How to Avoid Being Bored on a Gap Year
Worried about taking a gap year and being bored? Keen to avoid this situation? Or already on your gap year and already struggling to fill the time? Check out our top tips to avoid boredom on a gap year.
1. Work Out What You Want to Do
Do you want to travel? Gain experience? Increase funds? Learn something new? Once you have an idea of what you want to do you will get a clearer idea of the type of gap year you can plan then you will be able to arrange accordingly. It is good to listen to other people's opinions and research but it really comes down to what you want to do. Make the right choices and the chances are you will enjoy the experience more.
2. How Much Time Do You Have
You should have try to think about your time frame, the longer you spend abroad the more time you might have to be bored unless you find things to do.
2. Go with Friends
Traveling with friends is also a good idea as you will have someone to share the trip with and also talk to on a daily basis.
3. Choose Destinations Carefully
Some people choose to stay at home and this is fine, but ask yourself are going to be happy to spend potentially a year or longer living at home, or even being stuck in your home town/city? We highly recommend expanding your horizons as there are so many opportunities available. If you are worried about your budget fear not as there are also lots of cheap gap year programs abroad available to book all year round. Top recommended destinations where you are likely to meet other travelers include:
4. Work Abroad
Sitting at home waiting for things to come to you will not happen. You need to actively find things to match your interests. There are so many amazing things to do from traveling, working to studying abroad - make sure you try to fill your gap year with a mix of different things. You could apply to join an internship abroad which will be beneficial to your future career or if you are lacking funds apply to work abroad. There are so many options from summer jobs abroad, a working holiday in Australia, applying for a winter ski season jobs in Canada, working at a summer camp in the USA, training to become a field guide in Africa, seasonal jobs in Europe the choice is yours!
Doing something meaningful like going to volunteer abroad is a great way to meet kind people and gain a memorable experience. From going to work elephants in Thailand, taking a TEFL course, helping refugees, volunteering with lions in Africa, teaching English in South America or joining short term volunteer programs in Europe with communities and the environment. You will make friends for life, learn new things and hopefully inspire others to do something similar.
6. Join a Tour
Worried about going solo or want to have the most best trip possible? Book an adventure tour. You will get to travel in a group (so never alone) and get taken to the best places in the world with an experienced guide. If the idea of traveling Route 66' appeals why not book a USA group tour, go island hopping on a tour of Thailand, go overland on a tour of Australia or for the adventure of your life book a trip to Machu Picchu in Peru. There are trips with monthly departures all around the world.
7. Book an Adventure
There are so many short term trips and experiences available, for example learning to scuba dive, train to become a ski instructor, cookery classes, martial arts training camps, photography courses or taking a yoga retreat - these types of things allow you to do things with other people
8. Learn a New Language
Sometimes the idea of going somewhere exotic might sound exciting, but in reality it can be lonely as hell stuck in a foreign country and not speaking the lingo. For example, do you really want to take a gap year in Central America if you don't speak Spanish?
If the idea of a gap year in South-East Asia appeals to you why not combine experiences and learn Thai in Thailand or book a Chinese language course in China. We highly recommend going to study Spanish in South America, or if this continent is a little too far then why not go to learn Spanish in Spain? You can literally find language schools all around the world, so whether you fancy learning Russian in Russia, or German in Germany you will be able to find something to match your interests.
9. Be Social
A lot of people spend so much time worrying about their gap year and don't actually throw themselves into the experience. Be open to new people and experience and the chances are you will make new friends and enjoy things that you never imagined!
10. Keep in Contact
Try to keep in touch with friends and family, this will help stave off homesickness when traveling and also help you to not be lonely.