Most Affordable & Top Rated Volunteer Programs in Portugal from $455 with IVHQ

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1st VL 2018
1st VL 2018
Missing these two
Missing these two
My volunteer family!

About

Trusted by 100,000+ volunteers, IVHQ offers the most popular volunteer programs in Portugal and 50+ other destinations around the world.

In Portugal, you can volunteer for periods ranging from 1 week to 12 weeks and choose from 5 volunteer project options in Portugal:
- Youth Support
- Homeless Support
- Wolf Conservation
- Food Rescue

Your Program Fee includes airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support. You’ll be accommodated in a hostel, with other like-minded, impact-focused travelers from around the world.

IVHQ is trusted to support the meaningful adventures of thousands of volunteers every year, so before you even depart for Portugal, you’ll receive outstanding personalized service from your expert Volunteer Program Manager and exclusive access to superior pre-departure volunteer training.

With IVHQ, you can expect to establish real connections within the local community while supporting projects that make a genuine difference.

Highlights
  • IVHQ’s Portugal program is available year-round, starting on the first and third Monday of every month
  • Highly affordable program fees starting from $375 - IVHQ provides the most affordable and top-rated programs
  • You’ll be joining between 5 and 20 other IVHQ volunteers who start in Portugal each month
  • You’ll be traveling with IVHQ, the volunteer travel experts, and joining a network of 100,000+ volunteers. Our outstanding safety systems and track record set us apart, we are the world’s safest organization
  • Your efforts will have a positive impact because our programs are community-driven with a focus on supporting long-term local needs

Questions & Answers

Reviews

98%
based on 31 reviews
  • Impact 9.4
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 9.6
  • Value 9.6
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 1 - 15 of 31
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Josephine
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My experience with IVHQ

My experience with IVHQ was fantastic and very rewarding. I took part in the marine conservation project in Lisbon, portugal and I thoroughly enjoyed my month there. The support I received in the lead up to my departure, in country support and even post program congratulations made me feel very at ease in knowing I had chosen the best program and volunteer community. IVHQ allowed me to make lifelong friends as well as interact with locals in the community. THe dive centre we were working with was amazing and had very considerate, personable and professional dive staff. The hostel staff cooked amazing food and made us all feel like the impact house was our home away from home. Without a doubt I would take part in an IVHQ volunteering trip again as I came away feeling I had grown as a person while having the time of my life!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
Arriving in a foreign country by myself! But the team made me feel so comfortable and at ease and the other volunteers were so friendly, I immediately felt comfortable.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Josephine, thanks for your review. I'm glad to hear you had a rewarding experience in Portugal. The contribution you made to the Marine Conservation project is greatly appreciated. We look forward to having you volunteer with IVHQ again soon. ^Sean - IVHQ Portugal Program Manager

Default avatar
Tanmay
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Unforgettable Trip!

Volunteering with IVHQ in Portugal was one of the most rewarding experience. The trip truly exceeded my expectations. From the application to the completion of my project, it was smooth sailing. I always got required support from both IVHQ and their local counterpart ImpactTrip in Portugal. The local team in Portugal is so friendly and always goes one step further to help out and makes sure you are comfortable. They helped me plan and book my local trips/activities with great zeal. I throughly enjoyed my stay at the ImpactHouse. Best part of the trip was meeting with the incredible volunteers and friendly and helpful local team. I hope these friendships get stronger by time. Another highlight of the trip was delicious food at the ImpactHouse. I am not exaggerating when I say it was one of the best foods have I had. :) I would highly recommend volunteering with IVHQ and the local team in Portugal. Thank you IVHQ and ImpactTrip for the wonderful experience!

What would you improve about this program?
The program is very well designed. I would not change anything.
Default avatar
Nastya
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Charming winds of Portugal

I spent a week in Lisbon on a youth support program which was a magical experience
Be ready:
• There are a lot of hills - take only comfortable clothes
• People don't really speak English so it would be a great idea to learn a couple of useful phrases
Locals especially appreciate when strangers try to speak their language
Also, If you know italian/french/spanish/brazilian you'll have an adventage
• We lived ten people in a room
• Two or four showers per floor - I found it very helpful to organize my stuff beforehand (ex, all you need to shower is in one place)
• We kept our stuff in a box under the bed -and there was one table per room
Unexpected surprises - extremely loud door which we managed to 'fix' with a towel and then with a special sticky thing for the doors
+ you may not be able to sit stright in your bed
• Tourists are not really favored
• Go for a week with the weekends minimum because there are so many places to visit
1. Cascais with amazing beaches, lagunes, and 'the mouth of hell'
2. Sintra
3. Potro
And many others
• Everything is quite cheap
• Some people were a bit freezing at night -can be a good idea to get a hoody
• Take nothing heavy!!! You get really tired walking up and down the hills under the sun with a bag on your shoulders

Highlights:
• We had a terrace and a little garden :з
• Recycling - the hostel definitely tried its best to be sustainable
• Sustainable shop in the hostel (take a look)
• Strong feeling of emergence into the culture
• O my god the views, it is incredible!
You just walk on the street and then BOOM, there is an edge, a roof of a house is under your feet and the ocean emerges into the sky...
• Meet a sunset at Tagus - it worth it!
• Definitely climb the Christ, the view is breath taking
Also, you can take a boat there, or a bus 753, which would be cheaper and much closer to the statue
• Locals are always happy to help
• Fruits are amazing
• The quality of food is great
• Veggie friday in the hostel - try to become a vegetarian at least once a week :D
• We had a tour with a local woman who was passionate and charismatic about her hometown
Amazing experience
• People are magical!
• Stuf was always ready to provide the best info, help, and support

Don't be a tourist, be an explorer!

Obrigado!

Default avatar
Kami
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing trip in Portugal!

My time in Lisbon, Portugal was amazing. I worked on the Food Rescue project for 3 weeks. I could tell the Refood organization I was working in was really important to the community. Although the work was not always fun, it felt really meaningful and I was happy to volunteer my time there. Outside of volunteering, I met friends from all over the world, tried amazing food, and traveled to different areas around Portugal. I saw Porto and Sintra on my weekends and both were so beautiful and different. The staff at the hostel where the volunteers stayed were also very friendly and helpful. I really liked how the theme of it was sustainability. The food provided to us was cooked fresh by the staff there and was always really good. There were options for everyone.

What would you improve about this program?
I struggled a bit to understand the locals I was working with on my project. I think more communication with the staff at Refood, IVHQ, and the volunteers would make for a more productive environment.
Default avatar
Sarah
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The trip of a lifetime!

This was the trip of a lifetime and one I will certainly remember forever. I participated in the marine conservation program out of Lisbon in Cascais. The local team and diving school were incredibly helpful, approachable and fun! If I could, I would participate in this program again and again. Thank you IVHQ for making this opportunity a possibility. I was able to learn so much while also making a positive impact on the environment. I fell in love with Portugal for its culture, art, food, and people. The beautiful tile building and the many areas of graffiti art are a must see. There is so much to do and see, from castles to beaches, I could have spent months there and not gotten tired of it. A memorable moment was a sailing boat cruise overlooking the infamous bridge! My favorite trip so far.

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
I ate octopus (many times) and it was seriously amazing! Also, try the custard tarts :)
Valy
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Unforgettable

Amazing experience! Broadening your horizons, getting international perspectives and travelling with a real impact, ideal if you want to make the most our of your holidays, in a way that you feel safe, supported, engaged and empowered to make a difference. The local team was awesome and they infused us with such an enthusiasm, which we could therefore afterwards use Inoue placements, especially when handling unfamiliar situations. An important thing to note is that the program is suited for solo travelers, you will meet people from all over the world, which will help you expand not only your knowledge, but also your way of thinking. Preferably for at least two weeks, since one week is a bit short. Such a fun, interesting, challenging, exciting experience, that will stay with me a lot later after it is over.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Go with an opens mind and open heart, embrace any challenges and enjoy!
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Thanks for leaving a review, Valy! I'm glad to hear the program exceeded your expectations and I hope you will join us again in the near future :) - Meika - IVHQ Program Manager

Default avatar
Jesus
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

volunteering with IVHQ a dream come true

My experience with the IVHQ was more than perfect! The support was awesome since the very beginning, they were there every step of the way, and they helped me make this dream come true.
After the application they helped me to get ready to go, and once I was at Portugal they keep in touch to know if everything was fine, if I was feeling good or if I needed anything. But everything was perfect!
I still feel like everything was just a dream but no it wasn’t, it was real! And I can’t wait to go on my next adventure with the IVHQ! This was my first time traveling by my self and now I can’t wait to go alone again! I have a new family that I will never forget! And that’s my IVHQ family!
The placement was really comfortable and the staff was super nice and they were always worried about me and the others volunteers.
actually i got sick and they took care of me really good and i felt like home since the airport pick up. I was scared before I left home, I was scared on the airplane but when a I saw the impact trip guy ,Jorge, smiling at me I was not scared anymore.
So I highly recomend the IVHQ, and I really invite everyone to go to Portugal! Because the impact trip staff was the nicest people I¨ve ever meet.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
the only thing I would change of my trip is how long I stayed there, I wish I stayed longer! a month was ot enough and I am not done with Portugal yet, thinking of coming back next year and stay for a bit longer
Default avatar
Isabel
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Best volunteer company

It is a life changing adventure!! you meet so many new and amazing people, all looking to help other and you get to discover a hole new culture.
The IVHQ members are amazing! super supportive and willing to help at any time. 100% recommendable.
Lisbon is a very vibrant, full of culture, amazing city, that is definitely worth exploring! and besides it is really safe, so you will not have to worry (only watch out for the pickpockets ).
The Food Rescue program, was really well organised, people there where really kind and welcoming, and the people you help are very nice and understanding as well.
The program has made a huge impact on the community, you can see that.
The impact house was always very clean, it was pretty comfortable, and spacious and the food was really good and well balanced.
The weekend trips were so much fun! and we got to know a lot, they were not expensive at all and truly worth while.
I would definitely do it again.

Cassidy
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Travelling with IVHQ

Travelling has never been something that peaked my interest but when I heard of IVHQ and all the different opportunities I chose to step outside my comfort zone and volunteer with their program in Lisbon, Portugal.

As an unexperienced traveller I had so many questions and concerns when I first applied but right away IVHQ made sure that every concern or question I had would be answered with care and in depth.

Travelling to Portugal was the best decision I made. I had the chance to meet people from all over the world and develop friendships, experience a whole different culture and challenge myself by volunteering in difficult situations. I recommend to anyone to take a chance and step outside your comfort zone and travel, explore, and create with IVHQ!

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Cassidy! Thanks for your review. It was so great to meet you in Portugal and I'm glad you had an incredible experience. It definitely can be nerve-wracking stepping out of your comfort zone but I'm so happy that it worth it and the best decision you made. I hope you volunteer with us again soon! Meika - IVHQ Program Manager.

Default avatar
Taya
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Portugal volunteering

Volunteering in Portugal was one of the best experiences I have participated in. It is such an amazing way to see a country, make friends and especially make an impact in areas that require the help. Personally i Participated in the construction and renovation program. It was so rewarding going everyday and helping build a house, knowing it was going to be used by someone in need. Seeing the constant development everyday, made me proud of the work me and the team had made. I'd highly recommend this volunteering to anyone who wants to push their comfort zone and also become part of a project that really impacts lives in a positive way. Many thanks to IVHQ.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Thanks so much for your wonderful review, Taya! We're so glad that your time on our program in Portugal enabled you to achieve so much and you found the experience to be rewarding. We hope to see you on another IVHQ program again soon. Meika - IVHQ Program Manager.

Tam
Tam
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Food Rescue - Lisbon, Portugal

I arrived in Portugal with my flight delayed 2 hours past my scheduled pick-up. I was worried my pick-up guy abandoned me, but he was still around.
We drove to the location. My initial glimpses of Lisbon were not too pretty: It looked like we were in the middle of nowhere, some back-country land.
It wasn't until we arrived at the hostel that things started to look better. The hostel itself is well-kept and cute. The people there tend to your dietary restriction if any and make you feel at home.
Day 1 was orientation to the hostel and the program--short and simple. Day 2 was the first volunteer day. The R3Food organization we volunteered at had a very well-structured system; we felt kind of obsolete too be quite honest. The cause is a worthy one though.
The shifts we had alternated between morning and night, around 10 AM - 1 PM and 8 PM - 11 PM. It was mostly packaging food, bringing food in, getting food from stores and doing in-person deliveries. The toughest part would be finding matching lids for the tupperware.
This volunteer program gave ample time to explore Lisbon. I got to visit Belém, Cascais, Alfama, Central Lisbon and Sintra. We did a wine tour and relaxed on the beach, did a city tour on a Tuk-Tuk, and went to Cascais''s Lumina Festival. I recommend downloading MAPS.ME (free offline map navigator app) and walking around Lisbon especially in Alfama and the nearby areas.
I will never forget my experiences here, the people I met and Lisbon itself. Thank you IVHQ and ImpactTeam. Well done.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Tam, thanks for your awesome review! It's great to hear you managed to explore so much of Lisbon in your spare time - it really is a beautiful city. I hope you will volunteer with us again in the near future. Meika - IVHQ Program Manager.

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Default avatar
James
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Fantastic from start to finish

My experience on the Lisbon Youth Support Program was incredible. The placement was enjoyable and impactful. The accommodation was friendly, well run and felt like a home away from home (with excellent food!). The support network from the moment I applied to me sat in my kitchen now has been thorough and melted away any nerves throughout this journey. The people I met were from every corner of the globe and we have already organised to meet once more. In short, I cannot wait to go back!

What would you improve about this program?
Nothing springs to mind
Default avatar
Véronique
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

beautiful Lisbon

I spent 3 weeks in Portugal and it was one of the best experiences in my life. The local team is to lovely and caring. I had the opportunity to meet so many new people from all over the world.
I did the Youth Support programm and had a lot of fun. The team helped us to change the placement as at the first place we barely had any kids. But then I had an amazing time.
And there's so much to do and see in Lisbon. So many beautiful beaches, places and castels. And i even spent one weekend in Porto which was fantastic.
and if you're in Lisbon you have to do a daytrip to Sintra! This place is just like in a fairytale!
So pack your suitcase and go on an adventure! It's totally worth it!

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Veronique, thanks for your review! I can definitely tell you had an awesome experience volunteering in Portugal and I hope you volunteer with us again soo. Such wise advice too - "don't hesitate, go on an adventure!" Meika - IVHQ Program Manager.

Default avatar
Michael
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Priceless Experience

Meeting people from another country and truly indulging yourself in their culture and way of life is something truly remarkable. I have really grown into a new person from this experience and would recommend anyone to embark on the same one if not another interesting IVHQ program.

I am very lucky to have been put with very friendly people who were supportive all the time.

My favorite part was meeting new people and how they made changed in their lives that reflected their values. Animal cruelty is unfortunately a very real problem in the world and I am currently changing my diet to not have any meat.

What would you improve about this program?
There is always room for improvement for everything, nothing is ever perfect. The price could be changed to make it more affordable perhaps, the support could be more informative, and the return to the airport could be included as part of the package.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Thanks for your review Michael! I'm so glad you felt support by us here at IVHQ, we do our best to make sure volunteers have the most life-changing experience possible. It's awesome you had a great experience and I hope you volunteer with us again soon. Meika - IVHQ Program Manager.

Default avatar
Samantha
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Volunteer Experience in Lisbon, Portugal

I had a truly amazing experience with IVHQ and I can't wait for the opportunity to volunteer with them again. As part of my gap year I knew I wanted to explore the world while also assisting a community in need. Ultimately, I decided that Lisbon, Portugal was where I wanted to do this. From the moment I arrived, and throughout my five week stay, the IVHQ team in Portugal made me feel right at home. The accommodations and food were beyond my expectations and everyone was very friendly/ helpful. As far as my volunteer placement went, it was a very educational experience. It was fascinating to work amongst people of various backgrounds and cultures, all of whom shared a common goal. At my project, food rescue, I was able to see who I was helping which definitely made my efforts more worthwhile. Additionally, my placement only lasted a few hours each day which allowed all of the volunteers an excellent chance to explore Lisbon and its surrounding cities. This was a great way to bond with them and I will cherish the memories and friendships made throughout my time there. I highly recommend this program to anyone who is considering traveling with IVHQ. Thank you again for an unforgettable trip!

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IVHQ is the world’s most trusted and affordable volunteer abroad organization, offering the largest range of safe and impactful volunteer programs in 50+ destinations. Over 100,000 travelers have volunteered abroad with IVHQ over the past 12 years,...