What are the requirements to apply for a short-term trip?

OM is composed of people from many national, ethnic and denominational backgrounds. We are looking for faithful followers of Jesus who desire to join with others in reaching the unreached and marginalized around the world. Those wanting to join OM on a short-term outreach should meet these

  • Be a follower of Jesus Christ for at least one year
  • Have a growing relationship with Jesus Christ
  • Be actively involved in a local church
  • Agree with OM’s Doctrinal Statement
  • Be willing to trust God to provide for your financial needs
  • Be at least 18 years old by departure dates of outreach

If you do not meet all of these requirements or if you have general questions before proceeding, please ask a Missions Coach.

OM USA can only accept applications from American citizens, US permanent residents (green card holders), and those with American student visas. All other nationalities need to visit the international OM website (www.om.org) to find the office nearest you.


How long does the application process take?

All applications must be submitted at least 90 days before the outreach begins. Completing the actual paperwork only takes 15-20 minutes. Because each person’s application requires customized care and decisions they are all handled individually and the length of time required to process them will vary. It is possible that you could receive your acceptance notice within a few days. However, some may take a few weeks.


Do I need any training or experience to take a short-term trip? 

The short answer to this is, no! However, OM USA expects all short-term participants to have the attitude of a learner and the heart of a servant. Whether this is your 1st or 50th trip, we believe there is always something new to learn about serving on foreign soil with people from other cultures. Once you arrive at your destination, your OM leader will provide you with site-specific training based on your particular outreach.


What if a husband and wife want to apply together?

Both spouses will need to fill out an application but with separate references (they can both use the same pastor as a reference). Each person will pay the $80 application fee.


What does the posted cost include?

The posted cost includes all ministry expenses for your outreach, background check, transportation within the destination country, accommodations, food and administrative costs. The posted cost DOES NOT include airfare or visas and emergency medical/evacuation insurance.


Can I pay for the trip myself?

How you pay for your trip is your decision. However, we strongly encourage participants to build a support team of friends, family members, and churches that will get involved with advancing God’s kingdom by giving to someone they know personally and committing to pray for you.


When can I start raising my support?

You may begin raising your support ONLY AFTER you have been notified by your coordinator that you have been accepted for your outreach.


How do I know how much money I have in my account for my outreach?

Your coordinator will keep you informed by sending periodic gift updates.


Do I need a passport for my short-term trip?



If I don’t have a passport how and when should I apply for one?

Immediately! Please see details under “International Travel”.


What is a visa and do I need one for my short-term trip?

Please see details under "Visas".


Can I withdraw from or change to different outreach?

If your plans change, please contact your coordinator as soon as possible. You are responsible for any fees incurred by OM caused by your changes.

If you wish to choose a different outreach, please contact your coordinator immediately. You will be permitted to switch outreaches only if room is available on the outreach you wish to join and that team accepts your application. You must have sufficient funds for the alternate outreach.


Can I arrive or depart earlier or later than the outreach dates?

The dates posted are the dates you are expected to arrive and depart at the outreach site. Should you want to arrive earlier or depart later from the country, the field may or may not be able to host you for the extra time so you would need to make other plans for your accommodations. Expenses incurred for additional days are the responsibility of the applicant and are not reimbursable.


When can I buy my plane ticket?

You may buy your plane ticket only AFTER you have been accepted for your outreach. This is for your own financial protection. We recommend that you purchase a refundable ticket OR purchasing trip insurance to cover last minute travel changes.


What should I pack for my outreach?

See section under "Packing".


Who is on my short-term team?

OM short-term trips are available to participants all over the world! You will be serving on a team with people from different nationalities, ethnicities, and denominations. Because of the diversity within OM and our international offices, we don’t know how many people will be on each team. On average, a short-term team will have 6 - 25 participants, but this varies by the type of outreach and time of year.

If there are other Americans participating in the same outreach with you, we can put you in contact with them via email, as long as all parties consent.


What is a typical daily schedule on a short-term trip?

See details under "Schedule"


Can I bring my cellphone/computer and will there be Wi-Fi available? 

Phone: In the major cities there will probably be Wi-Fi available, but if the outreach you are going on is not in a major city, there may or may not be access for you. Unless you have an international cell phone and activate an international calling plan with your phone company, you will not be able to use your cell phone. If you have a smart phone and there is Wi-Fi available, you would be able to use that, but your cell phone will only work as a phone if you set it up for international calling prior to leaving the States, and calls will be VERY expensive.

Laptop: For many reasons, we suggest you leave your laptop at home.


When is the best time to arrive at my outreach? 

Generally the best way to plan is to arrive at the designated location by noon on the first scheduled day of the outreach.