On average, it takes three to nine months for a nominee to receive an invitation to serve. Your invitation will state your departure date, which may be anywhere from one to seven months in the future.
The timing of your invitation depends on a number of factors, including your availability date, the skills required by current assignments, and any special needs identified during your medical clearance. Placement of married couples usually takes longer because the complexity of the assignment match is doubled. Your file will be processed according to your projected departure date.
Remember: You will not know when or where you are going until you receive your invitation. Don't make any major changes yet, such as leaving your job or selling your car. Your projected departure date may change — sometimes more than once — before your final invitation arrives.
Visiting a Volunteer
Family and friends can make the trip to see a Volunteer in his or her overseas community. Visiting a Peace Corps Volunteer is one of the most exciting ways to see and learn about another country's people, cultures, and traditions. The cost of your vacation travel is your responsibility. The Peace Corps provides two vacation days to Volunteers for every month of service.
Access to e-mail is becoming more common but is far from universal. Your Volunteer may or may not have access to e-mail during his or her service.
The reach of the Internet around the world is changing rapidly. In some Peace Corps countries, Internet cafés and computer access are common. In others, they are rare and expensive. Access may vary widely within a country, depending on the nature of a Volunteer's assignment and the community in which the Volunteer lives.
Your Volunteer's Welcome Book packet will contain more specific guidance for his or her country of service.
Letters and Packages
Before departure, your Volunteer will receive information about you can keep in touch during his or her years of service. The instructions will be tailored to his or her particular country. If you have questions about communicating with your Volunteer, you may call Peace Corps headquarters and ask for the Country Desk.
Your instructions will include an address for the initial 10-12 week training period. After training, you likely will receive new mailing instructions from your Volunteer.
Please check the guidelines before sending care packages from home. Weight, content, and customs restrictions will apply. There may also be prohibitions against sending food items. You should consider carefully before sending items of great value, too. Please abide by the suggested regulations in order to prevent the loss or delay of items.
Keep in mind that another country's postal system may take longer to distribute mail than the United States Postal Service. It is not uncommon for correspondence to take several weeks for delivery. For this reason, you and your Volunteer may want to number any letters you both write to keep track of your correspondence.
Telephone systems vary from country to country, and both phone systems and access to a telephone may be different than you are accustomed to in the United States. Volunteers may have a phone in their home, or they may have to place calls from their place of work or a public facility. Other Volunteers make calls from a nearby town or a friend's house.
Lots of info - but doesn't it make you excited? Is that just me?