Servas is purposeful travel. Travelers and hosts are united by their desire to help build world peace, goodwill and mutual understanding by participating in visits with individuals and families of diverse cultures and backgrounds. During a typical visit, usually lasting two nights and three days, a traveler participates in the daily lives of their host: running errands, discussing social concerns, cooking a meal, visiting a school or lending a hand in a workplace. Pictures and Stories
Using a Servas host list, travelers can contact a farmer in Italy, a carpenter in Oregon, a teacher in Uganda- all with a shared commitment to international friendship and hospitality as a cornerstone of world peace. Servas host lists show hosts' contact information, languages spoken, interests, professions, the places they have lived and traveled and the amount of advance notice they require.
There is an annual fee to become a Servas traveler and a small, refundable deposit for host lists, based on the number of lists you request. After being interviewed and approved as a Servas traveler, you will receive a validated Letter of Introduction that is good for 12 months, and host lists for the areas in which you plan to travel.
Servas welcomes people of all ages and backgrounds. Travelers under 18 years of age must travel with their parent or guardian and are free of charge. You may travel alone, with your significant other, with friends, or even your whole family!
Servas hosts offer simple accommodations to approved Servas travelers for visits usually lasting three days and two nights, allowing host and traveler time to begin a genuine exchange. Visits can be extended beyond the two night minimum at the invitation of the host. Hosts are not obligated to accept a traveler but welcome Servas visitors when they have the time, energy and interest to receive guests.
As a Servas traveler, homes and hearts are open to you around the world as well as here in the United States. On an international Servas trip you can go beyond the tourist experience and get to know the people- not just the places you visit. You are welcomed in more than 15,000 homes in over 125 countries around the world, as an "ambassador of peace." You may also choose to travel in the U.S. and explore the diversity within our own country. More about Travel Programs
A traveler application and information packet, along with a list of interviewers, are included in your application materials. You may either access them on an HTML page or download them as a PDF file (viewable in Adobe Acrobat Reader). Download Traveler Packet PDF OR Apply Online Here
You can also download a brief summary of US Servas. Download History of Servas PDF
Locate an interviewer near you. US Interviewers
Please visit our Rates and Fees page for a full list of traveler membership rates and (express) postage fees.
Note: These materials are intended for use only by applicants currently in the United States. If you are outside the US, you should contact a Servas representative in one of our member countries. List of Member Countries
Letters of Introduction are valid for one year from the interview date and travelers must renew annually to keep their memberships active. Travelers that have traveled recently need not submit letters of reference, but all renewing travelers must contact their interviewer. Renewal reminder postcards are mailed out quarterly. If you have any questions please contact the office. Download Traveler Packet PDF OR Apply Online Here
To register as a traveler takes approximately three weeks. You will obtain and prepare your application materials, meet with an interviewer, and following the processing of your materials, receive your host lists. Here is an outline that explains the steps in detail.
Over the past fifty years, our members around the world have enjoyed the friendships they have formed through Servas' worldwide network of travelers and hosts. The system works remarkably well, but only when travelers remember to do the following:
We encourage you to read the complete list of traveler responsibilities, which will ensure that you are a Servas traveler that will always be welcome by your hosts. Traveler Responsibilities
Hosts also have responsibilities to adhere to, and you may read them here. Host Responsibilities
We expect that you will have an interesting and enriching experience by becoming a Servas traveler, and we encourage you to share what you have learned, as well as read other's stories.
When you first joined as a traveler you were given a traveler report form. Use this form when returning your host lists. It gives you an opportunity to request a refund, ask for additional lists, tell us about your interview experience and request membership materials. Most importantly, it gives you a chance to tell us about your Servas travels—what you shared with your hosts, if you encountered any problems and a memorable experience! Download Traveler Report Form PDF OR Apply Online Here
When you are back from your trip and have finished using your borrowed host lists, you may return them to the office and request one of the following options:
Submit stories of your Servas travels for use in our newsletter and on our Pictures and Stories page!
Perhaps you found yourselves in Brazil discussing the role of sports in society, or in a small Italian town talking about films, or in a home in China learning varying views on American politics. Or maybe your Servas homestay was part of other peace-building or volunteer activities. We would like to hear about it all! In so many instances, the bonds created from the host-traveler experience have created life-long friendships. Spread the word of your fascinating experiences, and invite us all to share your encounters. Submit a Story!
To promote contact on a local level, US Servas encourages members to arrange seasonal events and monthly dinners for area hosts, travelers and friends. These get-togethers give members an opportunity to get to know one another, share their Servas experiences and introduce Servas to new potential members. If you do not know your local interviewer, visit our US Interviewers page.
There may also be an event that you can get involved in, so visit our Community Page for the latest information.
Major problems between hosts and travelers are rare, however, striving to overcome even small problems between host and traveler with patience and goodwill is an important expression of Servas' efforts to promote peace. If a problem arises that cannot be solved between the host and the traveler, the situation may be brought to a local representative or to the national office staff who can offer advice and indicate what further action is necessary. Complaints Procedure