How to apply online
If you'd prefer not to apply online you can also fill out a paper application (.PDF file) and mail it back to us. You can also submit your application over the phone. Our Phone number is 1 (877) 463-7432 for international calls.
Complete the application form as fully as possible. To help ensure that the application process goes as smoothly as possibly, please see our Application Tips. While it is useful for us to have your passport number and referee details they are not immediately crucial to start processing your application. A deposit of $295 American or Canadian Dollars is required with your application. The deposit will go toward the total cost of your program and is not an additional fee. We will immediately acknowledge receipt of your application and deposit payment.
Please call us or email us if there's anything you would like to discuss. Our basic package includes food, accommodation, insurance, and the support of our staff at home and at your destination.
VIM Online is our online system, which allows you to log on to your own dedicated web page. Here we'll keep you up-to-date with the organization of your placement. We'll send you regular e-mail updates to tell you when there's something new on your page. If you don't have an e-mail address or easy access to the Internet, or just prefer to have hard copies sent to you don't worry; we still send information by post on request.
What happens next?
As soon as you are accepted, our Team will contact you about flights.
Within fifteen working days we expect to write to welcome you formally on to our program. At this point we will send you your VIM online login name, password and instructions by email. You can use these to access the following information on your own dedicated web-page:
- General information about your destination, along with information about Volunteer Inn staff, offices etc.
- Our teaching ideas booklet (if you've applied for teaching)
- An invoice for the balance of our fee, payable three months before departure (or immediately, if there are less than three months to go)
- Our formal Terms and Conditions
- An 'Everything You Need to Know' chart about traveling in the developing world
- A questionnaire for you to fill in and return, so we can match you to your job
Visa information, if it applies to you, will also be uploaded onto your dedicated VIM Online page, or sent to you, usually between one and four months before your departure. This time-frame depends on embassies and application deadlines.
About a month before your departure, we will upload or send you full information about your particular placement.
Amendments & Cancellations
If personal, academic or other circumstances turn out to make travel impossible at the time planned, placements can normally be deferred without cost or for a minimal charge. Please call us to discuss your situation.
Amendments, cancellations or part-cancellations must be notified in writing. The charge for amendments ranges from $75 to $130 plus the amount charged to Volunteer Inn Mexico by third parties. If the total cost is going to exceed $180, we will provide you with a quote before proceeding. Cancellation charges depend on how far in advance of your stated departure date we have been informed in writing. Your stated departure date refers to the earliest of either: the “preferred departure date” entered on your original application form or any subsequently agreed upon date. If only a month and a year are specified on the application form, the "preferred departure date" is the 1st of the month specified:
- Notice of 3 months or more - $100
- Notice of 2-3 months - One third of total program fee
- Notice of 1-2 months - Two thirds of total program fee
- Notice of less than 1 month - No refund
Please note that the above cancellation charges apply whether an application is made more than three months before the stated departure date or less than three months before the stated departure date. Deposits paid less than three months before the stated departure date, defined as above, are non-refundable.
Please also note that if you have made your final payment, cancellation insurance will be available in defined circumstances.
Please remember - we're not responsible for everything.
If you choose to take part in one of our programs, we cannot allow for every eventuality. You will be choosing to travel far afield to places that can be both exotic and unpredictable. Lifestyles and conditions will be different from those you are used to - not necessarily worse but different. Please be prepared to cope with the unexpected, with local customs and shortages; with the vagaries of weather, travel and mankind in general. Common sense and good humor will see you through most things.