Coronavirus and Beyond. Postpone don't cancel. Book now, pay later. FIND OUT MORE.

Advice for Parents

Welcome to The Leap

Guy and I have built this page as we know what it’s like for a parent researching or being asked to commit to a gap year plan. The thoughts of really? With whom? Going where? spring to mind...

So, here we go, food for thought to guide and steer the gap year planning. If you have any questions then drop me an email:

Who are we?

We are one of the UK’s most experienced Gap Year companies, set up (and still run) by Guy and I (Milly) Whitehead in 2002. We provide a collection of financially-protected, high-quality, structured gap year programs where safety and customer care comes first from our office in the pretty market town of Marlborough in Wiltshire.

A personal service – this is our daily mantra – the office team go beyond the call of duty to make sure every volunteer (and family) feels confident abroad and is being supported from start to finish by our UK staff and overseas project co-ordinators.

Read more about our staff ->

P.s. If you are starting to feel somewhat envious of the amazing adventure your child is about to commence on, why not think about heading away yourself? We now offer snappy MidLife trips for the adventurous. Have a little look over here...

The Leap difference

We deliver travel experiences that you can't create yourself, pushing gappers beyond the hostel-hopping trend.

Variety - each program is a carefully crafted itinerary which includes a mix of conservation and community projects, set in different locations, interwoven with adventure weeks to provide a dynamic, ever changing travel experience.

Team travel – our leapers travel as part of a team of like minded gappers, from all over the world. This team experience gives confidence to the traveller, reassurance to us parents, a great social life and more hands to complete the projects.

Personal development - through this unique experience the gapper is able to build self-confidence, spread their wings and gain independence all vital for making a successful transition into adulthood.

Read more about how we deliver our programs ->

Are we good value?

Yes indeed.

Cost wise you are receiving a complex itinerary of multiple locations, projects, adventure activities, group accommodation, food and drinking water (not industry standard!), transport and all project materials overseen by project leaders who live and travel with the team.

Time wise the gapper hits the ground running, they are exploring and contributing from the moment they arrive. The project leaders helping them navigate their new surroundings without having to worry about logistics.

In the background we remove the stress. From first-aid trained project leaders on the ground managing risk to our 24-hour personal phone service should the unthinkable happen, to being on hand to get all that pre-travel admin in order. You'll have someone to turn to before, during and after the program.

About 65% of the program cost is spent overseas, have a read of what each team can achieve: April-Review-2018.pdf

Who organises the extra bits?

Like flights and visas etc? We do.

We organise a team flight through STA Travel, who provide great service and value. This ensures everyone flies out together making the long-haul journey more enjoyable.

Visas/injections/kit/travel advice etc. – on booking you will be given a family login to a personal account where you will find all the information required for pre-departure organisation in your 'Knowledge Hub'.

How do we manage risk?

With every challenge comes an element of risk – so our detailed risk assessments, safety audits and management systems are paramount to our program planning and execution. We follow the highest standards, guidelines and industry/government practice expressed by: BS8848 Trading Standards, The Year Out Group and Gap Year Association.

On arrival in country the team will be given a thorough safety briefing at each location and will be provided with secure accommodation, risk-assessed vehicles, medical evacuation access and tested emergency communications, with access to professional medics, counsellors and advisors to ensure emergencies are swiftly resolved.

Our detailed risk assessments and safety audits for each of our destinations are available on request.

Are we Industry recognised?

Yes, we are.

We're a member of the Year Out Group and the first British company to be accredited by the Gap Year Association, which let me tell you involved 6 months of grueling interrogation.

Our safety procedures are led by the advice of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s 'Know Before You Go' campaign.

We protect your money through a Non-Statutory Trust Account, and your flights are booked through STA Travel who have an ATOL Insurance Bond (3206) through the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Read more about these accreditations ->

Find your perfect leap

Got a burning question?

Got a burning question you can't find the answer to? Filled with panic about organising your gap year? Or maybe you just fancy a friendly chat and some advice about your options? We're here to help.

Or give us a call on +44 1672 519 922

And chat with one of our (very friendly and knowledgable!) team

Opt in below to help us keep track of your planning, so each time you talk to us you can pick up where you left off.

Yes please, let's keep life simple.