If you’ve decided not to go to uni this year (or you’ve just decided you don’t know what you want to do with your life, full stop), you’ve probably put some thought into seeing the world before you’re effectively forced to enter the world of work. You’ve probably also come up against some resistance from family of friends, who are questioning your decision – ‘You’ll get into debt’, ‘It’s dangerous’, ‘You’ll lose your work ethic’ and ‘You won’t want to go to uni when you return’ are just some of the negative comments you may come across.
These people care about you, so listen to what they have to say, but if you’re dead set on travelling, you’ve got the rest of your life to spend your time off at a familyholidaypark or at a villa in Spain. The world is your playground – and exploring it is an experience that you will never forget. Here are the best reasons why you should spend your gap year travelling – use them at will!
You’re young, free and unshackled – what more of an excuse do you need? Life won’t always be this way – you’ll probably meet someone at some point in the future, and want to settle down. Trekking across India with a partner is one thing, but doing it with a small child is quite another. Put simply, you won’t get a chance to do this when you have a family. Take advantage of your carefree life!
It’s very easy to assume that you’ll always be able to see the world. Plenty of people imagine that when their children leave home, or when they make some more money at their job, they’ll up sticks and travel. We say, life for living – and it’s the most precious thing you’ve got. Don’t assume that you’ll live to 80, and you’ve got all the time in the world. We’re not being macabre, just honest – make the most of today, because tomorrow might be very different.
If you don’t have a fully-fledged career path at the moment, that’s a good thing – use this time to work in a job that will enable you to have as much fun as possible whilst letting you save. Don’t concern yourself with finding something that may mean your resolve to travel steadily decreases – it’s all about keeping your eye on the prize. Research how much your tickets will cost, open a savings account, and focus on making money – you’ve got plenty of time to find a career when you return.
Talking of careers, don’t be fooled into thinking we’re trying to put you off having one – just the opposite. Showing that you can take care of yourself, that you have an inquisitive mind and that you’re capable of thinking outside of the box are just a few of the traits that employers look for – and nothing will say this quite like a stint travelling. It’ll also show employers that you’re good at mixing with diverse groups of people, making your own decisions, and that you’re not afraid of being outside of your comfort zone, which is never a bad thing.
If you’re from a small town and you’re finding it hard to meet new people, this is the ideal opportunity to make friends and meet good-looking people. I’m sure you understand what we’re trying to say; if you’re young, free and single, this is an ideal opportunity to meet the opposite sex. Go forth and have fun!
You know this already, but learning a language massively increases your chances of getting employed. Nothing will allow you to learn faster than living in another country, so why not get started with a beginner’s course before you leave, and do your best to learn the language whilst you’re living abroad? This means that you’re more likely to land a career where you can travel, and, of course, you can drastically increase your chances of finding work in any country that speaks your second language.