You ask – we answer
Can I combine different countries and jobs?
That’s exactly the idea behind our Work & Travel programmes! Your trip will be individually tailored to your wishes. You are not tied to one country or one job direction. If you have enough time, you can travel to all four countries and try out different jobs. Even within a country, you can work for different employers in different places.
For example, you can start your adventure abroad with a hostel experience to improve your language skills and get used to backpacker life. Then you can travel to another country and do a professional internship.
Within a relatively short period of time, you will have the opportunity to experience several exciting Latin American cultures. Each country has its own charm and differs from the other in many ways.
Can I work together with my girlfriend or boyfriend in the same project or hostel?
No problem at all! Although most Work & Travellers set off on their own, you can of course start the adventure together with a friend. There are some employers who don’t like it if you want to work with your friend. Others have no problem at all and have enough job opportunities for several volunteers at the same time. As we have a large pool of hostels, we can almost 100% guarantee that we will find a suitable employer for you.
I don’t know Spanish. Is that a problem?
No, that’s not a problem at all! All of our on-site jobs are designed to integrate you into the local team and help you learn the Spanish language quickly. What you should bring with you is the curiosity and desire to learn a new language.
Our Hostel Experience programme also includes a 2-week language course at the beginning of your adventure. This gives you a good basis to learn or refresh the basics and to be able to communicate a little. Of course, you can also book this course with the other programmes. If you have no previous knowledge, this is highly recommended.
Especially in the hostel, English is spoken a lot with the other volunteers as well as with the guests. This means that you don’t need any knowledge of Spanish to communicate. However, it is advisable to learn the language. This will enable you to get to know the locals and their culture better. And that is exactly what will make your experience a unique one.
A few of our volunteer jobs or internships abroad require advanced Spanish language skills, as you will need to communicate with locals who do not speak English. In this case, you will find the relevant information in the programme description.
How much do flights cost to Latin America and locally?
The cost of flights to Latin America depends, of course, on your destination, departure point and travel period. Flights are usually more expensive during the holiday season or on public holidays. You should therefore avoid dates such as Christmas and New Year. For a flight from Germany to Central or South America, you should plan between 600 and 900 euros. We know the best dates for cheap flights and will send you a non-binding offer from our partner travel agency after your booking, which we will be happy to finalise for you.
The distances in Latin America are sometimes very long. If you don’t just want to work, but also want to travel and see something, you won’t be able to avoid one or two domestic flights. You can get a domestic flight in our countries for around 30 to 40 euros (one-way). Many of the big airlines have regular offers. If you are a little attentive, you can find great bargains there. Of course, we will support you in your flight search and will also be happy to book intercontinental flights for you.
Do I need a visa?
A big advantage in Latin America is that you don’t need a special visa to enter the respective country and work there as a volunteer, but you can simply enter as a tourist. You will receive a tourist visa of at least 90 days at the airport when you enter the country.
The only exception is Colombia. Here you also need a visa for any kind of volunteer work. You can apply for this visa in advance online at the Colombian Embassy in Germany or on site in Colombia (only in Bogota). If you stay in the country for up to 90 days, you will be issued an electronic visa. For longer stays, you have to come to the embassy in Berlin or Frankfurt for a personal appointment. You should allow 2 months to apply for and receive your visa. Of course, we are happy to help you apply for the visa.
Can I earn money in Latin America?
All the jobs you can do on our Work & Travel programme are based on voluntary work. This means that you do not receive a salary in the form of money for your work. In return, however, the employer will provide you with accommodation for the entire duration of your work and at least one meal a day. Accommodation and meals are usually the biggest costs when travelling. Therefore, you can save quite a bit during your working time. In addition, the cost of living in the countries we offer in Central and South America is significantly lower than in Western countries. But most of all, it’s about the experience you’ll gain during your volunteer work. You will gain valuable skills for your professional career as well as for your personal development.
There are two important reasons why you don’t get paid for your work in Latin America. Firstly, the wage level in Central and South America is unfortunately not comparable to the level you know from Germany. Local wages can often be very low. This means that your accommodation and food are worth even more than a local employee earns. On the other hand, you enter as a tourist and are therefore not officially allowed to earn money.
Can I travel to other countries during the programme?
We currently offer our Work & Travel programmes in the following four countries in Latin America: Mexico, Peru, Colombia and Guatemala. Of course, you can also combine different countries and travel to neighbouring countries during your travel months. Please note that we can only guarantee our all-round local support in the four countries mentioned above, as only there is one of our contact persons on site.
However, we have personally travelled to many other countries in Latin America. As far as we know your destination, we can of course still give you tips on how to plan your trip. However, we only arrange jobs in Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia and Peru.
Do I need special insurance abroad?
Even if insurance implies additional costs, you should not save money in the wrong place. If you are insured against all eventualities, you can sit back and relax and enjoy your adventure abroad.
Health insurance abroad
Unfortunately, your German health insurance is not valid outside Europe. To ensure that you are also protected in the event of illness abroad, you should definitely take out international health insurance that reimburses you for medical and hospital costs incurred abroad. Otherwise it can be expensive in an emergency. There are many different health insurance companies that offer such insurance.
Travel cancellation insurance
Your adventure abroad is already planned down to the last detail and all flights are booked. But what if something unexpected comes up at the last moment and you can’t travel after all? In this case, it is very important to take out travel cancellation insurance, which will cover your travel costs in such cases. This way you can save yourself the high costs of rebooking or cancelling flights.
We work together with a renowned insurance partner we trust and with whom we have only had good experiences. We will be happy to assist you in taking out insurance and will submit an individual offer after your booking.
Can I use my German credit card abroad?
As a rule, you can withdraw cash abroad with any German or European credit card or pay with the card. This is not possible everywhere with a debit card. Therefore, you should definitely apply for a credit card. However, there are big differences in terms of fees. In order to be able to withdraw cash from ATMs at any time, we recommend that our participants open a German bank account that does not charge fees for withdrawals abroad. The credit cards of DKB and Comdirect are well known for this and we have had good personal experience with them.
In Latin America, there are ATMs all over the country where cash can be withdrawn without any problems.
How long must my passport be valid?
It is important that your travel documents are up to date. It is important to check the validity of your passport as soon as you decide to go abroad to Central or South America. If your passport is not valid for long enough, or if you don’t have one, you can apply for one at the local municipality. Currently, you will receive your passport within five weeks of applying. Your passport should be valid for at least six months when you enter your last destination country. If not, we recommend that you apply for a new one immediately.
What is the right age for volunteering abroad?
There is no “right” age for volunteering abroad. Our programmes are suitable for both young and old. It doesn’t matter if you’ve just finished your A-levels and want to go abroad for a while before your upcoming studies, if you’re just between your Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, or if the grey daily routine at work is hitting you on the head and you want to take some time off – everything is possible. The minimum age depends on the country and employer. As a rule, our programmes are possible from the age of 17 or 18 at the latest. There is no upper limit.
Without a doubt, you will gain a lot for your life through a year abroad at any age and in any phase of life. There is no age limit for the encounter with another culture and the locals, the acquisition of language skills and a positive contribution to the development of the local population!
Does a year abroad last a whole year?
The word year abroad is often used synonymously with a stay abroad. With our programmes, you don’t have to be away for a whole year. As a rule, our participants spend between 2 and 12 months abroad. You can choose the duration flexibly according to your availability. The more time you bring with you, the more intensive your experience will be and the more opportunities you will have to immerse yourself in the culture of the respective country or to travel to several countries at once.
Please note that you are entering our countries in Central and South America as a tourist and can therefore stay in the country for a maximum of 183 days, depending on the country. But the location of our countries offers the perfect opportunity to combine different countries.