Wildlife Conservation

Posted on March 21, 2016

If you’re an animal lover, you have probably felt one of the following;


  • Wonderment when you see wild animals in their natural habitat
  • Outrage when you hear of cruelty to animals, and especially any threat to an endangered species.
  • In awe of charity projects who fight to protect wildlife all over the world.


If you’re passionate about wildlife and travelling, then a wildlife conservation project could be the perfect adventure for you this year.

Whether you are interested in marine conservation in Madagascar, protecting primates in Costa Rica or helping big cats in South Africa, there is a charity project to suit you. According to WWF there are only around;


  • 20,000 Polar Bears left in the wild
  • 7, 500 Sumatran Orangutans left in the world
  • 3,200 Tigers left in the world
  • 1, 600 Pandas left in the world
  • Less than 250 Vaquita left in the world
  • And most shockingly there are less than 30 Amur Leopards left


This is simply a short list, but there are so many endangered animals that are at risk of extinction or harm. Therefore any help you can offer will be greatly appreciated by the charities that are fighting to protect endangered or threated creatures.

You can research charity projects online which will normally plan the entire trip for you. Just make sure that you fully research the website, charity and country you are visiting, to make sure you get the correct vaccinations and travel insurance for working with animals.


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If you have a passion for travel, teaching or helping the less fortunate, then teaching abroad could be a perfect adventure for you.

Teaching abroad will allow you to develop priceless skills such as leadership, training, languages and cultural understanding. These can transmit into any career, whether you choose to carry on teaching or head into a completely different direction.

You can now become part of teaching projects almost anywhere in the world, whether you want to teach sports, dancing, music, singing, English, maths or science, to name just a few, there is a project to suit you.

You just need to decide what you are passionate about teaching, and where you want to teach – you could travel to Europe or further afield. The internet is full of websites and organisations that can organise the whole trip for you, but just make sure that you fully research the country, project and website before you commit to anything.

Remember that teaching and travelling will always present challenges, but the rewards (for you and the community you are helping) are invaluable.

To give you some ideas, here are our top three teaching opportunities;

  • Use your voice! If you’re worried that you have nothing to give, remember that you are fluent in one of the most popular languages in the world. The English Language is taught in schools all over the world, so if you are keen to apply yourself and learn how to teach a language, this could be a great option for you. You will probably find that you learn some of their language during your stay too.
  • Do you have a sporting hobby? If you have a hobby which you really enjoy and are good at, why not teach that! Football is a great example, so many play in this country and those skills could easily be used to teach the sport to young people abroad. There are a range of sports and activities you could teach, check out our Sports Volunteering page for more information.
  • Do you have a talent? If you are really good at maths, science, dance, or even if you can play a musical instrument, these skills can be put to great use by teaching them abroad. Research the countries you would like to visit, and see what teaching opportunities are available.


Community Projects

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If you want to truly immerse yourself in a culture abroad, or if you are interested in helping a specific community, then a Community Volunteering Project will be perfect for you.

A community project is the best way to learn about a certain culture whilst you live and work there. By working with these people you will be helping the less fortunate and making sure their way of life survives and thrives.

There are hundreds of communities in need of volunteers, whether you want to work in hospital clinics in Africa or teach children in Brazil, your help will be priceless to these communities. In turn they will reward you by accepting you into their community and educating you on their way of life.

Once you have worked on a community volunteering project, the people, country and project will remain close to your heart forever. You are guaranteed to have an amazing but sobering experience.

Volunteering Checklist;

  • Vaccinations – if you’re planning to work within a community, especially in poorer countries or areas, you need to make sure you’ve had certain vaccinations and have taken preventative medicines. For example, if you’re planning to work in a hospital or clinic, your GP will probably recommend that you have certain jabs to give you extra protection.
  • Travel Insurance – make sure you have quality travel insurance, that will cover you for all of your volunteering activities. Without travel insurance you leave yourself vulnerable to potentially huge bills if you face a holiday disaster.
  • Backpack – you need to ensure that you bring the right things, and the right amount of things, with you for your stay. For example, a first aid kit is always advisable, and especially if you are helping a community that is far away from any towns or hospitals. Furthermore, a community such as this might not have electricity for you to power your phone, so invest in a solar charging pack if this is important to you.
  • Fundraise – when your adventure is booked, why not fundraise at university or work? Any funds, clothes, toys and toiletries people can donate will be put to great use by your community, so get campaigning!
  • Health – remember to look after yourself as well as your new community. Don’t forget to wear sun protection, drink plenty of fluids, and take plenty of rest in the shade if you’re working in a hot climate. Make sure you continue to take any preventative or prescribed medication regularly, and seek medical attention immediately if you feel it is necessary.




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Most Backpacker and Longstay travellers plan their adventures around chances to experience other cultures and ways of life, and unsurprisingly many find themselves seeking work within local communities, either for experience or money.

WWOOFing or ‘World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms’, is basically an exchange programme where people who are interested in agriculture or nature can travel abroad and volunteer for a farm or small holding. In return for hard work, the WWOOF hosts provide food, lodgings and of course the opportunity to learn.

When you start your WWOOFing adventure, you will travel to live with your hosts for a period of time decided by you both, for example you could stop by for three days during a backpacking trip, or you could stay for six months. On average, people usually decide to stay for a couple of weeks, during which time you will be expected to join in with the activities of the host, working around 6 hours a day to pay for your lodgings.

WWOOF programmes are now available throughout the world, and are a great way to travel, learn about a specific culture, and different approaches to agriculture. You could work on a vineyard in France, or harvest mangoes in Bangladesh – the world is your oyster!
The range of activities and jobs available is astounding; you could potentially find yourself…

  • Cutting wood
  • Feeding animals
  • Fencing
  • Gardening
  • Making bread
  • Making cheese
  • Making compost
  • Making mud bricks
  • Making wine
  • Planting
  • Sowing seeds
  • Weeding

Imagine adding those to your CV! The first step is to decide where you want to travel, and what activity you want to participate in or learn more about.

For more information about how to apply for a specific activity, farm or destination, visit WWOOFInternational.org.


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Volunteering in another country is an amazing experience. Not only will you be offering genuine help to a less fortunate community, you will also meet some wonderful people, have the opportunity to travel and gain priceless life and CV experience.

There are now hundreds of charity projects running throughout the world, whether you want to teach less fortunate children in Europe, help with wild life conservation in Asia or build schools and houses in Africa, there is a charity project out there for you.

You just need to decide which charity project most interests you and where you are willing to travel. The internet is full of websites and organisations that can organise the whole trip for you, but just make sure that you fully research the country, project and website before you commit to anything.

Once you have worked on a charity project, the people, country and charity will remain close to your heart forever, it is always a wonderful and humbling experience.
To give you some inspiration, here are our top 10 volunteering missions;

  • Wildlife conservation – if you love animals, there are opportunities to work with wild and endangered animals all over the globe. You could work with Giant Pandas in China or baby Sea Turtles in Costa Rica. Decide which animals you would love to help, and then you can choose a destination and project to join.
  • Teaching children – teaching children is always a fun and rewarding experience, you will help to build their knowledge as they help you grow and develop your life skills. Whether you want to teach sports or science, there are opportunities all over the globe.
  • Charity – if you want to help give something back during your travels by helping a poor community, there is a massive variety of charities you could get involved with. From building schools in Africa to working with the homeless in the USA, any project will appreciate your help.




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Participating in an internship abroad can be an amazing way to travel, add to your CV, gain experience and make sure you stand out in any job interview.

Many graduates are turning to this option to gain experience the UK job market just isn’t offering at the moment. Working abroad is a great way to explore a career path, to gain experience in how other countries and cultures operate, and most importantly an opportunity to learn.

Internships are usually a humbling experience where you truly learn whether a certain career path is for you, if not you can simply walk away and try something else. Doing this abroad also gives you the chance to travel somewhere different and truly step outside your comfort zone.

Not only will you gain a wealth of experience but it will also impress in any job interview, because it becomes so much more than a bullet point on your CV, it is a great talking point and portrays bravery, experience and passion.

Decide on the career path you want to explore and then research the type of internships available, you could travel to Europe or further afield, it completely depends on what is available and how adventurous you are feeling.

Working Abroad

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Working abroad is an amazing way to enhance your CV, experience different cultures, test a career path, or simply pay for the next plane ticket. Once you have decided what you want to get out of your experience, there are a wealth of projects and websites online dedicated to matching you with a job abroad.

  • Volunteering for a charity project – this can be an amazing way to give something back to a less fortunate community, plus it will really set you apart on any CV or job application. There are worthy charity project throughout the world, you just need decide which is closest to your heart or the most interesting, for example you could help with wildlife conservation, help the homeless or build schools.
  • Teaching – teaching abroad is great for anyone who is thinking about becoming a teacher, is good at languages or enjoys a different culture. As a teacher working abroad you will be thrown head first into a different culture, it is a great way to teach as you learn, master the language and give something back. You could teach English or even coach a sports team.
  • Working abroad/Internships – again this is a great way to ‘test the water’ of a chosen career path, or to add to your CV. More and more graduates are turning to this option because of the UK job market. If the company has a UK office you could even ask for a transfer if you decide to go home.

It is important to remember that any travelling experience will come with certain drawbacks or down points which you need to be prepared for. You will at some point feel home sick, probably because of massive culture shock, and you need to accept this and move past it.

Working abroad can also present its own problems, you need to make enough time for yourself to relax and explore, don’t attempt to work every second to fill your time – to get everything you possibly can out of the experience you need to be able to tick everything off on your to do list.

On a final point, always make sure that your travel insurance covers you to work abroad.
For more information check out the links below;

Vaccinations Guide

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When planning a trip abroad, it is important that you research the destination you are intending to visit, to check whether you need vaccinations or preventative medicines before you travel.

Below are some things to take into consideration when planning a trip;

  • If you are planning to visit Australia or a country in Northern / Central Europe, or North America, you will most likely not need any injections. However if you are planning to travel further afield you will probably need some form of jab, even if it is simply a booster.
  • Remember that the region of the country, and the time of year you are visiting could make a difference – do plenty of research and consult your GP.
  • You should arrange to see your GP a minimum of eight weeks before you have planned to depart. Some vaccinations and tablets take this long to take effect.
  • It is important to remember that not all vaccinations are offered on the NHS, if your vaccination is not available you will need to research a private clinic. Unfortunately you will need to pay for these jabs, the cost can vary depending on the dose you need, but they will normally cost around £50.00 for one dose.
  • Always make sure you invest in quality travel insurance before you travel. Travel Insurance will prove invaluable if you do face a holiday nightmare; it could potentially get you home and save you thousands of pounds.

Make sure you inform your GP if any of the following are applicable to your plans;

  • Will you be spending a lot of time outdoors, trekking or visiting rural areas? You are more at risk of contracting something in rural rather than urban areas.
  • Will you be doing charity work? You are far more likely to come into contact with disease if you are working in poorer communities, simply because they have very little medical care.
  • Are you planning to work in a hospital or clinic? People working in a medical setting will need to take additional precautionary measures.
  • Will you be in contact with animals? Diseases such as rabies can be spread by wild animals, so you may need additional injections.
  • Are you a backpacker who will be staying in hostels or camp sites rather than hotels? If so you are more at risk.
  • Are you planning an extended visit? The longer your stay, the greater your risk of being exposed to medical issues.
  • Also remember that your age and health can make you more vulnerable to infection. Also inform your GP if you have any pre-existing medical conditions, as this could affect the treatment you can have.

If you would like more information on travelling and vaccinations visit http://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/destinations.aspx.


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Australia is an extremely popular destination with backpacker and Longstay travellers alike, however journeys like this are expensive, and it is important that you save your money for the things you really want to do, rather than wasting it on expensive medical bills.

If you’re travelling to Australia, it is important that you enrol in their Medicare programme, just in case you need medical attention abroad. To help anyone planning a trip to Australia, please see our frequently asked Medicare questions below;

What is Medicare, and why do I need it?

Medicare works similarly to the EHIC in Europe, you receive a personalised card which gets you discounted or free public health care and medicines in state Australian hospitals – hence why it is so important. It should ensure that you receive medical treatment similar to the NHS in the UK; however you may still need to pay towards some medications and treatments. If you do need medical treatment during your time in Australia, always head for a state clinic or hospital, to avoid paying fees at private hospitals.

Who is eligible for Medicare?

Australia has Reciprocal Health Care Agreements with several countries around the world, including the UK, which means that any Brits traveling to Australia can apply for Medicare and receive essential medical treatments.

Why do I need travel insurance if I have Medicare?

It is important to remember that, just like the EHIC, Medicare is not meant to be a replacement for travel insurance. Medicare is there to make sure you receive the medical treatment you need in state facilities, without having to pay extortionate fees. However, Medicare will not be able to assist if your baggage is damaged or stolen, or if you need to be repatriated to the UK. You must invest in quality travel insurance to make sure you are fully covered in Australia.

I take medication, should I just fill my prescriptions in Australia?

We would always suggest that you take a good supply of your prescription medication abroad with you, just to make sure you have enough for your time away, and in case you cannot obtain your medication in your destination.

However, it is important to remember that Australia has strict customs regulations about what can and can’t be brought into the country, and some prescription medications are on this list. Always check customs regulations, as well as local laws before you travel, just to make sure you don’t face any issues before your holiday has even begun!

How can I get a Medicare card?

To enrol in Medicare you will need your passport and a valid visa. You can apply by visiting Humanservices.gov.au and downloading an enrolment form. Alternatively, you can apply by visiting a Medicare office (there are hundreds all over Australia) up to 10 days after you arrive, to register for the programme.

Top Money Saving Tips for Backpackers

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Planning a gap year or backpacking adventure can become expensive, so it is important that you settle on a realistic budget and get all your money matters organised before you depart.

Here are our top tips to save travellers money;

  • Before you leave, shop around! You need to be a savvy consumer, use the internet, high street or travel agents to shop around for the best value flights, accommodation, currency exchange rates, travel insurance, gear and essentials. You might save a lot of money, or you may only save pennies, but every little helps and it quickly adds up to a decent saving.
  • Make sure you have a decent amount of spending money; you should split this between pre-paid cards or travellers cheques and cash. Do not carry tons of cash around with you, what will you do if all your money is stolen or lost? Pre-paid cards, on the other hand, can be immediately cancelled if lost. Also be careful how often you withdraw money abroad, as this can generate massive charges.
  • Look at exchange rates before you leave. It is easy to go to another country and have no idea whether something is cheap or expensive, but if you understand the value compared to the pound you are more likely to be a smart spender abroad.
  • Don’t be afraid to haggle, if you don’t ask you don’t get! Some companies are willing to give you small discounts, but only if you ask, there is always something they can do to give you a better price – the worst they can do is say no!
  • Research sales, discount codes and see if there are any discount cards you can invest in, for example international student cards or rail cards will get you discounts worldwide.
  • Research and plan a realistic budget; if you don’t have a lot of money to spend, then you need to visit less expensive countries. Places like Ibiza are always going to be a lot more expensive than a country like Thailand.
  • Watch your spending abroad. In some countries, like Thailand, the British pound stretches a very long way, so you may be tempted to splurge on luxuries, but just remember that the bills will soon mount up.
  • You can save money by shopping at markets and supermarkets and cooking your own food, instead of going out. Try not to splurge on luxuries; if you can live without something then it is not necessary. Save your money for the things you really want to do, for example day trips, activities and the occasional night out.
  • Travelling in groups rather than individually may get you more discounts, look out for group discounts and split all bills.
  • Make sure you have all the correct paperwork and that you have invested in quality travel insurance. Without the correct paper work (i.e. valid passport, visa etc.) you may be refused entry to the country. Travel insurance will protect you against massive bills if you need medical treatment abroad, or if your vital possessions or travel documents become lost or damaged. By being organised and making sure you have the correct paper work in place before you travel, you might save yourself a small fortune.
Please note, Holidaysafe's online prices automatically include a 15% discount against our Customer Service Centre prices.
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