, Traveler’s checks?

    We encourage you to use your credit or ATM cards. Visa & Mastercard are most widely accepted; American Express and Diners Club a bit less so. Traveler’s checks are no longer commonly used in international travel.

    Most travelers withdraw the local currency from ATM machines. Remember to call your bank ahead of time to advise of when you will be traveling to Mexico.

  • Do I need a money wallet?

    We recommend you carry a money wallet, which can be purchased at any luggage store. This is the most secure way to carry your money. Do not carry large amounts of cash.

Hotel Rooms, Meals & Other Items at Your Destination
  • Will I have a roommate?

    You will have a roommate, unless you requested a single room. (A limited number of single rooms are available for a supplemental price, shown as “Single Room Supplement” on the registration form.)

    A “Double Room” means two people sharing a bed. A “Twin Room” means two persons in two separate beds. Triple rooms are available in some locations upon request, receive no discount in price, and often the third bed is a rollaway bed or cot.

  • What meals are served each day?

    Please refer to the itinerary in the brochure for designations of which meals are included daily (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner). Menus are fixed, and unless noted otherwise, beverages are not included (wine, beer, soft drink, juices). Passengers pay the waiter for drinks. If you have a special diet request, when you arrive at the restaurant, ask your tour manager if the kitchen can accommodate a special request.

  • Is the water safe to drink?

    Even though in many countries the local water is safe, we always recommend travelers plan to drink bottled water. In Mexico, you may order sparkling / mineral water (“con gas”) or flat water (“sin gas” (pronounced “seen gas”)).

  • Will there be a lot of walking during the pilgrimage?

    Most pilgrimages require you to be on your feet and walking more than many of us may be accustomed to in our everyday lives. As a way to prepare for this pilgrimage, you may want to begin a regular walking routine if you don’t already have one. Please check with your doctor first before starting any new exercise routine.

  • What will the weather be like?

    The best place to get weather information for your travel destinations is via The Weather Channel.

  • Is there a time difference between home and where we will be?

    The time in Mexico City is Central Time, which is two hours ahead of Pacific Time. So, for example, 10:00 am in Mexico City is 8:00 am in Los Angeles.

    Note: All information subject to change without notice.

Resources
Frequently Asked Questions

Refer to the FAQs on this page (above), or download this PDF with all of the questions and answers in one document.

Download File
Beatitudes of the Pilgrims

Reflect and pray about your journey in the months before you depart. What intentions are you bringing with you? What should you leave behind? How will you open yourself to the blessings that await you?

Download File
Packing Checklist

Not sure what to bring? Use this handy Packing Checklist! You might not need everything on the list, but it’s a good exercise to read through and make note of items you want to pack.

Download File
LA pilgrims reflect on visit to Guadalupe shrine: ‘We really want to see our mother’

July 17, 2018 | Angelus News — “We are coming to be with our mother,” Archbishop José Gomez said as he celebrated Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe with almost 150 pilgrims from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles on July 7.

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Archbishop José H. Gomez’s homily during Mass celebrated at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe

July 17, 2018 — On July 7, Archbishop José H. Gomez celebrated Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe for 140 pilgrims from the Los Angeles Archdiocese and thousands more who were present to venerate the tilma (or cloak) of St. Juan Diego, which holds the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe that appeared in 1531.

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