5 Tips Before Volunteering Abroad

Author: AB Staff

5 Tips Before Volunteering Abroad

Editor's Pick Purpose Travel

This article is by GlobeAware

It may seem obvious, but sometimes we get so excited for the experience ahead and we forget to prepare properly.  Even as a seasoned older adult traveler, we can forget the basics at time. Use the information provided below as a quick checklist before you set off abroad!

  1. Passport/Visa:

Make copies of your passport/visa and other important travel documents. Make sure to check your passport for the expiration date as well. Many countries require 6 months of validity to grant entry, so the effective “deadline” might be sooner than the expiration date in your passport. Another good tip is to keep note of your country’s embassy contact information.

  1. Print out all your reservations:

Plane ticket, orientation packets, and even emails with important information. Sometimes our phones can fail on us when we need them the most, so having hard copies to show when required mean’s you’ll have less problems to stress out about.


  1. Notify your bank and credit card companies that you’ll be traveling:

If your bank or credit card company sees that there is  activity outside of your registered address, they might freeze your bank account.  And although some credit card companies these days don’t require you to notify them of travel, but you should double check with them just in case.

  1. Medical Needs:

Make sure to let your volunteering organization know of any allergies or health issues you have. Pack your required medication, but make sure to research what can and can’t be brought since some countries might have a ban on seemingly normal over the counter medication. Make sure to also have a list of emergency contacts and any documents that would be helpful in case of emergency. You can also pack a mini first aid kit for yourself, ex. Allergy medication, pain killers ,wet wipes, band aids and anti-diarrhea pills. Get necessary immunizations and vaccines. Check the U.S. Centers for Disease Control destinations list for where you’re going.

  1. Phones:

Make sure to look up your phone carrier’s international plans otherwise you may come back home to an exorbitant phone bill. If you don’t plan on getting an international phone plan, or purchasing a sim card in the country you visit, you can always set your phone to “airplane mode” and turn on the “Wi-Fi.”

If you’d like to learn more, please visit our website at www.globeaware.org.

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