Wednesday 9 February 2022

“We could have never predicted what was to come for our very first season at the magnificent Club at Mirasol” - Ashley Garrity and Claire Knepscheld

When we applied to The Workaway International Program we could have never predicted what was to come for our very first season at the magnificent Club at Mirasol. The whole Workaway International experience from applications to our flights being booked seemed to be the easiest and fastest process.

We can never forget our very first day landing in the Florida humidity – that was an experience (we are from Durban so for us to say it was hot, it really was hot!).

Buying our first groceries, settling into our beautiful apartment and meeting the people who would contribute to the epic season we had to come. 


The service industry in the US is unmatched, in South Africa the hospitality industry most commonly employs school leavers who don’t intend on pursuing it as a career whereas Americans hold quality service at an extremely high calibre and in turn creates careers out of the service industry, so for us this experience was like nothing we had ever experienced in South Africa. 

Alongside learning so much and making great money we were also able to experience so much! From spontaneous trips to Miami and getting surprised by Claire that we are going to watch The Miami Heat’s play live, taking an all-expenses paid cruise to the Bahamas and visiting Universal Studios in Orlando. Did I mention that we did all of that in 1 season?

All of what we have experienced is thanks to The Workaway International Program. 


We are beyond grateful for everything that The Workaway Team does for us and we cannot wait to get back!

Tuesday 25 January 2022

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all” A basic proverb by Helen Keller that I live by – Lynn Smith

Hospitality and travel have always gone hand-in-hand for me. From the sweet aroma of food as I watched my mom cook delicious meals for family and friends, coupled with the joy of going on road trips spending countless hours driving across the country, this was my happy place. Naturally I pursued a career in Culinary Arts which would allow me to enjoy the two things I love the most: food and travel.

And that’s how it all started for me, thanks to The Workaway International program, my dreams become a reality.

On arrival at New York City Airport - the concrete jungle where dreams are made - with a 10-hour layover, I had to explore the city.

Nothing feels better than finally seeing the iconic landmarks that you had been watching on tv for a lifetime, including the Statue of Liberty, Time Square, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Empire State Building. It was definitely a melting pot, with high energy and excitement.  I have to caution; it will leave you exhausted but wanting more.

Over the seasons I have enjoyed the
5am sun rises in Malibu Beach and California and sun sets in New Hampshire. I have met so many incredible people over time, from Mexico to Europe and the Philippines, giving me the perfect excuse to travel some more.

Traveling is educational and it breaks the stereotype, it’s given me the opportunity to both teach and change views as well as learn.

Workaway International definitely takes care of their people and for that I am eternally grateful. They helped make my dreams become a reality. I got to work at Addison Reserve Country Club with some of the most profound chefs and leaders, gaining invaluable experience and a wealth of professional networks. 

Sunday 9 January 2022

Living The American Dream – Sasskia Naidoo

My time on the Workaway International Program has been an amazing experience, to say the least. I have done three seasons so far and I am going back for my fourth and hopefully many more.

I have made lifelong friends, met the love of my life, seen so many beautiful and breath taking places like Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico, the famous Route 66, the Grand Canyon in Arizona, Las Vegas in Nevada and Ripley’s Believe It or Not in Panama City, Florida.

I’ve seen the white sands and the blue sea of Miami. I’ve picked up beautiful shells up along the coast of Ft. Lauderdale. I camped for my very first time on Peanut Island and tried out paddle boarding in the Boynton Inlet (I fell off a couple of times ha-ha).  I took a boat tour along the harbour of Palm Beach with my new away- from- home-family.

I’ve seen beautiful sunsets and hand fed carrots to the wild horses grazing outside my porch.

Being on Workaway is so much more than just getting a job overseas, it gives you the opportunity to be independent, to travel and to learn more about the hospitality industry. I’m glad I took the leap of faith and gave Workaway International a try.

Thursday 23 December 2021

Workaway International is the best! – Awande Cele

After 5 seasons and hopefully many more to come, I have nothing but great things to say about Workaway International. Starting out as an 18 year old and thinking of going abroad on my own sounded so scary, and believe me it was! However I had the best agent, Workaway International.

They made me feel safe as everything was attended to so professionally and I have been able to trust them throughout the many years.

 Working at Boca West Country Club, I never felt like I was left to fend for myself. Our living arrangements and twenty four hour support from Workaway International made all my stays in America comfortable and I felt at home. Throughout my travels I went on many outings, but my favourite has to be and will always be Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida.

The working schedule allows you to explore more parts of America and I find that absolutely amazing.

 Thank you so much guys, keep up the good work!


Monday 6 December 2021

A growth experience – by Nonala Mbatha

Through Workaway International I got the opportunity to work at Boca West Country Club in Florida. It was the best experience ever. I was there for work but I got the chance to explore, meet new friends that became family and brush up on my hospitality skills.

It was tough being away from home but over time it got better. Workaway International and Boca West made me feel at home and checked in to see that I was settling in well. Work was good, we learned to work smart and hard.

The club organized a trip to Miami for us in our first month in Florida and later that season we had our employee Christmas party. They also organized a trip for us to Universal Studios and Disney World.

In between all that I got the chance to celebrate my 21st birthday. I had gotten two days off from work so that meant I could really celebrate in style. On my actual birthday I went out for drinks and dinner with a few friends and we painted the town red. The next morning my bestie / roomie took me out for lunch at a restaurant near the beach and later that night my friends surprised me with another birthday dinner where they sang a birthday song for me and gave me gifts. All I can say is I would do it all over again in a heartbeat!

Monday 29 November 2021

A Life changing opportunity – Rolando Mentoor

I first want to thank the Heavenly Father for the opportunity he was created for me, I have seized it with both hands and I am on my way to my second season at the Polo Club of Boca Raton if things go according plan.


I was part of the Polo Club set up crew during my first season on the program. It was a very good learning curve and I learned a lot from my colleagues who are masters in the field. We had different types of tasks to perform with different themes and everything had to be co-ordinated so you could not afford to lose focus. Every set up task had to be accurate without disappointments. Fortunately we were well trained and success became part of our culture.


During the time away from home I met people who came from near and far but it did not stand in our way of becoming friends which made life so much easier.


On the program you learn that circumstances cannot stand between you and your dreams forever.


I also had the opportunity to explore America a bit and went to places I was able to mark off my bucket list with a happy face!



This year, I want to achieve more success during my season at the Polo Club and I have pretty big plans to continue my American dream. 


My message of encouragement to every young individual is that you should never give up and you cannot stop dreaming. Set goals and strive towards them. God answer prayers.


Thank you Workaway International for an exceptional program!

Tuesday 2 November 2021

A life changing opportunity! – By Queen Maithufi


Workaway is such an amazing program. They help and guide you with everything.


I'm a girl from a small village and I was given an opportunity to travel and work in the United States, how amazing is that? It was even my first time on a plane! However I never felt lost because you get to meet all these wonderful new people and I now have friends from all over the world.


We got to stay in amazing apartments and I was honoured to be a part of the Boca West Country Club team in Florida where we received the world's best training. These were the best years of my entire life! I can now confidently say I am a fantastic server as I worked in amazing restaurants, managed to learn, explore and be the ‘Queen’ that I am today.


Part of my time on the program was spent exploring…in Florida, I visited Miami and Disneyland and explored some of the world's best beaches. New Mexico has beautiful mountains, surrounded by southern culture and native Indians, it's full of nature and great adventures. I even learned a bit of Spanish and experienced making some of their local dishes.


New York, however was the best experience ever! From the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, to Time Square and so much more!

This program has brought out the passion and love I have for hospitality, and I can now say I have international experience.

Lastly, with this program, I saved enough to finally manage to build my mom and myself a house and fully furnish it and that's just the icing on the cake!