travel opportunities

Rustic Volunteer and Travel

Street Address: 303 Moonlight Dr.

Locality: Euless

Region: United States


Conservation and Eco-Tourism Efforts in Costa Rica

Costa Rica
Various Locations
Duration of Program
1-12 Weeks
Dates of Program
2nd and 4th Mondays of the Month
Both (group and independent)
Age Restrictions
18 Years+
Project Review

Costa Rica receives worldwide attention for its efforts in environmental awareness and conservation, but in reality, there are simply not enough resources to fuel the vast needs of conservation projects. Environmental education efforts require attention as well. Like other developing countries, the local people of Costa Rica also need guidance understanding the value of nature and its preservation. This volunteer opportunity is perfect for anyone pursuing a career in any area of conservation.

Major Responsibilities

    Job Responsibilities: 

    Costa Rican Conservation and Eco-tourism project volunteers can choose from many areas and conservation projects: 

    • The Atenas conservation office has only one permanent employee orchestrating all local efforts, so assistance is welcome and provides a great way to gain hands-on experience.
    • Maintain trails in the municipal forest, promote new projects or assist in the office.
    • The Ministry of Agriculture is also seeking volunteers to help build educative trails.
    • The local environmental committee is always looking for assistance with fundraising and grant writing.
    • There is even a tree-planting project, which plants more trees throughout Atenas.
    • Volunteers can also be placed directly in the national park system. These volunteers will maintain trails, educate visitors and more. Various park locations include Poas, Braulio Carrillo, Carara, Manuel Antonio, Barva, Palo Verde, Santa Rosa and Guayabo.
Cost/Program Fee
USD 357 (1 Week) to USD 1487 (12 Weeks)

What program fee Includes

    Fee Covers:

    • Accommodation with Host family/Hostel 
    • Food (local food 3 times a day) 
    • Comprehensive Travel Insurance 
    • Services of our local staffs

    Program Fee Does Not Cover:

    • Daily transportation to project
    • Airfare
    • Visa and Visa extension fee
    • Airport taxes
    • Any personal expenses on food and travel• Mineral water and soft drinks
    • Gifts to project staffs and host family
    • Laundry
    • Telephone
    • Immunization

Skills/ Qualifications

This project prefers ( but does not require ) Spanish speakers at a basic to intermediate knowledge of Spanish. If you cannot speak Spanish, we suggest you enroll in our Spanish language course to make your stay more rewarding – both for you and for the farmers you are helping. Volunteers placed directly into the National Parks system must have a background in biology, ecology or environmental studies to participate. Volunteers are expected to be dependable, understanding and tolerant.

Arrangements for Room/Food

Rustic Volunteer Travel arranges volunteer meals, accommodations and strong field support for the duration of projects and optional travel packages. In Costa Rica, volunteers generally stay with host families and accommodations are simple and clean homes in safe neighborhoods. Volunteers usually have a private bedroom, but occasionally rooms will be shared with a same-gender volunteer. Our host families are well screened and are respected members of their communities who live in affluent neighborhoods. Most of our host families have experience with hosting international volunteers. A host family stay is a great chance for cultural immersion and exchange. Orphanage volunteers may stay at their project as many orphanages have special rooms set aside for international volunteers and these accommodations are normally shared with a same-gender volunteer. Volunteers receive three local meals per day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). We can provide vegetarian meal options, but needs must be detailed in a volunteer's application. Snacks and beverages outside of mealtimes are not provided; however, there are local restaurants and grocery stores near the residences in which we place volunteers.

Application Process

Please read Rustic Volunteer Travel's 5 steps of application:

  • There are two options for applying to volunteer in Costa Rica through our program. You can apply online or you can down loan an application, fill it out, and mail it in to us. You will need to submit your application with a $200 application fee. This fee is required to make an application valid.
  • Once we get your application, we will immediately send it to Costa Rica for processing. They go over your application carefully and find the best project possible for you. The decisions for room and food are made at this time, Arrangement for room and food depends on the location of the project. The vast majority of our volunteers stay in full immersion home stays though some orphanage projects are residential. 
  • Once we get the details of your placements, we pass it on to you with a final invoice. Your final payment is due six weeks before your start date, and in expedited cases, as soon as possible. The placement details have local contact information use them for contacts on your Visa application or to get in touch with the local staff and host family. 
  • Preparation for trips should include reading about Costa Rica , immunization, travel Visa (entry permit), and booking airfare. If you face any problems our Program Manager is always available for assistance. 
  • Now, once you purchase your ticket, send your flight information to our US office by fax or by email. Your flight information will be forwarded to the Costa Rica staff who will arrange an airport pickup.

Any Missing Important Information

    Rustic strongly suggest that all volunteers apply for a tourist visa, in a timely manner before departing for Costa Rica. Please call our office or contact the local Costa Rica embassy to learn more about visa, visa fees, and visa extensions. Getting your tourist visa is your responsibility.