NEED https://www.workaway.info/ site review or user experience

186°
Deal Lieutenant
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So I found this cool site which lets you trade few hours for a FREE STAY and FOOD at places across the world. Really cool concept just wondering about the safety and genuiness as we all have heard stories of people being taken abroad by fake promises and compelled to do toilet cleaning and stuff laughing

anyone who have experienced this site or anything on similar grounds pls share your experiences and inputs

24 Comments  |  
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@siddudeagarwal did you give a try, bro? Is it better than couchsurfing? (Not talking about present situation, but in general, like in normal times)

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Looks pretty cool to me.
We can make a group so even if we have to clean toilet we will share the miseries.🤣🤣

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Tejaa wrote:

@siddudeagarwal did you give a try, bro? Is it better than couchsurfing? (Not talking about present situation, but in general, like in normal times)

no bro couldnt

I did go for a mumbai trip but couldnt try this

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there are few such Fb grps too name HIMALAYAN VOLUNTEERING etc with similar purpose and objective

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I’ll write about it in a few days. Been using it (host as well as volunteer) since 2010

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I am unable to post pictures. Messing up “Img src” somehow

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Ramta_Jogi wrote:

I am unable to post pictures. Messing up “Img src” somehow

Upload the image on https://imgur.com/...ad first, and then copy the direct link of each image.
.
The link usually ends with .jpg or .png and then try this method:

.https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682849/medium/Screenshot_2021-05-04-16-43-32-58_8ccd364c752df521fe39ba6a80db379d.jpg?1620126892

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Tejaa wrote:

Upload the image on https://imgur.com/...ad first, and then copy the direct link of each image.
.
The link usually ends with .jpg or .png and then try this method:

.https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682849/medium/Screenshot_2021-05-04-16-43-32-58_8ccd364c752df521fe39ba6a80db379d.jpg?1620126892

Thanks!

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@siddudeagarwal
@Tejaa
@Ash

I will divide this into two parts. Starting with my experience as a volunteer and then my requirements as a host (later) or what most would expect from you if you think of taking it up.

The pictures i am posting are relevant both from the point of view of a volunteer as well as a host, with different perspective.

Let’s begin with saying that this and other sites like WA are genuine; some sites are dedicated to only one project like WWOOF (organic farming). This is one of the sites where you can offer your services – you can choose from any/all of the following in exchange for food and accommodation as per the mutually agreed terms and conditions which are given on the host’s page. In some cases where you end up being a part of the host’s success story, the host may provide you with monetary benefits also though this is purely on luck and mood of the host.

Some like CS may or may not have this written explicitly on the host’s page and traveler(s) get a rude shock when they have to get up at 5 am and work in the fields.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682888/medium/7603182qfX0hwx.png?1620132086

As a volunteer you’ll have to pay USD 44/year individually or USD 56/ yr as a couple (2 people) upfront, with no refund even if you use it once or twice or don’t use it at all, to enroll into the WA programme. It’s valid worldwide and is not country specific like a few other sites.

You are supposed to work for 5 hours a day/5 days a week for a new host or as per the timings agreed upon. Accommodation provided to you can either be private room (rare in western world) or bed in dorm with public/shared bathroom.

While WA say that all profiles are verified and reviews are genuine, things are not so simple as they look. I have, in-person, heard some real horror (psycho) stories from volunteers and travelers. If things look to good to be true, they probably are. Trust your instincts. Communicate with the host. Ask a lot of questions. Don’t leave things to “I thought”, “Things should have been this or that way”.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682889/medium/7603182nNJ9ZCl.png?1620132090

The monthly/yearly availability calendar is as follows- highlights are self explanatory.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682890/medium/7603182iTGbt4s.png?1620132092

The minimum stay requirements are either 2 weeks or a month or as determined by the host. You are not legally bound by any rules though if you leave earlier than you might get flagged down.

@ OP: Cleaning toilets is a part of job; any job. You can’t pick and choose.

As far as what works and what doesn’t work in this setup is – It limits your options specially as a first time traveller to new land or if you are travelling for a fortnight or less. 6 hours of sunlight time from total 10 hours is most of the day gone.

It works if you are travelling for a full year/6 months/3 months or you are looking for a different experience (farming, perma/aquaculture, steam uses, carpentry or plumbing skils, coconut tree climbing, washing elephants!, community cooking, women empowerment, tribal/backward class upliftment, teaching rural kids/ under- privileged, language skills, farming, gardening etc.)

My best stays from 2017-19 were in Amritsar (India), near Bangkok in Thailand and in Aswan (Egypt). A private room with a swimming pool. Taking care of cats; cooking meals. Free transport or huge discounts on cruises. I had a tractor for self-driving in Amritsar. Full “pindd” feel.

Feel free to ask questions.

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Ramta_Jogi wrote:

@siddudeagarwal
@Tejaa
@Ash

I will divide this into two parts. Starting with my experience as a volunteer and then my requirements as a host (later) or what most would expect from you if you think of taking it up.

The pictures i am posting are relevant both from the point of view of a volunteer as well as a host, with different perspective.

Let’s begin with saying that this and other sites like WA are genuine; some sites are dedicated to only one project like WWOOF (organic farming). This is one of the sites where you can offer your services – you can choose from any/all of the following in exchange for food and accommodation as per the mutually agreed terms and conditions which are given on the host’s page. In some cases where you end up being a part of the host’s success story, the host may provide you with monetary benefits also though this is purely on luck and mood of the host.

Some like CS may or may not have this written explicitly on the host’s page and traveler(s) get a rude shock when they have to get up at 5 am and work in the fields.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682888/medium/7603182qfX0hwx.png?1620132086

As a volunteer you’ll have to pay USD 44/year individually or USD 56/ yr as a couple (2 people) upfront, with no refund even if you use it once or twice or don’t use it at all, to enroll into the WA programme. It’s valid worldwide and is not country specific like a few other sites.

You are supposed to work for 5 hours a day/5 days a week for a new host or as per the timings agreed upon. Accommodation provided to you can either be private room (rare in western world) or bed in dorm with public/shared bathroom.

While WA say that all profiles are verified and reviews are genuine, things are not so simple as they look. I have, in-person, heard some real horror (psycho) stories from volunteers and travelers. If things look to good to be true, they probably are. Trust your instincts. Communicate with the host. Ask a lot of questions. Don’t leave things to “I thought”, “Things should have been this or that way”.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682889/medium/7603182nNJ9ZCl.png?1620132090

The monthly/yearly availability calendar is as follows- highlights are self explanatory.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682890/medium/7603182iTGbt4s.png?1620132092

The minimum stay requirements are either 2 weeks or a month or as determined by the host. You are not legally bound by any rules though if you leave earlier than you might get flagged down.

@ OP: Cleaning toilets is a part of job; any job. You can’t pick and choose.

As far as what works and what doesn’t work in this setup is – It limits your options specially as a first time traveller to new land or if you are travelling for a fortnight or less. 6 hours of sunlight time from total 10 hours is most of the day gone.

It works if you are travelling for a full year/6 months/3 months or you are looking for a different experience (farming, perma/aquaculture, steam uses, carpentry or plumbing skils, coconut tree climbing, washing elephants!, community cooking, women empowerment, tribal/backward class upliftment, teaching rural kids/ under- privileged, language skills, farming, gardening etc.)

My best stays from 2017-19 were in Amritsar (India), near Bangkok in Thailand and in Aswan (Egypt). A private room with a swimming pool. Taking care of cats; cooking meals. Free transport or huge discounts on cruises. I had a tractor for self-driving in Amritsar. Full “pindd” feel.

Feel free to ask questions.

@Ramta_Jogi Thanks for the detailed information, bro!

Actually, it’s been a few months since I am searching for something like that. Trying to become a digital nomad. But this pandemic spoiling all my plans.

I have compared WA with CS. CS is good only for a few days to a maximum a week, whereas in WA we can plan a long time (suitable for me).

I read in reviews that 25 hours a week is the average period. Have seen some 15 hours listings as well, but there one gotta compromise on one meal, have to buy from own pocket.

I have two questions for now. 😅

1. Should we only choose listings with reviews? And, in case of a new listing, suggest some ways to know the genuineness of the host. I’ve noticed that new listings are providing better deals.

2. And one should avoid hosts where you are the only guest, no other guests are there? I mean risk wise. I know it’s all luck based but still…

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@Tejaa

CS is not officially a volunteer based community like WA. CS is (was) more of a culture sharing platform but with the advent of cheap hostels, that has been done away with.

If you want to be digital nomad – A hostel might suit you better than WA initially as you can work shifts based on your or your client’s needs (if your clients are overseas) or your work is only during certain hours (stock market for example). Also, you may need access to high speed data for uploading/downloading large files – Most WAs i spent time at won’t give you high speed data – very expensive in Europe. You have to depend on your mobile data. Do keep that in mind specially for remote places.

Coming to your questions:

1. Should we only choose listings with reviews? And, in case of a new listing, suggest some ways to know the genuineness of the host. I’ve noticed that new listings are providing better deals. – Choose listing based on your needs and host’s requirements. Reviews are always relative and subjective. What suits you may be a deal breaker for others. I will come to it once i finish writing my “hosting” part in the next few days.

2. And one should avoid hosts where you are the only guest, no other guests are there? I mean risk wise. I know it’s all luck based but still… – Not necessarily – It helps if the host stays on the same property where he is providing you room/bed. If there are no guests around, you’ll have more personal interaction with the host. ask these questions before hand and finalise only when you have made up your mind.

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Ramta_Jogi wrote:

@siddudeagarwal
@Tejaa
@Ash

I will divide this into two parts. Starting with my experience as a volunteer and then my requirements as a host (later) or what most would expect from you if you think of taking it up.

The pictures i am posting are relevant both from the point of view of a volunteer as well as a host, with different perspective.

Let’s begin with saying that this and other sites like WA are genuine; some sites are dedicated to only one project like WWOOF (organic farming). This is one of the sites where you can offer your services – you can choose from any/all of the following in exchange for food and accommodation as per the mutually agreed terms and conditions which are given on the host’s page. In some cases where you end up being a part of the host’s success story, the host may provide you with monetary benefits also though this is purely on luck and mood of the host.

Some like CS may or may not have this written explicitly on the host’s page and traveler(s) get a rude shock when they have to get up at 5 am and work in the fields.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682888/medium/7603182qfX0hwx.png?1620132086

As a volunteer you’ll have to pay USD 44/year individually or USD 56/ yr as a couple (2 people) upfront, with no refund even if you use it once or twice or don’t use it at all, to enroll into the WA programme. It’s valid worldwide and is not country specific like a few other sites.

You are supposed to work for 5 hours a day/5 days a week for a new host or as per the timings agreed upon. Accommodation provided to you can either be private room (rare in western world) or bed in dorm with public/shared bathroom.

While WA say that all profiles are verified and reviews are genuine, things are not so simple as they look. I have, in-person, heard some real horror (psycho) stories from volunteers and travelers. If things look to good to be true, they probably are. Trust your instincts. Communicate with the host. Ask a lot of questions. Don’t leave things to “I thought”, “Things should have been this or that way”.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682889/medium/7603182nNJ9ZCl.png?1620132090

The monthly/yearly availability calendar is as follows- highlights are self explanatory.

https://cdn0.desidime.com/attachments/photos/682890/medium/7603182iTGbt4s.png?1620132092

The minimum stay requirements are either 2 weeks or a month or as determined by the host. You are not legally bound by any rules though if you leave earlier than you might get flagged down.

@ OP: Cleaning toilets is a part of job; any job. You can’t pick and choose.

As far as what works and what doesn’t work in this setup is – It limits your options specially as a first time traveller to new land or if you are travelling for a fortnight or less. 6 hours of sunlight time from total 10 hours is most of the day gone.

It works if you are travelling for a full year/6 months/3 months or you are looking for a different experience (farming, perma/aquaculture, steam uses, carpentry or plumbing skils, coconut tree climbing, washing elephants!, community cooking, women empowerment, tribal/backward class upliftment, teaching rural kids/ under- privileged, language skills, farming, gardening etc.)

My best stays from 2017-19 were in Amritsar (India), near Bangkok in Thailand and in Aswan (Egypt). A private room with a swimming pool. Taking care of cats; cooking meals. Free transport or huge discounts on cruises. I had a tractor for self-driving in Amritsar. Full “pindd” feel.

Feel free to ask questions.

Quite informative

Wasnt aware of Host shelling out 44USD pa.
The main worry I have is what if host backs out at last moment, then the volunteer looses his money on flight and cab etc especially if he is planning that travel just specifically for this.

I feel there should be an Escrow system by workaway where they hold certain amount of money from both parties and release it once the volunteering is successfully complete. Any damages to either will be compensated by another from this security deposit

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siddudeagarwal wrote:

Wasnt aware of Host shelling out 44USD pa.

Hosts don’t shell out anything. You misread/ misinterpreted.

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siddudeagarwal wrote:

The main worry I have is what if host backs out at last moment, then the volunteer looses his money on flight and cab etc especially if he is planning that travel just specifically for this.

That’s why you make a string of volunteering works; hopping from one place to the other.

Have a backup.

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siddudeagarwal wrote:

I feel there should be an Escrow system by workaway where they hold certain amount of money from both parties and release it once the volunteering is successfully complete. Any damages to either will be compensated by another from this security deposit

It’s not a job that you are applying for; it’s mutual exchange. Isn’t supposed to work on Escrow.

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@siddudeagarwal
@Tejaa
@Ash

As a host :

You are going there (to any host) to help the community or host and not to boss around. Don’t even consider that you are indispensable or you have sort of applied for a job and you can demand work hours and payment. If you cannot drop your ego, drop your plans. Stay at home or book a hotel.

Your chances of getting approved and invited improve if you can multi-task like cooking, housekeeping, teaching etc.

If a person wants you over for gardening then it’s going to be an all-encompassing requirement of weeding, raising bed, seedling, compost, watering etc. In a hostel/hotel, you might be required to clean toilets, wash utensils, make drinks, prepare games, lead tours etc.

Mode & cost of transport will not be paid by the host till the time agreed upon. Communication/language gap is the biggest headache. Some things are just, you know, “lost in translation”. This holds true mostly for South East & East Asian countries.

There was this one place in North Thailand which mentioned mode of transport something like bike and Google translated it to be motorcycle. I was picked up from the railway station on a cycle and taken 5 kms on the bumpy “road” towards the farm. My bum and back were sore for 2 days.

If you know how to search for a place well on google/other search engines then you are able to find that place on WA by its real name on google map/ website. Pick up a few sentences in the listing, look out for them on the internet. That is one way to make sure of the authenticity of the listing. This is also a way to filter out (G)host listings. However, that listing may or may not take direct volunteers for security concerns.

Reviews are dicey in the manner that sometimes even if the host (or volunteer) screws up – leaves early or doesn’t provide the agreed upon things, neither party wants to deal with a negative comment on their profile and hence they won’t report. If you are able to locate your host’s place on google, going through the reviews on sites also help you to understand the nature of work, place, host and location.

- Ask if there would be a place for you to cook your own food, even if it’s shared with other guests. It helps. Having a grocery and daily needs shop or dhaba/canteen close by is a definite plus.

- Be aware of your allergies and phobias. If you are allergic to hair/dust/pollen etc. then taking up manual labour or paint job or working with flowers may not be for you. Likewise,if you are claustrophobic or have fear of lizards or spiders, scan the listing accordingly.

- Pack up on medicines. Double pack up on emergency medicines and write salt names. Ask your host to write the name of those salts in local language or mention an alternative name for your home medicine.

- If veg. food is all that you can make – get it clear inside the head of your host. For many, fish is also veg. and then we have organic veg. eggs – from chicken that have been fed only veg./organic feed. Yeah, i know, WTF?!

- Make a note of your surroundings. Go out on foot. Locate nearest public transport, medicine shops, befriend a few locals, smile and wave. Don’t be a grumpy head.

- Tell your family and friends back home where you are going. Don’t be foolish.

- Read the listing again & again – a place of my stay was for nudists only. Liberating feeling i must say – though it felt quite awkward at first. This was in Europe.

- Follow the rules of the listing.

- Use common sense. Avoid late nights till it’s with others in group. Even then, keep your wits about you.

- The most popular in-demand work is cooking, yoga, teaching, weeding, cleaning, taking care of cats, working in farm and working with wood/paints.

The longest any volunteer(s) stayed with us was 3 months. They were buskers from Chile. Shortest was 10 mins – Drug addict :-/

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Ramta_Jogi wrote:

@Tejaa

CS is not officially a volunteer based community like WA. CS is (was) more of a culture sharing platform but with the advent of cheap hostels, that has been done away with.

If you want to be digital nomad – A hostel might suit you better than WA initially as you can work shifts based on your or your client’s needs (if your clients are overseas) or your work is only during certain hours (stock market for example). Also, you may need access to high speed data for uploading/downloading large files – Most WAs i spent time at won’t give you high speed data – very expensive in Europe. You have to depend on your mobile data. Do keep that in mind specially for remote places.

Coming to your questions:

1. Should we only choose listings with reviews? And, in case of a new listing, suggest some ways to know the genuineness of the host. I’ve noticed that new listings are providing better deals. – Choose listing based on your needs and host’s requirements. Reviews are always relative and subjective. What suits you may be a deal breaker for others. I will come to it once i finish writing my “hosting” part in the next few days.

2. And one should avoid hosts where you are the only guest, no other guests are there? I mean risk wise. I know it’s all luck based but still… – Not necessarily – It helps if the host stays on the same property where he is providing you room/bed. If there are no guests around, you’ll have more personal interaction with the host. ask these questions before hand and finalise only when you have made up your mind.

Thanks again, for the prompt response, bro. 🙂

And yeah, I have looked for hostels as well. As you said, hostels are best, to begin with. I’ve checked hostels by Gostops, Zostel etc. where after offers and all it won’t cost more than 250 a night.

Within India, it’s the best option for sure. But in foreign countries, it’s not that cheap. I’ve checked, at some places, the rates start from even 1500-2000.

And yeah, I have read some listings saying that they have high-speed internet, whereas some saying they have very limited internet access.

Guess, I will start with hostels when the situation gets little normal and then later try WA.

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Ramta_Jogi wrote:

@siddudeagarwal
@Tejaa
@Ash

As a host :

You are going there (to any host) to help the community or host and not to boss around. Don’t even consider that you are indispensable or you have sort of applied for a job and you can demand work hours and payment. If you cannot drop your ego, drop your plans. Stay at home or book a hotel.

Your chances of getting approved and invited improve if you can multi-task like cooking, housekeeping, teaching etc.

If a person wants you over for gardening then it’s going to be an all-encompassing requirement of weeding, raising bed, seedling, compost, watering etc. In a hostel/hotel, you might be required to clean toilets, wash utensils, make drinks, prepare games, lead tours etc.

Mode & cost of transport will not be paid by the host till the time agreed upon. Communication/language gap is the biggest headache. Some things are just, you know, “lost in translation”. This holds true mostly for South East & East Asian countries.

There was this one place in North Thailand which mentioned mode of transport something like bike and Google translated it to be motorcycle. I was picked up from the railway station on a cycle and taken 5 kms on the bumpy “road” towards the farm. My bum and back were sore for 2 days.

If you know how to search for a place well on google/other search engines then you are able to find that place on WA by its real name on google map/ website. Pick up a few sentences in the listing, look out for them on the internet. That is one way to make sure of the authenticity of the listing. This is also a way to filter out (G)host listings. However, that listing may or may not take direct volunteers for security concerns.

Reviews are dicey in the manner that sometimes even if the host (or volunteer) screws up – leaves early or doesn’t provide the agreed upon things, neither party wants to deal with a negative comment on their profile and hence they won’t report. If you are able to locate your host’s place on google, going through the reviews on sites also help you to understand the nature of work, place, host and location.

- Ask if there would be a place for you to cook your own food, even if it’s shared with other guests. It helps. Having a grocery and daily needs shop or dhaba/canteen close by is a definite plus.

- Be aware of your allergies and phobias. If you are allergic to hair/dust/pollen etc. then taking up manual labour or paint job or working with flowers may not be for you. Likewise,if you are claustrophobic or have fear of lizards or spiders, scan the listing accordingly.

- Pack up on medicines. Double pack up on emergency medicines and write salt names. Ask your host to write the name of those salts in local language or mention an alternative name for your home medicine.

- If veg. food is all that you can make – get it clear inside the head of your host. For many, fish is also veg. and then we have organic veg. eggs – from chicken that have been fed only veg./organic feed. Yeah, i know, WTF?!

- Make a note of your surroundings. Go out on foot. Locate nearest public transport, medicine shops, befriend a few locals, smile and wave. Don’t be a grumpy head.

- Tell your family and friends back home where you are going. Don’t be foolish.

- Read the listing again & again – a place of my stay was for nudists only. Liberating feeling i must say – though it felt quite awkward at first. This was in Europe.

- Follow the rules of the listing.

- Use common sense. Avoid late nights till it’s with others in group. Even then, keep your wits about you.

- The most popular in-demand work is cooking, yoga, teaching, weeding, cleaning, taking care of cats, working in farm and working with wood/paints.

The longest any volunteer(s) stayed with us was 3 months. They were buskers from Chile. Shortest was 10 mins – Drug addict :-/

This is the gold content I was looking for.

About the phobia part, guess I gotta work on my cats/birds-phobia then, else it would be hard to find a place without cats. 😅

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Tejaa wrote:

This is the gold content I was looking for.

About the phobia part, guess I gotta work on my cats/birds-phobia then, else it would be hard to find a place without cats. 😅

Cats are common pets in Thailand and S-E Asia. Same for Egypt

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Ramta_Jogi wrote:

@siddudeagarwal
@Tejaa
@Ash

As a host :

You are going there (to any host) to help the community or host and not to boss around. Don’t even consider that you are indispensable or you have sort of applied for a job and you can demand work hours and payment. If you cannot drop your ego, drop your plans. Stay at home or book a hotel.

Your chances of getting approved and invited improve if you can multi-task like cooking, housekeeping, teaching etc.

If a person wants you over for gardening then it’s going to be an all-encompassing requirement of weeding, raising bed, seedling, compost, watering etc. In a hostel/hotel, you might be required to clean toilets, wash utensils, make drinks, prepare games, lead tours etc.

Mode & cost of transport will not be paid by the host till the time agreed upon. Communication/language gap is the biggest headache. Some things are just, you know, “lost in translation”. This holds true mostly for South East & East Asian countries.

There was this one place in North Thailand which mentioned mode of transport something like bike and Google translated it to be motorcycle. I was picked up from the railway station on a cycle and taken 5 kms on the bumpy “road” towards the farm. My bum and back were sore for 2 days.

If you know how to search for a place well on google/other search engines then you are able to find that place on WA by its real name on google map/ website. Pick up a few sentences in the listing, look out for them on the internet. That is one way to make sure of the authenticity of the listing. This is also a way to filter out (G)host listings. However, that listing may or may not take direct volunteers for security concerns.

Reviews are dicey in the manner that sometimes even if the host (or volunteer) screws up – leaves early or doesn’t provide the agreed upon things, neither party wants to deal with a negative comment on their profile and hence they won’t report. If you are able to locate your host’s place on google, going through the reviews on sites also help you to understand the nature of work, place, host and location.

- Ask if there would be a place for you to cook your own food, even if it’s shared with other guests. It helps. Having a grocery and daily needs shop or dhaba/canteen close by is a definite plus.

- Be aware of your allergies and phobias. If you are allergic to hair/dust/pollen etc. then taking up manual labour or paint job or working with flowers may not be for you. Likewise,if you are claustrophobic or have fear of lizards or spiders, scan the listing accordingly.

- Pack up on medicines. Double pack up on emergency medicines and write salt names. Ask your host to write the name of those salts in local language or mention an alternative name for your home medicine.

- If veg. food is all that you can make – get it clear inside the head of your host. For many, fish is also veg. and then we have organic veg. eggs – from chicken that have been fed only veg./organic feed. Yeah, i know, WTF?!

- Make a note of your surroundings. Go out on foot. Locate nearest public transport, medicine shops, befriend a few locals, smile and wave. Don’t be a grumpy head.

- Tell your family and friends back home where you are going. Don’t be foolish.

- Read the listing again & again – a place of my stay was for nudists only. Liberating feeling i must say – though it felt quite awkward at first. This was in Europe.

- Follow the rules of the listing.

- Use common sense. Avoid late nights till it’s with others in group. Even then, keep your wits about you.

- The most popular in-demand work is cooking, yoga, teaching, weeding, cleaning, taking care of cats, working in farm and working with wood/paints.

The longest any volunteer(s) stayed with us was 3 months. They were buskers from Chile. Shortest was 10 mins – Drug addict :-/

Awesome info bro.
Really informative. Must read for anyone getting into it.
+Kg

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Ramta_Jogi wrote:

@siddudeagarwal
@Tejaa
@Ash

As a host :

You are going there (to any host) to help the community or host and not to boss around. Don’t even consider that you are indispensable or you have sort of applied for a job and you can demand work hours and payment. If you cannot drop your ego, drop your plans. Stay at home or book a hotel.

Your chances of getting approved and invited improve if you can multi-task like cooking, housekeeping, teaching etc.

If a person wants you over for gardening then it’s going to be an all-encompassing requirement of weeding, raising bed, seedling, compost, watering etc. In a hostel/hotel, you might be required to clean toilets, wash utensils, make drinks, prepare games, lead tours etc.

Mode & cost of transport will not be paid by the host till the time agreed upon. Communication/language gap is the biggest headache. Some things are just, you know, “lost in translation”. This holds true mostly for South East & East Asian countries.

There was this one place in North Thailand which mentioned mode of transport something like bike and Google translated it to be motorcycle. I was picked up from the railway station on a cycle and taken 5 kms on the bumpy “road” towards the farm. My bum and back were sore for 2 days.

If you know how to search for a place well on google/other search engines then you are able to find that place on WA by its real name on google map/ website. Pick up a few sentences in the listing, look out for them on the internet. That is one way to make sure of the authenticity of the listing. This is also a way to filter out (G)host listings. However, that listing may or may not take direct volunteers for security concerns.

Reviews are dicey in the manner that sometimes even if the host (or volunteer) screws up – leaves early or doesn’t provide the agreed upon things, neither party wants to deal with a negative comment on their profile and hence they won’t report. If you are able to locate your host’s place on google, going through the reviews on sites also help you to understand the nature of work, place, host and location.

- Ask if there would be a place for you to cook your own food, even if it’s shared with other guests. It helps. Having a grocery and daily needs shop or dhaba/canteen close by is a definite plus.

- Be aware of your allergies and phobias. If you are allergic to hair/dust/pollen etc. then taking up manual labour or paint job or working with flowers may not be for you. Likewise,if you are claustrophobic or have fear of lizards or spiders, scan the listing accordingly.

- Pack up on medicines. Double pack up on emergency medicines and write salt names. Ask your host to write the name of those salts in local language or mention an alternative name for your home medicine.

- If veg. food is all that you can make – get it clear inside the head of your host. For many, fish is also veg. and then we have organic veg. eggs – from chicken that have been fed only veg./organic feed. Yeah, i know, WTF?!

- Make a note of your surroundings. Go out on foot. Locate nearest public transport, medicine shops, befriend a few locals, smile and wave. Don’t be a grumpy head.

- Tell your family and friends back home where you are going. Don’t be foolish.

- Read the listing again & again – a place of my stay was for nudists only. Liberating feeling i must say – though it felt quite awkward at first. This was in Europe.

- Follow the rules of the listing.

- Use common sense. Avoid late nights till it’s with others in group. Even then, keep your wits about you.

- The most popular in-demand work is cooking, yoga, teaching, weeding, cleaning, taking care of cats, working in farm and working with wood/paints.

The longest any volunteer(s) stayed with us was 3 months. They were buskers from Chile. Shortest was 10 mins – Drug addict :-/

Superlike

thanks bro and yes vigilance and maturity is indispensable in choosing a host and stay else the experience may give us hiccups and bumps

Missing