Work and Travel in Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)
VOLUNTEER AND PAID WORK OPPORTUNITIES IN FALKLAND ISLANDS (ISLAS MALVINAS) FOR TRAVELLERS
The Falkland Islands are about as remote as you can get. Situated off the South American coast, the Falkland Islands is a place steeped in violent history. But following the war in the 1980s where Argentina briefly occupied the islands, before being evicted in a short conflict, things have been peaceful.
If you want to go where few other backpackers go, work and travel on the Falkland Islands could be for you. Read our travel guide to the Falkland Islands (https://www.lonelyplanet.com/falkland-islands) to find out more about some of the things you can do here.
1. Work on a Farm on the Falkland Islands
The Falkland Islands is primarily a farming community. Port Stanley is the only real major town. Much of the population either lives there or on farms across the islands. If you want to see the rugged beauty of the Falkland Islands, work on a farm.
Working on a farm will bring you closer to local people and, as part of your homestay, you’ll be taking care of the animals, carrying out housework, and you’ll get your meals and accommodation covered.
This sort of work on the Falkland Islands is a unique experience.
2. Care for Penguins on the Falkland Islands
Travel in the Falkland Islands and you’ll notice that it’s famous for two things: sheep and penguins. Don’t go to Antarctica to see the penguins, come here instead.
Conservation programmes will bring you into close contact with these creatures. You’ll spend your time working in the numerous penguin colonies, where you’ll be helping scientists to research them and preserve their habitats.
You don’t need to be a qualified scientist or conservationist to work in this field. Volunteers who don’t mind working hard are always welcome to pick up these volunteering opportunities on the Falkland Islands.
3. Horticulture on the Falkland Islands
The Falkland Islands is an ecosystem that’s found in few other places. In spite of the oil industry growing off the islands, efforts are already being made to preserve the environment on and around the islands.
So if you want to work on the Falkland Islands and you love being outdoors, horticulture is the option for you. Learn about the flora and fauna of the islands and make your mark.
This can be a difficult job with long hours, but it’s rewarding because it’s often combined with a home stay at the same time.
VOLUNTEER WORK VISA / PERMIT REQUIREMENTS FOR FALKLAND ISLANDS (ISLAS MALVINAS)
The Falkland Islands are a British Overseas Territory (https://www.airsafety.aero/About-ASSI/Overseas-Territories.aspx). This means that it isn’t its own country and its visa policy is closely connected to that of the UK.
It operates a lax visa policy. The usual 90-day entry without a visa policy (https://www.falklands.gov.fk/our-home/visit-us/) is available to Americans, Canadians, citizens of the European Union (EU), South Africa, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand. Also, much of South America can travel in the Falkland Islands without a visa, including Argentinians.
Those who need a visa to work and travel in the Falkland Islands include: Russians, Mexicans, and the Chinese.
You can visit any British embassy in the world to get a visa to visit the Falkland Islands because it’s one of the 14 British Overseas Territories (https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/falkland-islands/entry-requirements).
SEASONAL BACKPACKER SKILLS NEEDED IN FALKLAND ISLANDS (ISLAS MALVINAS)
Understand that due to its proximity to Antarctica and the Atlantic, temperatures are cold throughout much of the year. The spring time is closer to the summer season, but it’s still extremely cold at night. Rainfall is relatively constant throughout the whole year.
Since this is the beginning of the year and the seasons are reversed below the equator, you should consider indulging in a home stay during spring.
Exploring the rural areas will give you a chance to see part of the country that few other tourists see. Get out of Port Stanley and Port Howard and see the natural beauty of the islands.
The summer season is actually winter time. As you would expect, this is the perfect time to visit the penguins and involve yourself in conservation projects there.
You shouldn’t find it difficult to find work as a volunteer here. Just remember to apply for these projects in advance as you will need a work permit, even for volunteering. This also applies to UK citizens, so don’t arrive and assume you can get the necessary permits when you’re already there.
These are relatively easy to secure, however, if you already have a job waiting for you.
There are no specific backpacker skills needed in autumn. The climate and the conditions are much the same as in the ‘Spring’ season, so you should refer back to that section to find out more about the skills needed at this time of year.
The winter time is what passes for summer on the Falkland Islands. If you find yourself available for work and travel on the Falkland Islands, horticulture work is always a good option.
With any outdoor job, you’ll want to select the hottest part of the year. Although it never gets hot on these islands, the winter time is when you can expect to enjoy the best conditions.
Horticulture, working with other animals on the islands, and conventional farming work are always popular during winter.
ATTITUDE TO FOREIGNERS WORKING OR VOLUNTEERING IN FALKLAND ISLANDS (ISLAS MALVINAS)
The Falkland Islands have a strange relationship with foreign workers. Contract workers are not welcomed to the islands as there’s a popular myth that they get free housing and they don’t have to pay any bills. Living costs are about three times that of the UK, due to the islands having little to no natural resources. So when it comes to money there can be a lot of unfriendliness towards contract workers.
This is why you should avoid attempting to take on paid work. Volunteers are welcome as long as they are paying their way.
Remember that life on the islands is difficult for the locals, so they can be sensitive to outsiders.
Are you ready to work on the Falkland Islands?
- Edited on Dec 11 2018 by Marichka