Buenos Aires is considered “one of the world's most addictive cities,” and it definitely delivers the goods. With its dramatic architecture and bustling nightlife, Buenos Aires is a must-see for any traveler and a great place for taking a gap year.
However, aside from this thriving metropolis, Argentina also has one of the most diverse landscapes in the world. It is truly a natural wonder. Being such a large country, Argentina goes from tropical weather in the north to cold arctic weather in the South. Where else can you see both jungle-dwelling howler monkeys and short wobbling penguins? Argentina is a country that is full of surprises and will not disappoint. Take your gap year in Argentina, and have unforgettable memories!
Types of Programs
Argentina has a diverse offering of volunteer programs that include: working with children, interning at a hospital, or coaching sports; volunteers are seriously needed in many parts of Argentina. Volunteering is a great way to immerse yourself in this enchanting and lively culture while giving back to the community you are learning from.
Volunteering in Argentina will not only stimulate and challenge you, but this rich South American country will also have you wandering mountain towns, sailing deep blue waters, climbing volcanoes, and everything in between.
Both long-term and short-term programs are available and will help place you in the field that is right for you. Placements in Argentina include Teaching, Care, Medicine, Dentistry, Occupational Therapy, Journalism, and teaching English. Volunteers in Argentina have a direct impact on local communities through service projects arranged and coordinated by expert staff. Consider volunteering in Argentina, we guarantee you won't regret it!
Argentina is one of the most unique countries in the world. Argentina is a surprising country. When we think of South America, we typically think of lush jungles and blistering hot sun. What we forget is how large this continent really is. In Argentina, a gapper can visit the Perito Moreno Glacier, the Iguazu Falls (which rivals the scenic beauty of Niagara Falls), and the dense jungles of the rural North. Argentina is the perfect place to get involved in wildlife research and conservation efforts. Whether you’re a mountain climber, backpacker, scuba diver, or simply a lover of nature, Argentina’s biodiversity will leave you breathless. The list of things to do in Argentina could really be endless.
Due to the economic problems in Europe, many Europeans are migrating to the charming capital, Buenos Aires. As a result, of this influx of European money, Argentina has experienced economic growth. Interning in Buenos Aires will allow you to see this shape-shifting economy firsthand and will add international work experience to your resume.
Many internship placement programs will place you with various internships throughout the country with corporations or non-profits. Whether you're interested in business, film, graphic design, marketing, or education, these programs will find the best fit for you.
Planning Your Trip
Cost of Living in Argentina
Argentina is one of the most expensive countries in South America. That being said, 1 Argentine Peso is only equivalent to 0.22 U.S. dollars. Even as the Argentinian economy experiences growth, the price of living in Argentina is very reasonable when compared to other countries such as the UK and the US.
The cost of living in Argentina does vary from place to place and this needs to be addressed by the gapper sooner rather than later. So what can you expect from life in Argentina? While Argentina has higher taxes than the US and rent has nearly quadrupled over the last 30 years. in comparison to the U.S. (on average) rent is still significantly cheaper.
Culture and Etiquette in Argentina
Argentinians are primarily of European descent, which separates them from other Latin American countries. However, while Spanish culture largely dominates the country, some indigenous traditions have been mixed into the culture.
Business in Argentina is very formal. Argentinians tend to not agree to business terms until they feel they can truly trust who they’re working with. Employees are expected to dress formally and to also address co-workers and authority figures using their surnames until told otherwise. Business in Argentina is often viewed as old-fashioned and conservative. That being said, Argentinians are warm people and their unreserved nature brings to the forefront their passion and sentimentality. In addition, they are close communicators physically so will often touch each other when speaking and maintain very little physical distance between speakers. They are passionate but formal. Sometimes this is can be a tricky predicament for foreigners.
Argentina also has a long history of artistic achievements. Some famous Argentinian artists include Adolfo Bioy Casares (a famous and influential Argentine writer), Astor Pantaleón Piazolla (a controversial Argentine tango composer and bandoneón player), and Andrés Calamaro Masel (a famous Argentine composer, musician, interpreter, and producer who has composed some of the most important and influential songs of the “rock en español” genre).
Health & Safety
While you will make numerous friends in this hospitable country, this may give you a false sense of security in the cities. There are dangers that you should be careful of. While cities like Buenos Aries are safer than most of the cities in South America, you still need to take caution when getting around the city. Foreigners are easy prey from con artists and robbers. Like all countries in South America, there is a large divide between the rich and the poor. The sad reality is that, while the Argentinian economy is on the rise, crime rates are still high in comparison to those of the United States and Europe.
Argentina has a decent healthcare system, with available public options, but you will still need Vaccinations for Typhoid fever and Yellow Fever. With a diverse landscape comes a diverse number of diseases. Mosquitoes are the largest perpetrators, spreading more disease than any other animal on earth. So bring mosquito repellent.
Lastly, while Argentinian food is some of the best food in the world, the country’s water quality is not up to par with the United States' or many other countries. Bring bottled water and make sure to have some Tums handy!