Arrival Procedures for Volunteers in Madagascar
- Arrival Airport: Ivato International Airport (TNR)
On arrival at Ivato International Airport (TNR), you will walk through Immigration, collect your luggage, and make your way to the Arrivals Section of the airport. Exit the airport and you will see a clearly visible Projects Abroad staff member waiting for you. They will be holding a Projects Abroad sign. Please note that for security reasons, the airport is accessible only to travellers. Our staff members cannot enter the building at all.
After meeting our staff member, you will be given a chance to exchange currency and buy a SIM card if needed.
From the airport, you will be taken straight to your host family. The drive between the airport and the town where you will live is around four hours, depending on traffic.
If you arrive after 5pm, you will be booked into a hotel or B&B for the night. After breakfast the following day, you will be taken straight to Andasibe to meet your host family and begin your induction.
At your host family, our staff member will explain how meals and living arrangements work. They will run through the procedure for the next couple of days and you’ll receive an induction folder with essential information and emergency contact numbers. After this, you’ll be left to relax, unpack, and settle in.
Volunteering in Madagascar: Induction and Orientation
Depending on the time of your arrival in Antananarivo (Madagascar’s capital city), you will either have your induction on the same day as your arrival or on the following day.
On the day of your induction, you’ll be picked up from your host family and taken for an orientation around the area. Your Projects Abroad coordinator will show you different landmarks and amenities such as the post office, banks, internet cafes, and bureaux de change. During the orientation, you can purchase a local SIM card or phone (if you had not done so at the airport) and you’ll be taught how to use the public transport. You will also have the opportunity to meet other volunteers in destination.
The Projects Abroad coordinator will show you how to travel from your accommodation to your placement and back again. If the placement and your accommodation are in walking distance, the route will be shown to you. If this distance is further, you’ll be shown how to use public transport to commute daily. All necessary work-related transportation costs are covered by Projects Abroad. The handbook and any necessary safety and security measures will be explained to you on this day too.
If you arrive over the weekend, you will have your induction on the Monday morning, because banks and the post office are closed all weekend and the exchange bureaus are closed on Saturday afternoon and Sunday.
The best time to travel and explore the island will be over your weekends and during your free time. Plan a full day of sightseeing in the capital Antananarivo, visit local markets and the palace, or spend an afternoon trying Malagasy cuisine. Team up with the other volunteers by hiring a private taxi and heading down to the beach for a weekend of relaxing and coastal adventures. The Projects Abroad staff can also offer you some insider tips to making the best use of your free time in Madagascar.