Tuesday, 20 September 2011 2:11 PM
You might be overwhelmed by the number of things you have to organise when taking a career break, but here are some tips on how to get prepared for your adventure away.
Even before you decide where you want to go, you might wish to choose what type of things you want to do while you're away. If you've been dreaming of hopping from country to country and exploring as much of the world as you can, you'll want to book a multi-destination ticket so that you have the flexibility of flying to more than one destination.
Alternatively, you might want to use your time off to work abroad and pick up new skills. This may help you develop talents you didn't know you had or encourage you to consider a different choice of profession.
By deciding if you would rather stay in one place, either by getting a job for a period of time or taking part in volunteer holidays and helping out with local communities, this will determine what sort of ticket you'll need.
There are many options available and if you're planning to go for a long time you might decide to work or volunteer for a portion of your trip and travel for the rest of it.
One thing that might help you make this decision is how much money you have saved up to spend on your career break. If you have managed to accrue quite a bit then you might find you can fit in everything you want to do. Otherwise, you may want to shorten your time away or choose between travelling and volunteering. Having a return ticket could also help you budget so that you don't overspend while you're abroad as you will know how long your cash needs to last.
Once you have decided what you want to do, where you wish to go and have booked your tickets, don't forget to spend time getting your other documents together.
Sort out travel insurance as soon as possible as this will should cover you if anything gets cancelled before you leave. You should also research thoroughly before signing up to cover to ensure that you'll be protected for the activities you take part in during your trip and the locations you travel to. If you're planning to journey between nations, a multi-trip insurance policy will be best for you.
It is also important to look at whether you need to get any visas before departing and that you have enough pages in your passport to travel to the countries you want to go to. Also, don't forget to make sure your passport will still be in date when you plan to return!
After you have your documents in order, it's time to think about what you need to pack. This is likely to depend on how long you are going for and where you are spending your gap year. However, some essentials will always come in handy, such as emergency contact numbers, a mobile phone and a first aid kit.
And don't forget your camera, as you're sure to have plenty of things to take photos of during your great adventure abroad.