Basics: Food, Water, Shelter, Money

Food & Water

Breakfast will be eaten at our hotel before we head for the worksite each day; there will be a lunch break every day at the worksite. The evening meals will be eaten at the hotel once we’re back for the day and cleaned up a bit- get ready for some delicious El Salvadorian cuisine!

Here’s an example of a traditional meal in El Salvador:
– Breakfast: To gear up for the day, you will enjoy a wonderful typical Salvadoran breakfast of rice and beans, eggs, bread and coffee.
– Lunch: A typical Salvadoran-style lunch includes rice, tortillas, and salad with chicken, fish, or beef, and a fruit drink or soda.
– Dinner: Evening meals may include beans, plantains, vegetables, pasta, “rellenos” (veggies or potatoes stuffed with cheese and covered with cooked egg batter).
– Snacks: We will provide drinking water and a stack of fresh fruit, cookies, juices, or ice cream, both in the morning and afternoon.

If you have any special dietary needs, please let me know ASAP so that provisions can be made to assure your needs are met!

Hydration is very important on GV builds- bring a reusable water bottle! Safe drinking water will be available at all times on-site and with meals. Some participants choose to bring electrolyte drink powders (Gatorade, Powerade) to add to the water, or gels (the kind used by runners). You’ll be sweating a lot!


Please keep in mind that our accommodations in El Salvador may not have all of the luxuries of the hotels you are probably used to (e.g. elevators, constantly-available hot water, internet, etc). Make sure that you are able to carry your suitcase up a flight of stairs if you need to! You will share a hotel room with a team member of the same sex. I do not post much info about our hotels online for safety reasons- information is provided via email; if you have any questions, please email me!

Valuables such as electronics or expensive jewelry are best left at home.

Electric outlets are 110V and are the same type as those in the US.


Your trip cost covers your housing, transportation, food, insurance, and cultural activities for the dates of the trip; the only money you need to bring is for any personal souvenirs or extra purchases you may wish to make and for your visa on arrival at the airport ($10 USD). Amounts will vary widely from person to person; in general, $100-200 should be more than enough. (Per Habitat policy, alcohol cannot be covered by trip funds, so if you wish to have a beer with dinner, you will need to pay for that separately.) El Salvador’s currency is the US Dollar, so no need to exchange any money.

Most places will not accept bills larger than US$20, so it’s recommended that you travel with small bills to avoid any problems. ATM machines are easily accessible in El Salvador and are convenient for those who do not want to carry a large amount of cash into the country. Please check with your bank regarding the international ATM surcharge. Traveler’s checks are not recommended because few banks change them.


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