[Global Gatherings] FAQ Orlando Work Week

Hello all,

Another WorkWeek, another FAQ, if you have more inquiries, questions, doubts, please reply to this topic. The first part is copied from the previous FAQ for the workweek:

What is a workweek?
A workweek is a meeting where all the Mozilla Employees get together to meet in person with their team mates, to work on their projects, to plan, and to discover more about the objectives and the goals of the organisation for the next quarters… It’s also an opportunity to work across teams, to identify shared priorities and to build a broader understanding of Mozilla.

What are the objectives/goals?
The main objective is the opportunity to work in person teams that usually works remotely. This is very much a “get work done” event. Also is the occasion to learn about the objectives of Mozilla for the next quarters, and align all the teams under those goals.

What is the selection criteria?
Each team in Mozilla has a limited budget, and they have to select just a few volunteers. The criteria depends on each team, and also depends on the objectives or goals that they have for the next quarters. We also placed a process for sign up if you want to attend (which is already closed). More information: https://wiki.mozilla.org/Participation/Globalgatherings2015#Selection_Process

How many volunteers are invited?
For the Orlando Workweek, around 110-120 only.

How often we have these Workweeks and where?
Starting 2015, the idea is to have 2 work weeks per year.

I’ve been working with X team and they didn’t select me, even after I made important contributions.
It could be that the team you’ve been working with doesn’t have the budget to invite volunteers, or can only invite a few. We encourage you to have a conversation with the team(s) you work with to better inform both of you for upcoming events.


Now we pass to the Logistics questions:

1) When the WorkWeek will take place?
We suggest to take a look at the wiki: https://wiki.mozilla.org/Coincidental_work_weeks/2015_Orlando/volunteers
The event will take place in Orlando, Florida (USA) between the 7th and 12th December. Arrival date should be on the 7th for those who has up to 8 hours timezone difference. Departure will be on the 12th. If you want to extend your stay, Mozilla won’t cover any extra costs related to that.

2) What is covered by Mozilla?
All meals, travels and accommodation costs while the workweek takes place. All food are included during the event. There will be shuttles to take people from the Airport to the hotel, and vice versa.

3) Does Mozilla covers Visa fees?
Yes, we will be covering costs related to visas. Please contact Francisco for more information.

4) How will be the process to request reimbursement for visa fees?
If you are a Rep, you only need to file a budget request through the standard process. There’s already an event page, so you can include it in your request. If you are not a Rep, please contact a Rep in your country, or in your region to help you out. If that Rep doesn’t know how to help you, or refuse to help you for some reason, please contact Francisco Picolini.

5) What papers do I need in order to request the visa?
Each country has different requests, please contact your local US embassy in your city for more information. If you have to request something special, please contact Brianna or Francisco.

6) The embassy says that I need a booking confirmation, when I will get it?
A booking confirmation will be send automatically to all the participants, if you need it urgently, please contact Brianna or Francisco.

7) How do I book the flights?
You should receive an email with a link to book the flight, if you haven’t received yet, please contact Francisco Picolini. On that link you will be requested to create an account. Note that if you already have an account, you will have to access with your details.

8) I’ve requested an account in Egencia, but I haven’t received anything yet.
Note that the account authorization is manually, so don’t expect immediate replies, or an email on a weekend. Also, if you have already an account, you will be able to access with your user and password. If it has been more than 72 hours without a reply, please contact Francisco Picolini (franc@mozilla.com)

9) It ask for Traveler Group and department.
It’s ok to include MoCo Support service as traveler Group, and 1002- Participation as department, unless you know the code from the team that invited you.

10) There are 2 airports in Orlando, which one I should choose?
You have to select Orlando Intl (MCO), which is the one who has the shuttle service arranged by Mozilla.

1 Like

Now the Visa section, with some details:

11) Do I need a visa to enter the US?
Please, check if you need it in this page: http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en.html

12) Which kind of visa do I need?
Ideally the type of visa should be B1 or B2. You can find the details in the Official webpage, or in Wikipedia. You will come as Tourist, which means that you only need a temporary visa.

13) It says that my country is part of the visa waiver program, what does this means?
If you are listed in these countries: http://www.esta.us/visa_waiver_countries.html, or if you have a passport expedited in these countries, you can apply for an ESTA (https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/), please note that there are several sites that says that you can process your ESTA. Please go to the official page, the fee is 15-20 USD. Mozilla won’t reimburse ESTA processed in other sites (usually the fees in these webpages are for 50-70 USD).

14) What specific costs related to request a Visa or ESTA are covered?
Only costs associated to process the papers. Which can include travel to the office (if you live far away, or if there’s no office or local embassy in your city).

15) What costs are excluded:
Since we are sending invitations with 2 months in advance, we won’t cover the following “extras”:

  • Fees associated to offices or agencies that process the visa for you.
  • Expedit/priority visas (we can do exceptions, but has to be reviewed)
  • Medical insurance (note that in some countries are “suggested” and in others is “mandatory” in order to process the visa. We will only reimburse in case of “mandatory”)
  • Passport (if you need to do a new passport, or if your passport is expired).

16) The embassy says that I need a contact person in US / the visa form ask me for contact details:
Please check that in the visa letter, all the details are included there. You can indicate Brianna Mark as contact person and the Mozilla office as an address (you can find also the phone number of the office in case you need it).

17) I’m under 18 years old, are the costs related to the visa of my guard covered by Mozilla?
Yes, exactly the same as stated above, we will cover only costs related to the visa, and won’t cover the “extras” already mentioned.

18) What would be the process to request the reimbursement?
Please check question 4 in the second comment of this thread.

19) I have the visa/ESTA already, do I need an invitation letter?
While we’ll only sending one visa letter, there are some countries who request an invitation letter or a letter that indicates or clarify the purpose of the travel. This information is already included in the visa letter. Please check if that letter will be enough in your local embassy. If you need more documentation, please contact Francisco or Brianna.

20) Ok, I have it all, all the papers, visa approved, what do I have to say at the US Borders?
While we know that the term “WorkWeek” can be tricky, you can’t say that you will come to work to the US, since you will need another type of visa. Like we suggested in Whistler, you can explain to the official that you will come to attend a conference called “WorkWeek”, which is a bi-annual gathering organized by Mozilla. You have been invited as a volunteer, and you will stay until (the date of your departure). You can give the visa letter to the officer, where he/she will include more information. Your main purpose for travel is “Pleasure/Tourism” (depends on the form that you have to fill).

1 Like

Thanks Franc, this is very helpful indeed!

After the flight has booked I got the message about ESTA authorization is required.
My country (Ukraine) is not listed here http://www.esta.us/visa_waiver_countries.html.
Do I have to pay for ESTA authorization to receive the tickets?
Is this payment reimbursable for countries, which are not listed?

Hi @apoli,

The message is an automated information (it also says that a valid passport is required).

If your country is not listed, means that you need to ask for a Visa. Egencia won’t ask or check to include any of this information on your profile… Visa or ESTA is required at borders control.

Please follow the first link: http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en.html to find more information about what you need for your Visa.

1 Like

@apoli, AFAIK there is no need apply for ESTA for Ukrainians. You should only have B1-B2 visa

Thanks for clarifying :slight_smile: