Work and Travel in Nicaragua
VOLUNTEER AND PAID WORK OPPORTUNITIES IN NICARAGUA FOR TRAVELLERS
Nicaragua is a regular stop for anyone on the classic Central American backpacking trail. But why not get more out of this country than most?
Work and travel in Nicaragua is a way to truly get to know this land. For adventurers who want to experience more than the average person, they need to get off the beaten track.
So now you need to know about the various opportunities open to you.
This travel guide to Nicaragua is going to reveal the most important aspects of working in this country.
1. Teach English in Nicaragua
The primary language of Nicaragua is Spanish, as a result of its long colonial history under the Spanish Empire. However, Central America is growing more prosperous by the year. Local people want to better themselves and see the rest of the world.
You can help them do that through English teaching in Nicaragua. There are so many programmes that offer this sort of work in Nicaragua.
You’ll have the option of working in schools, providing private tuition, or joining camps with a set length. You don’t necessarily need qualifications for English teaching if you’re a native English speaker.
2. Renovate for the Poor in Nicaragua
Anyone who has decided to travel in Nicaragua in the past is aware of the level of poverty in the country. Charities have stepped in to build and renovate on behalf of the poor.
These projects are many and varied, but they mainly take place off the main tourist trail. This is one of the best volunteer opportunities in Nicaragua because you’ll get to see the realities of being Nicaraguan.
Projects range from building new schools to renovating existing homes. It’s a great way to make a real difference in the country.
3. Join the Arts in Nicaragua
Young people often suffer from a lack of opportunities in Nicaragua. But you can make a difference by giving them the skills they need to flourish.
Most of these projects revolve around the arts and sport. For example, you could join a theatre camp or a football camp. Some projects teach arts and crafts, so you’ll be showing young people how to make products that they could later go on to sell.
Others still teach the art of dance, such as capoeira. It’s a fantastic option if you’re passionate about helping young people as you travel in Nicaragua.
VOLUNTEER WORK VISA / PERMIT REQUIREMENTS FOR NICARAGUA
Nicaragua offers a simple visa regime. Citizens of North America, the European Union (EU), the UK, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, and South Africa are free to enter the country for 90 days without acquiring a visa in advance. For more info click here.
We should mention that the CA-4 Agreement between four Central American countries still exists here. It works much like the Schengen Zone in Europe in that you can cross the borders of these countries without additional checks when you enter one.
However, this agreement only applies to land-based border crossings. Air crossings work the same way as before and you’ll get a new stamp every time you enter a new CA-4 country through an airport.
Chinese and Indian citizens will still need to apply for a Nicaraguan visa before they travel.
SEASONAL BACKPACKER SKILLS NEEDED IN NICARAGUA
Nicaragua has two distinct seasons throughout the year. Spring covers both the dry season and part of the rainy season.
We recommend opting for projects like those in English teaching. It will keep you away from the rains and allow you to work in Nicaragua without worrying about the onset of the wet season.
It’s probably the most in-demand job available at this time of year.
Summer is a strange season because it’s the middle of the rainy season, but it’s also the time when the majority of foreign tourists enter the country.
It’s possible to find volunteering jobs in hostels or in guesthouses at this time of year. You’ll usually be expected to work part-time in exchange for food and accommodation. Arrangements can vary depending on where you happen to work.
If you speak Spanish, there’s a whole host of foreigners coming to the country to learn Spanish. You can find a lot of work in this sector in summer.
The autumn season, on the other hand, is the worst time of year to visit the country. September to November are the wettest months of the year.
The best jobs involve working in community development and engagement, or teaching English. Some of the more remote areas can be difficult to work in during autumn.
The winter season signals the start of the second dry season. A whole host of volunteering opportunities in Nicaragua are available because this is when children leave school for the holidays.
You may want to consider working in camps for young people who are away from school. Sports camps are the most popular, followed by camps dedicated to the arts.
Richer families also choose to hire English tutors on a private basis during the school holidays. Some projects even come with the chance of a homestay.
You can also find construction jobs in the remote areas in winter. If you want to explore parts of Nicaragua that few others do, these projects are the ones to look into.
ATTITUDE TO FOREIGNERS WORKING OR VOLUNTEERING IN NICARAGUA
There’s no denying that Nicaragua does have a crime problem, just like neighbouring Honduras. Recent political problems has led to an upsurge in violence. However, it shouldn’t scare you away from Nicaragua. Use common sense and you won’t run into any problems.
Like the rest of Central America, Nicaragua has a long history of backpackers visiting the country. You’re not going to experience any problems working or volunteering in Nicaragua because it’s such a common sight.
A working knowledge of Spanish, whilst not a deal breaker, will make it much easier to get around. You’ll also be able to apply for a wider range of volunteering projects.
Are you ready to work and travel in Nicaragua?