Frequently asked questions

Who can apply?

  • Participants should be between 18 and 30 years old.
  • Participants should have a good knowledge of English.
  • Participants must be residents of a country where Atlantis has a partner organization. Please see list of partners.

Do I need an agricultural background or experience?

No, you do not have to have agricultural experience, but it is an advantage. You need to be able to communicate well in English. Motivation, flexibility and ability to show initiative are also important qualities.

How much does it cost to participate?

The registration fee will vary depending on which partner organization you apply through, and how long you wish to stay for. Please contact the partner organization in your country for more information.

How will I live?

You will live with a local family, have your meals with them and help out on their farm or tourism business.

What are the work conditions like?

  • You work maximum 35 hours per week.
  • You will have 1,5 days off per week, continuously.
  • EU citizen: you will receive 1200 NOK per week in pocket money as well as free board and lodging.
  • Citizen from outside EU: you will receive 1000 NOK per week in pocket money as well as free board and lodging, and your host is obliged to cover the cost of your return ticket back to your home country.

What is the placement procedure?

When we receive your application, we will start the process of trying to find a placement for you. Your application form and references are forwarded to host families which we believe are suitable to your qualifications and wishes. Based on your application, the family themselves decide if they are going to invite you as a Working Guest. Most families prefer to give you a call before they decide to invite you.

When a host family invites you, we will immediately send you their invitation, along with information about the family, their farm or tourism business, and the tasks relevant to your placement. If needed, you will also get detailed instructions on how to apply for a work permit. Furthermore, you will receive written information about Norway and Norwegian customs.

At this moment it will be your responsibility to establish contact with the host family, to agree upon details and get to know them before your departure. Because citizens of EU/EEA-countries do not need a work permit to work in Norway, we can place you on relatively short notice, and we keep trying to place you right up to your last arrival date.

Are there specific start dates?

No, there are not. You can start all year round. Exact arrival dates should be agreed with the host.

When should I apply?

Atlantis accepts applicants and places participants all year round. Since EEA/EU-citizens do not need a work permit to work in Norway, there is no definite deadline for how late you can apply. However, the earlier you apply, the greater the chances of us finding a placement for you, and the greater the chances that the placement will suit your wishes.

What kind of placements does Atlantis offer?

We offer placements in agriculture and tourism. The agricultural placements are often on farms with animals such as cows, goats, pigs, horses or farms with vegetable and fruit production. We have a few forestry placements, but often in combination with other production, as well as some crops production.

The tourism placements are family-run hostels, and you will usually be asked to take part in many different parts of the daily tasks.

Some placements are combined farm and tourism placements.

Can two friends travel together?

It is possible to apply to be placed together. In such cases, we do out outmost to find a placement where they will accept both of you. However, we can not guarantee this, and therefore we strongly encourage applicants to be flexible in this matter.

Do I need a visa?

Depending on which country you are from:

EU/EEA countries:

Participants from EU countries do not need to apply for a visa if they stay less than 3 months. If they stay longer they must apply for an EEA permit after arrival.

Non EU-members:

All participants must sign their invitations and send them to the Norwegian embassy/consulate, together with the application for work permit (issued by the embassy/consulate) as quickly as possible. See more at www.udi.no.

When is the best time of the year to travel?

This depends on what kind of things you like to do. Norway has four seasons.

  • Spring: March, April, May
  • Summer: June, July, August
  • Autumn: September, October, November
  • Winter: December, January and February

During the autumn and winter months Norway can be quite cold and dark, whereas the summer season is extraordinarily light. The lambing and calving season starts around April, and the harvesting season is at the end of the summer.

Can I get in touch with other working guests?

Yes, you can. Atlantis issues contact lists of other working guests who are in Norway the same time as you for participants in our programs. Atlantis also organizes get-togethers for au pairs and working guests a few times a year.

Please see our Facebook page.

What kind of support am I given while in Norway?

You can contact Atlantis at any time with any questions or concerns you may have. Atlantis has an emergency number that is open 24 hours. You will get a list of other working guests upon request and will be invited to our social get-togethers.

What if problems arise?

To solve a problem, whether it is personal or arises from a conflict with someone, it is important that you discuss it with your hosts. Poor communication or lack thereof is often the root cause of problems or conflicts. It is important to be open about what you think and how you feel.

If you do not manage to solve the problem with your host family directly, we want you to contact Atlantis. Although we have limited possibilities of solving individual problems, which may often arise simply from poor interpersonal chemistry, we do our best to help out. We can help you to clear up misunderstandings, set up an agreement, find compromises and an acceptable solution. To be able to help you, we need to be informed of what your problem is. Changing hosts may be a solution in some cases. This will only be possible if we have a suitable new placement readily available.

A Working Guest may interrupt his/her stay, if the host family breaks the written agreement or shows very little ability to integrate the guest in their family life. The host family may ask the Working Guest to leave their farm and return home if he/she proves to have very little ability to adjust to their way of life, shows a severe lack of responsibility towards the tasks on the farm, if he/she commits a criminal act or has given incorrect information about him/herself in the application process. They may also break the contract in cases like severe illness, sudden unemployment etc.

If you have not been in Norway before, you should be aware that it is a special country, long, narrow and sparsely populated. Most of the farms are situated on the countryside far away from a town. The public transportation is often very limited and it can be long way to the nearest shop, bank or pub etc.

It is important that you have thought about how to handle problems and home-sickness before you apply. Most challenges that arise are opportunities for personal growth. However, if the problems become so extensive that neither you nor the host family are able to cope with them and a termination of your contract becomes inevitable, both parties are entitled to fourteen days of notice. Shorter notice is only acceptable in very serious situations. Any termination of contract is to be discussed with Atlantis beforehand.

Will I get some language training?

Atlantis organizes Norwegian courses in Oslo. Please contact us for further information.

Who will cover my travel expenses?

You must pay your own travel costs both ways to where your host family is located. We advice you to contact a travel agency, and ask them about the cheapest fare. It is usually cheaper to buy a return ticket than two one way tickets. Remember to bring money with you in order to cover at least the first week’s expenses, and be aware that Norway is considered an expensive country by many foreigners.

Where can I find more information about Norway?

Lonely Planet has a guide to Norway.

You can also read about Norway on:

  • Visit Norway: tourist information (available in multiple languages).
  • Norge.no: home page to public sector in Norway (Norwegian/English).
  • Nsb: the Norwegian Railway (Norwegian/English).
  • Gulesider: Yellow pages (available in English), where you may do map searches in order to find the location of cities, tourist attractions etc.
  • Hanen: information about rural tourism and Norwegian food.