How to save for your gap year

Other | Wednesday 23rd September 2015 | Ben

Many teenagers will go straight from school to university, but according to the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) an estimated 25,500 will take a year off to travel or volunteer abroad. This is not simply an opportunity to see the world - the experience will look good on your CV too.

Raising emergency funds

There are lots of ways to prepare for a gap year and the earlier you start the more you can save. Setting up a budget plan will allow you to begin building up enough money for the adventure of a lifetime. You can get a quote from Car Cash Point to borrow money against the value of your car. This could help you buy your ticket.

Working and selling

Getting a part time job while you are still at school or college will help you get used to budgeting and the Thisismoney website has some simple steps to follow to help you get started. Alternatively you could earn up to £100 per month by advertising on the side of your car. The marketing company will apply an adhesive wrap to your car with an advertising logo printed on it; this doesn’t cause any damage to your paintwork and is an easy way to earn some extra cash.

Saving money

Just working one day a week and saving your wages can soon build up a nice little nest egg for your gap year, but the more hours you can work the more you can save. You do have a great incentive. If you’re not used to having money then you won’t miss your wages when you get paid, but try not to be tempted to spend any of your savings. You can also collect all of your old CDs, mobile phones and computer games and sell them online. Every penny helps and once you’re enjoying your year off you’ll be glad that you didn’t spend too much.

Living on a budget

There are many ways to save and learning to live as cheaply as possible will not only save you money for your year off, it will also help you live on a restricted budget while you’re away. Cooking your own food rather than buying takeaways is a good way to start saving and writing out a list will also help. You can get your friends to save at the same time as you and you’ll soon start to make it into a challenge. Who can save the most?

Volunteering abroad

An article in the Guardian online explains how you can volunteer abroad during your gap year. Even though this can work out expensively there are some schemes where you earn your keep by working and at the same time seeing some amazing countries. This will give you something to add to your CV and might help you get the job you’re aiming for on your return from your travels. Before you book your placement you should do as much research as possible and ensure that you are old enough to work in the country that you choose. Some countries have age limits for certain jobs.