9 Cheap Volunteer Abroad Programs for College Students (+ How to Pay for It)

Here’s some great advice for the budding wanderluster: See the world while still in college, volunteer abroad, and do it on the cheap! Affordable volunteer abroad programs are plentiful—so you can do good things, keep your expenses low, and explore new places all at the same time. In fact, cheap volunteer abroad programs for college students are available in any field, and on every inhabited continent. You just need to know where to look!

Hand on a colorful world map

Where in the world will YOU end up for cheap volunteer abroad programs?

And really, why wouldn’t you pursue a cheap volunteer abroad program? The experience of helping others while seeing new parts of the world is really its own reward, but we also know that inexpensive (or even free volunteer abroad programs) can bring big value to your personal and professional development portfolios—and that can mean money in the bank later on! With so many options for volunteer abroad programs, how should you choose? Well, we’ve got nine of the best programs for college students (including information about how to pay for it!) right here!

9 affordable volunteer abroad programs

1. Construction Project in Zambia

If you want to work with a hands-on project, this is the program for you! While it’s one of the most affordable volunteer abroad programs out there, what’s even better is the opportunity to build homes for homeless families in the village of Mwandi. Some construction experience would be a plus, but it’s not required for participation. If you like to become part of the community, this is also a great option as volunteers are encouraged to participate in village life. Even better, the total cost is roughly $100 per week.

Biker riding down a road in Zambia

Cheap volunteer abroad programs for college students will land you in some of the most beautiful places on Earth.

2. Iceland Trail Team Volunteers

We know that inexpensive is key, but what about free volunteer abroad programs? In this program, you can join the Icelandic Forest Service and help them manage the network of hiking trails that cross the wilderness. Full disclosure—this volunteer opportunity is only for the physically fit; but if you’re an adventurous, athletic volunteer with a passion for the outdoors, what could be better than spending six weeks (or more!) among waterfalls, valleys, and mountains? Best of all, there are no actual expenses for this program. That’s right—the costs are $0!

3. Best Volunteer Projects in Bolivia

Let’s say you’re looking for a free volunteer abroad program, but you’re searching for options beyond hiking the wilderness.  Well, why not head to Bolivia? Participation in this program allows you to pursue opportunities like teaching children to read, or working to conserve wildlife and care for exotic animals. And if geography is your thing, you won’t find a place more diverse! From tropical rainforests to the tropical savannas, and from the Andes mountains to the salt lakes, volunteering abroad in Bolivia has something for everyone. And yes, the cost to you is $0.

4. Skilled Volunteering with Moving Worlds

If you’re someone who prefers a customized approach, be sure to check out this stand-out among volunteer programs abroad. Cheap and flexible? You bet! Skilled volunteering means matching you with experiences that best correspond with your interests and skills. For a college student, this is perfect, because you can find a volunteer program that will connect your talents, interests, and course of study with an opportunity to do good things! As far as where you can go with this program, there are over 40 options from Argentina to Zimbabwe—for $80 per week!

Waterfall in Argentina

Price per week: $80. These views: Priceless.

5. Giving Way

This program keeps the costs low by connecting you directly with the non-profit you’d serve. When you’re exploring cheap volunteer abroad programs, you’ll notice that each program has something unique to offer. With this opportunity, that unique element is keeping the costs super low, and making sure the fees you do pay go directly to the community organization you would serve. This doubles the impact of your experience, and keeps the weekly cost at roughly $70.

6. Connecting Worlds in Argentina

If you’re looking for a six-month (or more) commitment for a cheap volunteer abroad program in South America, this could be the perfect program for you. With opportunities to serve in fields ranging from education to health care, there are all kinds of opportunities for a college student looking to enrich your experience. Another perk of this program is that all volunteers get an included homestay, which offers an even more immersive experience for those wanting to engage in the community. And you get all that for only $140 per week.

7. Kalamos and Kastos Sustainable Development Program

Typically, if you’re looking for cheap volunteer abroad programs for college students, opportunities in Greece are among the most beautiful—but also the most expensive. The low cost of this program makes it one of the most desirable and affordable volunteer abroad programs you can find! You get to work on sustainable conservation and spend your free time exploring the stone-house coast with like-minded people for only $158 per week. Fantastikós!

A bench on a beach in Greece

Grecian beaches are legendary. Cheap volunteer abroad programs will show you the way there!

8. Sustainable Bolivia Opportunities with Niños con Valor

If you enjoy working with children, this is one of the most interesting, cheap volunteer abroad programs out there. The focus is on providing critical support to victims of various kinds of trauma; if you’re in a counseling or therapeutic field, this could be a perfect fit, but no previous experience is required. There are three primary projects, ranging from HIV/AIDS related healthcare to mental health. Do good for those in need for only $68 per week.

9. Volunteer World Best Volunteer Programs Worldwide

So if you’re looking for affordable volunteer abroad programs and don’t have a preference on where to go or what to do so long as it’s a positive experience, check out Volunteer World! With over 80 countries to choose from, and an incredible range of options for activities, locations, and program length, this is the perfect program for those who want a big menu of options. From working with animals to engaging in sports, at only $162 per week, you could do more than one!

Quick tips for covering your volunteer abroad costs

So now that you have the inside scoop on cheap volunteer abroad programs for college students (or even free volunteer abroad programs!), wouldn’t it be great if you could reduce those costs even more? Well, you can! Check out this short list (of many!) ideas to help you make your volunteer abroad dreams a reality:

  • Have a good old-fashioned bake sale
  • Sell your unwanted fashions online
  • Wash some cars, trucks, or motorcycles
  • Run some errands or mow some lawns
  • Consider babysitting or elder care
  • Walk some dogs (or cats!)
  • Do some ride-sharing or pedi-cabbing
  • Work short term as a bicycle messenger
  • And (most importantly) check out the resources on FundMyTravel.com!

You can afford to volunteer abroad!

Man standing on a mountain top with a backpack

Cheap volunteer abroad programs for college students are calling. Ready to answer?

As you can see, there are all kinds of options for cheap volunteer abroad programs out there, and even more ways for you to raise money to cover the costs you do have! A volunteer experience can be life-changing for the volunteer and for the people they serve, so don’t let something like financial costs get in the way of living your dreams, seeing the world, and helping others. Get your research done, get creative, and you’ll be packing your bags in no time.

And, with FundMyTravel.com, there are more options than ever to raise money to cover the costs of volunteer programs abroad, cheap or otherwise. Whether you want to feed the world, build homes, teach children, map the wilderness, conserve the coastline, or do any other super cool things with your talents and time, you can find something that suits you—so get started today!

[Sign up for a FundMyTravel account now!]

andi sciaccaThis article was written by Andi Sciacca. Andi is based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she lives with her husband and their four-legged family. She works with inspired professionals who are expert practitioners, experienced educators, and well-known contributors to their field. Andi helps them take ideas and put them into practice. When not working or writing, she loves to experience music, see the world, and learn new things. Andi’s favorite places to travel include anywhere she can eat good food—and swim.

7 Little Improvements to Make to Your Online Fundraising Campaign

Every online fundraising campaign needs a boost from time to time. When your donations have slowed down to all but a trickle, it’s time to liven things up! There’s much more to online fundraising than just directing people to a donation page, and it’s important to keep your online fundraising campaign fresh and relevant to appeal to donors. The key to keeping donations high is to find a way to connect with your supporters in a meaningful way; this is at the heart of all successful fundraising campaigns!

Two women high fiving at a cafe table

Making meaningful connections is a surefire way to achieve successful online fundraising campaigns.

Hitting your fundraising goal can make or break your time abroad, which means you need to put your best foot forward when crowdfunding online. There is always room for improvement to your online campaign! Little tweaks can offer big returns, so it is worth revisiting your online campaign page and updating your fundraising strategy. These 7 tips will help you figure out how to increase donations and liven up your fundraising campaign!

How to improve your online fundraising campaign—small changes with big returns

1. Tap into your passion—and show it!

You can’t fake passion and authenticity, and these are two things that many people value deeply. One of the best ways to connect with people is through a shared passion. At the very least, even if your opportunity abroad is not related to their passions, showing your donors that you are passionate will pique their interest.

Everyone knows how it feels to be passionate about something, and when you’re moved by a story or a cause, you want to support it. When people realize how close to your heart this opportunity abroad is, the donation process feels much more meaningful. Most importantly: you have to be able to communicate your passion. It is a way of proving that people should donate to you.

Here are a couple of questions to start with: Why is this opportunity so important to you, and how will it make you and the world around you a better place? These questions should reveal the passion behind your journey abroad. Your campaign doesn’t have to be over the top to convey passion; you can convey it through writing something heartfelt, and even a genuine smile in a campaign video can make it clear that your cause is close to your heart.

Woman smiling outdoors

Don’t hide how you feel! If you want to know how to get donations online, the answer is to be passionate and genuine.

2. Make sure you are telling a story

Everyone loves a good backstory! Stories humanize us and connect us. There’s a reason why you are fundraising (beyond the fact that you just need the moola). There’s a history of decisions, passions, and maybe even coincidences behind your decision to go abroad. Tell it!

Once again, connections help drive donations. There is probably an aspect to your story that donors can connect to: a love for travel, a love for helping others, a dream of studying abroad—these are all things that many people have experienced at some point! Your backstory gives donors more insight into who you are and your reasons for going abroad. A good story is a major driving factor behind successful fundraising campaigns!

3. Put a face to your story

This small change can elevate your fundraising campaign. If you are using generic photos (or even worse—NO photos), you’re missing out on a big way to connect to your donors. Sure, many of your donors will probably already know what you look like, but you can take your story to the next level by using imagery to your advantage. When people can connect a story to a face, it humanizes the narrative. It’s not just words on a page; it shows that the story is connected to a person with a past, and with hopes and dreams for the future.

You can do this in a number of ways. For example, if you are saving to volunteer abroad, you can include photos of the communities you will be helping. You can include photos of individual within that community, and the ways that this trip may help them. For environmental volunteering, you can include photos of the flora and fauna you will be conserving (who doesn’t love some cute animal photos)? If it is a more personal cause, like work or study abroad, you can include photos of yourself participating in activities that are related to your job or field of study.

Woman on top of a mountain taking photos

Stellar photography does a ton of heavy lifting when it comes to your online fundraising campaign.

4. Use compelling images

Images that tell a story, images that are beautiful, images that capture an important or emotional moment…these are the types of images that draw people in! It is easy to scroll past a bunch of words on a page. But pair it with a compelling image, and people are more likely to stop and pay attention.

First, make sure you have the basics covered. Images that are focused, not too dark or light, and that have a connection to your campaign (they need to have a reason for being on your page). Then there are some aspects that can bring your images to the next level. For example, capturing an authentic moment or emotion related to your trip, interesting related subject matter (e.g. a famous or unique location, or aspect of the country you will be visiting), and bright or photogenic color scheme that captures your attention. The main point is: images are important. Make sure to take the time to choose and edit meaningful photos to use for your campaign!

5. Let donors know exactly where their money will go

When it comes to donations, most people want to know where their money will go. When you are giving away money in good faith, it feels good to know that it will be used wisely. One simple way of showing this is by including a list of expenses you are fundraising for. For example, are you fundraising for flights, program fees, or tuition (maybe all of the above)? Donors are more likely to donate if they know their money is going towards the intended cause and not being spent frivolously.

If you want to take it a step further, you can even show a budget break down and the amount you hope to raise per expense. Figuring out a budget is something that you need to do for any trip, and one way to keep control of your spending is by sharing this information. Creating a budget will give you an accurate idea of how much money you need to raise. By making it public (even just between you and a few of your donors) it will set you up to be more accountable for your spending.

Three women laughing together

While running an online fundraising campaign, make sure to be transparent with your donors about what their money is funding.

6. Edit with a fine-toothed comb

There is nothing worse than reading something littered with spelling and grammar mistakes. It can make a good fundraising campaign look careless and slapped together—which is definitely not the kind of look you want when you are asking for donations!

Beyond just editing grammar and spelling mistakes, you should also edit the tone and flow of your campaign. Try your best to let your personality shine through! A personable piece is much more likely to attract the attention of donors. Your online fundraising campaign is integral to your fundraising efforts, so it is worth your time to double (and triple check) your work.

7. Say “Thank You” effectively by offering a token of appreciation

Hopefully, you are already doing something to make your donors feel appreciated (if not, you really, really need to start!). Your donors are helping you achieve your dreams, and that is something to be thankful for. There’s more to online fundraising than just figuring out how to get donations online; you also need to make sure your past donors feel appreciated!

This can be as simple as a grateful email to say thank you and let your donors know that their donation will take you far (literally)! Other ideas can include postcards or small gifts from your time abroad. You can also highlight donors in a social media post (everyone loves a shout-out). Just make sure you are saying thank you in some way!

A thank you card next to a latte on a table top

Whether by text, by letter, or in person over a latte, showing your donors that they’re appreciated is a fundraising best practice.

Need some examples? Here are 4 successful FundMyTravel fundraising campaigns

1. Interning in Dublin

This campaign answers the three most important questions within the first few sentences: what, where, and why. They explain why they are passionate about their internship field and also why they chose Ireland as their destination. The photos used reflect the beauty of Ireland (it even makes us want to jet over there!) This fundraising campaign managed to surpass its goal by 20%. Not too shabby!

2. Mental Health Placement in Sri Lanka

This fundraiser breaks down exactly how the volunteer will help mental health efforts in Sri Lanka. It gives an excellent explanation of the importance of this volunteer trip. They specify that they are collecting donations towards their program fee, which gives donors a good idea of how their money is being spent. This online fundraising campaign managed to reach its goal with almost a month left to spare.

3. Honeymoon Fund

This one takes advantage of a sentimental event to raise travel funds. Instead of asking for gifts, it is a call for donations towards a honeymoon trip. Asking for donations in lieu of physical gifts is a great way to maximize your donations!

4. Volunteer in Bali

This campaign shares a detailed background story, and also a cost breakdown. It is easy to see that effort was put into this campaign (and it paid off!). It even includes a list of donor gifts that will be given depending on how much you donate. All of these aspects definitely helped make this a successful fundraising campaign.

Now you know how to increase donations online!

Friends hanging out together at golden hour

Make connections, be genuine, and tell a great story, and you’ll be well on your way to a successful online fundraising campaign.

It can be tough to get over your mid-campaign lull. After the initial surge of donations starts slowing down, you can be left wondering how to keep the wave going. No matter how excellent your original idea was, every campaign can use some livening up from time to time! You need to put in work at every step to keep your campaign memorable and relevant, and to keep those donations coming in.

A strong online fundraising campaign can give the push you need to reach your donation goal. Creating a clear and concise fundraising campaign is a big task, but it is totally doable! If you’re wondering how to get donations online, the main aspect you should focus on is forging a connection with your donors. There are small improvements that you can make to any fundraising campaign to boost its effectiveness. These tips will help your online fundraising campaign stand out from the rest!

Haven’t started your fundraising campaign yet? It’s time! Create a Fund My Travel fundraising campaign and start collecting donations today!

jasmine harding headshotThis article was written by Jasmine Harding. Jasmine recently graduated from Western University with a degree in Media, Information, and Technoculture. She lived in 5 different countries before she turned 7 years old, but she claims that none of them “count” since she doesn’t remember them. She can’t wait to actually live in 5 different countries! In her spare time, you can find her playing with cats or watching food documentaries on Netflix.

What is Crowdfunding for Travel? How Does it Work?

Looking for funding for trips to come? Consider some good ol’ fashioned crowdfunding for travel. ☆ Crowdfunding is everywhere! You’ve probably heard the wild success stories. There’s the now multi-billion-dollar Oculus Rift, which raised $2.4M for a project started in a garage, or the bizarre tale of the $55K potato salad campaign, or the super-cool tap to get honey right from the hive that raised over $13M! These are awe-inspiring fundraising campaigns…But do you know how to use crowdfunding for travel? Would you be able to put the right steps in place to get funding for trips?

Group of friends staring at the horizon with arms around each other

Hint: Your best pals are heavily involved when it comes to crowdfunding for travel.

Whether we want to call it an outgrowth of the sharing economy, or peer-to-peer at its best, or just chalk it up to the magic of the internet, crowdfunding for travel allows you to leverage an existing platform to help you make your dreams come true with the support of friends (and strangers!) around the world. There are more places than ever to post your campaigns. There are countless opportunities to share your message through video, audio, blogs, podcasts, and creative outlets. Crowdfunding means funding for trips, and whether you’re a newbie or an expert, we’re here to help!

FAQs on crowdfunding for travel

1. What is it?

Crowdfunding for travel is simply the ability to get donations from others to raise funding for trips. You post an explanation of your need to a secure site, explain what you’re trying to do, list the amount you need, share the story behind your fundraiser and the request (called your campaign), and watch people support you! Keep in mind that there are different programs, risks, and fees (we’ll talk about those later). But for the most part, it’s that simple!

2. Why do it?

Simply put, because you need to! Whether you’re seeking an internship abroad and need money to cover airfare, or you want to raise money to live on while you’re volunteering with endangered animals, or you’re looking to get some financial support to purchase a new laptop for your study abroad trip, you can use crowdfunding to get the financial resources you need. You’ll definitely want to share your request with friends, family, and within your community. However, the best part of creating a platform-friendly campaign to get funding for trips is that you’re not limited to the people you know directly!

Group of travelers sitting at a mountain summit

Don’t rule out strangers and acquaintances (and other travelers!) when crowdfunding for travel.

3. Where can you do it?

If your goal is crowdfunding, you can do so through a larger-than-ever list of options! You can share your campaign on Facebook, or use one of the big crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe, IndieGoGo, Kickstarter, or Patreon (just to name a few). But if you’re looking exclusively for crowdfunding for travel, you’re much better off going with a platform dedicated to funding for trips—like FundMyTravel! That way, your campaign isn’t lost in the long list of food truck investments, tech gadgets, and quirky inventions that tend to appear elsewhere.

4. What will it cost you and what will you get?

So this is where platforms differ—a lot! Some platforms will only pay you if you reach your established funding goal, while others allow you to keep whatever you raise. Some charge you a set-up fee, while almost all of them keep a percentage of the donations you raise. That percentage can range from 4% up to almost 10%, so it’s smart to shop around. Other things to keep in mind include overall processing fees, discounts based on campaign volume, and being transparent about those few funding platforms that double up on charges to your donors!

5. How can you set yourself up for success?

As with anything, the best way to be successful is to plan! Most crowdfunding sites will include some info to help you get started, but when it comes to crowdfunding for travel and making sure you’re doing the best you can to secure funding for trips, platforms like FundMyTravel provide comprehensive, travel-focused resource kits to help you get started. You can get practical advice on everything from writing your campaign description, to posting your video, to managing the thank-you process. And don’t forget to check out the popular campaigns for fundraising inspo.

Online funding for trips can make a difference!

Group of people running towards sunset

Crowdfunding for travel will get you the funding for trips that you need!

While we’ve only scratched the surface, the options for using crowdfunding for travel are as varied as your possible destinations! When you use public platforms to raise funding for trips, you also get to share your plans, ideas, passions, and missions with a much wider audience than if you only posted to private sites or shared with people you know. And, who knows, you might even inspire others to follow your lead.

So how should you get going on crowdfunding for travel once you’re ready? Well, if you have a location in mind and know your budget (or even if you’re just getting started with this!) you can use the available resource kits (like the one on FundMyTravel.com) to build out your campaign and prepare it for launch. And, while you’re at it, go ahead and sign up for a free account today!

Use FundMyTravel to Start Your Fundraising Campaign Today

andi sciaccaThis article was written by Andi Sciacca. Andi is based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she lives with her husband and their four-legged family. She works with inspired professionals who are expert practitioners, experienced educators, and well-known contributors to their field. Andi helps them take ideas and put them into practice. When not working or writing, she loves to experience music, see the world, and learn new things. Andi’s favorite places to travel include anywhere she can eat good food—and swim.

How Much Does AIFS Study Abroad Cost?

Wondering about AIFS study abroad cost? Don’t worry—we’ve got the deets. ☆ There are countless ways that you could have gotten here: Maybe you’ve been planning your international excursion since infancy, counting down to your days of freedom and exploration. Maybe it was just yesterday that you discovered you’ve completed all your required credit hours and your guidance counselor suggested a semester abroad. Maybe you’ve finally succeeded at convincing your parents how safe global travel is after years of back-and-forth. And maybe your parents finally told you that you need to seek some independence and learn about other cultures.

Coffee cups and a baguette sitting on a French bistro table

Sometimes seeking independence and learning about other cultures looks really, really good.

Whatever your journey, you’ve made it. You’re going to study abroad. You spent nights shuffling through pamphlets after evenings at study abroad panels; you’ve spent days in front of your computer screen, clicking through all the cities, countries, fields of study, and providers you could image (it can feel pretty intimidating to have the entire globe open to you, huh?). Now, you’ve finally landed on your decision: you’ve made the spectacular discovery that AIFS is the program for you. It’s got the support, the courses, and the destination of your dreams put together exactly as you always hoped for. There’s one more, kind of nerve wracking, looming question, though, hovering in the back of your mind – how much is my study abroad going to cost?

Breaking down the cost of your AIFS program

You’ve got several decisions ahead of you, but don’t sweat it—we’re here to lighten the burden and heighten the excitement. Where you go and what you do is ultimately up to you. However, there are a few factors to consider that might aid in narrowing down your options and help you make the big decision (there are a lot of places to see in the world, you know what we’re saying?).

A view of the Eiffel Tower from a French roof top

The potential views will inevitably help you narrow down your decision, too.

Getting there.

Let’s start with the (semi-) obvious: getting abroad can be expensive. The motto of most study abroad providers is, we’ve got you covered once you’re abroad, but getting there is on you. Naturally, getting to some countries and cities is more expensive than others, so that might weigh into your decision. A major perk of the AIFS study abroad cost is opting into the optional, low-cost round trip flight program. Wow, do they make it easy on you!

This benefit not only eases your parents’ minds about getting there (and home) safely, but it might mitigate some of your costs. It’s still going to revolve around where you’re leaving and where you’re heading, but you can count on an around $2000 cost for door-to-door transfers.

Oh—let’s not forget the passport and visa fees, though! For first-time globetrotters, set aside about $145 (and two months of time) to get that passport processed. Depending on where you’re headed, visa fees can also come out to as much as $100 – $200, so make sure to look into specific prices and processing times ahead of time.

What does tuition cover? And where will I live?

Getting there is just the beginning of the factors to consider…and just the beginning of all the excitement to come. When looking at AIFS study abroad cost, a few major elements are tied into the “tuition.” Housing is one of them. You can breathe easy knowing you don’t have to scan sites to find your own place or discuss leases with a landlord who doesn’t speak your language.

Choices include homestays, residential halls, or individual living. Your program itself is included, too. We’re talking classes, teachers, and on-site AIFS staff that’ll help you navigate the cultural difference, keep you safe, and serve as your international program head. In general, semester-long programs average out to around $15,000, whereas options such as January-term bring the cost down to $5,000 for a month of interim study.

Let’s talk food.

If you’re like us, the prospect of authentic food that makes your palette water probably factored into choosing your destination. How much is munching abroad going to cost, though? This is one of those factors that gets that cliche, slightly-vague answer: it depends. Some cities in Asia have street markets with entire meals for under one dollar. Some cities in Scandinavia have snacks for 20 times that. So, like we said—it depends.

But we recommend doing some research and budgeting it out, because holding back from some of those gustatory senses is not going to be enjoyable. AIFS knows that those costs can add up quickly, so they’ve got your back with a few meal plan options, too. Dining with your host family, receiving restaurant vouchers, or checking out your school’s cafeteria are all possibilities depending on your program.

Excursions.

You’re not going to travel all the way around the world and hang out in just one location, right?! (Full disclosure, it’s normal if you do—and we’re pro full-on immersion). AIFS programs often involve a range of day trips and cultural activities, sometimes to museums right in town, and sometimes to ancient ruins a few hours away.

These are an excellent way to get acquainted with your new surroundings and spend time with others in your program, all while sitting back, relaxing, and letting someone else do the planning. Some of these excursions might be included with your program cost, and others might be up to $100. They’re worth it, so saving up a little couldn’t hurt!

People crossing the street in front of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris

Our advice? Always take the excursion. It’s worth it, even if it does tag a little bit extra on to your AIFS study abroad cost.

How to cover your AIFS study abroad cost

When you start to piece together all of the expenses tied into being abroad (honestly, just living costs in general!), the number might feel a little suffocating. There are plenty of steps you can take to lessen the burden though, and we’re here to walk you through them!

AIFS study abroad scholarships and grants.

Way too many people forget to check out funding opportunities with the source itself. Whether you’re hoping for a scholarship to a particular location or a grant-match to a scholarship you’ve received from an outside source, AIFS study abroad scholarships and grants cover a range of possibilities. You might be eligible based on your destination, heritage, field of study, prior achievements, or general merit, for funds up to $5,000! Worth looking into, no?

Crowdfund with FundMyTravel.

This is the age of personal fundraising websites and we are happy to be here. Reaching out to family, friends, your friends’ families, and your family’s friends has never been more manageable than it is today. Tell your story, share your aspirations, and ask for a little somethin’ somethin’ towards making your international travel dreams come true!  

Start saving.

Eh, we know. It’s not that glamorous and it’s hard work…but once you’re eating gelato besides the Trevi Fountain or taking surf lessons in Bali, you’re going to be grateful you tucked a dollar a day into that “Saving for…” jar. Even if you’ve already applied for AIFS study abroad scholarships or grants from other organizations, having some extra spending cash is only going to be a benefit.

Afford your study abroad fees with ease!

Wing of airplane at golden hour

Don’t let AIFS study abroad cost play too huge a role in your decision-making—where there’s a will there’s a way!

We know that some of the expenses of traveling and studying abroad can be daunting, but as with any endeavor, there’s some wiggle room to tailor-make your own budget. Plus, now that you’re familiar with some of the upfront costs, you can get going on applying for grants, start saving, and get the ball rolling on fundraising!

Start Fundraising for Your AIFS Program Abroad!

7 Fresh Tips for Dental Mission Trips for College Students

Are you a dental student raring to go abroad, to gain experience in your field, AND help out others? If so, dental mission trips are what you need! While it’s not all about money (we hope not, at least), making a financial plan can help to alleviate any pre-travel stress right away. And who wouldn’t want that—are we right?

Plane wing at forefront of sunset on horizon

“That moment when you forget you’re volunteering to help change lives, because it’s changing yours.”

There are so many options when choosing a dentist mission trip. Some examples include: dental mission trips for college students AND pre dental mission trips! With plenty of fundraising ideas for dentistry mission trips, you just need to get a bit creative. From joining in on your program’s selling tactics, crowdsourcing the funds (more on that later), and creating meaningful incentives, the cash needed will be yours in no time.

And while paying for the trip may feel like a cavity (pun intended), FundMyTravel has some great ways to make the cost doable for you. So, what are you waiting for? Read on for more useful fundraising tips and tricks for dental mission trips for college students!

6 tips for pre dental mission trips

The great thing about a mission trip is that you are truly helping others and people GET that. They really do! You have an amazing opportunity to tell a story about how you are helping others. Maybe you don’t like attention or asking for money. Don’t think of it that way! Crowdsourcing is all about telling your story.

1. Find your program and destination

Maybe you already have a program in mind (if so, congrats! Skip this section and jump down to tip #2). However, if you are still searching, a great place to start your search is by utilizing GoAbroad’s Dental programs search! Choosing a program is the first big step, because it can determine where you will be spending your time abroad, as well as the how much it will cost.

Here are a few destination suggestions to get your search off the ground!

While there are so many great destinations to choose from, you’ll need to narrow it down at some point. Ask yourself what language you’d like to immerse yourself in. Do you prefer sandy beaches and a hot summer sun, or the mountains and snow? Does haggling while shopping sound like fun to you, or would you rather shop in peace? Are you looking for complete adventure or some familiarity to home? All of these questions will help to determine your perfect location.

A bird’s eye view of London

Where will dental mission trips for college students take you?

If you’re still feeling indecisive, know that it’s okay. There are so many places in this world and we can’t possibly make it to EVERY one of them. (But we can try, of course!) Just remember, wherever you decide for your dental mission trip, you are sure to create some long-lasting and wonderful memories!

2. Determine what your costs will be

Now that you’ve finally settled on a location for your pre-dental mission trip, what will the costs be? Researching the cost of living is a great place to start. Heard of a cost-of-living calculator? It can help you put into perspective the value of your money. By understanding how much money you will need to survive on in any given month, you’ll be able to better craft a fundraising goal for yourself.

Knowing where you will be living, as well as what the food situation will be, helps to create that number. You don’t need to go out to eat every night (as much as our stomachs would love it, of course). While taking in the night life can be a great part of being abroad, getting to know the people and culture is equally important (and often better for our wallets!). So, once you finally have a realistic monthly or weekly cost for your trip, it’s time to start that fundraising!

3. Blog about it! (AKA storytelling)

Creating a blog about your soon-to-be adventure is a great way to raise some funds! Not only are you sharing your story, but you are getting others to empathize with you and come along on the ride with you. Before you start that blog, ask yourself a few questions:

  • Why do you want to raise money for dental hygiene mission trips?
  • What will you learn through the experience?
  • What are your goals and mission for the trip?
  • Who can you share your blog with?
  • What would others want to hear about dental mission trips?

Your blog can be your storytelling machine. Storytelling is a fancy way of getting your crowd involved and invested in you and your dental mission trip. People who find success in fundraising are often expert storytellers. Explain why you want to go and what you will gain from it. Finding a deeper reason than just hanging with your friends will help motivate others to invest in you. Tell the story, don’t simply state the facts!

Setting sun behind compass

You’re going on a dentist mission trip? That’s already a pretty darn good story. People want to hear about it!

4. Utilize social media

Another great tip is to become savvy at social media. Learning how to use social media in a smart way to create a better online presence is just as important for getting any potential blog in the right readers’ hands. Not currently active on Twitter or Facebook? Get on it! Not an active user? Start posting more often! Did you know that using pictures in a post gets your views up by nearly 50 percent!?!

There are all kinds of cool facts and stats on social media out there. Use them to your advantage to really win over your network. By increasing your social media presence, you will have a much easier time raising the funds you need for your dentist mission trip. With these thoughts in mind, it’s time to start that blog, vlog, or whatever the kids are calling them these days.

5. Become savvy at #crowdsourcing

Not exactly sure what crowdsourcing is? That’s why we are here! FundMyTravel is all about telling your own story to create a successful crowdsourcing campaign. Crowdsourcing is basically a fancy word for using the internet as a fundraising tool. Sounds easy, right? It is…trust us!

Ask yourself where you can share your campaign and who you can share it with. Ideally, this will be family and friends on social media accounts, blogs, etc. As these are dental mission trips for college students, use that to your advantage. People like helping out college students, especially when it’s for a good cause! Of course, it will be fun to be living abroad, but finding that deeper reason to share with others will help your crowdsourcing campaign go far.

Woman looking out airplane window to bright sky

Crowdsourcing may very well be the answer to how you can set off on the dentist mission trip of your dreams.

6. Stay on top of your fundraising status

Is your crowdsourcing campaign off to a successful start? That’s great! Keep pushing onward! As your campaign grows, it’s important to remember to be thankful to those who did give. Show gratitude. Write a personal thank you. If you’re starting to feel like your campaign is at a standstill and you still haven’t met your goal, try creating incentives to motivate people to donate. Or as we like to call them, meaningful incentives.

So, what exactly is a meaningful incentive? It’s a way to give back to your donors! There are many ways to do it, but the key is to give back to your donors and show your appreciation in a fun and unique way. It’s completely up to you on how you’d like to go about this, but some fun ideas include bringing back a fun souvenir for your donors, sharing your travel experiences through a blog, or even creating a competition for donors. Videos are a great way to get people involved too! Once you are at the destination, create a video showing the views, the work you are doing, and even a day trip you took!

Fun fact alert: Including a personal video with a FundMyTravel campaign increases odds of success by more than two times. And remember, only create incentives on things you WILL be able to follow through on. It’s not a good look asking people to donate for a prize they’ll never receive. Remember, the incentive doesn’t have to be expensive and time consuming, just meaningful for you and your donors.

7. Create your FundMyTravel Account!

So, what are you waiting for? Create your account today! Additional FundMyTravel resources can be found here. Learn more about the process and how FundMyTravel works here! The basic steps include:

  1. Create your Campaign
  2. Spread the Word
  3. Get Funded
  4. Cost

With a story, some incentives, creativity, and lots of determination, we can’t wait to see how far your dentist mission trip campaign will go!

Last call for dentistry mission trips abroad!

Person walking into sunrise with rolling suitcase

Ready to set off on dental mission trips for college students?

Soon, you will be living the dream abroad and drilling into those cavities in no time…(if that’s your thing and all). Why not get started on the right foot, financially speaking that is. While crowdsourcing might be new to you, it’s doable if you put in some time and effort. Plus, if you are savvy with social media, it might be the easiest way to raise some money for dental mission trips for undergraduates.

Remember, lots of people need to fundraise in order to afford a dental mission trip. It’s normal! You can successfully create a crowdsourcing campaign to fundraise without killing your bank account. While it may sound like a big undertaking at first, it doesn’t have to be if you use your keen organization skills. Start your account to find out just how easy it will be to raise money for your pre-dental mission trip! Don’t believe us? Start your FundMyTravel account today!

You Can Afford Dental Mission Trips with the Help of FundMyTravel

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