Tourism Volunteer Abroad

Back to Programs

A Guide to Volunteering Abroad in Tourism

As resources and technology develop in the modern world, the tourism industry booms with opportunities of all kinds. As a tourism volunteer, you will have the opportunity to gain practical hands-on experience in connecting travelers to destinations. Volunteering in tourism presents a unique travel experience that allows you to give back while gaining professional experience.

Why Volunteer Abroad in Tourism

Volunteering in the tourism industry offers students new opportunities and challenges in a constantly evolving industry facing major reform. These reforms have created the need for partnerships beyond the traditional scope of the tourism industry. The diversity of the volunteer tourism industry allows you an opportunity to participate in unlikely short-term opportunities while abroad that can increase your cultural understanding, social awareness, and sense of global responsibility.

Types of tourism volunteer projects

Volunteer opportunities in tourism are quickly becoming one of the most popular forms of international travel. These projects however, should be carefully researched and planned in order to find an opportunity suitable to your specific needs; such as time, financial details, lodging, language requirements and more. Oftentimes, volunteers live with host families, so in addition to invaluable work, you will also experience total cultural immersion, something otherwise not possible as an average tourist. 

Hospitality. Hospitality and travel go in hand in hand, so it’s not surprising that there are plenty of opportunities in this discipline under the umbrella of volunteer tourism. Volunteers can expect to work on improving the travel experience with your customer service skills in hotels, restaurants, spas, tours, and attractions, to name a few.

Eco-tourism. Volunteers with a passion for the environment can find a wealth of volunteer opportunities in tourism. Get involved with collecting data on animal species and assisting with ecological restoration in damaged areas. Look forward to also leading tours and educational activities. 

Cultural Tourism. Volunteering in cultural tourism abroad, while being almost a self redundancy, can prove to be an extraordinarily rewarding path. Immerse yourself and others with the lifestyle, history, art and music of your destination while leading tours, providing outreach and education, even volunteering at museums and architectural landmark destinations.

Individuals will have the opportunity to work with other volunteers from around the world, further establishing their connections and personal network. Most volunteer opportunities are geared towards short-term commitments ranging from 2-4 weeks, however some opportunities do exist in a more long-term setting. It is also important to take note of any possible language requirements that might be a prerequisite to specific locations.

GoAbroad’s inside scoop for tourism volunteers

Volunteering abroad in tourism is your chance to experience some of the most incredible and diverse areas of the world, while making a difference in a community and learning important skills that will stay with you for life. Because the nature of the tourism industry covers such a vast expanse of opportunities and adventures, this is your opportunity to apply your skills, and form long-lasting memories in places many people will never get to travel. At the end of the day, you can feel assured that your work is helping make a real difference in these communities, and you can leave them, a stronger, more experienced person.

Read More

written by:

A Guide To
Volunteering Abroad in Tourism


 Find Tourism Volunteer Programs Abroad Now


This listing has been saved 958 times

World's #1 Affordable Volunteer Programs. Trusted By 80,000+

IVHQ is the world's most trusted and affordable volunteer abroad organization with the largest range of top-rated programs, available in 40+ destinations year-round! We place over 18,000 volunteers abroad annually and have over 10 years experience in providing safe, impactful and affordable volunteer abroad programs. With program fees starting from just USD 10 per day and the best safety re...


This listing has been saved 129 times

Best Volunteer Programs & Internships from $5 per day

GoEco is one of the world's top volunteer organizations, with award-winning programs that are carefully chosen by the company's founding sustainable travel experts. With projects starting at just $5 a day, GoEco provides affordable, outstanding volunteering projects, all with 24/7 support and travel insurance. GoEco was established in 2006 and has since sent thousands of volunteers to p...


This listing has been saved 26 times

Marine Conservation Expedition in the Seychelles

Join critical conservation efforts on this marine expedition and be an active member of Global Vision International's Marine Research team in the Indian Ocean, just off the Seychelles. The expedition base is located in the Cap Ternay Marine National Park, on the main island of Mahe. You will spend your time scuba diving around the coral reef, collecting research data on coral and fish species, ...


This listing has been saved 2 times

Volunteer For Children at Day Care Center in Peru

As a volunteer in this program you will be involved in the day to day care of the children and be involved with playing with the children, running many types of craft activities, teaching some English too or arranging creative activities such as drawing or arts and crafts. You need to help these kids to develop their skills in order to be ready for kindergartens. The day care centers are open M...


This listing has been saved 4 times

Volunteer in Samoa with Projects Abroad

Join Projects Abroad on a volunteer project in the South Pacific islands of Samoa. Volunteering in Samoa will allow you to gain a different perspective of the islands, compared to most people who visit as tourists staying in the lavish beach resorts. Projects are available for anyone interested in volunteering, including those taking a gap year, career break, summer abroad, or volunteer vacatio...


This listing has been saved 36 times

Hands-On Lion Conservation Volunteering at Antelope Park

The African lion population has diminished by 80 - 90% in the past 40 years. The aim of the Lion Rehabilitation Program, African Impacts own pilot project, is to release and therefore restore lion populations through a 4 stage program. The project has been designed that it will also provide social benefits to surrounding communities. Volunteers are involved in research of lion behaviour an...


This listing has been saved 13 times

Elephant Welfare Project in Eastern Mahout Communities

Volunteer in the east of Thailand on this elephant welfare project and work with communities that have lived with elephants for centuries. Since the ban on logging and the introduction of machinery, opportunities to work for these communities has become limited and people and elephants often starve. As a result the government has introduced initiatives to use the elephants to encourage ethical ...


This listing has been saved 307 times

Conservation, Community and Adventure Placements from $255

With more than 400 projects worldwide and with 25 years experience of providing ethical travel placements, Frontier can find you the perfect adventure whatever you want to achieve. We offer placements in more than 50 countries including Costa Rica, Madagascar, Fiji and loads more. Here are just some of the options available: Marine Conservation and Diving Travel to beach paradises, scuba...


This listing has been saved 163 times

Global Internship & Volunteer Programs with Connect-123!

Whether you're looking for a hands-on, career-related internship that will set you apart from the crowd or a chance to use your skills on a meaningful volunteer project, Connect-123 provides customized programs that are tailor-made for you. We run programs in six exciting international destinations: Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Shanghai, Dublin, Sydney and Barcelona! Programs are open to stu...


This listing has been saved 1 time

Business Placements in Oaxaca, Mexico with Adelante Abroad

An internship in International Business will enable candidates to gain both business and international experience while in Oaxaca. Examples of business related internships are accounting, business (social and economical) development, and graph design. These programs promote the cultivation and consumption of an ancient grain grown in abundance in Oaxaca (amaranth) as a way to improve health. S...


This listing has been saved 26 times

Volunteer at an Elephant Camp, Thailand

45 minutes outside of the busy city of Chiang Mai, in the lush hills to the north, is an Elephant Camp. Come learn about the endangered Asian elephant, help with conservation efforts, and become a part of this community! The park has been open for 20 years, has over 70 elephants and roughly 250 workers. It is surrounded by lush mountains and is divided down the middle by a river. This is a ...


This listing has been saved 17 times

Work with Brown Bears in Romania

Help to care for over 90 bears in Eastern Europe's largest bear sanctuary, located in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains. The bears are being rehabilitated after years of misery in circuses or as tourist attractions in tiny cages. It is fantastic to see these beautiful animals living happier lives and you will help achieve this by working alongside a very dedicated team of Romanian worke...


This listing has been saved 16 times

Discover Africa Gap Year Program w Cross-Cultural Solutions

Africa is full of mysterious locations, hundreds of unique cultures, and an infinite amount of lessons to be learned. This gap year trip is guaranteed to enlighten, challenge and surprise you with an itinerary that takes you on an adventure through 3 contrasting areas of Africa. Morocco in Northern Africa is rich in Muslim culture and history. Ghana in West Africa with jungles, cities, and coas...