What Should You Consider Before Taking A Gap Year?

Photo by Dominika Roseclay from Pexels When we think about the words ‘gap year’ we often think that it’s purely for people ...

Photo by Dominika Roseclay from Pexels

When we think about the words ‘gap year’ we often think that it’s purely for people who are in university and are taking a year out from study or are taking a year before starting out in their career. However a gap year can be for everyone, whether you just need a year to yourself to explore who you are, you are planning on taking the family with you or are the traditional student who has now completed their studies there are some important things that you should be considering before going travelling for a year.

What Do You Pack?

This will depend completely on the type of gap year you are choosing to take. If you are staying in one place then it may be an option to take more personal items with you and have the choice to live in accommodation such as a hdb for rent and even have things like your favourite ornaments shipped over to make it feel more like home. You may end up with souvenirs that you want to return home with too as you will have a lot of space to be able to collect keepsakes/ People have been known to find unique pieces of furniture that they can’t bear to part with so have them shipped back home. If you’re taking a gap year on foot and hopping from destination to destination then packing light and only taking the essentials is probably more suited. Most commonly people tend to pack a hiking bag and take items such as walking boots, sleeping bags and portable blackout blind for the hostels.

Where Do You Go?

When taking a gap year it is highly recommended that you doing a little bit of planning around your destinations and devise a rough route especially if you are planning on moving around a lot. If your planning on staying put in one location and living a little more like a local, possibly to learn a new language and delve into a new culture then where will probably already be something that you have known for a long time. You might already have a gap year planned through a programme. If however you are travelling around and are only planning on spending a few days or weeks in a one destination it’s a good idea to plan yourself a rough guide, it will prove useful when your not constantly sitting at the computer trying to figure out where you want to go next and what there is to see and do. Research is your best friend when it comes to travel.

What Are Your Options?

There are many options when looking into doing a gap year. You could be looking to free roam and travel around different countries, completing a language course, volunteering, teaching, working in summer camps or travelling around in a motorhome with the whole family, dog included.  Whatever your circumstances it’s wise to do a little bit of digging around for all the options available to you. There are plenty of services and programmes that can help you to plan all sorts of gap years that if of course, you don’t want to plan every detail yourself. If you’re planning on travelling with the family it is worth looking into the educational needs of your children and finding out what homeschooling is all about. It can be really easy to educate on the road but you do need to make sure you have some sort of a plan.

How Are You Funding It?

With a big plan like a gap year, it’s important to think about how you are going to be funding yourself. Of course, each of the different gap year options is going to need a different level of funds and some may even fund you for your expertise for roles such as educational needs. It would be advised to sit down and make yourself some sort of forecast of spending requirements including things such as living costs, accommodation costs and travel costs. Some of the gap year programmes that are out there have essentials like accommodation included in the form of live in, which is where you live on site or with a local family. All you have to do is pay your costs for the duration you want to stay. Been able to stay with a local family can really immerse you into the real daily living of a country.

Do you have any other things that you should be considering before taking a gap year? Please share them in the comments section below.


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