Work and Travel Central and South America
Have you dreamed of leaving your home country and exploring the world? Would you like to broaden your horizons, get to know a new culture, gain practical experience and learn a new language? Do you have curiosity and wanderlust and need a change of scenery? But most of all, do you want to experience a foreign country like a local, not like a tourist? Then a work and travel adventure might be just right for you.
The combination of travel and work allows you to spend a long time abroad, see many places and countries, meet great people from all around the world and incidentally gain valuable experience for your future life. In your travel time you can explore the fascinating and diverse countries of Latin America at a low cost and make your dream of traveling come true.
Our offer is diverse. You work in hostels, on farms, in a surf or a diving school—there is just the right thing for everyone. Whether it’s on a dream beach or in the jungle, in the mountains or in a metropolis, on land, on water or even underwater—work doesn’t feel like work when you’re pursuing your passion.
The duration of your trip is also flexible. Whether you want to spend just one month or up to twelve months in Latin America, work in one or many programs, or explore one or many countries, we’ll put together a program tailored to you.
from 800,00 €
On a farm in Latin America you can dive into untouched nature and discover the breathtaking landscapes.
from 900,00 €
from 880,00 €
from 770,00 €
Work and Travel Latin America
Have you ever dreamed of leaving your home country and exploring the world? Would you like to broaden your horizons, get to know a new culture, gain practical experience and learn a new language? Do you have curiosity and wanderlust and need a change of scenery? But most of all, do you want to experience a foreign country like a local, not like a tourist? Then a work and travel adventure might be just right for you.
Our offer is diverse. You work in hostels, on farms, in a surf or a diving school – there is the right thing for everyone. Whether it is on a dream beach or in the jungle, in the mountains or in a metropolis, on land, on the water or even underwater – work doesn’t feel like work when you’re pursuing your passion.
You would like to go abroad…
…but you are not sure which program is the right one for you? Find out with our test “Which Work and Travel type am I?”.
10 Reasons to Work and Travel in Latin America
1. Because the local conditions are perfect for it
The friendliness and helpfulness of Latin Americans, a good network of public transportation and the abundance of great and interesting employers makes Latin America the destination for a successful work & travel adventure. However, a work and travel trip there is not comparable to one to Australia, New Zealand or Canada. Here you move in other cultures, and you notice this at every corner. But that is exactly the beauty and the reason why we love this region so much. Because it is the many differences that make it special and open the door to unique experiences. Since Work and Travel is not yet common in Latin America, it is important to plan sufficiently in advance. This is exactly what we want to support you with and provide you with everything you need for a smooth adventure on the most beautiful continent in the world.
2. Because there is so much to discover
Latin America, especially related to the different countries, landscapes and cultures, is unique and diverse. Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Chile and Argentina together have less area than Australia. This means: see more, discover more! Each country brings an exciting, unique culture that is often very different from Europe. The countries of Latin America are wonderful to travel through by public transportation, especially by bus. Flights with Latin American airlines are also often very cheap. If you want international diversity, you will be incredibly happy with a Work and Travel Experience in Latin America.
3. Because you do not have to decide for a program, but can combine them as you like
You feel like participating in a volunteer project, but also want to live life as a bartender in a hostel and get your hands dirty on a farm? No problem! You don’t have to choose just one job. Our programs can be combined in any way you like. Through our building block system you can choose in advance how long you want to participate in which project. Of course, you don’t have to commit to one country. You decide how long you want to stay in which country and which countries you want to explore during your travel time. Of course, we will assist you in the planning and selection of your programs as well as on-site and provide you with insider tips, travel routes and all the information you need.
4. Because you don’t follow in the footsteps of a 1000 other Work and Traveller
Latin America is simply perfect for a Work and Travel adventure, because the conditions are ideal. And yet the continent is not known for it, on the contrary. If you listen around in the circle of friends, then they talk much more often about Australia, New Zealand or Asia, only rarely about our favorite continent. But this is only an advantage for you! The countries are not yet overcrowded, and you do not walk on the paths that many others have already trampled flat before you. You dare to do something new and special, you have more exciting stories to tell, which you haven’t already heard at every corner.
5. Because you will get to know a new culture
Latin America, especially compared to countries like Australia, is simply different from Germany, and that’s what makes it different. Whether language, music, dance, sports, politics or food – in Latin America the clocks tick differently and it is just wonderful. Latin America is also rich in ethnicities and religions. The charm of this continent is shaped by its more than 600 million inhabitants, a gathering place of the world’s cultures! Immerse yourself and become part of it. Soon you will no longer feel like a tourist, but like a local.
6. Because you will learn Spanish during your adventure
Being fluent in English is nothing special these days, it’s probably more of a basic requirement. Incredibly popular with many employers, however, is another world language: Spanish, with more than 400 million native speakers. And the nice thing is – when traveling in Latin America, you actually learn to speak. Because very few people there speak an English that is sufficient for communication. Don’t worry, hands and feet help in the beginning, and more Spanish vocabulary is added every day.
7. Because it is inexpensive to travel to, unlike other Work and Travel countries
Traveling Latin America is not only beautiful, but also unbeatably cheap, especially compared to other work and travel countries. For a day of super delicious local food and drinks at the bars, travel costs (cabs, Uber, intercity buses, etc.), accommodation, and a tour or two, you don’t spend more overall than a night in a crowded hostel on the outskirts of Sydney. With a budget of 800 euros (per month in the travel season) you can travel in Latin America excellently and have a great time. Low budget is also possible for 600 euros. And you usually don’t even have to give up comfort, good food, parties and adventure.
8. Because the quality of the jobs is excellent
From other Work and Travel regions you know the work only as a mass processing of backpackers willing to work as a legal money printing machine for owners. In Latin America, there are quality and reasonable jobs that often pay not in money, but in room and board. No 12-hour days, no exploitation. Appreciative employers with whom one can also develop a personal bond. Tasks that help one in personal development, where one gets to know many new people and locals. If you decide to volunteer here, you are also doing something good and helping where help is urgently needed. We have personally convinced ourselves of the quality of the jobs and stand wholeheartedly behind our programs.
9. Because the Latin American mentality is hard to beat for warmth and joy of life
We love trips where you discover new things, meet a new culture and, above all, meet lots of interesting people. And we speak from experience when we promise, in Latin America you will find exactly that. Here you will be welcomed by locals with open arms! They are curious and interested, warm and hospitable. The attitude towards life in these countries is characterized by traditions, good humor, positive vibes and joy of life, and you won’t find this anywhere else in the world. Once you meet the right people, you’ll have the best time and the most fun of your life – that’s for sure.
10. Because you don’t need a visa
Quite different from most countries in the world known for work and travel, in Latin America you don’t need a visa and you don’t have to fulfill any other strict requirements. Not even if you want to work in a hostel, on a farm or in a project there. This makes everything easier and more relaxed. Of course, you will get more detailed entry information from us.
Work and Travel in Latin America: a little different!
Work and Travel in Latin America – this is something you (still) hear and see rather rarely. Working on the side while traveling through the countries is not common. And that is exactly what makes it so special. Excellent conditions for a work and travel adventure are waiting for you.
Unlike Australia, for example, employers in Latin America don’t adjust to having only job-seeking young travelers doing the jobs. This means for you that you will not become part of the mass processing of backpackers, you will not follow in the footsteps of thousands of Germans and there is no feeling of exploitation.
The quality of the jobs in Latin America is excellent. Here you can find exactly the tasks you are really interested in. Unlike in other countries, we don’t see work in Latin America as a transitional period between your travels. Work here often doesn’t feel like work, but like an important part of your journey where you will learn a lot, discover a new passion for yourself and gain unique experiences. Of course, we have reviewed all of our employers and programs for their quality and have already placed numerous satisfied participants.
Generally, it is not common in Latin America that you are paid for your work as a backpacker with salary. This has the background that the wage level in Latin America is so low that you could hardly afford room and board for a usual wage. But don’t worry, you will not go empty-handed. In all our offered programs, the accommodation and often a large part of the food is included, which you get in return for your work. A very good deal considering you won’t be working more than 30 hours a week and have plenty of free time to explore your new home. Some of our farm programs are volunteer programs, accommodation is paid by us in advance to the farm and is included in the program price.
And when you explore the diverse countries on your own after your work is done, you will quickly realize how affordable local life is. Whether transportation, hostel accommodations or a restaurant visit – in Latin America you can get through the month with a comparatively small budget without compromises. A real plus point. We are happy to help you plan your budget in advance.
Unlike most countries in the world that are known for work and travel, you don’t need a visa in Latin America and don’t have to fulfill any other strict requirements. A Work and Travel visa does not exist there and you don’t need one even if you want to work in a hostel, on a farm or in a project. You are traveling as a tourist during your entire time there. This makes everything easier and more relaxed. Of course we will provide you with more detailed entry information.
Especially because Work and Travel is not common, we recommend everyone to organize work placements already in advance and to secure the job, because they are not there like sand on the beach. That’s why we secure the programs of your choice months in advance. So we guarantee not only that you have a permanent job for the booked time, but also your accommodation during this time. In addition, we are available for you as a contact person.
IS WORK AND TRAVEL A GOOD FIT FOR ME?
You are curious and adventurous? You want to experience something extraordinary, learn new things every day and have unique experiences? You have a heart for other people, foreign cultures and new ways of living? Then you are exactly the right participant for our programs. There are no fixed requirements for participation in our Work and Travel offer. The most important thing is that you are open and interested in foreign cultures, have a desire to learn and a love of travel. Everything else will come by itself. During your time abroad you will become more confident and playful with unfamiliar situations.
Spanish knowledge is not a requirement in most programs. However, you should be willing and eager to learn and speak this beautiful language during your trip. You will be in contact with locals a lot. This way you will learn the new language by yourself. However, if you want to feel more confident, we recommend a language course in one of our language schools or with one of our private teachers. This will be perfectly adapted to your knowledge, can take place before or during your work in the programs and can last as long as you wish.
You have wanderlust and would like more detailed information about Work and Travel in Latin America? Sign up now for a call and talk to us personally about your questions, plans and dreams.
You are motivated and really want to work and travel, but are not yet sure which of the programs fit you best? Take a look at our Quiz, answer a few questions and we will send you the programs that we think would best suit you and your wishes.
AT YOUR DESTINATION
Arrival: In each of our destination countries, we have a German-speaking contact person who will personally meet you at the airport and take you to your hostel, in which you will be accommodated during the introduction days.
Introduction meeting: At the beginning of your Work and Travel adventure, our contact person will explain and show you everything important during the introduction days. You will get a first impression of your new home and can ask any questions.
Spanish course: If you want, we can organize a Spanish course for you at the beginning of your trip. Perfect if you are a Spanish beginner or want to refresh your school knowledge a bit.
Support: Our local contact, as well as the staff in Germany, are available 24/7 for you, so you always feel well taken care of and safe.
Excursions: If several of our participants are in one location at the same time, optional excursions and activities can be planned with other participants.
Our WanderWorld T-Shirt: We at WanderWorld Travel see ourselves as a family. With our T-shirt we want to connect all our participants and create cool photos.
AFTER YOUR TRAVELS
Certificate and attestation: After successful participation in our program, you will of course receive a certificate with all the information you need. This will look great in future job applications. If you want to take your participation into account in your studies, for example, we will of course also be happy to issue you with a suitable certificate. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
You ask, we answer
Can I combine different countries and – jobs with each other?.
That is exactly the idea of our Work and Travel programs! Your trip will be individually tailored to your wishes. You are neither bound to a country nor to a job direction. If you bring enough time, you can also travel to all four countries and try yourself in 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 or work at a farm.
Within a relatively short period of time, you will have the opportunity to experience several exciting Latin American cultures. After all, each country has its own unique 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 and Travellers set out alone, of course you can start the adventure together with a friend. There are a few employers who do not see it so happy if you want to work together with your girlfriend or boyfriend. Others have no problem at all and have enough job opportunities for several volunteers at the same time. Since we have a large pool of hostels, we can almost 100% assure you to find a suitable employer for you.
I don’t know Spanish. Is that a problem?
No, it is 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 is the curiosity and desire to learn a new language.
In addition, our Hostel Experience program 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 bit. Of course, you can also book this course with the other programs. 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 guests. This means that you do not need to know Spanish to communicate. However, it is still advisable to learn the language. This will allow you to get to know the locals and their culture better. And this is exactly what will make your experience unique.
A few of our volunteer jobs or internships abroad require an advanced knowledge of Spanish, since you will have to communicate with locals who do not speak English. In this case, you will find relevant information in the respective program description.
How much do flights to Latin America and within the country cost?.
The cost of flights to Latin America depends, of course, strongly on your destination, your departure point and the travel period. Thus, flights during the vacation season or holidays are usually a bit more expensive. 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 gladly arrange for you.
The distances in Latin America are sometimes very long. If you not only want to work, but also travel and see something, you will not be able to avoid domestic flights. You can get a domestic flight in our countries for about 30 to 40 euros (one way). Many of the major airlines have regular offers. If you are a little attentive, you can make great bargains there. Of course we support you with the flight search and book gladly also intercontinental flights for you.
Do I need a visa?
A big advantage in Latin America is that you do not need a special visa to enter the country and work as a volunteer, but you can simply enter as a tourist. You will receive the 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 a personal appointment at the embassy in Berlin or Frankfurt. You should allow 2 months to apply for and receive the visa. Of course, we will be happy to help you apply for the visa.
Can I earn money in Latin America?
All the jobs you can do in our Work and Travel program are based on volunteer work. This means that you will not receive a salary in the form of money for your work performance. However, in return, the employer will provide you with accommodation throughout your working time and at least one meal a day. The cost of accommodation and meals is usually the biggest expense when traveling. Therefore, you can save quite a bit during your work. 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. First, the wage level in Central and South America is unfortunately not comparable to the level you know from Germany. The local wages can often be very low. Therefore, 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 officially not allowed to earn money.
Can I travel to other countries during the program?
Currently, we offer our Work and Travel programs in the following five countries in Latin America: Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Costa Rica and Guatemala. Of course, you can also combine different countries with each other. Please note that we can only guarantee our all around local support in the five countries mentioned above, as only there is one of our contact persons on site.
However, we have personally traveled 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, Costa Rica and Peru.
Do I need a special insurance abroad?
Even if an insurance implies additional costs, you should not save in the wrong place. If you are insured against all eventualities, you can sit back and enjoy your adventure abroad relaxed.
Health insurance abroad
Unfortunately, your German health insurance is not valid in non-European countries. To ensure that you are also protected in the event of illness abroad, you should definitely take out international health insurance, which will reimburse for medical and hospital costs occurring abroad, among other things. Otherwise it can be expensive in case of 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 happens at the last moment and you can’t travel after all? In this case it is very important to take on a travel cancellation insurance, which covers your travel costs in such cases. This way you can save high costs of rebooking or cancellation of 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 with the conclusion of your insurance and submit you an individual offer after your booking.
Do I have a right to child benefit during my time abroad?.
According to the current legal situation, you are entitled to child benefit until the age of 25, if you are in vocational training or studies until that time. Even between two periods of training, the claim can remain, if this section does not exceed four months. But there are exceptions here as well. If you do voluntary work abroad for a longer period of time and this work serves a purpose that prepares you for your job or studies, you may still be entitled to child benefit. Of course, we can issue you a certificate for the office confirming the acquisition of social skills and language skills during your volunteer work. The prerequisite is that the skills to be acquired are of central importance for your future studies. It is also important that you do not move abroad. Ultimately, however, the decision depends on the person in charge of your family insurance fund. Therefore, we recommend that you contact the respective family fund in good time.
Can I get BAföG during my stay abroad?
If you want to do an internship abroad during your studies, you may qualify to receive BAföG abroad. Legally, it is specified that you must be in the initial training for this and no longer live with parents. Since you are continuing your education abroad, the entitlement continues.
Even if you do not receive BAföG in Germany, you have a chance to receive BAföG abroad. This is because the income limits are different here. In addition to the items such as rent, living expenses and health insurance contributions, which you also receive in Germany, you will also receive a travel allowance abroad as well as a special foreign supplement for countries in Central and South America. So it is definitely worth a try.
In some study programs, a pre-study internship is also required at the beginning of your studies. In this case, you are also entitled to financial support before you start your studies. However, this only applies if the pre-study internship is a mandatory requirement and cannot be made up at a later date.
Please note that the BAföG application usually takes a relatively long time to process. Therefore, plan a period of at least six months so that you have the money available right at the beginning of your trip.
Can I use my German credit card abroad?
Generally, you can use any German or European credit card abroad to withdraw cash or pay with the card. With a debit card, this is not possible everywhere. 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 locally at any time, we recommend that our participants set up a German bank account that does not charge fees for withdrawals abroad. Well known for this are the credit cards of DKB and Comdirekt, with which we have personally had good experience.
In Latin America, there are ATMs throughout 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. You should definitely 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 long enough or you do not 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 age is right for volunteering abroad?
There is no “right” age for volunteering abroad. Our programs are suitable for both young and old. Whether you have just finished high school and want to go abroad for a while before university, whether you are just between the bachelor’s and master’s studies or whether the gray everyday work falls on your ceiling and you want to take some time off – this is all possible. The minimum age depends on the country and employer. As a rule, our programs are possible from the age of 17 or 18 at the latest. There is usually no upper limit.
Without a doubt, you will gain a lot for your life through a year abroad at any age and at any stage of life. 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, there is no age limit!
Does a year abroad last a whole year?
The word year abroad is often used synonymously with a stay abroad. With our programs, you don’t have to be on the road for a whole year. Usually, our participants are 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.
It should be noted that you are entering our countries in Central and South America as a tourist and therefore, depending on the country, you can stay in the country for a maximum of 180 days. But the location of our countries offers the perfect opportunity to combine different countries.