Graduation: where next?

The time has finally come. Its graduation day. Long gowns, caps as far as the eye can see, rolled up parchment paper. You didn’t think this day would actually come, and so soon! But here you are, wondering how you came so far and what life has in store for you next. No matter how many career talks you attend or job fairs you book onto, nothing really prepares you for the sudden realisation that after today you’ve only got a few months until the next academic term and the pressure of your future really starts to hit. Some will immediately go into jobs, but for those of you who aren’t quite sure where life is going to take you, why not consider a gap year?

Australia: the place everyone seems to be dreaming of. Well, this could be your home for a year! There are so many opportunities for new graduates in this vast country of heat, sun and surf. If it’s a casual job you’re looking for, why not try your hand at fruit picking in the vast fields of Australia’s countryside, or work in one of the many youth hostels that this country has to offer, receiving refreshments and board (what more could you ask for?). If neither of these strike your fancy and you’re wanting something outside in the blaze of the summer heat, many coastal towns and cities offer travelling students and graduates surf jobs, so grab your board and hit those waves for some extra cash!

If Australia isn’t for you, why not travel 9437 miles across to the other side of the world and hit America. With 50 states you simply can’t go wrong with such diverse cultures and languages. Why not visit California, known for its sandy beaches offering so many water sports you couldn’t possibly deny it? If the beach life isn’t for you but you still enjoy the thrill of being in the outdoors and exploring new and exciting places, you could take one of the many hiking routes to the famous Grand Canyon. If you’re looking for a job that’s more permanent and stands your feet in firm ground, why not consider working at one of the thousands of camps America has to offer? These are not just limited to summer: many states offer hundreds of camps throughout the year that you could be a part of. The sheer size of this continent means it’s suitable for anyone of any age looking for a whole world of ideas!

Whether you’re perusing the streets of Montmarte in Paris, or visiting the Roman Colosseum, this choice of travel ensures your journey is never dull

For those of you wanting to mix your travels with education, South-East Asia is a great place to start. Featuring the three most prominent and popular countries of Thailand, Malaysia and Vietnam, it’s difficult not to delve into differing cultures and really search for life’s secrets. Whether you’re visiting the Kek Lok Si temple in Malaysia, or teaching children English in Thailand, you are never short of an amazing and diverse culture. Test your taste buds at the hundreds of markets lining the streets of each and every town, but definitely be cautious with some of the extravagant tastes and cooking methods. South-East Asia is perfect for those eager travellers who want to experience something completely different to what the West has to offer and really emerge from their comfort zone.

As a new graduate, money is often the biggest concern when choosing a destination and subsequent planning. That’s why Europe has become an extremely popular destination for thousands of students wishing to experience new adventures every day. One of the most popular choices for an excursion is interrailing. Sick of staying at the same resort year in year out? This choice is for you! With unlimited train access across thirty different countries starting at £179, all that’s left to pay for is food and accommodation. And with most of Europe’s countries offering affordable, student-friendly hostels for low-budget prices, you simply can’t go wrong. Whether you’re perusing the streets of Montmarte in Paris, or visiting the Roman Colosseum, this choice of travel ensures your journey is never dull.

The hardest decision everyone faces when planning a holiday is where to go, what to do and how much this will all actually cost. With the large amount of debt all new graduates are in, who wants to pay those extortionate prices and yet not really gain anything valuable? That’s where the beauty of the planet really shows its colours. The world is your oyster. Get out there and discover what you never thought was humanly possible before the reality of real life actually sets in!

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