The word “budgeting” can evoke fear in many a student (or graduate!), however it’s a necessary chore when it comes to planning a trip abroad. Budgeting for your healthcare elective is essential for a few reasons; it allows you to be financially prepared, it allows you to make adjustments to your spending in the lead up to your trip, and it means you can manage your expectations when it comes to spending money and added extras on your trip.

Once you’ve started planning your trip with one of our advisors, you’ll have a totally accurate picture of how much the programme will cost. As you’ll know, Work the World provide your accommodation, most (if not all) of your food, your airport transfer, and will organise your entire clinical placement. There are some other costs you’ll have to consider and organise yourself, which include your flights and spending money.

It’s a good idea to note down all associated costs as soon as you know them, so you can plan your fundraising and budget accordingly.


After you’re booked onto your programme, one of our operations administrators will be in touch to chat through the details of your trip with you. This includes information about booking your flight. This will likely be the biggest cost outside of your placement fee.

They will be able to advise you which is the best airline to book with, and give you information about the arrival airport you should be flying into. With this information, you’ll be fully prepared to shop the market for the best deal on flights. Remember, the general rule is that the sooner you book, the more you’ll save.

Spending Money

Street food snacks, souvenirs and weekend activities quickly add up. Making sure you have enough money put aside to do all the activities on your bucket list is very important. Generally, most things are quite affordable in our destinations, but if you have a lot of ideas of things to do on weekends and after placement, you need to carefully plan out how much cash you’ll need.

When you arrive in destination, our programme team will show you where to withdraw and exchange currency, and give you a good idea of how much things will cost.

In-country travel

We encourage all our students to take public transport where it’s safe to do so. Generally, travel around our destinations is affordable, quick and easy. When you’re planning your placement with one of our advisors, they’ll explain public transport in the destination you’re going to, and of course, when you arrive, your programme team will show you how to use it.

You may want to take trips on weekends, and some of our students choose to hire private transport for this. It’s worth doing a little research before you leave to manage your expectations when it comes to cost.


Don’t forget: everyone that travels with us needs indemnity insurance. Your advisor will be able to tell you what type and also the best provider for your discipline. This is very important, and covers you for your clinical placement.

You’ll also need travel insurance, which, depending on what type you choose, will cover your luggage, on-person belongings (such as your mobile phone or passport), and if you get sick while you’re away. Some policies also cover you if your flight gets cancelled last minute or for a number of other things. Some banks offer travel insurance for their customers, so it’s worth asking to see if you can get a good deal.

Don’t forget about…

  • Vaccinations: you might have to pay to have some of the necessary vaccinations to visit your destination, it’s best to check with your doctor or travel nurse about which you need
  • Visas: One of our advisors will help you figure out which visa you need and how to get it
  • Donations: you might want to donate supplies to your hospital. We advise buying these in-country as they are generally cheaper, and it means you can assess the need when you arrive
  • Extra luggage: don’t forget, many airlines charge for overweight or extra baggage
  • Travel essentials: you may be advised to purchase a SIM card in-country, and you might also want to take things like mosquito spray or other travel-related necessities
  • Hospital essentials: your advisor will give you details of things you might consider taking, for example alcohol gel, face masks, or shoe covers, which you may or may not need to bring with you

Budgeting is just one way to gather together funds for your placement. You can also try and raise money from other sources — why not apply for bursaries and grants, host fundraising events, and find someone sponsor your placement as well.