Free (or Cheap) Volunteer Work in Mexico

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Free (or Cheap) Volunteer Work in Mexico

We have more projects to add here soon. In the meantime check the help exchange networks as a fair amount of hostels in Mexico are willing to exchange food and a bed for help about the place.


Grassroots Volunteering in Mexico

The organisations listed below have either got in touch with us to add their details to this or another of our websites, or we otherwise have reason to believe they are actively looking for international volunteers and charge reasonable or no fees to join in, live and work with them:

Centro Infantil de los Angeles

A safe haven for the children of single, working mums who would otherwise not be able to afford daycare for their babies and young children while they work in San Miguel de Allende, in central Mexico, Centro Infantil de los Angeles welcomes volunteers that can cook, build things, teach basic hygiene or that are just good with children. Since they opened in 2000 they have welcomed 1,800 volunteers from 15 countries to be a part of the work they do.

Where: San Miguel de Allende.
Accommodation & Costs: Accommodation in their guesthouse is available for $180 donation per week or $650 per month, less if staying longer, for groups or returning volunteers. There is also a $25 application fee.

Free (or Cheap) Volunteer Work in Mexico

Hostel Work Exchanges

We have seen Tribu Hostel looking for a receptionist and bartender on Holbox Island. Spanish and English language skills were needed along with a big smile. How long you stay depends on how much you like the island and them and how much they like you. Hostel Che has a presence on the same island, and elsewhere in Mexico, including Playa Del Carmen and Tulum. They will swap accommodation and breakfast for 20 to 25 hours’ work a week – providing you can commit to one or two months. There’s a Work with Che link on the site for uploading CVs.

Billing itself as the only real backpackers’ hostel in Puerto Vallarta for young souls with a budget looking for a good time, Oasis Hostel has been known to employ volunteer workers, aged 23 to 32 and with pertinent work experience, for a minimum of eight weeks. Breakfast, dorm bed, internet, laundry, and drinks are provided in exchange for six hours of work a day, with the possibility of pocket money after eight weeks. In San Cristobal de las Casas, Iguana Hostel uses Workaway for their volunteer recruitment needs.

We had Hostel Rincon del Viajero listed in our directory but they are sans website these days. On searching for them we found this Worldpackers listing. They’re under a different name but their volunteer requirements largely chime with what we said back in the day that “volunteers help this Mexican hostel run smoothly. They work as a community of artists, writers, scientists, construction workers, gardeners, etc, and all talents are welcome to help their goal to develop an ecologically sustainable, inspiring, and enriched living space.” They are on Mexico’s Pacific coast, in  Zihuatanejo.

Travel blogger Trisha Velarmino found that while most hostels in Mexico wanted fluent English speakers, basic Spanish, at least, was also required, and the hostel volunteers she encountered there were mostly from other Spanish speaking countries. She also said Mexican hostels preferred volunteers to stick around for longer periods compared to elsewhere: a one month minimum usually requested. Head over to her blog where she shares her tips and the volunteer requirements of seven beach town hostels.

Help Exchange Networks in Mexico

HelpStay Work Exchanges

Volunteer Latin America –
Workaway –

Other Ways to Travel or Stay for Free in Mexico

Stay free in return for caring for local residents’ homes or pets. Join Trusted Housesitters to live rent free as a house sitter.

Volunteer Experiences*

Volunteering in Mexico: A Day With the Women of Teotitlan – Katie Boyer visits women’s groups near Oaxaca.

* not all these volunteer experiences are with grassroots NGOs or low cost organisations

Image courtesy Reskiebak




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