VolunTourism in Hawaii

Well Hawaii is high on my list of places to go so I’ve talked about possible travel plans, accommodations, websites, Kauai, etc.

This article on Hawaii caught my eye because of the nice contrast it provides with my recent rant on companies that make money asking for volunteers.

So from 7:00 AM (ouch that’s early for vacation) to 1:00 PM they worked on a Habitat for Humanity project. In return they got to feel good, learn how to make cabinets, and pay only $239/night for their hotel. I’m no expert, but considering these Kuhio Shores condos cost about $195/night (the range for ones that sleep 2-4 is $195-$225), that doesn’t seem like a great bargain to me.

Then again, you’re not supposed to volunteer only to get a discount on the hotel:

“For many people who are coming to Hawaii, vacationing is not just about lying on the beach and having a mai tai anymore,” Clemmons said. “They appreciate that there is a stronger opportunity for volunteer conservation projects in Hawaii than in most parts of the (U.S. mainland).”

“I interviewed a couple of young women who had done a documentary on their VolunTourism trip to Hawaii,” he said. “They said VolunTourism lets you bring your aloha. These tourists are bringing their aloha. They aren’t just taking it.”

The upcoming Voluntourism opportunities in Hawaii sound much better than building houses (at least to me). There’s a whale count on Oahu, for example.

Filed Under: Meaningful Travel

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