A gap year could quite possibly be one of the best years of your life, especially if you plan on travelling the world! According to the International Travel and Health Insurance Journal, some ABTA Members specialising in gap year travel have reported increases in bookings of more than 10 per cent over the last 12 months, with Australasia, South-east Asia, the US and South America being the most popular destination choices.
That’s not to say gap years come cheap. They can be costly and before you start packing your bags you’ll need at least a couple of thousand to even think about making your dream a reality. Your first step should be to do your research, decide on what you want to do, where you want to go and get an accurate idea about the costs involved. You should also start planning well ahead so there is plenty of time to apply for quick loans here or raise the money you need. Below are some ways to help fund your adventures:
Get a job
If you don’t already have a job, get one! It doesn’t have to be anything glamorous or related to your degree (but of course it will help your CV) – a job is a job and you’ll soon be jetting off before you know it! Stay focused, raise the money you need then leave; it will all be worth it or consider working as you travel with sites like WWOOF.org
Make cut backs
If you’re going to save money for your gap year, you’re going to need to make some cut backs and sacrifices. Whether it’s drinking, gaming, music or clothes, cutting down on how much you spend on unnecessary items can potentially save you hundreds of pounds. For an unforgettable gap year, cutting back on such things is only a small price to pay.
Fundraising is a popular way to raise money for your gap year and according to The Guardian, experts say that you can gain many valuable and transferable working skills. If you intend to do some volunteering or working for a good cause while you are overseas, ask friends, family and colleagues to sponsor you or donate to support the cause. It may also be worth contacting the local press to raise awareness, especially if you’re planning on something crazy!
Ask for gap year birthday gifts
Why not ask for contributions from your family as a birthday or Christmas gift? Whether it’s helping out with money or buying those travel essentials for your kit, it’s likely they’ll jump at the chance to get you something you actually need.
Apply for a job abroad
Have you considered working while out in your destination country? There are many opportunities for gap year travellers who wish to work abroad and this will be great experience to add on your CV.
Apply for a grant or scholarship
There are many different grants, bursaries and scholarship funding opportunities available from schools, colleges, universities and local authorities that could assist in funding your gap year. Whilst this does vary on your individual situation, it is worth looking into.