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    Eight reasons to consider volunteer vacations for couples

    Article by Zaytoen Domingo

    Zaytoen Domingo

    Posted: February 14, 2020

    There’s a reason couples travel on their honeymoons. Travelling abroad together can help you deepen your relationship, and learn more about each other and the world. Here’s why volunteer vacations for couples are an excellent idea. 

    Volunteer opportunities for couples are a great idea if you’re considering a trip overseas together. As well as getting to share exciting adventures with your partner, and gaining insight into your relationship, you’ll be able to make an impact in a meaningful way. Overall, this can be a great way to build a strong and long-lasting partnership. 

    GVI offers different types of volunteer opportunities for couples who want to take a holiday and make an impact, together. Here are eight reasons to give couple volunteering a go

    1) Travelling with someone else can be easier

    Travelling solo can be a challenge. For many people, having someone along for the adventure can make overseas travel more accessible. In the security of a couple, you can travel to places that might intimidate you if you were alone. 

    Good places to travel as a couple, such as Cambodia, Ghana or India, will challenge you to step out of your comfort zone. Having the support of your other half can make these destinations much less daunting.

    2) You’ll see the best in each other

    Couple volunteering will allow you to see the best in your partner


    When you volunteer together, you’ll get to see your partner’s altruistic side. Seeing your significant other working towards making an impact can show you a side of them that you may not have seen before.

    One 2013 study revealed that altruistic behaviour can make you appear more attractive in the eyes of others. Both men and women in the study rated people that showed helping behaviour as more appealing for long term relationships. 

    3) You can build a closer relationship

    Volunteering as a couple will bring you closer together


    Couples volunteering together can enjoy a stronger and more connected relationship. 

    That’s because studies have shown that helping other people can trigger the release of the “love hormone” oxytocin. This hormone facilitates social bonding and building trust in other people. 

    As such, experiencing the feel-good effects of volunteering can also make you feel closer to your partner. 

    4) You can double your impact

    A couple apply purple ointment to an infection on a sea turtle

    Purple ointment is applied to an infection on the sea turtle by volunteers in Seychelles.

    One volunteer is good, two is better. By supporting your partner in their volunteer project — or convincing them to come with you — you’ll have double the impact.

    The best places to volunteer as a couple will allow you to make a meaningful impact and contribute your respective strengths. 

    For example, you could consider a project such as volunteering to promote public health and well-being in India, where you can take part in workshops to create awareness on topics relating to public health and wellbeing, education, or women’s health. 

    5) You won’t get sick of each other

    Volunteering as a couple means you'll be surrounded by like-minded people, so you won't have to spend every second of the day together


    Travelling as a couple means you’ll spend nearly every hour of the day together. Couple volunteering is a great alternative to classic vacations, ensuring you don’t get sick of each other during your trip. 

    During your volunteer project, you’ll spend time with other international volunteers from around the world, as well as a dedicated team of skilled staff, and local project participants. 

    This means you’ll have plenty of opportunities to have thought-provoking conversations and share meaningful experiences with other people. 

    Being around others means you won’t run out of things to say to your partner!

    6) Volunteering can help you find a common purpose

    Learn about your common interests and goals when you volunteer together as a couple


    Identifying common goals can help bring you closer as a couple. Relationships built on shared core values, such as striving to help others and build a better world, are more likely to last the distance. 

    Contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) through volunteer projects can give you a shared purpose as a couple, and help you identify the values that are most important to you. 

    Volunteer ideas for couples can include going on a wildlife research expedition in South Africa to learn more about conservation, helping to build communities through teaching English in Costa Rica, or supporting holistic well-being on public health projects in Nepal

    7) You’ll learn to work as a team

    Work together when you volunteer as a couple on a GVI marine conservation program


    When learning how to travel as a couple, you’ll figure out how to function as a well-oiled team.

    During your volunteer project, you’ll overcome obstacles together, compromise, problem solve and communicate

    Whether it’s learning a new language, arranging your visas, or figuring out how to navigate a new city, you’re in it together. 

    Dealing with unanticipated challenges can encourage you to adapt and explore different roles within your relationship, developing better teamwork skills and supporting each other in a range of different ways. 

    You’ll grow more trust in your relationship and become closer with each joint decision you make. 

    8) Some experiences are best shared

    Trekking in the Himalayas is even more beautiful when you do it with someone you love


    Volunteering is a powerful experience. You’ll be carrying out potentially life-changing work in a beautiful corner of the planet. 

    Experiences such as learning about Buddhist culture and teaching English in Laos, researching elusive jaguars in Costa Rica, or trekking to Mount Everest’s base camp can be even better when you share them with that special person in your life. 

    You’ll have your partner along for the entire ride, sharing in the joy and wonder, as well as the difficulties and frustrations. 

    Shared, meaningful experiences can help to build companionship by giving you space to spend important time together and giving you plenty to talk about and reflect on. 

    Plus, sharing experiences gives you special memories that are unique to your relationship. Later down the line, you’ll be able to reminisce happily with each other about the incredible time you spent volunteering abroad. 

    Start planning your overseas adventure together and explore GVI’s range of volunteer vacations for couples today. 

    By Zaytoen Domingo

    Zaytoen Domingo is a content writer and editor based in Cape Town, South Africa. She is currently enrolled in the Masters program in English at the University of the Western Cape. After graduating with an Honours Degree in English and Creative Writing, Zaytoen completed a skills-development program for writers and became an alum of the GVI Writing Academy.