Why Take a Gap Year?Don’t be scared to take a Gap Year after getting your exam results, in between education institutions or even as a work break. Taking time out from life can benefit you in many way.

Chad Schwab


1 year ago in News

Don’t be scared to take a Gap Year after getting your exam results, in between education institutions or even as a work break. Taking time out from life can benefit you in many ways.  We are part of the Ticket to Ride Group, one of the UK’s leading gap year providers. We stay in touch with all our past riders that we have helped “do a gap year”, so we have seen the benefits that it can bring. 75% of people that have taken a gap year say that the time out helped them make the right decision when choosing their career and 88% said that a year our added to their employability.

“A gap year is still one of the most worthwhile experiences you can have,” says Marcus Sherifi, travel editor at Gapyear.com.

Personal Development

Personal Development is a great buzz word at the moment. When you understand what it means it is easy to see how a year spent doing something amazing and worthwhile will really make a difference to you personally. Personal development is all about improving your self awareness and knowledge as well as developing skills which contribute to building your confidence and identity. What better way to work on all of this than away from your normal life in beautiful places while taking part in experiences that many people will never get the opportunity to do.

 

Gap-Year

Independence

One of the big things that happens as we grow up is our need for independence, some of us go and buy a car, some of us get a job, others will move out of home, or go to University. There are also a group of us that need to leave our comfort zones so badly that they go as far away as they can and experience something completely different. In our work organising trips and courses around the world we have seen how pushing the boundaries and becoming independent has helped individuals develop and discover what being away from your family network is like. While being away from home always helps you to develop and grow, it also teaches us that we don’t need to be completely free from what we thought we wanted in the first place to become independent.

 

Gap-year-South-Africa

 

“Generally speaking I think if you talk to most academics they think that gap years used wisely – and the key is used wisely – are a very good thing.” – Marcus Williams, Deputy Director of Student Recruitment University of Birmingham

Relax, Unwind, Reflect

Everyone has a different reason for taking a gap year. No matter what the reason, one of the rewards is always that it provides time to get away from what you were doing and a clear space to decide what your future might be. No matter how you use your gap year you will benefit from a mental break away from education or work. You will find that you have more space in your head to reflect and your mind will work through all the things that normal life restricts it from exploring. Away from the commute, social media, work commitments, family time, formal learning and all the mundane bits of admin that comes with life, there is space to breath and find out more about who you are. Which is important as people who are comfortable with who they are have more confidence and are ultimately happier people.

 

swim-the-stingrays-on-your-gap-year

New skills

When people look at what you did during your gap year and we mean people who will take part in deciding your future, like University Admission Tutors and Employers, they will want to know if your gap year was a wise use of your time. The best evidence you have is the new skills you have acquired during your time out and how you can apply them in your life.  These new skills, and experience in applying them, are probably the biggest benefit you will get from taking a gap year.

Employability

Many people worry about the effect that taking a gap year may have on your employability but you shouldn’t! As we have already said, you will learn a huge amount of new skills that are transferable into the workplace, but what are employers actually looking for? Staying in full time education doesn’t always prepare you for work and employers like to employ people with the “soft skills” that is is only gained through previous work experience, which many people will get on their gap year from, doing vocational training, working to pay for the gap experience or by working abroad. Employers also love people who have been “out of their comfort zone” as it these experiences that mean the employee will be more prepared to take on new challenges and take on big tasks. Many gap year experiences will also teach good communication, leadership, planning, researching, timekeeping and management skills which is great as it is exactly the the things that employers look for in a candidate.

“Former gap year students are generally more focused and responsible” – UCAS

 

Bungy-jumping-experience-on-a-gap-year

Ideas & Inspiration

This may seem a silly thing to say but a gap year could change your life in a way that you could never have thought of. The founders of our sister company Ticket to Ride were inspired by their gap year to set up business making sure others could have an amazing year out just like they did. You may discover a passion for a subject that you have never come across before and end up devoting your life to it. We have met many people who have come to do a ski or snowboard course with us, or a surf course, and have ended up dedicating their lives to becoming an instructor. The truth is you never know where that spark of inspiration will come from but with time to be free that you get during a gap year you may just discover it.

Beach-yoga-on-your-gap-year

Experience

They are called gap year experiences for a reason and the best thing about amazing experiences is that you always have something to talk about. You will always have an interesting tale to tell in an interview situation that makes you stand out although this will be far different from the one you will tell your mates in the pub, which will also be very different from the story you tell your parents friends.

See-incredible-places-on-a-gap-year

There are endless benefits to doing a gap year as long as you choose one that is rewarding and interesting to you then it will be worth doing. If you need anymore inspiration then have a check out at our 5 Amazing Gap Year Ideas blog.