Taking a gap year has numerous perks. We finish high school when we are 17 or 18 years old. It’s actually quite young when you think about it! Taking a gap year gives you the time and freedom to figure out what you want to do with your life and make the best decision possible for your future. This is, without a doubt, the most crucial reason. Take a look at our list of reasons why having a gap year has so many advantages in this blog.

Complete a TEFL course before you go as this will enable you to get work in any country without having to know the local language. There are also lots of TEFL communities worldwide and a great network out there to make your travels safer and more enjoyable.

Also Read: How to avoid Burnout as a TEFL Teacher

Travelling and Preparing for TEFL Certification during the Gap Year

  1. Your Future

Deciding what you’d like to do for the rest of your life is a big decision. Taking a gap year before making this decision can have a huge impact on what you choose to do. With some life experience behind you, your educational route will be completely different. You may find a passion abroad or find out that perhaps it’s not the route you wanted to take at all. Either way, the right choice for your future will become all the more clearer after your gap year. 

  1. Money

Education is a very important milestone for everyone in the world. It sets you up for life and gives you degrees and certificates that will help you find the perfect career. But let’s face it! Education can be expensive. For some countries, education is free or with low costs, and for others, it can be a considerable amount. This can rack up some huge student debt. Taking a gap year by working abroad in a country with a lower cost of living can seriously help financial struggles during your studies. As a TEFL teacher, you earn a western wage nearly anywhere in the world, meaning you can save quite a bit in a year. This will definitely help you with your education financially, such as education fees and rent. 

  1. Memories

The best thing about a gap year is that you will no doubt make a lot of memories. You’ll make new friends, see the world and have an experience of a lifetime. If you can’t yet see the professional benefits of a gap year, that’s ok! But be sure to trust us when we say the experiences you have while abroad are memories you will remember forever. With teaching hours, you’ll be able to visit the world’s best tourist spots and plan excursions with like-minded travelers. 

Travelling Memories during the TEFL Certification

  1. Mental Health

Education and decision-making for your future can be stressful and even cause anxiety. Taking a gap year can relieve this stress and make you a healthier person. You are essentially taking a year out, while also being productive. Mental health can be overlooked and thought as a secondary issue after education, but this should never be the case. You come first, so if you need a year off to explore other options, absolutely take it. 

  1. Work Experience

Education is very important, but as you’ll see within each industry, work experience always trumps education. This is why so many graduates will complete internships and apply for graduate programs. Employers also appreciate the international experience. Why? Because you are worldly and may bring cultural assets to the table, even if the work abroad was not the same industry. For example, you may be able to suggest a software system to your company that would not be well-known in your home country but works way better than the current system. 

  1. Networking

Networking is something that we can’t learn in school. It is a life skill that needs to be picked up at some point. Without networking, you’ll only get so far. Traveling the world and taking a gap year means that you’ll meet lots of new people from all walks of life. You’ll also find yourself building a rapport with them faster than you would at home in a familiar environment. Always take their information when abroad and connect with them on LinkedIn or follow them on Instagram. People are always happy to help in the future and give a few likes and shares, which will stand to you in the future. 

  1. Job Prospects with TEFL 

We’ve got you excited about a gap year, but why use the TEFL route to do it? Teaching English as a foreign language is a booming industry with hundreds, even thousands of jobs available every day. You can find contract work everywhere as well, so you don’t need to stay in one place for the whole year. TEFL teaches you how to teach English without translation. This means you don’t need to know the local language to get employed. This opens a lot of doors for you and you are not subjected to a limited amount of countries. 

  1. Discover a Hidden Passion

After working for a year as a TEFL teacher, you might find that it’s what you want to do for a living. You might get addicted to travel, love being an educator, or fall in love with a country. While abroad, you may even find other passions that you would not have tried at home through taking up a hobby abroad and doing a side hustle. The sky is the limit! 

  1. Work Certifications

As a young professional, your CV/resume will look a little empty in comparison to others who are applying for the same position. Having an extra certification to present to potential employers will seriously help you stand out in front of the crowd! 

  1. Credit towards your Degree

Some people like the concept of taking a gap year but are concerned about “falling behind” in their studies. Don’t be concerned! There are numerous gap year programs that offer college credit, allowing you to continue working on your degree while on the road. You may be able to apply federal loans toward your program cost if you have college credit, and your school may even provide financial help or support for your experience. 

Also Read: The Advantages of TEFL Internships

Travelling the world and Preparing for TEFL Certification during the Gap Year

FAQs

Q: What are the benefits of taking a gap year before college?

There are many advantages to taking a gap year. We finish school at the age of 17 or 18. When you think about it, it’s seriously young! Taking a gap year means that you have the time and freedom to find out what you want to do and make the right decision for your future. This is probably the most important reason. Read our list in this blog to see why taking a gap year has its many benefits. 

Q: Is it worth it taking a gap year?

Without a doubt, a gap year is worth taking and has several advantages. For some, you know what you want to do and have the means to do it. However, for most of us, it’s not that clear-cut. A gap year will help you for the future, and let’s face it, also very fun! You can earn money while traveling the world and get real-life experience.

Q: What are some challenges of taking a gap year?

When taking a gap year there are a few things to consider. The main one is that it can be quite hard to motivate yourself back into a learning environment and get back to college or university. If you find self-motivation difficult, perhaps apply for college before you go and apply for a deferral year. This way you have an end date to your time out. 

Another challenge is finance. If you do a gap year correctly and work as you travel, your savings don’t have to be huge. However, you will need a start-up fund. Budget yourself correctly and list what you’ll need. Some of the main sources of draining your bank account will be flights, the first month’s rent and deposit (before your first paycheck), and excursions when you arrive. Most people tend to spend a lot in their first month before getting their first paycheck. Use numbeo.com to help you budget correctly with the cost of living. 

Q: When should you take a gap year?

In short, whenever you want! In our opinion, the best times would be when you have just completed school and before college or in between your graduate and post-graduate studies. This way you’ll start your studies with a fresh mind. If you choose to go between your college term you may start to forget some of your knowledge and have to do a bit of extra study when you come up to catch up!

Q: How do you successfully take a gap year?

Earn money as you go. Prepare your trips ahead of time. Be adventurous and make friends along the way. And most importantly, make some amazing memories. 

Complete a TEFL course before you go as this will enable you to get work in any country without having to know the local language. There are also lots of TEFL communities worldwide and a great network out there to make your travels safer and more enjoyable. 

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