Volunteering overseas often conjures up images of traipsing through jungles to remote island villages and hammering tooth and nail to help build schools. While those are both definitely options on a volunteering holiday, you may not have realised you could also teach disadvantaged kids how to surf or hand-rear baby lion cubs in South Africa or help out with panda conservation in China. Voluntourism projects range from building developments for disadvantaged communities, working with children and animals and so much more.

Volunteering overseas can involve a wide range of work; you could find yourself helping to support the health of communities in Peru to working on conservation projects in Costa Rica and joining community projects in India, South Africa or Ecuador. What it’s really about is doing a little good in the world – ultimately though, you’ll get just as much back as you give, if not more, in the grand scheme of things.

Whether you want to work with kids, animals or help with building and conservation, there’s a variety of options all over the globe from helping with kids in Thailand and Vietnam to feeding elephants breakfast in Sri Lanka, looking after game animals in Kenya and Namibia or getting involved in sporting activities with disadvantaged kids in Malawi. There's also orangutan conservation in Malaysia or helping with whale shark conservation in Mozambique. Whatever your calling, we can help sort out packages, visas, travel, insurance and accommodation details so you can start making a difference, sooner.

You can volunteer from two weeks to a month or more, and there's no age limit on giving back. What’s different about travelling as volunteer as opposed to a regular tourist is you get to know the local people and you get an insider view. It’s a big deal you’ve come out of our way and are giving your time, and your gesture won’t go unnoticed. In most cases, when volunteering overseas, your meals and accommodation will be sorted and any additional expenses will be left up to you, so it’s a good idea to have some extra savings for further travel after your volunteering endeavours come to an end.

They've been friends like forever

21 Things to know before studying abroad in America

28th April 2017

The years spent at university are some of the most stressful yet exhilarating and awakening of many young adults lives. It’s a time to meet new people and figure out who you are and what you want to stand for, as cliche as it sounds, it’s pretty true. One of the best ways to take that experience, amplify and accelerate it is through a student exchange program abroad. Not only do you get to go to...Continue reading →

Top 3 tips for volunteering overseas

  1. Look after yourself: Take malaria medication if it’s advised for the region you’re travelling to, and get all of the relevant vaccinations. Drink bottled water, carry antibacterial hand gel and wash your hands. Illness is usually prevented by taking a little extra care in terms of hygiene. 

  2. Learn some local language: A few words in the local lingo will get you a long way!

  3. Keep your eyes and mind open: Consider the impact of the photos that you take and the messages you put across.

They've been friends like forever

21 Things to know before studying abroad in America

28th April 2017

The years spent at university are some of the most stressful yet exhilarating and awakening of many young adults lives. It’s a time to meet new people and figure out who you are and what you want to stand for, as cliche as it sounds, it’s pretty true. One of the best ways to take that experience, amplify and accelerate it is through a student exchange program abroad. Not only do you get to go to...Continue reading →

A palm tree swing, is there anything more idyllic? Photo: Olivia Nysse.

4 Reasons why Sri Lanka should be on your bucket list

24th April 2017

Sri Lanka is an island nation located off the Southern Coast of India, It's often described as a foodie heaven, full of culture, breathtaking scenery, great surf and fascinating wildlife. In other words it’s Paradise!  Sri Lanka is country like no other, and with its tourism industry growing, now is the perfect time to go. Student Flights consultant Olivia Nysse shows us a few awesome reasons why...Continue reading →

10 San Diego Spots Your Instagram Feed Needs

20th April 2017

It’s all about sun-drenched coastlines, arts and culture in San Diego, California- so where better to visit than this Instagram-friendly metropolis. After all, it’s as much about the adventure as it is about keeping your Insta feed as aesthetically pleasing as possible. Add these photogenic spots to your bucket list and watch the easy likes roll in!  Keen to get travel 'gramming? No need to wait...Continue reading →

Hot dogs

70 Hot Dogs in 10 Minutes - USA's Best Eating Comps

17th April 2017

#Lifegoals right here: people cheering you on as you eat as much as you can with the possibility of a cash prize at the end of a bucket of fried chicken. The USA is the world’s hotspot for competitive eating, a legit sport that has its own administrative league and a calendar of juicy events.Even if you’re not up for stuffing your face for money it’s fascinating to watch others do so, and there’s...Continue reading →

Before you go - checklist:

The travel stuff

  • You'll need a visa appropriate for volunteering and travelling in your chosen destination;
  • Make sure your passport has at least six months' validity;
  • Travel insurance.

Personal admin

  • Let AEC (Australian Electoral Commission) know you’re leaving the country so you don’t get wacked with fines for not voting if there’s a local or national election on the horizon;
  • Make sure your drivers licence is valid for a while or apply for an international drivers licence;
  • Make copies of your documentation (i.e., passport, visas, birth certificate, etc.);
  • Photocopy all documents including insurance particulars, record the numbers of your credit cards, passport, and airline tickets and give to a responsible family member or friend at home;
  • Bring additional passport photos to ease the process of replacing a lost or stolen passport, or if other official documents are required once you are in your destination country.

Medical

  • Medical – do you have you have all the drug prescriptions you need, including your glasses/contact lens prescription (if you wear them)?
  • Pack a spare pair of glasses and contact lenses (if you wear them);
  • Have you had all the relevant shots/immunisations for the region you’re travelling to? And pack a list of the vaccinations you’ve had, just in case;
  • Visit your dentist to have a clean and checkup before you jet.

Finances

  • Tax – let the ATO know you’re leaving the country;
  • Apply for any credit and debit cards for travel;
  • Notify your bank and close any accounts that might charge you fees while you’re away;
  • Money – take approximately $AU200 with you as universal currency;
  • Pay off any debts you have with friends, family or financial intuitions;
  • Cancel any automatic withdrawals you have from your bank account.

Practical

  • Pack you camera, batteries and chargers;
  • Pack an extra memory card for your camera;
  • Buy an international power adaptor suitable for use in the region you are travelling to;
  • Invest in a good backpack;
  • Don't forget all your electronic chargers;
  • Note all your insurance and emergency numbers in a safe place;
  • Know the address of the closest Australian embassy in your destination, just in case.

The not-so obvious

  • Pack foam earplugs (to block out noisy travel buddies or offer to others if you’re the noisy one!);
  • Bring a good book or a novel based somewhere where you are headed - it adds an interesting perspective when you explore these destinations;
  • If you have more than one credit card, separate them. Perhaps store one in your wallet and the other in your luggage. That way if you lose one or the other you’ll still have access to cash;
  • Collect Australian souvenirs (those little clip-on koalas go down a treat) to give out to your students or kids you meet while volunteering;
  • Purchase a few educational games or children’s word association games;
  • Collect glossy catalogues and magazines with lots of pictures; these are hard to find in most developing countries and students love them!
  • Find out what is considered to be proper attire in your classroom or volunteering location, including shoes, as well as weather-appropriate clothing for your destination.

Teach English in Ubud, 14 nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a Shared House. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Social and cultural activi more..

$995*from

Helping Kids in Goa, 14 nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a Shared House. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Social and cultural activi more..

$995*from

Cape Town Township Kinder Kids, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share accommodation. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-country team and more..

$995*from

Outreach through Surfing, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share accommodation. Airport pickup. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-c more..

$1,145*from

African Wildlife Rehab, South Africa, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share accommodation. All meals daily. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in- more..

$1,695*from

South Africa Monkey Sanctuary, 14 nights

14 nights of twin-share cabin accommodation. Coach transfer to project location. All meals, except dinner on weekends. A more..

$1,795*from

Marine Biology, 4 weeks

28 nights of single-room accommodation, with shared bathroom. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, loca more..

$1,995*from

Great White Sharks, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share accommodation. Breakfast daily, most lunches. Return airport transfers. Arrival orientation bri more..

$2,095*from

South Africa Cheetah Conservation, 15 nights

15 nights of 4-share accommodation in Volunteer House. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, more..

$2,195*from

Big 5 African Wildlife Research, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share bunkroom accommodation in Project House. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure more..

$2,295*from

Cambodia Teach English to Buddhist Monks, 14 nights

14 nights twin-share accommodation in a Guesthouse. Orientation on arrival. Tuktuk transfer to and from the project dail more..

$995*from

Helping Kids in Cambodia, 14 Nights

14 nights twin-share accommodation in a guesthouse. Airport pick-up. Orientation on arrival. Tuktuk transfer to and from more..

$995*from

Teaching & Temples Tour of Cambodia

14 nights of twin or multi-share accommodation. Breakfasts daily, 1 buffet dinner. Guided Phnom Penh city tour. Entrance more..

$1,895*from

Tanzania Help Kids, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share accommodation. Breakfast and dinner daily. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk more..

$1,095*from

Building for Communities, 13 Nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a shared house (upgrades available). All meals. Airport pick-up. Arrival orientatio more..

$1,095*from

Chiang Mai Elephant Adventure, 6 nights

6 nights of shared accommodation. All meals. English speaking guide. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdes more..

$1,195*from

Surin Elephant Village Experience, 7 nights

7 nights of multi-share accommodation. Transfers outbound from Bangkok to Surin, and return transfers between Surin and more..

$1,389*from

Teach English in Surin, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share accommodation. Bangkok city tour. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local i more..

$1,499*from

Totally Thailand in 2 Weeks, 14 Nights

14 nights shared accommodation. Some meals. Airport pick-up. Transportation. Arrival orientation briefing. Social and cu more..

$1,499*from

Chiang Mai Elephant Adventure, 13 nights

13 nights in share accommodation. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-country team more..

$1,695*from

Totally Thailand, 4 weeks

28 nights of multi-share accommodation. Meals at elephant village. Bangkok city tour. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre- more..

$1,995*from

Bangkok to Angkor Voluntour, 14 Nights

14 nights accommodation. Breakfast daily, 5 lunches & 3 dinners. Airport pickup on arrival. Fully guided tour. Coach or more..

$1,995*from

Helping Kids in Borneo, 13 Nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a shared house (upgrades available). All meals. Airport pick-up. Arrival orientatio more..

$1,095*from

Orangutan & Tribes of Borneo Tour, 13 nights

13 nights of Shared Accommodation. All meals. Project donation. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, lo more..

$2,195*from

Borneo Orangutan Sanctuary, 14 nights

14 nights of Shared Accommodation. Self-catered meals, food ingredients all provided. Project donation. Arrival orientat more..

$2,995*from

Teach English in France, 4 weeks

28 nights private room accommodation with a host family Breakfast and Dinner from Monday -Friday. Breakfast, Lunch & Din more..

$1,145*from

Helping Kids in Fiji, 14 nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a Shared House. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Social and cultural activi more..

$1,195*from

Yasawas School Help, 9 nights

9 nights twin-share accommodation. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-country tea more..

$1,745*from

Fijian Youth Development Grad Trip (Volunteering), 8 Days

Return economy class airfare to Nadi including prepaid taxes. 7 nights accommodation in multi share dorms. Breakfast eve more..

$2,199*from

Giant Panda Care in China, 6 nights

2 nights dorm-share accommodation. 4 nights twin-share accommodation. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-depar more..

$1,195*from

China Paid TESOL Placement, 5 months

5 months of twin-share accommodation. All meals (Mon-Fri only). Arrival orientation briefings. 4 & a half months paid te more..

$3,995*from

Costa Rica Turtle Conservation, 8 nights

8 nights dorm-share accommodation. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-country tea more..

$1,195*from

Helping Kids in Vietnam, 13 Nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a shared house (upgrades available). Airport pick-up. All meals. Arrival orientatio more..

$1,195*from

Helping Kids in Kenya, 14 nights

1 night single room in a hotel. 13 nights of twin-share accommodation in a Family Homestay. Most meals. Arrival orientat more..

$1,245*from

Teach English to Buddhist Monks in Nepal, 14 nights

14 nights of twin-share accommodation in a family homestay or monastery. All meals. Bonus weekend trip to Chitwan Nation more..

$1,389*from

Elephant Camp Adventure, 13 Nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a shared house (upgrades available). All meals. Airport pick-up. Arrival orientatio more..

$1,495*from

Turtle Conservation, 13 Nights

13 nights bunk-room accommodation in a shared house (upgrades available). All meals. Airport pick-up. Arrival orientatio more..

$1,495*from

Sri Lanka Elephant Conservation, 14 nights

14 nights of multi-share accommodation. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-countr more..

$2,095*from

Teaching in Rio, 3 weeks

21 nights of Shared Apartment Accommodation. Project donation. Orientation on arrival. 24/7 emergency assistance, and fu more..

$1,499*from

Teaching English in Cusco, 4 weeks

28 nights of twin-share accommodation in a Family Homestay. Most meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure help more..

$1,695*from

African Wildlife Sanctuary, 14 nights

14 nights twin-share accommodation. All meals. Arrival orientation briefing. Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-country te more..

$1,695*from

Wild Elephant Desert Expedition, 14 Nights

14 nights adventure-style, swags under the stars. All meals. 24/7 guidance and support

$1,895*from

Help Kids in Buenos Aires, 14 nights

13 nights private-room accommodation in a Shared Apartment. Arrival orientation briefing. 20 hours Spanish school. Socia more..

$1,995*from

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