Things to Do on a Gap Year

Advice on planning a gap year

It’s time to start piecing together your dream trip and plan your gap year! It might seem daunting, but it doesn’t need to be. There are so many different ways to see the world that you can choose to do it however you please. This is your journey – make the most of it.

You might keep it simple and opt for classic backpacker tours, guided adventures around some of the world’s most amazing destinations, or complete packages that offer a complete trip off the shelf. There are also opportunities to volunteer around the globe, find paid work, gain valuable job experience, and study aboard. If you’re feeling confident, you can even just look at round the world flights and handle everything in between by yourself.

A gap year plan goes something like this: sketch out your ideal trip, and then look through all the options to make it a reality. There’s also advice on cost, travel kit, and other essentials so you can get the complete picture. Happy planning!

Tours

All the perks of an incredible adventure around the world, but none of the stress – adventure tours make planning your gap year fun and easy. You’ll get all the top sights, an expert guide, the nitty-gritty of accommodation, transport and other practical stuff sorted, and share the experience with like-minded travellers. Whatever your travel plan, tours can make it happen.

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Volunteering

Plan your travels to include a volunteering project and you’ll feel like you’re making the most of your time away. There are plenty of different opportunities available: rehabilitate animals, work in developing communities, or protect vital ecosystems. You’ll have amazing experiences in unforgettable places, and give something back along the way.

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Jobs

Want to get paid to travel? It’s time to find a job abroad! A little gainful employment can fit into your travel plan more easily than you think, whether you want to teach children, work a ski season or gain experience in hospitality. You’ll get a placement in the country of your choice, and earn enough money to either keep travelling when it’s over, or explore your chosen destinations during your time off. You’ll also come home with valuable job experience under your belt.

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Internships

If you want to travel the world and gain priceless professional experience along the way, plan on including an internship in your itinerary. Living abroad and immersing yourself in another culture is what gap years are all about, and internships give you the chance to work alongside industry experts, gain professional contacts, and make new friends. You can choose from all kinds of internships, from journalism, to law, to education, to medical, to engineering.

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Packages

Fancy a ready-made gap year plan so you can just sit back and look forward to going? Complete gap year packages are for you. Simply choose where you want to go! A gap year package means you don’t have to worry about accommodation, flight connections, meeting people, or anything else. All you need to do is grab your passport and go.

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Study Abroad

Travel and live in another country and culture, meet exciting new people and broaden your horizons, and gain invaluable education, qualifications, and life skills… sounds pretty great, right?! Studying abroad is kind of the ultimate travel plan. There are plenty of options, so you’re bound to find something to suit your goals and aspirations.

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Activities

You’re going travelling to escape your day-to-day life, so it would be rude not to throw in a little bit of adrenaline-pumping adventure. Sound like a plan? Great! Whether it’s extreme sports, scuba diving or expeditions, or something else completely, adventure activities get you out of your comfort zone and show your chosen destination in a whole new light.

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RTW Flights

If it’s a lengthy gap year plan you need, round the world tickets are the easiest and cheapest way to make it happen. Whatever route around the world you want to take, a multi-stop ticket lets you plan it out and see as many destinations as you want on a single trip, so you won’t have to worry about piecing it all together as you travel.

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InterRailing

One of the cheapest and most flexible ways to travel around Europe, an InterRail pass gives you the freedom of European trains, allowing you to plan your own route around the region. There is so much to see and do on this incredible continent, and InterRailing means you don’t have to miss out on anything that’s important to you.

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Short Trips

Ignore the name – a gap year can be as long or as short as you want it to be. If you’ve only got a few weeks or months, it shouldn’t stop you planning the trip of a lifetime. Short gaps can be every bit as epic as an entire year abroad. Remember: it’s not how long you’re away that matters, it’s all about what you do with the time. Don’t miss out!

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Destinations

One of the most exciting parts of planning a gap year is deciding where to travel to. This will depend on a large extent on the kinds of things you want to do (volunteers often find themselves looking at countries in Africa and South America, for example). When deciding on your gap year destinations, it’s usually best to think in terms of wider regions first.

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Essentials

Once you’ve decided on a rough plan of where you want to go and what you want to do, you’ll need to consider some of the more practical aspects of your trip. These things can range from figuring out what measures you can take to stay healthy, how to budget while on the road, what travel insurance to take out and what travel kit to pack.

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Amazing gap year experiences

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South Island Snow Safari

from £925

7 days

Welcome to NZ's ultimate guided ski and snowboard tour. We hit 6 different mountains over 7 days and our expert...

Vietnam – 14 Day Tour

from £955

14 - 365 days

Immerse yourself in all that Vietnam has to offer. Complete the Dong Flexi Tour in 2weeks, or hop off, spending...

New Zealand’s Ultimate Road Trip

from £760

31 - 360 days

Discover the real New Zealand from the far North to the very far South. Experience all the hotspots as well...

Kenya to Cape Town Grand Adventurer

from £2175

75 days

An awesome trip for those who want a hands-on adventure with like-minded travellers and who have plenty of time to...

Felucca Odyssey & Red Sea

from £274

12 days

Take a journey through Cairo and Dahab which encompasses some of the most astounding sites from the old world. Marvel...

Sail Split to Dubrovnik

from £192

8 days

Soak up Split’s Mediterranean vibes at a waterfront bar, visit the long pebbly beaches and palm fringed port of Makarska.

Grand Traverse – Both Islands

from £1400

15 days

In 2 weeks launching from Auckland you will see the best of both islands with a unique combination of camping...

Ultimate Vietnam

from £790

14 days

See the best of what Vietnam has to offer! Explore Hanoi, escape to Halong Bay on a Junk Boat, stay...

South Island Mountain Bike Tour

from £1025

7 days

The South Island is renowned for its outstanding beauty and adventures. Plant your feet on your pedals as you take...

South America Coast to Coast via Patagonia

from £1895

51 days

Join our expedition truck through some of South America's most spectacular National Parks, the vast wilderness of Patagonia, Iguazu Falls...

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South Vietnam Getaway

from £455

Observe the contrast between Vietnam’s urban and rural regions while taking in cultural highlights of the south. Negotiate the labyrinthine...

Northern Territory Encompassed Northbound

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Embark on a Northern Territory adventure, from Alice Springs to Darwin, taking in the region's biggest and best-known drawcards along...

Madagascar: Hike & Bike

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Madagascar

Off the coast of East Africa lies a magical island of spectacular mountains, lush rainforests and unique wildlife – a...

Rio to Salvador

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Brazil

Copacabana beach, Christ the Redeemer, Corcovado… Rio de Janiero is a must-see city, there’s no doubt about it. But a...

Vic Falls Short Break

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Take a short break to the biggest waterfall in the world by height and length; the stunning Victoria Falls (also...

Peru at a Glance

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Peru

This is the bout you’ve been waiting for: You vs. the Inca Trail. Limber up in Lima, then fly to...

Treasures of Galapagos – Western & Central Islands (Grand Queen Beatriz)

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Embark on an immersive journey through the Galapagos Islands and experience the best of the western and central regions. Visiting...

The Southern Trail

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Greece

Smash off the big bucket list items on this gallivant through Europe's finest; France, Spain, Monaco, Italy, the Vatican City...

Amazon Riverboat Adventure In Depth

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Hop aboard a riverboat and experience the Amazon in style. Led by an Amazon Reserve naturalist guide, your cruise will...

G Lodge Amazon – 4 Day Independent Adventure

from £479

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Get back to nature in the tropical rainforest. Located on the famously diverse Tambopata River in the Peruvian Amazon, our...

Inspirational gap year articles

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