How to travel on a budget (and eat really good food)

It’s all about wwoofing

If there is anything most college students desire to have is financial means to travel during breaks. Unfortunately we can’t all afford first class tickets to Miami for spring break or round trips to Paris for the upcoming summer break. However if your not allergic to a little hard work out on fields of soil, you should consider wwoofing. So what is wwoofing? Worldwide opportunities on organic farms. Wwoof.net is a volunteering website in which anyone can volunteer at organic international farms in exchange for food and shelter. Basically you only pay for your flight and a small membership fee.

Once on the farm you will be exposed to delicious food coming from the source. The farm would most likely by your pantry, a healthy one indeed, since rare to none of the farmers use chemically enhanced fertilizers. Throughout the experience your highly likely to make new international friends and learn a thing or too about food. Coming back now from wwoofing in California for two weeks I thought I’d share some tips and suggestions from my short-lived experience for other potential wwoofers.

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First and foremost, when searching for farms make sure that it is really the right fit for you. Ensure that the hours required of you and tasks are really something you are willing to do. When contacting the farmers ask them to be detailed about what your possible day-to-day routine would look like. Ask them what past wwoofers have done on the farm. Really do your research guys!

Solitude

Most farms will be in a rather secluded area, and as that may sound like the perfect place to get away and possibly meditate and reflect on life, things can get a bit too secluded if you’re of a younger age. When finalizing accommodations with the farm of your choice make sure to research things to do in the neighborhood. It is recommended that on your days off you just escape into a nearby town and just explore. It would balance off your long days of volunteering in the hot sun with some excitement from exploring unfamiliar places. If possible wwoof with a friend, pay for a rental and always have the car at your convenience. You guys may want to hit the road for a quick road trip or just for quick runs to the nearby supermarket for snacks. The farmers may not always be at your disposable to take you into town for they are often pretty busy so make sure you figure out nearby ways of transportation.

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Journal

The best thing I did was journaling every single day throughout my wwoofing experience. It was my outlet for positive or negative thoughts. Being on a farm you start realizing you mind begins to wander into places you might not have pondered upon before. The open space and long days of nothing but sounds of the surrounding nature can generate amazing thoughts for journaling. Write in a journal everyday and once you return home you would realize how great of an idea it was. Your thoughts can even become poetic in a way because open space on a farm allows you to channel into that.

Lastly, wwoofing would allow you to grow concerned and attached to agriculture, but what places the cherry on top is the fact that wwoofing would also allow you to learn about yourself. Depending on the length of your stay you would realize that as the weeks breeze by you begin to discover things about yourself you possibly didn’t know before. You might become enlightened in a way that has allowed you to find balance, but I have to admit you will definitely be learning something new about yourself. I don’t know what it is about the experience but it just does that to you.

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So that is all. Just a few tips and ideas for a first time wwoofer on Wwoofing. I hope someone out there may find this helpful and please guys wwoof away!

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Hunter College