/ Traveling on a budget
budget travel — By Abbie Mood on July 9, 2010 at 5:00 am
Filed under: featuredarticle, free travel

WWOOF: Volunteer and Get Free Room & Board

Here at Planet Eye’s Budget Travel, one of my goals is to share the best ways to save money while traveling, and nothing is better than free!  WWOOFing is a great way to get free accommodations with a local family while learning about a sustainable lifestyle.

WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms) is a worldwide network that started in 1971, and is somewhat like a work exchange.  For a few hours of help a day, WWOOF hosts offer accommodation, food, and an opportunity to get to know local people in the community you are visiting.  There are WWOOF opportunities available year round, all around the world!

About the WWOOF hosts

Your next volunteer opportunity awaits!

WWOOF hosts grow organic products, or are in the process of going organic or using ecologically friendly methods on their land. The hosts will provide hands-on experience of organic growing and other learning opportunities if possible. The hosts also agree to provide clean, dry accommodations and adequate food for their volunteer(s).

How do I get started?

The WWOOF website links volunteers to the national organizations for countries around the world.  Each country site lists organic farms, smallholdings, and farmers or gardeners who are looking for volunteers to help at specific times.

After signing up to become a WWOOFer*, you can then look through the list for an opportunity that interests you and contact the the hosts directly to arrange your stay.

The WWOOF-USA Host Farm Directory lists over 1,000 organic farms (thought not necessarily USDA certified organic) and gardens across the country. The Host Farm profile contains information about the location, general responsibilities, and lifestyle of the host. In the United States, the program is open to anyone 18 years of age or older, regardless of experience.

*Program registration is $30 for the United States, and $45 for Canada.  Be sure to check the specific country for their registration price.  This is the only cost to you as a volunteer!

Check out this trailer for a WWOOF documentary, currently in post-production.  WWOOF: The Movie Trailer from Ashley Terry on Vimeo.

Photo Credit: Nicholas_T on Flickr

Tags: featuredarticle, free travel


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