TRAVEL TIPS

Updated: Sep 1, 2021



You should arrive into Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi (airport code HAN) on the selected Wednesday start date. Programmes start on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month. You will be met at the airport by one of our local staff or an appointed driver who will be holding a named sign. They will take you to your accommodation where you will spend the rest of your day at leisure.

The programme ends on the Wednesday of your final week and you should depart the accommodation on this day.

Can I use this program as part of a university or college placement?

It is certainly possible to use one of EV’s programmes as part of your university or college placement. Project staff can sign off any paperwork required by your course tutors. EV regularly receives medical, childcare, psychology and nursing placement students at our projects around the world and we have ties with some of the leading universities.

If you’re a course tutor and would like further information about how one of EV’s programmes could meet the placement requirements for your degree course then please contact us directly.

Is it safe to travel to EV destinations?

Although our volunteers work in the developing world, we always ensure our host locations are safe. Each programme has been extensively researched and has passed our strict vetting process. Our UK team undergoes an extensive routine when establishing our in-country infrastructures and we continue to monitor our safety procedures on a regular basis. Furthermore, we monitor the stability of our volunteer destinations on a daily basis. Through our constant contact with consulates and embassies and our reports from our overseas teams, we are able to ensure that our volunteers are never placed in unstable regions.

The EV team has visited and participated in every programme we offer and verified them based on our own independent criteria. We carefully inspect every little detail of our set-up. From inspecting the living conditions, checking out the neighbourhoods you’ll be staying in, to tasting the food you’ll be eating – each and every programme we establish has gone through a lengthy and rigorous vetting process. Risk assessments have been written for all areas in which EV operate and our experienced local coordinators are always on-hand to manage any emergencies that may occur. Our UK team is always on the road reviewing our risk management procedures in the field and monitoring local conditions.

In emergency situations we have the necessary protocols and equipment in place and we are able to evacuate our volunteers from potential dangers. Our local coordinators are trained to deal with emergency circumstances.

All our local teams are experienced development professionals who have years of experience in hosting international volunteers. They are our representatives on the ground and will assist you 24/7 throughout your stay. Whether you need to call home, travel at the weekend or require urgent assistance – they are there to support you.

While we cannot guarantee your volunteer experience to be 100% trouble free we have taken all the necessary precautions to make sure each programme is as safe as possible.

Volunteers generally work as co-teachers alongside the local teacher and are welcomed to prepare and lead their own activities within the lessons. You will also be responsible for working with smaller groups of students, giving them the chance to speak English and helping them with their pronunciation.

Alongside our work with schools in Hanoi, our volunteers extend their contribution to a number of community classes and holiday camps. The community classes take place only a short walk from the Volunteer House within a rented classroom space. The classes are attended by high school and university students who wish to improve their English but cannot afford private tuition. Most of the students come from rural areas and move to the city to attend university. The aim of the classes is to create a fun and interactive environment for the students to practice their English.

There are two lessons at the community class project each day. Each class lasts for two hours with a 10-minute break in between. On average 5 to 15 people attend each class. Volunteers lead their own lessons. You do not need to follow a formal lesson plan and volunteers have the freedom to add their creative take on subjects. Our local team will guide you as to what former volunteers have taught and what the students wish to learn, so you have an idea of what to put in your lesson plans. We will also give you ideas on what activities you can implement, so there is no need to worry if you haven’t taught before. Furthermore, the level of English of the students is relatively advanced which makes communicating and structuring your lessons a lot easier.

Free-time activities

EV volunteers are based in a quiet, friendly neighbourhood approximately 45 minutes from the Old Quarter of Hanoi. There is everything you need within walking distance of the Volunteer House: ATMs, supermarkets, laundrettes, chemists, as well as some great cafes and local bars.

High-octane Hanoi is a feast for the senses. The first thing that hits you is the sound of swarms of buzzing motorbikes followed swiftly by the amazing wafts and tastes of incredible street food found throughout the city. Full of distinctive character as well as a confident buzz, Hanoi is now considered a pretty cool city.

For many, simply being in Hanoi and soaking up the atmosphere is entertainment in itself but there are many fascinating places for you to visit whilst you’re not volunteering both in the city and further afield.

HO CHI MINH MAUSOLEUM COMPLEX

The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum Complex is an important place of pilgrimage for many Vietnamese. A traffic-free area of botanical gardens , monuments, memorials and pagodas, it’s usually crowded with groups of Vietnamese who come from far and wide to pay their respects to ‘Uncle Ho’. Within the complex are Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, Ho Chi Minh’s Stilt House and the Presidential Palace, Ho Chi Minh Museum and the One Pillar Pagoda.

You will realise very early on that HCM still holds a very special place in the hearts of the Vietnamese people. Crowds queue for hours in order to pay their respects to the iconic leader. The seriousness of the guards and the reverence paid to HCM by the Vietnamese people is an eye opening experience.

THE OLD QUARTER

Take a step back in time into the Old Quarter of Hanoi. It will feel like a different world in comparison to the rest of the city where change takes place daily.

It is a warren of old style narrow, meandering streets full of antique brick houses where merchants and artisans would have gathered to sell their wares. Set around Hoan Kiem Lake, a visit here will give you the chance to explore how the locals lived a hundred years ago.

SAPA

Sapa is orientated to make the most of the spectacular views emerging on clear days; overlooking a plunging valley, with mountains towering above on all sides. Views of this epic scenery are often subdued by thick mist rolling across the peaks, but even when it’s cloudy, local hill-tribe people fill the town with colour.

HALONG BAY

Towering limestone pillars and tiny islets topped by forest rise from the emerald waters of the Gulf of Tonkin. Halong translates as ‘where the dragon descends into the sea’ and legend tells that this mystical seascape was created when a great mountain dragon charged towards the coast, its flailing tail gouging out valleys and crevasses. As the creature plunged into the sea, the area filled with water leaving only the pinnacles visible. The geological explanation may be a bit more boring but doesn’t make this seascape any less poetic.

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if you are accompanied by your parents.

If you are under 18 please ensure you have the consent of your guardian before you join this programme.

You should also be physically fit, as volunteering overseas can be quite strenuous. If you have any medical/mental health conditions that may affect your participation overseas then these must be declared to us during your online application.

Time Commitment

Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

What's Included

Services by EV

Your programme fee includes:

accommodation,

all meals (breakfast, lunch & dinner),

airport pickup (24 hours),

in-country orientation,

private transport to projects,

24 hour in-country support.

Your registration fee includes:

24 hour UK based support,

comprehensive volunteer handbook,

live pre-departure webinars,

regular programme inspection.

Airport Taxi

Housing

Food

Airport Pickup at Noi Bai International Airport

You should arrive into Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi (airport code HAN) on the selected Wednesday start date. You will be met at the airport by one of our local staff or an appointed driver who will be holding a named sign. They will take you to your accommodation where you will spend the rest of your day at leisure.

Accommodation

During your time with EV in Vietnam you will live at our Volunteer House located within a quiet and friendly neighbourhood approximately a 45-minute bus journey from the Old Quarter of Hanoi. There is everything you need within walking distance of the Volunteer House: ATMs, supermarkets, laundrettes, chemists etc. There are also some great cafes and local bars. You’ll be living with other EV volunteers from around the world, so you’ll make plenty of friends along the way.

The accommodation is basic but comfortable with free Wi-Fi. Each room has bunk beds with up to 6 people per room in single-sex, air-conditioned rooms. The bathrooms are shared and each has a western style toilet and hot shower. The house has a communal kitchen with a fridge, oven and washing machine (available free of charge). Free drinking water is available 24/7. There is also a lounge where you can hang out. Wi-Fi is also available in certain parts of the house including the communal area and there is a communal computer you can use. Each volunteer is also provided with a locker to store away valuable items and there are wardrobes to hang your clothes.

The Volunteer House is gated and padlocked with an appropriate lock combination to ensure volunteers safety. We also have a member of staff (usually a nanny) present in the house 24 hours a day. Please note if you arrive late in the evening at our Volunteer House then it is likely our local team will not be present and you will meet them the following day. Our local team have an office on the ground floor of the house, which makes for a great atmosphere and ensures volunteers are well supported throughout their stay.

During our busiest months (June to September) you may be placed at alternative accommodation. This could be a nearby guesthouse or one of our summer Volunteer Houses.

Dorm Room

Food & Beverages

You will be provided with three meals a day, which will be traditional Vietnamese dishes – this means a lot of rice! All food will be nutritious and freshly cooked.

For breakfast you can expect cereal, toast and tea/coffee. Some projects will provide you with lunch, for those that don’t, you will eat at the Volunteer House. Lunch in the house is usually always a Vietnamese dish, which will include soup, rice, vegetables and sometimes meat or fish. For projects a little further afield, you can eat lunch at a local restaurant and then be reimbursed for the value of your lunch up to 40,000 VND.

Dinner is served at the Volunteer House. We have cooks at the house who will freshly prepare your meals. You can expect a variety of dishes, so there will be always something to suit even the fussiest eaters! A typical meal will have pork, fish, beef or chicken and tofu or egg and at least 2 different kinds of vegetable dishes, along with rice and soup. Western meals will be served on an ad-hoc basis and our volunteers always appreciate this.

If you fancy eating out there are plenty of cafes and local amenities in the surrounding area or you can take a bus or taxi into the main tourist area, the Old Quarter, in the city of Hanoi.

* Please inform us in your application if you have any dietary requirements. Furthermore, meals on the Sunday arrival date are NOT included, so please budget between £5 to £10 for this.

Internet Access

Limited access at the project site

What's NOT included?

Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.

Flight Tickets

The nearest airport is Noi Bai International Airport (HAN) in Hanoi. We assist you to find cheap flights to Vietnam.

Travel Insurance

Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Vietnam provides security and is a plus to have.

Vaccines

If you are intending to volunteer in Vietnam you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Vietnam.

Dates & Fees

Availability

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Duration

4 - 24 weeks

Program fees

4 weeks (min. stay)$954

6 weeks$1,194

8 weeks$1,419

10 weeks$1,659

12 weeks$1,899

16 weeks$2,364

20 weeks$2,829

24 weeks (max. stay)$3,294

Average fees$188 /week

Why do I have to pay to volunteer abroad?

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated. EV will let you know about the final price during your application process.

Deposit (15%)

The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by bank transfer.

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