Best Gap Year Companies
Thinking about taking a gap year? Confused where to start? We get lots of enquiries from people asking: 'what are the best agencies, companies and websites to book my gap year with?' So to help we have put together a guide which will help you organise and book your big adventure overseas.
If you are keen to travel, work, volunteer or study abroad on your gap year view our top rated companies below.
Click on the company logo or name for more information.
Booking a tour is one of the best ways to see the world, you will get taken to the best places and not have to worry about the hassle of planning anything. Here are recommendations for the best operators:
G Adventures offer small group adventure tours to destinations all around the world. You can choose from over 600 trips in 130+ countries. The hard part is deciding where to go.
Busabout offer award-winning Hop-on Hop-off flexible coach tours worldwide. Thousands of people book trips every year and you can search so many unique adventures. From island hopping in Greece and Croatia, partying at Europe’s biggest music festivals or discovering the ancient cultures of Southeast Asia. A Busabout tour is the flexible way to explore, have a lot of fun and also make new friends.
Interested in seeing the world and enjoying one of the best experiences of your life? Contiki are one of the most well known travel brands in the world and offer over 300 trips of a lifetime which are aimed at anyone aged 18-35's. European tours are very popular.
Topdeck offer hundreds of exciting trips in Europe, Australia & New Zealand, Egypt & the Middle East, North America and Africa. Thousands of travellers book trips with Topdeck every year with trips ranging from 4 day festivals in Europe to 58 day overland safaris in Africa. There's a lot to choose from!
GAP YEAR SPECIALISTS
Not sure what you really want to do on your gap year? Keen to do a mix of lots of things? Or search lots of ideas? The following companies are highly rated and offer combo gap year work, volunteering and adventure trips worldwide:
Frontier are one of the most established gap year companies offering hundreds of courses, programs and intern placements. Thousands of people have participated on programs, will you be next?
Gap 360 offer over 200 exciting trips worldwide. From working abroad, volunteering, learning a new skill or joining a tour. Choose from 50+ destinations.
Would you like to work, intern or study in Spain? Instituto Hemingway offer Spanish language courses, work experience placements and jobs in Bilbao and other locations in Spain.
Oyster Worldwide are gap year specialists offering amazing trips to 20+ destinations worldwide. From working abroad, volunteering or booking a trek you can find something to match your interests.
Plan My Gap Year are an award winning specialist in gap year volunteering programs abroad. They offer safe and affordable placements in lots of exciting worldwide destinations. They will help you plan the ultimate gap year!
Want to travel the world? Real Gap Experience are one of the UK's best gap year and student travel adventure specialists. Over 50,000 people have booked trips with Real Gap and you can choose from 160+ trips worldwide! You can book amazing gap year trips or work abroad, teach or volunteer.
Smaller Earth are a Liverpool based travel company with offices all around the world. They offer jobs and working holidays to some of the most popular destinations in the world including the USA, Canada, Spain, Australia and New Zealand. From working at a summer camp in the USA
The LEAP have been offer gap year and volunteer trips overseas for over 10 years to destinations like Africa, Asia and South America. They offer 6 or 10 week volunteer programs and adventures where you can combine conservation, community and eco tourism projects. Prices aren't the cheapest so you will either need to have savings or fundraise to raise the money. You won't regret it though, feedback is overwhelmingly positive!
As the name suggests, Xtreme Gap Year offer you the chance to have an adrenaline filled gap year. You can choose from a range of worldwide adventures including diving, martial arts, fitness camps, tours and work/volunteer opportunities.
TEFL & TEACHING ENGLISH ABROAD
Interested in working as an English teacher overseas? These are the best companies to take a TEFL course with:
Founded in 1994, i-to-i are one of the worlds leading TEFL course providers and have helped 180,000+ people get qualified. They offer online and classroom TEFL courses worldwide. i-to-i also offer job hunting support, TEFL internships and lifetime advice from their excellent staff.
International TEFL & TESOL Training (ITTT) offer internationally accredited TEFL courses including online, in-class and combined TEFL courses which are internationally accredited. You can choose from over 30 worldwide locations.
Premier TEFL offer a wide range of fully accredited online courses and paid teaching internships. Premier TEFL provide you with all the training you need to confidently teach English abroad and ensure your lifelong certification makes you stand out in the global job market.
Interested in earning money on your gap year? Looking for a short term summer job abroad, winter ski season position or a long term position? You can find gap year jobs all around the world, here are some of the best recruiters:
Experience a different culture by applying to work in China with Aupairia! Aupairia offer au pair jobs and cultural exchange programs through China.
Interested in working at a summer camp in the USA? Check out Camp Leaders! They offer you the chance to work as a camp counselor or activity instructor at one of hundreds of camps throughout North America. This is one of the most fun ways to spend your summer and after your job finishes you will get up to 30 days to travel. Check out this article how Camp Leaders changed my life.
Become an au pair in America and be part of an unforgettable cultural exchange programme. Travel, learn and make lifelong friendship with Cultural Care who are one of the most established and popular companies.
InterExchange offer the chance for internationals to live and work in the USA, and also US citizens to work abroad. Choose from a range of exciting work, volunteer and intern programs including career training placements in the USA - you could work in New York City!
PGL offer summer and seasonal positions at their camps throughout Europe. You can work as an activity instructor or tour guide in countries like the UK, France, Spain and Greece.
Everyone has heard of Camp America right? This company is one of the most established brands in the UK, and the chances are you have either heard about, or know someone who has 'gone to Camp America'. They offer you the chance to spend your summer living and working at a summer camp in the USA. This is one of the best summer jobs abroad in the world where you will get to have an amazing experience and make friends from all over the world. Application cost are higher than newer similar summer camp agencies on the market but you only need to read Camp America reviews to see people really love this company!
Spending time on a volunteering program abroad is a fantastic idea but with so many organisations offering opportunities it can be difficult to know which one to choose. Check our recommendations for the best gap year volunteer companies below:
Projects Abroad are one of the most respected names in the volunteering industry. They have helped thousands of people go on structured projects in developing countries. They also offer amazing summer volunteer programs for 15-28 year olds.
The International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ) are one of the most popular volunteer organisations in the world and have placed over 80,000+ people on programs worldwide.
Love Volunteers are the perfect organisation if you would like to spend your gap year helping communities around the world. They offer rewarding life-changing intercultural volunteer projects in developing countries where you can make a real difference.
Concordia are a Brighton based charity offering affordable short and long term international volunteer programs to UK residents. You will get to make a real difference to local communities and the people in destinations all around the world.
Fronteering offer volunteer programs and adventure trips that are off the beaten track. Choose from epic trips in remote places from the Canadian Arctic to the deepest reaches of the Amazon jungle in unspoiled Guyana. All projects and trips focus on wildlife, the environment and indigenous people.
Original Volunteers offer very cheap volunteer programs in over 20 countries with most trips starting at £125 or less. You can apply to join projects helping children, animals, healthcare and building/construction.
Spending time in your gap year to learn a new language is highly recommended. Here are some of the most popular language schools worldwide:
Would you like to study French in France? Check out the Accent Francais language school located in Montpellier. They offer beginners courses, activities and also combo experiences like internships and volunteer placements.
Interested in learning Portuguese? The Caminhos Language School offer Brazilian Portuguese language courses in Brazil. They are located in spectacular Rio de Janeiro and offer beginners group classes and sightseeing activities.
If you would like to learn Spanish in Spain or Latin America check out the Don Quijote Spanish School who offer classroom courses in places like Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Cuba, Argentina, Mexico just to name a few.
If you would like to study German check out the Humboldt Institut in Berlin. They offer a range of group courses perfect for total beginners.
The following websites are recommended if you are ready to your trip:
There are lots of travel agencies and flight websites but we rate Skycanner as the best. Skycanner is a flight comparison website which is easy to use and makes finding cheap flights easy.
If you are not on a structured gap year program and are keen to go backpacking it is important to book somewhere to stay in advance.
Hostelworld offer a huge selection of hostels with cheap dorms and private accommodation at really low prices. Perfect if you are going overseas on a low budget.
Booking.com is the best hotel booking website where you can search accommodation for all budgets from all the major websites.
One of the most important things to do before you depart is to make sure you are covered for any accidents or medical emergencies, for travel insurance check out:
World Nomads offer extensive travel insurance to destinations all around the world. Included is 24/7 support perfect if anything happens whilst abroad.
Browse Gap Year Trips & Programs By Destination
- Africa Gap Year
- Asia Gap Year
- Europe Gap Year
- Central America Gap Year
- South America Gap Year
- North America Gap Year
- Ocenia / Pacific Gap Year
- Middle East Gap Year
How to Choose the Right Gap Year Company
One World 365 is the ultimate website to book your gap year featuring thousands of amazing trips, jobs, programs and courses worldwide. We work with a number of worldwide operators and the companies in our list can be trusted for authenticity. If you are thinking about booking a gap year with a company not listed above please check reviews and really research as there are a lot of bad companies in the market. If you need any advice about planning a gap year please contact us. You might also like to view our gap year guide for trips, ideas and information
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