There’s plenty of debate about whether a Gap Year is a good thing, but each year more and more people choose a Gap Year in preference to more education or work at home. So, why should you go?
Why Take a Gap Year?
For many it’s just a question of having had enough of schoolwork and exams, and taking a much deserved break to re-invigorate the mind. More than this though, taking a gap year enables you to take time out to think properly about what you want to do in the future before possibly committing to a further 3/4 years of education.
From a more altruistic point of view, many recognise the fact that in the UK we have it pretty easy compared with much of the world’s population, and you might want to give something back by Volunteering in less fortunate countries.
No matter the reason behind going or where you might end up, the journey is sure to leave you feeling more mature and confident about yourself and your abilities. With around 80% of gappers travelling alone, your new experiences and environments allow you time to learn loads about yourself and others, providing opportunities to make friends all over the world with loads of stories and photos to bring home with you.
Gap Year Decisions
So how do you make the most of your time away? Deciding where to go can be the hardest part but if you consider the following points and do some research, your decision will be infinitely easier:
- think about what your interests are;
- why you want to go;
- what you’re good at;
- what your budget is;
- if you want to volunteer, travel or work abroad;
- when you want to go and, if you can;
- talk to someone who’s been there and done it.
All of these elements will help you decide where to go and what to do when you get there.
How to Organise a Gap Year
Gap Year Companies can help reassure you (and your parents!) of the help and support you’ll receive while you’re away. They can also provide advice on visas, health and safety with some even providing courses to attend prior to leaving, such as weekend courses to bolster your confidence. One example is a Gap Year Safety Course – even Ewan McGregor & Charley Boorman from the ‘Long Way Round’ TV series attended one of these, so you’ll be in good company!
On your return, there are positives awaiting you too, with Universities encouraging gap years believing that it will enable you to be more focused on your studies. Some employers, too, actively seek applicants who have travelled because they can prove to be resourceful, well-rounded individuals and successful employees.
In recent years, more adults want to take a break from their career and see the world.
You will also need to get yourself some of the best gap year gear to make your gap year experience much more pleasant.
Gap Year Voluntary Work Overseas Improve Your Employment Chances
Current thinking from most employers is that you are more employable if you have done some voluntary work overseas or within your local community. It demonstrates a higher degree of teamwork and management skills.
Find out more about how Gap Year work overseas improves your employment chances.