Frequently Asked Questions

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Where can information on Course Fees be obtained?
Prices are provided by way of printed Quotations at the Open Days.

Where do the learners stay?
We can accommodate 35 girls in our women’s residences. Boys can select suitable accommodation from a number of private providers situated around Sondela or in Bela Bela – contact details are available at the Open Days and the providers often attend the Open Days to escort aspiring parents and students to visit the available accommodation at their premises. All students, whether live-in or live-out, must provide their own meals – a Staff /Student Canteen is available – more information and prices are available at the Open Days. Daily transport to Sondela via our bus can be arranged.

What are the entrance requirements?
Gr. 12, the standard Matric Certificate. Age: 17-24. Declaration of Special Needs and Medical Conditions upon Application for Entry, to be considered by the Academic Board.  Also see Question no. 12 below.

How do you enrol?
You can enrol at an Open Day by paying the Registration Deposit. This deposit of R1 500.00 is payable when you accept the Quotation by signing it, and a Tuition Deposit of R7 000.00 is payable before end of December for the end of January enrolments and before 31 May for participating in our annual July enrolments. We will discuss all the payment options for the balance with you at the Open Day.

When does the training start?
We have a January, as well as a July Intake every year. For the January Intake, we start during the last week of January with an induction programme aimed at introducing learners to their new environment. Actual training begins during the first week of February. In order to complete a full year of practical experience, training will finish at the end of January in the following year for the January Intake and at the end of the next June for the July Intake. The July Intake progresses similar to the January one: The induction programme is conducted at the beginning of July with the actual training per curriculum commencing mid-July.

Do the learners get paid during the year?
No – although learners are busy in the workplace, the workplace experience is the “Work Integrated Learning” component of the leaner’s studies and they do not get paid as this working while being coached forms part of their all-important workplace experience and exposure to the workplace. A small stipend is however available for Specialization and Professional Development Year learners

How often can a learner go home?
If possible, and no weekend event is happening, it is one weekend “on” and one weekend “off”. “Off” implies being able to be off Sondela from Friday at 15:00 up to Tuesday morning at 07:30. The hospitality industry requires long hours and resorts are at their busiest during holidays and weekends. Furthermore, in the industry, personal plans often have to be changed to accommodate new events occurring at a resort. It is therefore important that the learners experience this during their training so that they are under no illusion regarding the working hours that will be required of them in future. All learners have to participate in the events Sondela offers on certain weekends; therefore, sometimes it will only be possible to take “weekend leave” on the following available weekdays. Learners will however be informed in time about their on or off time.

What clothes do the learners wear?
The learners wear the same uniform/clothing as the Sondela staff. They get two sets of clothes as part of the quotation but they can order more when they enrol. The chef trainees get special kitchen uniforms as part of the quotation. During the first 4 weeks of the year, learners will be in the Workplace Orientation Course and they will be issued with Sondela T-shirts, to be worn with their own denims or khaki trousers.

Will the learners get job placements after completion of their initial training?
The best learners could get employment at Sondela if there are positions available, but all learners are urged to develop their photo evidence so that they can supplement their CVs. As our learners have workplace experience, the chances of finding work are better than usual. The learners’ confidence is also better developed which will improve their chances of finding work. It is a known fact that it is easier to find work if you have workplace experience.

What are the implications of withdrawing from the course or from the Sondela Residences during the year?
You initially sign a contract to pay the agreed fees. Therefore you will be responsible for the full amount owning as the training staff has been appointed to conduct training based on those fees. A cancellation clause therefore forms part of the contract with the implication of a penalty being imposed in case of a cancellation. This applies to both tuition as well as to accommodation contracts.

Who do we contact for arranging to attend an Open Day?
Sondela Academy, Tel: 014 736 8860, E-mail: info@sondelaacademy.net

Which language medium is used on the training courses?
All the leaning material, hand-outs, forms and presentations are done in English. This is done to assist learners to completely master English, the language of the tourism industry. No exceptions will be made to this.

Do we get a discount for paying the full amounts up front?
Yes – For full payment of the total course fee before end of January  for the January Intake or before end of July for the July Intake:   5% on the total Course Fee.

Please note that no discount can be applied to the Accommodation payment.