FAQs thailand

Why do I choose Thailand?

Thailand offers unique taste of culture, vivid picture of Thai life, golden temples and exotic sights for visitors. Like most Asian cultures, respect towards ancestors is an indispensable part of Thai spiritual practice. Thais have a strong sense of hospitality and kindness. Along with experiencing Thai people and culture, you will make a great difference while working with children, teaching Buddhist monks and assisting elderly people.

Is Thailand safe?

New Hope Volunteer always ensures participants to place in safe environments while volunteering in Thailand. Thailand is a safe country. However, you should be careful if traveling on buses, as petty theft is common and be suspicious of unknown people offering tours, offers, or any other deals. In addition, be cautious with your possessions, especially cash and cameras, and as always, take extra care in remote areas.

What is the program duration?

Our volunteer program in Ayutthaya starts on 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month. In Surin and Sangklaburi, the volunteer programs start every Friday but we encourage our volunteers to arrive on 1st Friday of each month. Except for the teaching program, they run throughout the year for a period of 1-12 week.

What age do I have to be a volunteer?

You must be at least 18 years old to be a volunteer and you should be in good health; there is no upper limit.

Do I have to speak a foreign language?

Volunteers on our short-term (2-3 week programs) do not need foreign language skills. Those volunteers interested in participating on one of our long-term programs need to have intermediate language abilities in the spoken language of the program country. Orientation will include an intensive introduction to Thai language.

Why should I pay for registration fee?

The registration fee is required to run the organization (office space, computers, Internet, supplies and Staffs). New Hope Volunteer has country office in Thailand and international office in USA to run the coordinated program. Part of the fee goes to maintaining these offices. The remaining money of the program directly goes to support the programs.

Are Master, Visa and other cards accepted?

There are several banks and money exchange services. You can bring Master card, American Express, Visa card, cash $/ Euro or travelers checks, these all are accepted in the main cities. However, facilities may be limited outside major cities. Traveler's checks may also be difficult to exchange in small towns and villages. You also can withdraw cash from most international banks from ATM machines, but $2-4 USD surcharges apply for each transaction.

What is the local currency?

Thai Bhat is the official currency of Thailand.

What is the national language of Thailand?

Thai language is Thailand's national language.

Who organizes my flights?

You will have to arrange your flights to and from Thailand since you are not charged for airfare.

Do I need travel insurance?

Our program does not cover liability and insurance for our volunteers. Therefore, volunteers must have appropriate insurance before joining the program. Please obtain necessary health and travel insurance before coming to Thailand. Talk to your travel agent about this or search on the internet to see what offers are available, and make sure you look into the details of the policy. Find out if it covers airfare in case of a medical emergency

What Should I bring for myself?

This will vary depending on what activities you want to participate in and how much you need to be comfortable during your placement. With the exception of medicine and first-aid-kit, you can buy everything that you would need for your placement in Thailand. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Sleeping Bag
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Sun cream
  • Water purification tablets and/or good quality water purifier
  • First aid kit
  • Flashlight (torch)
  • Penknife
  • Books about your country
  • Photos of your family / friends / home
  • A few examples of your local currency
  • Colored pencils and pens, drawing books, stickers

What should I bring for kids in project?

It is not obligation to bring gift for project but they would appreciate, if you bring any gifts. You could bring gifts like toys, books, chocolate, pencil etc.

Will there be any volunteers present during orientation time?

We receive 10-15 volunteers a month (depending on season) most long-term volunteers join the language and culture program. We offer language and culture program in fixed dates to make a small group. Usually there are between 3 and 10 volunteers at the orientation.

Will there be other volunteers at my placement?

This depends on the exact placement and your preference in this issue. If you want to stay with other volunteers, pleases inform us in advance.

What is the daily routine of the project?

Since we have been working in different projects in Thailand, the schedule of the project varies from one another. Most projects are from Monday to Friday for 20-30 hours a week. Volunteers will have the weekends off and can explore Thailand on their own.

What are the existing conditions of my placement?

You are provided with food and accommodations; your volunteer program fee covers them. During the training, you will stay at our hostel with other volunteers. We offer food and accommodation from the first day of the program to the last day. Local food trice a day is provided for you while training and volunteering. You are advised to buy your own bottled water once you arrive in Thailand. For the volunteers who arrive earlier or who want to stay longer, it is not possible to offer accommodations and food, but we will help volunteers to find a quality, inexpensive place to stay.

The living conditions of the placement depend on the area. One should not expect luxurious accommodations with cozy bed, hot showers and a bathroom like in your home country. You will be placed within a family setting with your own room. Most placements have electricity.

Will there be someone to pick me up from airport?

One of our representatives will be waiting for you at the airport terminal. He will be holding a sign with your name on it. Please do not forget to send your detailed flight itinerary in advance.

What happens, if I want to arrive earlier than the program begins?

You can arrive several days earlier or even up to a week early for your project, however, you will be responsible for these arrangements (including accommodations and food), and must still meet the Coordinator at the airport on the designated date.

Will I have time to explore Bangkok and other Thai cities during my stay?

You will have plenty of time to explore Bangkok during orientation. As a part of the language program, we offer full day tour. You will also have weekends off and can explore the places on your own.

How much extra money do I need?

We manage food and accommodation for volunteers from the first to last day of program so there will be no need of more money. It depends on how much you want to expend. You may need some extra money if you plan to take part in activities outside the organization or if you just want to buy some souvenirs. You must also remember the VISA fee (U$5, 15, 25 and 30 for transit, tourist, non-immigrant and multiple entry visa respectively) and airport tax of 500 Baht(while departing), though the visa fee is exempted for Denmark, Norway, South Korea, Sweden, Philippines and Tunisia passport holders.

Will I have communications access?

Internet cafés, telephone booths and post offices are available in Bangkok and most localities around the project where you will be placed.

Can I bring my cell phone from my home country?

Please bring your cell phone. You can use most mobile handsets with a local SIM card in Thailand. Moreover, cell phones are available in cheap price in Thailand.

Can I accompany with other volunteers?

We allow people to come with a friend or even in a large group. We can place any volunteer near to another volunteer already working in the field. Please be reminded that two different genders of volunteers are not allowed to stay in same house unless they are a married couple. In this case, it is better to arrange a private apartment so that you will have complete freedom.

Is it possible to change placement if I get dissatisfied?

New Hope Volunteer will consider request of volunteer seriously for the change of placement to meet the expectation of volunteers. We cannot change placement frequently without genuine reasons.

What happens if I decide to return home before the placement is over?

Once the volunteer makes a decision and pays for the program fee, upon receipt of invoice, New Hope Volunteer does not refund any program fee under any circumstances. Nevertheless, if the volunteer have unavoidable circumstances (such as illness, death of in the family etc) may request to leave the program, we will consider to return 30% of the host family cost, if volunteers are registered for more than 30 days program. No refund will be made if program is less than 30 days and if volunteers leave program in their own decision.

Who will drop me off at the airport?

New Hope Volunteer does not offer airport drop service. You will need to arrange a taxi or bus ride to the airport after your project is finished. This is an easy process and our in-country coordinator in Thailand or your home stay family will assist you.

Vaccinations and Medication

No vaccinations are required for entrance into Thailand, however, you should consider the following vaccinations:

  • Hepatitis A & B
  • Diphtheria
  • Tetanus
  • Rabies
  • Malaria tablets
  • Typhoid

Are New Hope Volunteer programs only for International volunteers?

We mobilize national volunteers along with international volunteer as their counterparts.

Visa

Normally four types of visa are granted to travelers: transit, tourist, non-immigrant and multiple entries. In order to work in Thailand as a volunteer teacher or care teacher for more than one month, you will need a Non-Immigrant Visa (type F, B, or O). VISA fee is U$ 5, 15, 25 and 30 for transit, tourist, non-immigrant and multiple entry visa respectively and airport tax of 500 Baht(while departing), though the visa fee is exempted for Denmark, Norway, South Korea, Sweden, Philippines and Tunisia passport holders. We can fax an invitation letter to you, if you need it. You can come as a tourist, you will get 30-day visa on arrival for the first time. If you need longer period, we will take care for that.

The visas can be obtained at the Thai Embassy in your country or at the Bangkok International Airport upon arrival. Please remember that it is the volunteer's own responsibility to manage their individual tickets and visa. We suggest volunteers to acquire tourist visa in their home country to avoid any redundant disturbances at the airport.

Where is the arrival and departure point?

Thailand has four international airports: Chiang Mai, Bangkok, Phuket, and Hat Yai, so international flights arrive and depart from these locations. As our national office is located near Bangkok, volunteers are requested to make their final destination Bangkok International Airport. Our representative will meet you at the airport.

Clothes and Climate in Placement Areas

Volunteers should dress conservatively when at their projects. Jeans and a t-shirt are acceptable. No high shorts and tank tops please. We suggest female volunteers not to wear short skirts in villages. Thailand people dress modestly. Lightweight clothing and rainwear is recommended as well as warmer clothing for the evenings (light jacket / sweaters). A solid pair of walking shoes is highly recommended for trekking.

The climate of Thailand is tropical and characterized by a rainy, warm, and cloudy southwest monsoon from mid-May to September, as well as a dry, cool northeast monsoon from November to mid-March. The southern peninsula is always hot and humid. The rainy season takes place in the fall, while the dry season is still quite humid. Bangkok will probably be much warmer and wetter than Chiang Mai.

Emergency Contact

You have three parties available to you 24/7 in case of emergency, health-related or otherwise: New Hope Volunteer staff, your host family, and your program supervisor. You will have contact information for all three before you arrive.

What are the characteristics of good volunteer?

If you have attributes like Independence, Patience, Sense of humor, Tolerance Willingness, Flexibility, Self-motivation and Open-mindedness, you get the most out of your stay in Thailand.

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