If you’re considering taking a gap year when you finish high school, you’re not alone. Students choose this option before continuing to university for a variety of reasons. Some wish to save some funds before they commit to a full-time study load. Others intend to return to the education system as mature-age students to access their preferred course.

Though there may be a goal in mind for your gap year, there’s still a chance that you’ll end up spending it aimlessly and wondering where the time went. To help you avoid this pitfall, we’ve put together a guide on how to plan the ultimate gap year.

Take On Casual Work

First up, we suggest that you take on casual work for the coming twelve months. Savings are a good foundation for any life path, and having the extra work experience on your resume will be great for future employment prospects.

If you’re not sure what to do, the great news is that recently graduated students often make the best online tutors. This is because the content is still fresh in your mind, so you’ll be able to help students from the grades below you get an edge on the competition.

Keep Learning

It’s a good idea to find something you enjoy learning and make it part of your schedule. This can be pretty much anything that takes your fancy. The main goal is to keep yourself in the practice of acquiring new skills.

If you’re stuck for ideas, why not look at studying a new language or signing up for a local dance class? Or, if you feel you need some help with adulting, consider a cooking class or short course on managing your finances.

Keep Bookings Flexible

Structure and goals are important, but a gap year is also the perfect time to be spontaneous. Because of this, we suggest keeping any bookings you make flexible. That way, you’ll have the option to explore any unexpected opportunities that arise.

You’ll obviously still have some commitments – such as paying rent and going to work – but having freedom outside of these responsibilities can really help you find yourself during your year off.

Consider A Road Trip

When you fly directly to your destination, you miss out on a lot of adventures that could happen along the way. While this may be necessary if you’re running to a tight schedule, a road trip can be a far more enriching and exciting experience if you have the time.

Consider grabbing a group of friends and driving off into the sunset at least once during your gap year, purely so you can say you’ve done it. You may find that it’s actually one of the best experiences you’ll have, and you’re sure to come across at least one or two surprises along the way.

Organize The Future First

A gap year can help you figure out what you want from life while also helping you build up your funds and experiences. However, you’re still going to want a clear path for what comes next. While you don’t necessarily have to have chosen a major, you will want to be on top of whether you’d prefer to attend university or TAFE, and you’ll ideally have a preference for providers.

Having this structure before taking your year off will help you transition smoothly between secondary school and higher education, even with a twelve-month gap. Trust us when we say it can make a significant difference to your future.

So, what are you waiting for? Go plan your ultimate gap year now!

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