Work and Travel in Comoros
VOLUNTEER AND PAID WORK OPPORTUNITIES IN COMOROS FOR TRAVELLERS
The Comoros are a set of little-known islands in the ocean just off of Mozambique in East Africa. Few people know about them let alone decide to work and travel in the Comoros. For anyone looking to do something different, this is the golden opportunity.
There are so many volunteer opportunities in the Comoros for intrepid travellers to take advantage of. This travel guide to the Comoros (https://www.lonelyplanet.com/comoros) is going to show you everything you need to know about tackling this grey area of the world.
1. Protect the Whales of the Comoros
The islands of Grand Comore and Moheli receive thousands of whales and dolphins every single year. You can play your part in protecting these majestic creatures from boats as you partake in whale watching.
Your job will be to record each species and to take photographs, as well as to record video footage. You may even be lucky enough to get to work with acoustic devices.
This option or work in the Comoros is a great way to explore the islands.
2. Conserve Rare Creatures on the Comoros
The lack of development is apparent as you travel in the Comoros. One of the results of this is a largely untouched ecosystem. As more aid flows into the country, though, certain species are beginning to become threatened.
Volunteers who love animals can act in protecting the rare Lemur mongoose, which supposedly came from Madagascar in pirate ships.
Additionally, you can find work in the Comoros protecting the beaches when the green turtles come to lay their eggs.
3. Help People to Read in the Comoros
Political strife has been common in the history of these islands. If you’re searching for rewarding volunteer opportunities in the Comoros, you could become a mentor to young children who’re learning to read.
Many of these people may never get the chance to read, but with international organisations they’re getting the chance to become literate.
You don’t need to be a trained teacher to get involved in this type of work. A native English speaker with a good literacy knowledge is already considered qualified.
VOLUNTEER WORK VISA / PERMIT REQUIREMENTS FOR COMOROS
The Comoros is one of the few African countries that doesn’t have a complicated visa system. No other countries have the option of entering the country without a visa.
However, every country’s citizens can work and travel in the Comoros with a simple visa-on-arrival (https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/comoros/entry-requirements). You just need to show proof of an onward ticket (https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/Comoros.html). The cost, as of this writing, is 4.11 Euros for a 45-day visa. There’s no option for purchasing a longer visa when you arrive in the country.
For most long-term volunteering opportunities in the Comoros, we recommend getting a visa in your home country.
It’s much easier than attempting to extend your visa when you’re already there (http://www.dirco.gov.za/foreign/bilateral/comoros.html).
SEASONAL BACKPACKER SKILLS NEEDED IN COMOROS
The spring season is one part of the warm, humid season. This lasts until May, when the monsoon season begins. We recommend opting for some of the remaining conservation projects if you arrive in spring.
The best options are working with turtles in some of the sanctuaries on the island or managing the mongoose population. These volunteer opportunities in the Comoros will take you to parts of the islands ordinary tourists never get to see.
Make the most of the last of the dry season, as the rains can be intense during the rainy season.
The summer season is the worst time to travel in the Comoros. You can expect high levels of rain and humid temperatures. It’s positively uncomfortable to be working inside.
If you do happen to be on one of the islands, you should consider picking up a literacy project. These will take you into schools, where you’ll be able to teach people how to read. You could also spend your time raising awareness of health issues or helping with basic education as part of a homestay.
These are the best options for travellers who want to connect with locals.
From August until November, you have the opportunity to involve yourself in whale conservation and research activities. Despite what you might think, it’s not necessary to have any professional qualifications as a scientist. These projects always require unqualified volunteers to help.
Moheli and Grand Comore are the two islands you should visit during autumn, if you want to take advantage of these projects.
We recommend applying for positions like this long in advance of the start date. Most teams are already set prior to the whale conservation season beginning.
The wintertime is the main dry season in the country. It’s also when the majority of ships and tourists come to visit the islands.
It’s possible to find work as a deckhand or working on the docks, together with the locals during winter. But if the idea of working on boats doesn’t appeal to you, the other projects listed are all largely available. It’s by far the best time to work and travel in the Comoros.
We do recommend that you avoid working in some roles in the tourism industry. This is a poor country and you don’t want to take a job that would have been otherwise filled by a local, who would receive a small salary.
ATTITUDE TO FOREIGNERS WORKING OR VOLUNTEERING IN COMOROS
The Comoros are a set of three magical volcanic islands. Tourists are few and you’ll definitely stand out for all the right reasons when you venture into the local areas. Working as part of homestays and involving yourself in projects that require you to deal directly with the locals will be an experience you never forget.
Not only that, they’re called the Perfume Islands for a reason. Like nearby Madagascar, these islands will introduce you to plant life and an ecosystem found nowhere else in the world.
If getting off the beaten track is on your itinerary, come and visit the Comoros archipelago on your next trip!
- Edited on Oct 9 2018 by Marichka