End of Exams… Now What?

It’s almost time to celebrate the end of exams. The stress and pressure of the last year are over for now – there is nothing else you can do… apart from plan your next adventure!

2014 whole groupConsidering a Gap Year?

As the end-of-exams-pre-results limbo approaches, you have plenty of time to think about your options. Whether you want a break from education, or are thinking about a back-up plan if things don’t go your way on results day, here is our step by step guide to planning a gap year.

Ski Gap yearPlan of Action

There is no right or wrong way to ‘do’ a gap year, whether your dream is to backpack across the globe, volunteer in Africa or take a course that gives you life-long qualifications, taking a year out will give you life experiences and opportunities. There are plenty of websites and companies out there offering gap programmes. Think about the following things when you are looking for Gap Year opportunities.

1) What do I want to do? 

Ian Logan and groupChances are you have a mate or two that are also gap-yearing. And whilst planning with a friend can take away the nerves and anxiety or going-it alone, really ask yourself if your plans match up. There’s no point in travelling together if one of you wants to spend months skiing and the other is looking to trek across Peru. Research what you want to do and don’t be afraid to go your separate ways, you can always meet mid-year somewhere exotic!

2) Will I enjoy it?

It might look great on job applications, but if you sign up for something or plan to go somewhere and it doesn’t spark a fire of excitement inside you, it might not be the gap year for you.

3) Will I see the places I want to see?  

Route planning and time scales are the key to gap year success – if you want epic snow and mountains, a ski or snowboard gap programme is perfect. Once you’ve completed your time in a ski resort, you can move on to sunnier places or chase the snow.

4) Can I afford it?

Budget is essential – all gap programmes cost money, even if you are looking to volunteer. Costs generally cover flights, accommodation, training and other essentials. If you are looking at an internship, make sure to ask how much work you will get and clarify that this will cover your living costs.

5) Will it boost my CV?

Experiencing other cultures and lifestyles will give you life skills which you can apply to future job roles. Gap year volunteering, courses and internship programmes show a great work ethic and offer you personal accomplishment which sets you apart from the rest – employers love to see candidates achieving something worthwhile from your year out.

6) Convincing my parents

Some parents are quick to encourage a gap year, others look at taking a year out as a waste of time and costly. If you need to win your parents round, going to them with a plan of action is key!
Working your way through this list and approaching your parents with all the facts is the best way to get their support – make your case with budget solutions, future prospects and a plan for your return and they’ll soon be on-board.

Gap year ski board instruct

Winter Sports Company specialise in winter gap years, running ski instructor courses, snowboard instructor courses and ski instructor internships across the world in Europe, Canada and New Zealand. We’re always happy to help with friendly advice.



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