Starting to plan your dream gap year adventures? Don’t get too ahead of yourself until you’re sure you have enough in your bank to match up with your dreams. With the exception of a lucky few, this is going to mean knuckling down to some hard work and being saving savvy.
Don’t panic though, you’re not on your own… we’ve come up with some ways to fatten your wallet and make all your gap year dreams possible.
Before any of the planning starts
Step 1 - you need to set yourself a budget. Think about exactly how you want to live your best gap year life, where you want to go and in what kind of style. Don’t forget to factor in things like visas, vaccinations and insurance.
Ok, so now you have the budget in place it’s time to work out how you are going to produce all the money you need?
Set up a new bank account
A good place to start is by setting up a new bank account just for your travel savings. It will make keeping track of your money that much easier and will hide it away so you can’t dig in, plus savings accounts often have better interest rates… every little helps.
Get a job
So this is the main one and where the bulk of your dough is going to come from...
Getting a job is part and parcel of a gap year, it adds to the experiences you will gain, people you’ll meet and skills you’ll learn that can be added to your CV.
The harder you work, the shorter amount of time you’ll need to work for, so knuckle down and get two jobs if you need to. Focus on saving all the pennies for your travel fund. There’s no better motivation to force yourself out of bed in the morning than knowing there is a beach at the end of it all.
The dream – work for 5 months, travel for 7.
How to spruce up your funds
Look for sponsorship
This is a great one if you are going to be doing some volunteering. You can set up a Go Fund Me account and share it with your friends and family or write begging letters to your school, big businesses and your local authority who often have pockets of money stored away to sponsor young people in charitable causes.
For example if you were going to Cambodia, you could write about the importance of the project bringing clean water, sanitation and education to communities that are still in recovery following the horrors of the Khmer Rouge Regime.
Sign up to Easy Fundraising
It’s a great initiative that has partnered with loads of huge retailers including Asos and Amazon, every time you spend money with them Easy Fundraising will donate a % to your travel pot. You can get your extended family signed up and keep the pennies trickling in.
Keep an eye out for our Easy Fundraising competition starting on 17th Septebmer 2018!
Do something to fundraise yourself
This could be anything from a car boot sale, selling your old clothes on eBay or even running a marathon to raise some funds for your volunteer adventures. If you run a marathon you can also get in beach body shape for your travels… win-win!
If you have a Christmas or a birthday between now and when you leave either ask for money towards your flight costs or some gap year gadgets that you’ll need for your travels. Check out this blog for some ideas…
Hold back on the booze
This might not be a popular one but go teetotal when you’re planning and saving, then put all the money you would be spending on beer in the pub into your travel account… you’ll be surprised how quickly it adds up.
Working abroad is a great way to keep yourself going when travelling and make your adventure last that little bit longer.
The list of options is long, from working on a ranch to behind a bar. There’s something to suit your background and experience. Just remember to make sure you have the right visa so you’re working on the right side of the law.
Read this blog for some tips.
The final option
If push comes to shove, ask your family – they might not be able to help you but if you don’t ask you don’t get. Plus the more you travel, the more vicariously they can live through you!
Ready to get saving?
I can promise you now, your gap year will be worth all the money spent and all the saving so don't feel overwhelmed. With the right organisation and saving stragety anything is possible...
Now you know how to build your travel kitty it’s time to put it into action. Head out, find yourself a job and get training for that marathon.
on 14 / 09 / 2018