How to take a meaningful gap year

PC: Mollie Bylett

A gap year is a period of time traditionally taken by students after they leave college.  However, travelling at an older age for a year is becoming increasingly popular too.

For many, the idea of a gap year seems amazing. It is essentially a year off to spend figuring out what you want to do with your life. It’s not a year to spend sat at home, binge watching “Friends”, as much as you would like to. This period of time that you spend off can really benefit you and allow you to fully decide what’s best for you.

Gain experience

Gain valuable work experience that will leave your CV and personal statement standing out from the rest. Use the time to be immersed within the industry you would like to pursue a career in at some point in the future. That way, if you do decide to go to university afterwards, you will already have an understanding of how the field you love so much works.


There will be many volunteering opportunities throughout the year that you can sign up for. This alone is something that looks great on uni applications and is a way for you to have a positive impact on the community. Here there are a range of books you can sink your teeth into when finding an appropriate agency to help you.

Save up

Use this year to save up for those bank breaking university fees. Getting a part time job during your gap year, is an amazing way to save for day to day necessities. Try and get work at the hostel where you are staying in return for board and food. Walking everywhere will also not only keep you fit but keep you financially savvy.

Pursue an online course

Look into extra classes that  to further your knowledge before university. Look into online courses, where you can work alongside your own schedule and complete them in your own time. The Open University offers a range of courses for you to dive into, no matter where you are living.

Keep memories

This is also a time for you to have fun. It is a year for you to do explore new places and cultures. Keep a blog. This will help you with some skill-gaining, but it will also be good for your memory bank. You are experiencing a high density of amazingness, so remember it. Work hard and make memories.

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