130 Questions To Ask A Volunteer Organisation

Volunteering abroad for the first time can be scary. Unlike package holidays and backpacking jaunts, it is harder to know what to expect. Asking the right questions can unlock all the information you need to prepare but it can be hard to know what to ask if you’ve never volunteered abroad before.

Here’s some to get you started, although you might not want to ask them all at once!

Questions to ask an Organisation:

  1. How long have you been running as a company?
  2. What countries can I volunteer in?
  3. Are all the projects available are on the website?
  4. Are there any others which aren’t currently listed which might match my interests?
  5. Can I combine projects?
  6. Do I need to attend an interview?
  7. Can I apply if I am not a resident of the volunteer organisations’ country?
  8. Can I apply if I don’t have fixed dates yet?
  9. Why are you cheaper/more expensive than other organisations I’ve looked at?

Questions about your Chosen Project:

  1. Students want to make use of volunteering for your career, ask which is the best project on their list for your subject. Rather than choosing your favourite country. It could be a profitable decision.
  2. When are the busiest and quieter times to volunteer?
  3. Do I need previous experience?
  4. What is the most popular project in terms of volume of volunteers?
  5. What is the most popular project in terms of feedback?
  6. Best project for complete beginners?
  7. Best project for nervous travellers?
  8. What is the cheapest project? (Don’t be afraid to ask this, everyone does!)
  9. Are there any supplies which I need to take with me?
  10. How long have you sent volunteers to my chosen project?
  11. How long does the average volunteer stay?
  12. What sort of training is there?
  13. What are the hours of volunteering?
  14. How many days do I volunteer?
  15. What is the average age of volunteers?
  16. What is the gender mix of the volunteer group?
  17. Can I opt out of the weekly schedule, if I need to?
  18. Is there someone who can sign off my University/Employer worksheet?
  19. How close are the projects to the volunteer accommodation?
  20. I want to bring donated toys/clothes/medical equipment, what is the best way?
  21. Do I receive a certificate upon completion?

Questions about Flights:

  1. What airport should I fly into?
  2. Does it matter what airport I fly from?
  3. Will I have help booking flights?
  4. Who do I contact if my flight is delayed or I miss a connection?
  5. When in the year are flights cheapest?
  6. What is the transfer time between the airport and the project/volunteer accommodation?
  7. Is there someone who will pick me up from the airport?
  8. Can I still be met if my flight is delayed?
  9. Are there set days which I have to arrive on?
  10. How long is the flight?
  11. Should I expect a stopover?
  12. What is the most common route, if there are stopovers?
  13. How much luggage will I need?
  14. Is there anything that I need to bring which can’t be taken in hand-luggage?
  15. Can you provide me with a packing list?
  16. Is there anyone else who is travelling around the same time as me?
  17. Can you give out my flight code for others to book onto the same flight?
  18. Once I’ve booked flights, who do I send them into?
  19. Are return airport transfers provided?

LQBTQ+ Questions

  1. Are there any destinations I should consider avoiding?
  2. Is my chosen country LGBTQ+ friendly? If not, what should I be aware of?
  3. Has my chosen project hosted LGBTQ+ volunteers before?
  4. Can I travel with my partner?

Questions about Visas:

  1. Do I need a visa?
  2. Should I apply for a tourist visa or do I need a work visa?
  3. Can you help me in getting a visa?
  4. Can I get a visa upon arrival or do I need to apply in advance?
  5. Are electronic visas available or do I need to send my passport in the post?
  6. Have any previous volunteers had problems with visas?
  7. How long can I stay on my visa?
  8. How far in advance do I need to apply for a visa?
  9. Do I need any special documents to apply for a visa?
  10. Do I need to show a bank statement?
  11. Do I need a flight already to apply for a visa?
  12. Will I need a return or onward flight?
  13. Do I need to show proof of immunizations to obtain a visa?

Questions about Safety:

  1. Is there anything I need to be aware of?
  2. What is the FCO advice on this country?
  3. Are there any parts of the country I shouldn’t visit during my travels?
  4. Should I avoid any months because of extreme weather conditions?
  5. Is there a number that I can give to my parents, if they need to get in contact with me?
  6. Is there a support team which I can contact 24/7?

Questions about Accommodation:

  1. Does the accommodation have free Wi-Fi?
  2. How many volunteers share a room?
  3. Does the room have a safe for my valuables?
  4. Is it single-sex accommodation?
  5. Do I need to bring a sleeping bag or pillow?
  6. Is there a kitchen where I can prepare my own food?
  7. Are there any kitchen utensils or should I bring my own?
  8. Is there a fridge?
  9. Does the bathroom have a western style toilet?
  10. Is there hot water?
  11. Is there more than one bathroom?
  12. Are there laundry services on site?
  13. What arrangements are there for couples?
  14. Is there somewhere in the bedroom to store my clothes?
  15. Does the bedroom have a power socket for charging gadgets?
  16. For hot countries: are the windows screened, or will I need to bring a mosquito net?

Questions about the Country:

  1. What language do the locals speak?
  2. Do I need to speak the language to get the most out of volunteering?
  3. Is there a translator nearby?
  4. Are there certain clothes I shouldn’t wear in this country?
  5. Are the seasons different?
  6. How hot/cold will it be when I travel?
  7. Does my home country have an Embassy in the country? In case I need help whilst over there.

Questions about Health:

  1. Do I need any immunizations before I go?
  2. Which immunizations do I need?
  3. Do I need malaria tablets?
  4. Is the water safe to drink? Or what do people typically drink?
  5. Will a medical condition affect me volunteering?
  6. Is there someone who knows what to do in a health emergency?
  7. Is the project remote enough that I should take my own first aid kit?
  8. Where is the nearest hospital?
  9. What are the typical health complaints volunteers have experienced?
  10. I am diabetic. Is there a fridge to store insulin?

Questions about Money:

  1. Is insurance included in the programme fees, or do I need to buy this?
  2. Is it a requirement to fundraise for my trip?
  3. How much should I budget for my weekly spending?
  4. Are discounts available for longer stays?
  5. When are programme fees due?
  6. Can I pay the programme fees in installments?
  7. What currency does the country use?
  8. Is it a closed currency?
  9. Can I exchange money at the airport upon arrival?
  10. How much money do I need to change for my first week?
  11. Is there a cash machine close to the volunteer accommodation?
  12. Is there a Western Union agent close by, if I need to pick up a money transfer from home?
  13. Will I be expected to contribute additional donations to my projects or are they included in the programme fees?
  14. What is the cancellation policy, if I need to cancel my trip at the last minute?

Questions about Friends:

  1. Can I volunteer with a friend?
  2. Will we be separated, or can we volunteer together?
  3. Can we stay at the same accommodation?
  4. Can we do things just us or do all of the volunteers go out together?

Questions about Free-time:

  1. Can you tell me what the main attractions volunteers visit and the costs, if any?
  2. Should I pre-book my free time tours?
  3. Can I walk to town easily and safely or should I get a taxi or a bus?
  4. Will someone help me with booking excursions after arrival?
  5. Are there western fast food restaurants nearby?
  6. Are there shops close by?
  7. I’m a practising Christian/Muslim/etc. is there a place of worship close by?

Contact Us To Ask A Question

We are always to chat about any projects or volunteering in general. Call us today 01603 280702 email us at [email protected] or message us to get the answers you need!