Real Estate

Airbnb is offering five people a free 2-month 'sabbatical' in the Bahamas


Airbnb is searching for five people to quit whatever they are doing and go on a free two-month trip to the Bahamas, where they will assist with ecological projects in the Caribbean nation.

Those selected to take part in the "sabbatical" will spend April and May traveling to three Bahamian locations to help preserve the country's natural and cultural resources.

Airbnb's latest "sabbatical program" was developed in partnership with the Bahamas National Trust, a local non-profit that protects 32 of the country's national parks.

It follows the company's Italian and Antarctic projects, both of which saw volunteers take part in working vacations to help with rejuvenation and research.

To be in the running for Airbnb's latest project, applicants must demonstrate a "commitment to contribute to island life," the company said.

Successful applicants to the Bahamas Sabbatical will travel to Andros, home of the world's third-largest reef system, to help create a coral reef restoration program and install a new nursery to grown coral reef fragments.

They will also spend time working on the conservation of reef-friendly species in Exuma, and assist with ecological and research projects in Eleuthera.

The two-month trip is designed to help local leaders set up sustainable sources of economic growth, such as new experiences that tourists visiting the Bahamas can book through Airbnb.

Those selected to join the sabbatical will also be given time off to take part in activities such as sailing and exploring marine caverns known as blue holes.

The Bahamas, made up of more than 700 islands, is heavily dependent on tourism, and parts of the country were devastated by Hurricane Dorian last year.

"This is a special place, and anyone who has spent time on any of the islands that make up the nation is moved by the air, the sun, the beaches, the food, the communities and most of all the people," Chris Lehane, senior vice president of global policy and communications at Airbnb, said in a press release Tuesday.

Candidates must be over the age of 18 to take part in the scheme, and must be available throughout April and May 2020. Potential participants should also speak good conversational English and be from one of 34 eligible countries, which include China, India, New Zealand and the United States.

Airbnb will announce who has been selected for the project on March 25.