Can you afford to take a gap year?
When the school year comes to an end or you’ve just finished your last year at university one thing lots of students look forward to is taking a gap year, to travel and broaden their horizons. However new research suggests that 37% of Brit students want to take a gap year but can’t afford to, with some looking to defer taking a gap year until they are financial able to afford it, when they are older.
Gap year’s used to be a rite of passage, common for many peers, to brag about where they went, across Asia, Australasia and South America however now, mainly due to rising costs of travel and crippling tuition fees, students are no longer taking this journey of self-growth. My Voucher Codes surveyed 18-24 year olds to find out whether they were planning on taking a gap year, they found the majority (37%) wanted to take a gap year but stated they couldn’t afford to. The results also showed that 20% were wanting to take a gap year and were planning on when they were older and in a better financial position.
Idealistically waiting until your older and in a better financial position might seem like good planning, however as you get older your responsibilities increase. From owning a home to having a family to support can stop you from taking a gap year, plus that’s only if you’re lucky enough to work somewhere which allows you to take a sabbatical. Could you afford to take even a few months away from work, you will have to save a lot more money to do that than you would when younger,
One option open to students struggling with debts and little cash flow is to take a mini gap, after finishing their education, around 4 or 5 months. If it’s well planned you can ensure it is really beneficial in terms of personal development and adding vital skills to your CV. Not taking a few months of to get drunk and get a tan, but to learn a new language, work somewhere foreign or help a charity. It might not be for a full year, but it could just give you an edge over another candidate fresh out of university for a job.
It would be a shame to see costs stopping young people getting out and seeing the world, there’s a lot out there and a lot you can learn.