Here are Frequent asked Questions

Frequent Asked Questions

Who are Zanzibar volunteers?

Zanzibar Volunteers is a newly formed NGO registered in Zanzibar with a strong team with over 10 years experience in community work., We currently operate our projects in various locations of Zanzibar town and village of Makunduchi.

What projects does Zanzibar Volunteers work with?

Zanzibar Volunteers works with a variety of different projects from teaching in nursery schools to working on a one to one basis with adults in IT classes. We would be happy to receive any personal suggestions from potential volunteers that have got particular skills and we would be happy to arrange a project that would benefit the most from your own skills.

Who are Zanzibar Volunteers sponsors?

Zanzibar Volunteers is a Non-Profit organisation; here at Zanzibar Volunteers we support our projects and our own growth through volunteer placements and from tourist excursions. Zanzibar Volunteers have no international or local sponsors although.

What support does Zanzibar Volunteers offer me in planning my travel?

We will provide you with a pre-departure package before you arrive in Tanzania giving you all the answers to the weather, climate, vaccinations, accommodation, and airport pick up etc. This will be sent to you after confirmation of your booking. Hopefully however this FAQ page will answer all of your questions. If you do have any that are not answered feel free to email the team at Info@zanzibarvolunteers.org.

How long should I plan in advance?

You should leave at least 6 weeks to plan your trip, this will give you enough time to find a good deal on flights and also get all the vaccinations you might need.

When can I arrive?

This is completely up to you; feel free to pick a date that suits you best, we all know that you can usually grab a better deal on a flight if you have flexible dates.

What airport should I fly to or port to dock at?

Zanzibar only has one airport so you should be able to find it quite easily the international code for this airport is ZNZ, however if you are coming from Dar and want to take the ferry across there are numerous ones that leave throughout the day, if you want further details on the ferry timetable then send us an email. Info@zanzibarvolunteers.org.

What currency should I bring with me?

We suggest bringing American Dollar as it is the most widely accepted currency, although Canadian Dollar and the Great Britain Pound is also accepted. We would also suggest bringing some travellers cheques as it is a lot safer than carrying cash with you, however do remember to bring the bank receipts for them otherwise they may be accepted in the bureau. There will be ATM’s available to you as well, Visa Debit cards are the most commonly accepted but MasterCard can be used as well.

How much money should I bring for my personal expenses?

This is completely up to you as the volunteer, you can quite easily live off $5 a day, if you had $10 a day you would find it hard to spend it all on basics (food, water, phone credit). We would suggest bringing around $40 a week for basics.

Are there any age restrictions to volunteering with Zanzibar Volunteers?

Zanzibar Volunteers are happy to welcome all to their homes in Zanzibar, however if a perspective volunteer is under the age of 18 we request them to be part of a group with an adult accompanying them.

What are the living conditions like?

Do not expect the European or American standards, we have however tried to keep it as close to them as possible with running water and electricity throughout the house. You will be sharing your room with other volunteers of the same sex.

What is the food like?

This is Zanzibar also known as the Spice Island. In Stone Town itself you can find some amazing restaurants that will show you exactly why the island is named The Spice Island. If you are a vegetarian then do let us know or if you have any specific dietary needs then we can arrange something different for you.v

How easy is it to get in touch with relatives/friends at home?

Topping up your mobile/cell phone in Tanzania is no different to anywhere else in the world so no need to worry about losing touch with everyone at home. There are also numerous internet cafe’s around for around 2,000tsh/$2/£1 you can check your Facebook, Email, Myspace, whatever social networking site you use for an hour.

How much is a visa and when can I get one?

Zanzibar Volunteers will provide you with a Class C Residence visa so that you can be classed as a volunteer this cost is included into the package fee and we can process it once you are in country with us. So before then upon entry to Tanzania you will need to purchase a tourist visa this will cost you $50 unless you are either Irish or a US National then it is $100. These can be applied for from your country of residency at the Tanzanian embassy, or you can easily get them done upon entry into Tanzania at the airport.

How long does it take to process as visa at the airport?

They can take between 30 minutes to 1 and a half hours it depends completely on their staff. If you let us know before you arrive that you are going to get your visa done at the airport our staff will wait for you outside until it is processed.

How safe is Tanzania and Zanzibar?

Tanzania and Zanzibar are both extremely peaceful, you will not find a nicer environment to volunteer in. As with everywhere in the world it has its draw backs but as long as you are sensible with your choices there is no need to worry. We have 24 hour security at the house and all of our staff are here to help you.

How many hours do I spend at projects each day?

All our projects vary but with regards to teaching all the schools are open from early morning around 8am till around 1pm. You may find this enough and want to spend the rest of the time taking in the local community or at the beaches, but if you wish to partake in an afternoon projects they too are readily available.

Parental/Guardian (Again not stuck on this)

This section is meant for your parents or guardians that are no doubt anxious about you going away for any amount of time. Hopefully this will help sooth their worries and be as excited as you are about volunteering with Embrace Tanzania.

Dont let your children tell you everything about the trip, if you have any questions at all, do not think twice about contacting us, we are here to help. We want you to feel just as comfortable about your children volunteering with Zanzibar Volunteers as they will.

Do read through our FAQ page and if you have any questions still unanswered drop the team an email and we will get back to you within 24 hours.

How do we keep in touch with our children once they have gone?

Here you have a few options but the main thing you need to know is that we have staff in Zanzibar that are available 24/7 if for any reason you need to get in touch with them. Upon their arrival they will have to buy a sim card and a voucher to send a text home to you just to check in say they have arrived safely. You can help here by getting them a mobile/cell phone that is set to roaming, no need to worry if you can’t on their first day they will be given local orientation where they can get a cheap mobile or use one of the many internet cafes to send you an email.

How can I help as a parent?

By the end of this you will believe you are going on the trip too. It’s quite simple really; Zanzibar Volunteers has given a set package price which includes all the basics, we have tried to keep the costs down so that more and more children that don’t come from exceedingly rich backgrounds can also go on Gap Years. This does not however mean that it is extremely cheap and will need some financial planning with you (the parents) even just discussing with your children how to budget so they don’t end up spending all their money in the first week on a diving trip.

What are your safety precautions?

The health and safety of your children is of the utmost importance to us at Zanzibar Volunteers. We take great care in organising trips that are safe and risk free we want you to know that your children are in safe hands when they are with us.

What vaccinations should my child getting before travelling?

This is the downside to travelling, and unfortunately when travelling to the tropics there are a few that are a necessity for the best advice consult your local GP. The one that is an absolute is the yellow fever vaccination and this is required to be granted entry into Tanzania.

What advice do you have for preventing malaria?

Malaria is hard to prevent but you can guide your child about how to go about it. To start with anti malarial tablets are a must, these can be prescribed by your local GP. Next, when packing make sure they are packing long sleeve tops and trousers for the evenings, shoes and socks are also recommended. They may think this is ridiculous for Tanzania but it is fairly cool in the evenings and it will save them getting bitten by mosquitoes. We recommend insect repellent be in their pack list as well, any DEET based repellent will be good. The last precaution is the sleeping quarters, we have put up mosquito nets above all the beds to allow a pleasant night’s sleep.