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We have international internship vacancies from August 2018 onwards:

We offer 3 – 6 month placements for Interns who can offer one or more of the following:

  • Photographer, graphic artist – (you will need to have your own outstanding social media profile)
  • Passionate about analyzing data or a google analytics fundi
  • In-house events & activity organizer (arranging,hosting and entertaining activities for our guests -(competitions, bbqs, parties, your ideas)
  • Students or graduates in hospitality management, international tourism & or responsible tourism

Besides your specific skill set, all interns are expected to participate in our volunteer in our community projects.  

  • Outgoing, friendly and confident
  • Enjoy interacting with people from all over the world
  • Well groomed
  • Good communication skills
  • Ability to work well in a team
  • Reliable and responsible
  • Intermediate English language, written and spoken
  • Ability to work flexible hours between 7am and 10pm daily
  • Computer literate with good skills in Outlook, Word, Excel, Internet

Besides your skill sets which you will be given projects to complete we will expect you to do:

  • General front desk reception duties
  • Checking guests in and out
  • Receiving and receipting payments
  • Guest reservations on online booking system
  • Guest enquiries with regards to travel planning, car rentals, room reservations
  • Answering switchboard / telephone
  • Tour sales and bookings
  • Café / bar shift when required, including coffees, drinks, stocktaking, restock of bar
  • Assisting with any duties as required by Duty Manager
  • Work 40 hours a week, including weekends and Public Holidays

We offer our interns:

  • Opportunity to complete your internship with a world leader in responsible tourism establishment
  • The opportunity to gain invaluable working experience
  • Enjoyable working atmosphere with great team members
  • Ability to meet interesting people from all over the world
  • Opportunity to go on educational tours

Duration: Minimum 3 months

Please note that the internship is unpaid.   We offer free shared accommodation and breakfast.

  • Intern Gallery

  • Intern Feedback 2018

    January – April 2018
    I would like to thank The Backpack (very much) for the 3 months I spent in. This experience is definitely the best I ever have yet.

    My name is Cass, I’m 20 years old and French. I am validating an Applied Foreign Languages degree with this this internship.

    I arrived at the Backpack in the middle of January, in South Africa for the first time. My internship run through discovering every departments of the company and being part of different projects. For example every week, the intern team is going to the township to help a school with pupils from different grades. This community project is one of my favorite part of this experience. You learn a lot about realities in South Africa, and moreover about the signification of a community.

    As an intern, you work through projects related to your studies and skills. In my case, I didn’t really know what I was searching for. The AFL degree is quite versatile so I went through several projects ; and I found out that I am very into management and leadership. From now on, I’ll pursue my studies in this field for sure.

    Even though, my favorite part of this internship is the atmosphere of working. The Backpack staff is a family : as an intern when you arrived, you receive a warm welcome, every one is so nice – you feel like home. Being far from your « cocoon » – family, friends, city – for the first time could be a difficult experience at the beginning. But mine was incredible, mostly thanks to the Backpack staff who is welcoming you in an amazing way.

    During the two first months, I was working with another intern and for the last one, with three others. The concept of internship in an hostel is really interesting ; and the interns with who you are working start by being your colleagues and then become good friends.

    As an intern in the Backpack, your are working and living in a atmosphere of holidays. You must understand that you are working and not on vacations, even when you are living with people who are. But the fact that those people aren’t in a daily-life reality changes everything ; they are in an happy and enjoyable mood. Moreover, you are meeting persons from all over the world and the concept of interculturality is (for me) the most interesting thing that I found in this internship. You are sharing moments with people with different opinions, different backgrounds and obviously different personalities.

    Doing an internship in the Backpack is working in the tourism field. Cape Town is a wonderful city in this sector – you have million things to do. As an intern, you need to know about the city and the surroundings, and mostly about tours. The Backpack gave me the chance to go on educational tours, where I could discover a lot of beautiful places and where I’ve experienced many things. From my point of view, South Africa is a country which have a lot of things to offer and wonderful landscapes.

    I already miss this place – the Backpack, the people, the atmosphere, the city. Thank you so much for the opportunity you gave me by accepting me in your company. I’ll, for sure, be back in Cape Town and in the Backpack as soon as I can.

    Lots of love.

    NOVEMBER 2017

    I would like to thank The Backpack for an amazing opportunity to intern at their hostel. This hostel is something I have never experienced before – a social spot, a caring environment, a clean appearance and most importantly, it felt like home!

    During my internship, I was immediately welcomed into the team of employees, everyone willing to help and train me in any way possible. I felt well looked after and definitely well equipped to work out my duties capably.

    During my internship, I worked behind the reception desk or up at the cafe/bar. This open space is a great way to meet other travels and make new friends to go and explore Cape Town with. Over and above, The Backpack put me onto tours in and around the city, so that I could gain knowledge and understanding for what makes Cape Town so breathtaking.

    But what I loved the most was learning about how to make a difference. In fact, this is what gravitated me towards The Backpack in my application process. Their community projects. I got to learn how easy it is to make a small effort which goes a long way and I feel so humbled to have been a part of this while I was here.

    All the memories I will hold and cherish forever and I am so grateful my internship was spent at The Backpack. I know for sure that I will come to South Africa again one day and I will not hesitate to visit The Backpack.

    Intern Feedback 2017

    My name is Suzie, I’m 21yo and I am from France. Im studying Tourism and hospitality business and came to work for The Backpack during my first year for 2 months. 

    After a skype interview with the manager Jade, I was exciting but also didn’t really know how it would be to work in this multi-awards hostel. After this experience, I’m sure about two things, I would do it again, and I want to keep working in hostels. During this period, I had the chance to learn so much about hospitality business (bookings, check-in, check-out…) but also about the activities for the guests, I had the opportunity to go on educational tours (bungee jumping, cape point, shark cage diving, wine tour – special big up for wine flies, the wine tour company which is very friendly). I also worked at the bar, maybe it’s not what I was looking for at the beginning but it was the best placement to interact with the guests, make friends from everywhere and go out of your comfort zone.

    The staff is very nice, friendly and helpful, they never let me alone but also gave me responsibilities.

     About the place at itself, the rooms are very nice, the breakfast is amazing, you can take part of the community projects which is very interesting. The hostel is eco-friendly, and work with the community, so it gives the best impact possible for this country.

     And about Cape Town; I totally fell in love for this city. I can say that I was scared before to go as a European because I was not sure to feel safe in the streets, but South Afrikaans were very nice and welcoming, I had the best times ever in long street (hot spot) with locals and travellers. I never had the time to get bored as in this city you can go surfing, hiking, wine tasting, whale watching, shopping, and so on go on…

     Now back in France I miss Cape Town and South Africa, but not as much as the Backpack’s team! Thank you so much for your time, your kindness, and for giving the opportunity to have the best experience of my life! I just would like to warn the next interns, it will be so hard to go back in “real life “after your time at The Backpack…

     Merci beaucoup!!

    Intern Feedback August 2015

    My name is Kim, I’m from the US, and I am 22 years old.  I recently graduated from ODU studying Tourism Management and International Studies.  I was required to complete an internship for my degree.  Coming here, I had no idea what I truly signed up for.  I was aware that I was going be working at “the best hostel in Africa”, but I wasn’t sure what my duties would be.

    They had me working reception at first, which was a bit difficult because I had never worked in this type of environment before, and I was new to the country.  But, towards the end of my first month and all of my second and third month working here, I became much more involved.  I would sit in on meetings, went on some “educational tours” (shark diving, township, Garden Route), closed down and opened the hostel, sold and promoted tours, helped train other interns, helped with the community projects, organized the shop, and communicated with international guests on a daily basis. I learned so much about working in the tourism field and I absolutely fell in love with it.  It was so much fun to plan tours for guests and communicate with the multiple tourism companies.  It had its perks too.

    I feel as if every goal of mine was met at The Backpack, and I learned new skills that I never thought I’d be good at. I truly enjoyed coming into work, communicating with guests, the company of my coworkers, selling tours, and travelling South Africa.  I achieved networking strategies and gained a better understanding of how hostels are run.  Before this, I had never stepped foot in a backpackers, and now I know so much about how they are run.  I would say that my biggest disappointment is that I can’t stay longer.

    I highly recommend The Backpack as an internship for Tourism Management.  They take interns all the time.  You learn so much about tourism and hospitality.  If you are confident in yourself, The Backpack will highly benefit you and you will become very involved within the company.  Not to mention, South Africa is such a beautiful country and the tourism industry is extremely vibrant.

    This internship was the best decision I’ve ever made, and I would never take it back. I came here alone not knowing anything about the city, and I’m leaving with so much new knowledge, memories, and amazing friends.  This will not be my last time in South Africa, and I thank The Backpack for everything they have done for me!

    Intern Feedback July 2015

    My name is Mariano, I am 25 years old and I am from Argentina. I worked at The Backpack from late November, until the last days of May at the bar and at reception.  As I came to South Africa as a exchange student, and needed to look for a job, I can not be happier that I found this place to work.  The Backpack is a very organized hostel with an excellent vibe. From the housekeeping staff, up to the owners, Lee and Toni, I received the love and support I needed being so far away from home. Being my first time working in a hostel, I’m glad to say that I learned what are the basics to maintain a great reputation even after more than 20 years, and also the tools to be a good worker.

    I had the opportunity to meet travellers from all around the world, and each one of them gave me new perspectives on people.  And specially it made me want to travel more.

    And what to say about Cape Town?  It is one of the best cities that I’ve been to.  It’s combination of African culture, with European looks make it a place hard to leave. When I first arrived to South Africa, I new little about CT, but when I decided to move here, I immediately knew that I was going to have lots of fun.

    I want to thank Lee and Toni for giving me the opportunity to work in such amazing place, and giving me the possibility to do tours and activities I never thought I would experience.

    Muchas gracias!

    Intern Feedback February 2015

    I am Maren Reichardt, 20 years old and original from Germany. I am interested in business and tourism. These include that I like it to deal with people. It was one of my best decisions to come to this lovely city  Cape Town.

    I did my internship here at the backpack almost for 6 month at the reception and sometimes behind the bar. It was really varied.

    I met many international and national people from all over the world. It was one of my best experiences and I enjoyed it really much. It was excactly that what I except.

    Everyone took so good care about me and were very helpful.  I have gained a lot of new knowledges and experiences for my future.

    I am quite sad to leave and I am sure that I will be back.

    Thank you so much for that


    Guest Feedback

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    Great Value, Great Hostel

    Hostel is central, safe, and great value for money. Breakfast is decent in a buffet style. There is a bar which isn't too busy but cheap. They offer safes, excursions, and a kitchen.

    Scoot - United Kingdom

    Perfect Spot in Cape Town

    Nice hostel with bar area, an excellent comprehensive breakfast and really friendly and helpful staff. They helped me book and arrange all of my activities in Cape Town.

    Joel - Unknown


    Nice people, bedroom are very comfortable, the decoration is nice and colourful, you have lot of choice for your breakfast, the view on the mountain specially Table Mountain is amazing. So, I will go back without any doubt! :)

    Baz930 - France


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    Silver - Best African Responsible Tourism

    Social Inclusion


    Winner - Green Accommodation Initiative

    Global Youth Travel Awards


    2nd Place - Best Hostel in Africa

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