About Us

About Us

Hello!

We're a social network and travel advice website committed to providing you with everything you need to know about taking a gap year. We were created by backpackers, for backpackers, and offer expert advice on travelling, volunteering and working abroad, all tied together with inspirational ideas, opportunities and products.

But websites cannot run on circuits and servers alone. They need people. Human people. Below are the individuals that work on gapyear.com every day to make it one of the best travel sites around. Some of them write the words that appear on the site. Some of them sell stuff. And some of them fiddle with knobs and bang things really hard when everything stops working. But whatever they do, they are part of an awesome team committed to giving you the best travelling experience possible.

Core Team

Cormac Scanlan

Chief Operating Officer

Cormac Scanlan

Having originally joined the site as the head of design back in 2004, Cormac is now something of a gapyear.com veteran. He has a multidisciplinary background that includes content strategy, design and SEO, and is a firm believer in placing strong design principles at the heart of all development projects. A keen photographer and videographer, Cormac's downtime is usually spent camera-in-hand and his travels are usually geared towards the world's more photogenic locations.


Vicky Philpott 

Content and Community Team Leader

Victoria Philpott

Vicky has travelled through Europe extensively, dropping in on a few festivals and picking up work as she went. She's an advocate of slow travel and has worked at camp in America for two summers before releasing the pressure in the clubs of Cancun. She's toured Australia, explored the Serengeti and backpacked through Morocco. A wise man once told her, 'In the pursuit of seeing everything, we see nothing', and she tries to recite this to tame her travelling wants, but it's not working.


Will Jones

Content and Social Media Specialist

Will Jones

Will has worked in the travel industry since 2010 as a writer, editor and, most recently, social media expert. Before settling into office life he took his gap year exploring far flung corners of the world, including the Australian Outback, Vietnam, Nepal and the life-affirming chaos that is India. He loves travel and thrives on new experiences, and one of his ambitions is to have a friend in every country in the world before he retires. His biggest fear is spiders, though he does plan on conquering it. Tomorrow.


Sarah Kirke

Business Development Manager

Sarah Kirke

Sarah has been with the brand since 2009. She's half-Australian on her mother's side and has previously lived and worked in the country. She is a huge advocate of long-haul travel and the opportunities that backpacking experience brings. Sarah loves nature and horse-riding, and likes to be active outside of work and used to do three-day eventing, but feels she is getting on a bit to continue competing. Fact: she has just got over her fear of heights.


Erik de Vos

Product and Marketing Manager

Erik de Vos

Erik is Dutch and left Amsterdam after his studies to travel and work overseas. He lived in Australia for about five years travelling all over the country before moving to London in 2011. Erik has travelled in Europe, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and the USA, making him a bit of a travel expert. His last trip was to India and he's set his sights firmly on Kenya & Tanzania as his next trip.


Ben Granier

Web Development

Ben Granier

Ben joined the brand in 2013 and has visited lots of countries, some of which include Bulgaria, Kenya, Thailand, Nigeria, France, USA and the Netherlands. His favourite place in the world is a toss-up between Stonehaven and Legoland, and the next place on his list is Bermuda, though he doesn’t think he’ll ever get there because he first has to catch up with all his family scattered throughout Europe! He spends his spare time mainly dodging flying tractors and running after his menace of a child.


Travel Consultants

Kavon Bagheri

Gap Year Travel Manager

Kavon's dream trip would be to South Africa, Singapore overland to Beijing, Tokyo, Cairns over land to Adelaide, Christchurch overland to Auckland, Fiji, LA overland to San Fran. His favourite food is Persian and his biggest travel mistake was lack of planning. His best piece of travel advice is to not stress about anything and if you're travelling solo, take a group tour early on because you'll be safe, you'll meet other people and you'll feel confident about the rest of your trip.


Ellie Gilmore

Gap Year Travel Expert

Ellie loves the sun and her dream destination would be Costa Rica to see the wildlife. She thinks the best food in the world is the fresh seafood in Fiji and she'd never leave home without her camera to capture all her travel memories. Her top tips for anyone taking a gap year are to trust the guidebooks, make the most out of every experience and take some ear plugs. She says you don't need a massive budget to take a gap year - the Gap Year Travel team can find a trip to suit you!


Kat Jolley

Gap Year Travel Expert

Kat’s favourite travel destinations are Vietnam, Cambodia and Cuba, but her most recent adventure was in New York. Her best travel memory is spending Chinese New Year in Beijing and visiting the panda sanctuary in Chengdu, and next on her list of places to go is Brazil for Carnival! Her best travel tip is to always make sure you have comfy shoes and toilet paper, and when it comes to her advice for booking that trip of a lifetime, she says to avoid Skyscanner and give her a call!


Kali Walker

Gap Year Travel Expert

Kali has visited 46 countries, but his most recent adventure was volunteering and travelling through Tanzania and Zanzibar! His favourite travel memory is a toss-up between hitchhiking through China without a guidebook or pretending to be on the GB athletics team (don’t ask. Actually, on second thoughts, do.) His best advice for planning your gap year is that all things are possible and to not be put off, and the next country on his list is North Korea.


Rachel Watson

Gap Year Travel Expert

Rachel’s most recent adventure was in India, where she saw the Taj Mahal and visited some volunteering projects in Goa. Her favourite travel memory marks the beginning of her travel addiction: taking a cruise in the Maid of the Mist boat at the bottom of Niagara Falls when she was 16. Her favourite food experience was eating snake in Vietnam, and she says wherever you travel always make sure you have a pack of cards and a bottle opener, as you’ll never be short of friends!


Tom Grapes

Gap Year Travel Expert

Tom’s favourite travel memory is sitting in a bamboo hut overlooking a lake as the sun set, eating fresh curried fish with a friend and local guide in Chiang Mai, Thailand. His best advice for when you’re on the road is to go local: embrace local people, food and customs. The next country he plans to visit is Sri Lanka, and his best advice for planning a trip of a lifetime is to think ahead. He says this will allow you to save money and not miss out on anything amazing.


Genevieve Slater

Gap Year Travel Expert

Genevieve has visited 23 countries, the most recent being the United Arab Emirates, and the next place on her to do list is China. Her favourite travel destination is Fiji and her best travel tip is to feel free to be independent, but to always have your first couple of days organised so you don’t feel stressed and can plan ahead. She’s a self-confessed seafood fanatic, so her favourite food experience is anywhere where’s she’s had freshly caught fish.


Ed Miles

Gap Year Travel Expert

Ed has visited 40 countries and his most recent adventure was travelling from Kyoto to Tokyo in Japan, which he says is an  amazing place to visit and not as expensive as many people think. His best advice for taking a gap year is that there’s no rush, so don’t try to see too many places in one go, as you can have more than one trip of a lifetime. The next country he plans to visit is Ethiopia and his best travel tip is to not pack too much, as usually you won’t need half the things you’re taking!


The Founders

Tom Griffiths

Co-Founder

Tom Griffiths

Tom took his first gap year at 18, travelling to Australia via the US and Pacific Islands and back through South East Asia. He had such a brilliant time that he then spent his student days earning money to travel, doing everything from working on trucks to busking on the streets with didgeridoos. Tom wrote his first book Before You Go at 22 and founded gapyear.com in 1998 with IT Consultant Peter Pedrick. He has now left the brand and acts as a travel and volunteering spokesperson. He remains an industry authority, conference speaker and consultant, with countless media appearances over the last decade. 


Peter Pedrick

Co-Founder

Peter Pedrick

When Tom met him, Peter was about to take time out from running his IT consultancy company that he started at university. You could say that running and starting businesses was Peter's UK gap year, but at 23 he was itching to do some travelling and escape the usual workplace nightmares. He believes gapyear.com is about enjoyment, adventure and getting the most out of your life; three things we have always cared very strongly about.