This idea can seem a little daunting at first though, and sometimes when you hear people discussing gap years it can be quite negative.

You've got to decide if this is right for you, and you might also need to discuss this with your family and encourage them to let you go.

Whether you are thinking about delaying college/uni, finishing studies or you just want to take time out from there are so many reasons you should consider taking a gap year.

In this article we aim to give you some motivation to take a gap year, and share with you some of the main advantages.


1. Taking Time Out is Beneficial

Gili Trawangan

Are you bored of your normal routine? Feeling your life is lacking purpose?

Taking time from your life and having a break from studying or working will do you the world of good.

You'll discover a whole world of opportunities, something you wouldn't know about unless you go.


2. Meet New People

Girls jumping into the ocean from a yacht

When overseas you will get to meet so many people both young and old including locals and international travellers from all over the globe.

You could travel solo on your gap year, or book a tour which is a great way to meet like-minded travellers.

Usually when you share magical experiences when backpacking e.g. trekking to see beautiful waterfalls or ancient ruins you'll form stong bonds and might even make friends for life.

This is one of the best things about travelling, the people you meet along the way who you wouldn't randomly meet if you stay at home.


3. Visit Amazing Destinations

Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Travel abroad independently and escape your hometown and country - this can be the opportunity of a lifetime. 

It really is better to see somewhere once rather than hearing about it a hundred times. Not many things compare to travelling and there are so many places to visit on a gap year.

From exploring exotic islands in Asia, to seeing historical cities in Europe to trekking in lush jungles in South America - there are so many options.

Popular destinations include Thailand, Bali, South Africa, Japan, Vietnam, Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil, Spain, France and Canada - just to name a few.


4. Do a Round the World Trip

Plane sky flying

If you have a flexible schedule a gap year is a great chance to go around the world and visit multiple countries on the same trip. This really is a dream opportunity.

There are lots of places you can visit on a round the world trip, a popular route is London, Bangkok, Sydney, Auckland, Fiji, Los Angeles, London. But this really depends on your starting point, what interests you have and where you would like to go.

Prices vary but aren't as expensive as you might think. 


5. Volunteer

Elephant Sanctuary Thailand

A gap year doesn't have to be just sightseeing, there are so many meaningful things you can do.

One of the most popular things to do on a gap year is volunteering programs. There are lots of projects in countries all around the world, from coaching sports, teaching, helping build houses in developing communities, working with wildlife to helping nature and conservation.

You'll learn a lot, meet inspiring people and get the satisfaction of giving back to a worthwhile cause.

Popular options include volunteering in Thailand helping elephants, coaching football in South Africa or helping marine conservation on a volunteer program in Mexico.


6. Gain Work Experience

Hong Kong skyline night

This might not be the most exciting option to consicer, but you can develop new skills and gain personal growth on internship programs around the world.

There are lots of placements in every industry which will look fantastic to employers and can be really beneficial to a future career. Imagine working at a company somewhere incredible like New York, Singapore or Sydney and getting to experience living in these fantastic cities.

You'll usually also get accommodation included, and get lots of free time and weekend for sightseeing and exploration. 


7. Get Paid


Are you worried you lack for the funds to take a gap year? Think again.

You could choose to work abroad on your gap year, there are short and long term jobs all around the globe.

Popular gap year jobs include working a winter ski season, au pairing, summer camp counselors and working holidays. For something more long term you could consider taking a TEFL course and apply to teach abroad. 


8. Experience New Cultures

Wat Phra Kaew, Bangkok, Thailand

Travel really does broaden the mind and opens your eyes to other people, cultures and traditions. You will learn so much which you can't do by watching television or reading a book.


9. Have a Lot of Fun

Life is about enjoying yourself when you are young, fit and healthy! Imagine waking up and you have a day of adventure and sightseeing to look forward to, nothing compares to this. All your friends and family jealous by seeing all of your pictures and wish they were away too.


10. Find a New Home

Sydney ferry

If you are unhappy where you live a gap year can really land you on your feet somewhere else. You might meet the love of your life, or fall in love with a destination and then stay!


11. Lifes Not All About Work

Life goes quick and there is plenty of time for a career and full time employment in the future. Yes money is important, but sometimes you can't put a price on travel or life experiences.


12. Learn a New Skill or Get a New Hobby

Scuba diving Indonesia turte

Travelling allows you to try new things, even if they scare you. This is the perfect time to develop as you have so much free time.

We highly recommended gaining a PADI scuba diving certification and exporing the underwater world. Popular destinations include Thailand, Indonesia and Australia.

Or for something which will help when travelling, and in life, is to learn a new language.

You can find language schools in towns and cities around the world who offer classes to beginners. They usually organise social activities and sightseeing trips which can be a great way to improve your language level, make friends and see new places.

Popular options incuding studying Spanish in Spain, Portuguese in Brazil, French in France or Chinese in China.


13. Wake up on the Beach!

Balabac, Palawan, Philippines

Travel to a destination like Thailand and you can live in a beach hut right on the ocean for a low cost. Life doesn't get better than this! How many opportunities do you get like this in life!


13. Gain Life Skills

Some things you can't put a price on and when travelling you will learn so much about yourself and also develop as a person. You'll likely face challenging situations but if you can overcome these in a foreign country, you will get confidence for life.


14. No Regrets

A gap year is the chance to sieze the opportunity to do something which your parents might never have got the chance to do.

It has never been easier to travel with thousands of daily flights to destinations all around the world.

You don't want to wake up in 10 years time when you are stuck in a career or have a family/commitments and think 'I wish I had gone taken a gap year'.


15. Planning a Gap Year Has Never Been Easier

Philippines island hopping

A decade ago there were very few travel companies offering gap year trips and programs, and you really needed to be independent in booking flights, planning a whole trip and finding things to do.

But there are now so many gap year companies who can help you plan a dream trip and match your interests with destinations and activities.

If you need any help planning a gap year contact us for specific information or check our gap year directory for inspiration for your big overseas adventure.