Taking a Gap Year? Here Is What to Consider

Often, high school students graduate from high school and aren’t ready to jump into college yet, so they take a “gap” year to experience new things. My brother did this and wrote about having money for the first time. Another time students may take a gap year is after they have completed their undergraduate degree but before they move on to a graduate or professional program.

A gap year can be a great way to experience new things and grow personally. Before you take your gap year, make sure you have thought about the following:

Health insurance coverage. Depending on your age, you may no longer be covered on your parents’ health insurance and may need to buy your own. Taking a gap year without health insurance is not advised as one accident could lead you to financial disaster. Even though health insurance may be a pricey, it is worth the expense.

Programs you may want to join. There are many programs available for those looking to take a gap year. The key is to find the one that appeals to your unique interests. Before you begin searching for a gap year program, consider where you would like to live. Do you want to go abroad? If so, what country would you like to go to? What would you like to do during your gap year? Would you like to help those who are sick or help children? Have an idea of the basics before you start searching for gap year programs because there are many available.

Your budget. Of course it is possible to spend a small fortune on a gap year, but it doesn’t have to be that expensive. Some gap years can cost as little as $5,000, while others run $10,000 to $15,000. While this is expensive, it is less than you would likely pay for a year of college tuition, room and board. When you consider the personal growth that can occur as well as the possible insight that you may gain as to what career path you may enjoy, many people find a gap year worthwhile.

While a gap year was often something rich kids pursued, it is no longer just limited to the wealthy. A gap year is a viable option for anyone, and there are ways to cut corners if need be. With proper planning a gap year can be a successful way to take a year off college and grow as an individual while helping others.

Taking a Gap Year? Here Is What to Consider

Sweating the Big Stuff

2 thoughts on “Taking a Gap Year? Here Is What to Consider

  1. I am of the bent that taking a “gap” year is necessary for most high school graduates. Most high school students do not yet have a clear idea of what they want to do in life and most are not financially responsible. I just don’t think that sending undecided and financially irresponsible kids to an expensive college is the smartest thing to do. I would rather they take a gap year first to experience the real world, get a job, budget their own money, and figure out what they really want to be. Experience after all is the best teacher.

  2. I’d say people would be well advised to live in the real world upon high school graduation until they can achieve an income that will pay for college. Do that, and you’ll understand the cost and value of college much better and graduate debt-free.

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