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Travel Tip: Alternative Spring (and Summer) Breaks

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Volunteering is always a worthwhile way to spend a vacation, but when it comes to students, it often comes down to budget and time.

Every year, I have to give a shout out to the American Hiking Society, which hosts working spring breaks in national and state parks around the country.  The great thing is that it’s totally affordable—about $225 for a hiking membership, food and accommodations or camping for the week.

Globe Aware connects volunteers with programs everywhere from Brazil to Romania. What I like about these guys is that it includes cultural experiences, and there are one-week options—many of the other volunteer vacation providers have two-week minimums.

The Dallas-based Institute for Field Research Expeditions has programs all over the globe. You pay by the week, which includes meals and accommodation, and—perhaps most important—an on-the-ground contact and emergency support.

And there’s Global Volunteers, which not only has international programs, but also has volunteer opportunities right here in the U.S. on Native American reservations. And all because it’s a non-profit, your service fees, airfare and other travel expenses are tax deductible.

For more information, visit the voluntourism archives.

Keep reading for more travel tips.

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