Study Abroad on a Gap Year

Spend a semester or more studying overseas

To study abroad on your gap year is to give yourself the opportunity to intimately get to know another country and become fully immersed in its culture, while at the same time gaining valuable education and skills for life, training, and qualifications. It’s a bit of a win-win, to be honest.

There are loads of options to choose from, including high school, college, or university programmes, language courses, and summer study camps, as well as a huge range of study abroad destinations. Whatever your aspirations or goals, you’ll find something to suit you. And as tuition fees in the UK continue to sky-rocket, studying abroad has never been a more viable option. You’ll save money, travel, make new friends, and it looks awesome on your CV. Did we mention it’s win-win?

Below are eight frequently asked questions about studying abroad on a gap year, covering everything from how to find the right placement to visas and more.

Study abroad this year with one of these experiences

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In-Class TEFL Course in La Antigua

from £1098

20 days

Guatemala

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in La Antigua and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign...

In-Class TEFL Course in Surabaya

from £1290

20 days

Indonesia

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in Surabaya and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

In-Class TEFL Course in Buenos Aires

from £1400

20 days

Argentina

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in Buenos Aires and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign...

Combined TEFL Course Ohio

from £935

5 days

United States of America

Join our 5-day combined TEFL course in Columbus and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

In-Class TEFL Course in London

from £1425

20 days

United Kingdom

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in London and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

In-Class TEFL Course in Cusco

from £1230

20 days

Peru

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in Cusco and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

Internationally Accredited 250-hour TESOL Diploma Course

from £489

16 days

Take our 470-Hour TEFL Professional Package and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

In-Class TEFL Course in Corinth

from £1075

20 days

Greece

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in Corinth and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

In-Class TEFL Course in Sydney

from £1290

20 days

Australia

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in Sydney and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

In-Class TEFL Course in Chongqing

from £1055

20 days

China

Join our 4-week TEFL in-class course in Chongqing and become a TEFL/TESOL certified teacher of English as a foreign language.

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3 Day Nairobi City Stay

Hear the call of the wild? Start (or end) your epic African adventure in the heart of Kenya. Step into...

Dubrovnik Dreams

from £1079

Get your kicks from swimming in sparkling blue seas? Love a good novelty cocktail straw? Fancy spending your days switching...

Cycle Provence

from £1255

Wend your way past neat rows of vineyards, beneath towering aqueducts and through forests on this active cycling adventure through...

Salkantay Trek & Machu Picchu

from £619

Salkantay has been dubbed the most spectacular peak in the Peruvian Andes. On this trip, you’ll trek in the shadows...

Jordan Family Adventure

The worst part of resort vacations? Trying to find a spot to lay out your blanket on a crowded beach....

North & South India Real Food Adventure

from £3190

Spend over three weeks discovering the sights, sounds and flavours of India. From Delhi to Kochi and via the ethereal...

Best of Bolivia and Argentina

from £1387

Get off the tourist trail on this extraordinary adventure through Bolivia and Argentina. Uncover the rural history of Potosi, explore...

Azores and mainland Portugal

from £1912

Although modern Portugal can be credited for its contributions to art, architecture and world-class dining, there’s a distant remnant of...

Kenya Safari Under Canvas

from £2285

Visit Africa and forge into the heart of Kenya’s finest game parks on this eight-day overland journey. Visit Kenya's amazing...

Northern Sprint

from £849

On your marks, get set, sprint. Run, don't walk as we travel the Northern Sprint via some of the most...

Articles and stories about studying abroad

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How do I find the right study abroad placement?

This will depend a great deal on what you’re interested in doing. At one point or another you’ve probably thought about what kind of further education or career you would like to pursue in the years ahead. Studying abroad gives you the opportunity to follow those aspirations, while also offering the perfect chance to travel, broaden your horizons, meet new people, make yourself more employable, and maybe even learn a new language. There are so many options for studying abroad you’re bound to find something to suit you. Consider what you’re really passionate about, carefully research possible study abroad destinations and the benefit they would have to you, and take it from there.

What kind of study abroad options are available?

Loads! There are brilliant educational programs and facilities all over the world, each offering something different and exciting. One of the most popular is languages – what better way to learn a language than living in the country that speaks it. You can practice everything you learn in your studies on a daily basis, making the whole process considerably easier. Other popular study abroad options are media and journalism (particularly if you want to be a travel writer), medicine, business and finance, and childcare. Studying in a different country and exposing yourself to new ideas is the best way to gain knowledge and experience on your chosen topic.

Where should I go to study abroad?

This will often depend a great deal on what subject or field you are looking to study. For example, if you’re interested in medicine and/or childcare, you could take a study program in developing countries where you can get some hands-on experience helping local communities, working alongside experts inside and outside the classroom. If you see yourself as more of a high-flying business type, living it large in the city, make your way to one of the amazing cities in Europe to learn more about business and finance. If you want to learn Spanish, go to Japan. Just kidding! You know where to go. There are so many study abroad destinations available, you’re guaranteed to find one that suits you.

Why do I have to pay a fee to study abroad?

It might seem odd to have to pay a fee to go and study abroad, where you’re going to be working your socks off. The reason for the fee will depend on what kind of study abroad placement you’ve chosen. Often it will cover expenses involved in having you study there, such as your travel costs, visa fees, accommodation, and other administrative costs. If your time studying is going to include practical experience, such as working on community or medical projects in developing countries, your fee may go towards paying for local full-time staff or equipment necessary to the project. It may also be invested back into the local community. We recommend you read each study abroad internship carefully, and if you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Do I need visas and vaccinations?

You may need a special kind of visa in order to legally live and study in another country. Many study abroad placements will offer help in arranging this, but it may be necessary to do your own research too. Europe remains a popular destination for British students to study abroad as no visa is required to study in EU countries (at least until Brexit comes into effect). Visa requirements can differ greatly depending where you are from and where you are looking to study.

Similarly, we always recommend going to see your GP about what vaccinations or immunisations you might need (if any) before you depart. What you might need will depend on your chosen country – and what region of that country you’ll be calling home – as well as what type of study and hands-on work you might be doing there. Always make sure to see your doctor well in advance of travelling, as some vaccinations may require multiple visits or take some time to become effective.

Will qualifications I gain abroad be valid back home?

Almost any formal qualifications you achieve (well done, you!) while studying abroad will be internationally recognised, meaning they can be used to apply for jobs in your home country. Any informal training or skills gained, such as learning a language, can be formalised with an exam back home, if you think that would be valuable. If it is not clear from a listing what qualification you will receive, be sure to do some research and find out exactly what you will be getting from a study abroad placement, and how this will help you in the future.

Can I travel while studying abroad?

We believe travelling and seeing more of your host country is an integral part of studying abroad. Although you’re there to study a particular subject or field, you’re also there to broaden your horizons and develop your life skills. There’s no better way to do that than travelling as much as you can, meeting new people, and experiencing new cultures. Your studying is likely to keep you pretty busy, but your time off is very much your own. Chances are you’ll make friends with people you’re studying with, giving you people not only to travel with, but to share all the local tips. Your interest in the host country should always be an important factor when looking at studying abroad.

Can I put studying abroad on my CV?

You can, and you definitely should. Look at it from an employer’s point of view: which job applicant do you find more impressive, a person with a qualification in a certain subject who has never left home, or somebody who is equally qualified on paper but gained it by showing the maturity, motivation, and outgoingness to study abroad and expand their horizons? It’s the latter, every time. Having lived abroad will also have equipped you with important life skills (even if you might not realise it) that will be attractive to an employer, such as organisational skills, communication skills, and a general maturity gained from travelling. Put it on your CV and be proud as it opens doors for you.

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