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WWOOFing in Europe Good Way to Travel

How do I plan to WWOOF (Willing Workers On Organic Farms) in Europe? Hello Clare, I am glad to hear that you are planning on WWOOFing across Europe, it is a good way to travel. As you plan on working on organic farms during your year off from school, you are going to have a [...]

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How do I plan to WWOOF (Willing Workers On Organic Farms) in Europe?

Hello Clare,

I am glad to hear that you are planning on WWOOFing across Europe, it is a good way to travel.

As you plan on working on organic farms during your year off from school, you are going to have a good amount of time in each place that you stay at. Thus being, I would recommend not spending too much time tinkering and planning for times that are way down the road. I would say arrange your first stop, go there and work, and then see where you want to go from there.

As you mentioned that you would like to work in both western and eastern Europe — both inside and outside of the Schengen zone — I do not see any reason why you could not do this buy the rules: three months in, three months out. I would recommend trying to line up a farm to volunteer at in Spain, and then work your way east from there, making sure that you are in Croatia by the time your Schengen visa expires. Then you can work for three months in the Balkans or Eastern Europe, and then return to the Schengen countries (maybe Greece) with a fresh visa and 90 more days. In this way, you don’t have to worry about overstaying your visa or of having to avoid immigration anywhere.

About airfare, if you are coming from North America, it is not too expensive taking a Jet Blue flight to JFK and then transferring to Aer Lingus to Ireland and then transferring to a European budget airline to get to Barcelona. I figure that you could probably travel this route for under $400.

I just did a quick check, and you could get from JFK to Dublin for $330 in the beginning of September on Aer Lingus and then from Dublin to Barcelona on Ryanair for around $60.

As far as the Eurorail goes, never take it unless you really want to. It is expensive. In fact, it is the most expensive way to travel in Europe. You can fly between cities and countries on budget airlines for way cheaper that you can going by train. Buses are also cheaper than the train, but are often still more expensive than budget airline flights if traveling long distance. Unless you really enjoy riding on trains, Eurorail is a colossal rip off.

Index of European budget airlines

So I would recommend taking your year of work one step at a time, cross bridges when you come to them, and don’t plan too much. It will all work out. I would say start in the west and then travel east — three months in the Schengen zone, three months out, three months in, three months out.

I hope this helps.

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Walk Slow,


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Woofing in Europe good way to travel


Original question about WWOOfing in Europe

I’m taking a year off before college and I’m planning to spend about 10 months in the Mediterranean with WWOOF hosts. I’ve scoped out sites near Barcelona, Perpignon, Athens, and in Croatia. Figuring out airfare has been a nightmare, and it’s been difficult to get a feel for the prices and routes of the Eurail. How would you recommend traveling between these cities, for the best price and for the lowest likelihood of being stopped by immigration officers? Thanks so much!


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Filed under: Farming, Travel Help, Volunteering, Work

About the Author:

I am the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. I’ve been traveling the world since 1999, through 91 countries. I am the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China and have written for The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3720 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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9 comments… add one

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  • fanny November 24, 2009, 3:29 am

    i rode your mail, and i understood that you have been travelled in a lot of country. i think its very generous to share your experience.
    my qestion is if you know some place where you can wwoof and learn how to weave, where there is sheep and you do the colour..if you have an idea please let me know! thanks a lot, fanny

    Link Reply
  • Evan January 29, 2011, 5:30 am

    I dont agree with you at all that Euro Rail is expensive, its just bad advise.
    You can get cheap tickets and cover lots of ground if you do so in advance.
    Flying between major cities is an option, but the tickets are sometimes around the same price as the train, moree restrictive and not accesible for people without visa card or access to computers.
    I dont see for example, how like 160 Euros for a 5 stops in ten days across europe is expensive.

    Link Reply
    • Wade | Vagabondjourney.com January 30, 2011, 12:01 pm

      160 Euro for 10 days of transportation is totally expensive if you are not on a $50+ per day budget.

      Link Reply
      • Trevor April 4, 2019, 10:39 am

        i think Europe is just one big rip off. and im from here!! trains are expensive and suck. travel by bus!! dt even think about abusing the 90 day rule. !!!! youll get a ‘black marker’ against u.. and hence will be asked for return tickets and money to cover ur stay.. ‘specially if u go to UK.

      • Wade Shepard April 4, 2019, 3:36 pm

        That’s true!

  • Anu April 2, 2019, 9:54 am

    Hi Wade,

    I want to volunteer using WWOOF for 2 months. Can u help me how can I apply for a tourist visa from India.

    Link Reply
    • Trevor April 4, 2019, 4:48 pm

      Hi. may i interrupt this feed….. for a tourist visa you need to apply thru the normal channels. A return ticket and funds to cover your stay. if you cant , immigration officials, even if you have arrived in country, will deport you. times are tough! Times are made tougher by overstayers. it has a knock on effect.

      But WWOOFing is actually working, although its working in kind-you get food and lodging in lieu of pay. Theoretically you need a work visa for all aspects of working whether its paid work paid or paid in kind.
      This applies in every country. and if u sign up for work -away or other, it states that u, as a foreigner MUST obtain the relevant visa for your visit.

      And ask yourself, do the authorities have the man power to come looking for you? most likely they don’t. In corrupt countries you can pay a fine/bribe. In westernized countries you can be caught. Locals hate free loaders and will snitch on you. You will be deported. And black marked on your passport making it very hard to travel outside if your own country.

      Link Reply
      • Trevor April 4, 2019, 5:06 pm

        oh and i wanna add, yes i am from Europe. i have also tried with success to get a better life by working legally in the richest country in Europe, if not the world. I can work and the permit to work aint free either BUT times are changing. have been forced out of work by East Europeans who accept work for less pay than West Europeans..

        I also worked as a volunteer in 3rd world countries which was tantamount to slave labour though had its benefits. for which I worked very hard for.

        which is why i prefer to work in my own country. get my head down, work all hours God sends and where by my only out goings is to buy food to sustain myself in my 60 hour weeks.


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