Maybe you’re just finishing your finals and have decided to take a year out before embarking on Post-Graduate study, perhaps you’ve got your second set of student exams out of the way and decided to have year out from being an Undergraduate? Either way, if you’re looking for a break from study to go and adventure – you’re probably using the more familiar vernacular of a Gap year.
But what’s involved in this mythical year, where you can see the world, experience different cultures, learn some essential new skills and generally come back with a sense of how small our little blue planet really is? Well fear not, we’re here to point you in some of the directions you might look to get yourself underway if you are planning a Gap year…
First off, you need to decide what you want to get out of your Gap year. Is it just a jaunt to see other parts of the world? Is it a chance to work overseas and gain some valuable
Start at Uni – with Student Union and careers services
The first place to start is with your University careers service or Students Union. With any luck they’ll be be able to recommend some Gap year opportunities that will suit your course of study. That said, the skills you’ll bring back from a gap year are what you’d call transferable, in that they’ll benefit you in whatever you’re doing. Your Uni should also have links into reputable companies who specialise in helping students plan for a gap year abroad.
Student’s Unions also often provide opportunities for funded or sponsored Gap development projects. Working in some kind of volunteer capacity, they’re often linked to a global charity, so can add weight to your CV.
Specialist Gap Year Companies
Gap year travel agency is big business. So you’ll find lots of companies specialising in the Gap year market. They’re a good place to start, bear in mind that question about what you want to get out of your gap year – are you looking to get stuck in to conservation, healthcare, education – or something more sporty like skiing or snowboarding? There are lots of providers out there – and, just like good self storage companies, we suggest the reputable ones with a good track record – and always check that they’re ABTA and ATOL protected.
Practical Considerations & Logistics
As well as deciding on where you’ll go and what you’ll do, you need to think about the practical side of going away for from several months to a year. A big part of that will be knowing about how to prepare for where you are going.
Will you need to apply for a complicated Visa? Is the water drinkable? Will you need comprehensive vaccinations, so on and so forth. If you’re choosing to go away through a specialist Gap company they’ll almost certainly advise on all this for you. But if you’re going it alone you’ll need to sort it all yourself. Gov.uk have a really useful country-by-country Foreign Travel advice guide so you can get up to speed on all the things you need to think about.
What to do with Your stuff.
If you’re going away for a whole year, you’ll need to work out what to do with all the stuff that you can’t take with you. That might just be a few boxes of books, some tech and Uni papers. Or it might be a whole set of furniture and furnishings. Whatever you need to store we can make space for you – and if you’re booking for a long term student storage (like 12 months) whilst you galavant across other continents – then we’ve got some great offers.