5 ways you can travel South Korea by volunteering
It may be difficult to find ways to travel when your on a budget, but where there is a will, there is a way! Apart from the food and the sights -- both amazing reasons for you to get on a plane -- some of the best memories and experiences of traveling comes from learning about a different culture and meeting new people. Now, what if I were to tell you that there are ways for you to experience South Korea...both immersing yourself in the local culture and community...all without breaking the bank! Read on to find out 5 of the best ways you can travel around South Korea while earning free room and board!
1. Volunteer at a hostel or guesthouse
(Images from workaway)
One of the best ways to travel on a budget while still maintaining a lot of free time to explore is by volunteering at a hostel or guesthouse! For the most part, volunteering at a hostel or guesthouse does not require very difficult duties. You will probably be expected to interact with guests, clean rooms and bathrooms, and perform other various housekeeping duties, but who doesn't already do that in their own homes? This way, you get to meet new people from all over the world while getting free accommodation, some free food, not to mention all of the other amenities that other guests get! This is truly one of the best ways you can get to know Korea like the locals all while not burning a hole in your wallet at some fancy hotel!
Interested? Here are two great places to look for available volunteering opportunities in Korea's hostels and guesthouses!
2. Volunteer at an organic farm through WWOOF
(Images from WWOOF)
While visiting the usual tourist spots in South Korea is a must, if you are looking to get out of the city...or just like to be in nature...this next option might just be for you! A great way to travel around Korea and experience daily life (outside of the city) of Korean farmers is by volunteering through WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms). Through WWOOF, you can choose between the many types of organic farms Korea has offer all the while leaving behind the hustle and bustle of the city for an idyllic and peaceful Korean countryside...ok...the amazingly fresh and delicious local farming cuisine might be something to note also...
Most Korean farmers will give you free accommodation and food for your work and your duties vary depending on what type of farm you choose to volunteer at. In order to volunteer, click on the the link below, follow the simple directions and you will be on your way to an amazing experience!
3. Volunteer at a Language Cafe
(Images from Lzone Cafe)
It really is not a secret that one of the easiest ways make your way to Korea is to teach English! If you are fluent in English then you can easily volunteer at one of the many language cafes scattered all over Korea. Besides getting to share your culture and language with local Koreans while playing games and conversing, your duties might also include helping out with the cleaning and general maintenance of the cafes, but in exchange you get free accommodation, food, and many other benefits!
(Images from Workaway)
One of the great things about volunteering at a language cafe is the amazing locations! Many language cafes are located near universities and shopping/entertainment areas so there are numerous activities to keep you busy outside of the cafe work! Time to take out some new friends and experience Korea!
4. Volunteer to teach a Korean family English
(Images from Workaway)
While traversing through Korea on your own might be a blast, there are experiences that can only be had with a local guide. This is all the more true if that guide is a Korean family! One amazing way to volunteer and truly live like a Korean is with a cultural homestay!
By teaching a Korean family English, you can receive free accommodation and food in return! It may be harder to find this kind of volunteer opportunity so if you do make sure not to let it slip away!
5. Volunteer for the Lotus Lantern Festival
In Korea there are many different festivals all year round! However what makes the Lotus Lantern Festival special, held in April or May each year, is that you can volunteer and stay in a temple for free!
The Lotus Lantern Festival is one of the biggest festivals in Korea and is in celebration of Buddha's birthday. During the festival, hundreds of colorful lanterns are paraded down the streets. As a Lotus Lantern Festival volunteer you will get to participate in the parade as well as stay overnight at a temple!
As you stay at the temple you get to experience Buddhist life as you participate in, Yebul (memorial service), BaruGongyang (a monastic ritual of eating vegetarian food in complete silence without wasting any food) and then at dawn you will get to participate in a walking meditation ritual.
While you stay at the temple you learn how to make your own lotus lanterns so you can also guide others on how to make lotus lanterns on the day of the festival itself.
This years festival has already passed so keep your eyes peeled for the next opportunity to volunteer!
There are so many budget friendly ways to experience Korea...which one will you choose? Let us know below!