What benefits can I offer to travelers?
Are you wondering what you can offer travelers as part of your exchange? Are any benefits required to be offered? In this article we’ll answer all of your questions about what hosts can offer volunteers.
A good exchange between a host and traveler starts with what each party has to offer. Here are the benefits that hosts can offer, both required and optional, which determine the quality of both parties’ experience.
Types of accommodation
For each one of your positions, you can choose between four types of accommodation, one of which you must offer to all of your volunteers:
- Private room: A room exclusively for one traveler, or two in the case of a traveling couple.
- Shared room: A room that may be shared between volunteers and/or other people staying with the same host, such as guests or family members.
- Team room: A room shared exclusively among volunteers.
- Tent: An inside or outside space including a structure such as tents, canopies, trailers, or similar that is made available for volunteers to sleep. If you can’t offer a camping structure, add an item to your Screening Questions so that volunteers know that they’ll only have a campsite available, without a structure set up.
Emphasize additional information about available accommodation, like possible exceptions or situations where volunteers will not be hosted in the same place as their activities – and share photos of the accommodation in your Photo Gallery so you’re all on the same page.
Additionally, it’s advisable to select only the most basic option you can guarantee: then, if an upgrade is available, travelers will be happy with a pleasant surprise. But if the opposite happens, it will generate ill-will during your exchanges, compromising their quality.
Meals are a benefit that travelers really value, which has a lot to do with how many people are interested in helping you. You can offer up to three meals a day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and we highly recommend only selecting the meals that you can offer to all volunteers during their entire stay (while also considering their days off).
- Most hosts provide at least one meal per day, the most common being breakfast.
- If you’re located far from supermarkets and restaurants, we recommend that you offer all three meals, or the ingredients for volunteers to prepare their own.
- Any additional information must be shared on your profile and/or during your recruitment process so that expectations are aligned from the beginning. Some FAQs:
- Do I only provide meal ingredients, or serve whole cooked meals?
- Do I have to give volunteers a stipend to buy ingredients?
If your place has an equipped kitchen stocked with tools and spices for volunteers to use, you should also select this option in the “Extras” section. This benefit does not replace your meals – you can offer volunteers both.
Remember that, in general, travelers need access to a kitchen because they’re used to staying at places for weeks at a time, so offering this is common practice for the majority of our hosts.
Recommended for less accessible locations
Offering pick-up on arrivals makes a good first impression on travelers, saves them money on travel, and helps them feel welcomed. Pick-up could be relevant for hosts in remote areas with less public transportation.
If you have a bicycle that volunteers can use at their leisure, amazing! This is usually a success. The same goes for surf boards if you’re near the beach. In any case, it’s important that you only display what you’re sure you can offer. Can you offer more types of transportation, like skateboards or departure pick-up? Great! Include them in the additional information, and earn some extra points when travelers are checking your position.
Discounts & Other Free Benefits
The more benefits you can provide, the more attractive your position(s) will be! You can offer volunteers special discounts on local places where you have connections, such as restaurants, tours, drinks, and accommodation. If this is the case, make sure to only display what you’re sure you can offer equally to all volunteers to avoid any unfairness.
You can offer special discounts to your volunteers if you have partner projects such as restaurants, tours, drinks and accommodation:
You can also offer other free benefits to volunteers. Be aware: If you aren’t responsible for or can’t manage yourself over what you’re offering, we recommend that you not select this option.
Extra Courses, Classes, and Certificates
Worldpackers volunteers are looking for transformative experiences, and want to learn new things as part of this transformation.
Socio-environmental organizations, NGOs, and nonprofits may offer participation certificates, listed in the “Extra” section, which can be interesting for traveling students to earn activity credit, or for other travelers to have a tangible memory of their incredible time volunteering.
Ecological hosts can offer Permaculture Courses to extend permaculture knowledge around the world.
Can you teach a little of your language to travelers? Know any local dance steps? Even simple and informal lessons can be very attractive to people considering applying to your positions, because they add a cultural aspect and increase growth, self-awareness, and other benefits of travel.
Beside language and dance lessons, you can also offer yoga, surf, and holistic therapy classes. And if you have another kind of lesson or course to offer, add it to your positions’ additional information if you’re sure that you can provide it to everyone.
Important note: these certificates, lessons, and courses are not provided by Worldpackers, and have no relation to the courses and certificates found in the Worldpackers Academy for Travelers.
What if I’m able to offer one or more benefits that aren’t listed here?
Wonderful! Don’t forget to include them in your positions’ additional information so travelers know what you’re offering. Your chances of attracting more and better candidates will definitely improve!